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Today I thought I'd post a review of the new S60 because I've found it to be overall a very good car. I normally don't post to forums, but I thought it'd be fun to start so this is my first post, and get ready because its an extensive review of an S60 loaner I received while my 2016 S60 is in the shop for minor maintenance.

Backstory
I've owned (currently leasing) a few volvos in the past 10 years, my parents had a few so I've always liked them. I currently have a 2016 S60, and my wife has a 2016 XC60 that we both lease, and we have a 2008 Z4 M as our fun weekend/summer car, while our Volvos are our easy daily drivers. I'm posting this review, as soon my lease on my S60 will end, and I have yet to drive any of the new Geely-owned Volvos and have been curious to see what's changed, and just thought anyone curious would maybe want to read a review by a previous Volvo owner.

The model we received for our loaner was a 2019 S60 Momentum T5, FWD. It only had two options/packages, a cold weather seat/steering wheel heater, and premium package, totaling ~ $41K. It was Pebble Grey (which is really brown, never understood this color) on black leatherette.

Exterior
This is the biggest and best improvement of all new Volvos. The exteriors are gorgeous with great Scandinavian design and a more athletic and masculine look, and they don't look like anything else on the road. Only downside is colors could be a little better, I'd like to see a black metallic myself, and the Pebble Grey exterior my loaner had, didn't flatter the car, nor look like grey, but this vehicle, looks great overall, and especially good in white or red.

Interior
Overall materials have improved, and a big change that was made is armrest placement. They have finally fixed this issue and moved the armrest to a more natural spot and made it level to the other armrest. I would like to see more leather on the door, the Germans tend to do that, but the soft touch plastics are also very nice, and the carpeted center console tunnel is a nice touch for when resting my knee. While the windows do seem smaller and narrower, I didn't feel too cramped and found the panoramic roof to bring in a good amount of light. The seats are comfortable and supportive (a typical Volvo trait), and actually feel a bit wider/more spacious than the previous S60. I also like that they went away from the waterfall center stack design, and number pad layout, that was getting a bit dated. One thing I do miss however, is that there's a lack of physical buttons and knobs, but I will talk about that in the technology portion. Leatherette was surprisingly soft and supple, and I'm sure the real leather and two tone steering wheel makes a great impression with great feel, but even the leatherette was better than expected, although to get 4-way lumbar, leather is needed. The new door handles are a nice touch, and Volvo has finally made the wiper stalk go in the proper direction, not to mention they also finally fixed the awful wipers they had for years that would constantly smear and bring water back on the windshield.

Technology
This is a mixed bag. While looking modern, the touch screen is both intuitive, but also unintuitive. Its intuitive when it comes to its home screen. Large areas to tap for main functions are very nice and easy to use, while the shortcuts menu, which can feel a bit overwhelming, does put everything all in one place that will be used mainly. My main issue is the climate control system. I really wish it was separated from the touch screen. In a winter day, I worry about how easy it will be to quickly get to my heated seats and steering wheel functions. While the system has been improved in response times, I did start the vehicle later in the day and found that it needed "a moment" to catch up and perform my functions. I feel that the bottom row of buttons and volume knob would have been better suited to the climate control. Luckily I feel that I can possibly deal with this, but I do worry for those who aren't leasing, how the reliability of this system will be. Anyways, on to other things, the back up camera is much clearer and HD, blind spot monitoring is more noticeable, and the digital gauges are cool. I had the basic gauge cluster, but I would say its more than enough, although the fuel level looks ridiculous as its 16+ lines all stacked on top of each other just to display that the car's gas tank was full, a bit overkill and confusing to look at. A full digital cluster and more safety tech is optional, but my loaner didn't have this. Overall this is where most previous Volvo owners may find some trouble in my opinion.

Powertrain/Performance
The 2.0L 4 cylinder Volvo is offering is plenty adequate for their customers. I doubt many owners will drag race their cars or care about engine/speed so the base T5 Turbo 4 is plenty, although if you want AWD (like I do) the T6 which is supercharged and turbocharged is the base engine choice for AWD. I do have questions about the long term reliability of the new engines, especially the T6, but I'm leasing so I don't have many worries for myself. The sound is well... a 4 cylinder, not as nice or smooth as the previous I5 and I6, but again for their clientele, it should be great.

Handling/Ride
Its a Volvo, not a sports car, if you want something fun and sporty, maybe you can look at the R-design, but I think that a 3 series or G70 would be sportier. Luckily I am not looking for a sporty drive, as I already have my Z4 M for that. Like most Volvo owners, I'm looking for an easy and comfortable daily driver. While this car does handle better than any previous S60, most owners won't care or exploit the driving modes/dynamics. I mainly left the car in comfort all day, as I found sport only really holds revs longer and quickens throttle response a tad, but doesn't add to the experience. I mainly wish that sport would add more weight to the steering, but more on that in a moment. Overall the car rides softer somewhat more than my 2016 S60, although it does have the typical firm Volvo suspension, although its nothing too sharp or jolting when on rough pavement. Surprisingly the brake pedal is pretty firm and has short travel, I adjusted to this, but would prefer a bit longer of travel for smoother stopping. Steering is completely light and free of feel, which most owners will like, although I would like some more weight in the steering so it feels more secure (maybe the R-Design fixes this?), as I feel the car could easily under-steer if pushing the steering a little too much. For example, when making a 3 point turn, the steering feels too flimsy and light, with a tap causing it to rotate 1 full turn. While this may be aimed towards their clientel, I do wish they could at least make some adjustments to it in dynamic mode. One nice change is the steering rotation, not only does the car have a better turning radius, but the steering physically rotates more than the old model (a full 2 turns, vs 1.5), which was annoying in the previous S60.

Overall this car is great, and improves greatly on the old model in so many ways, bringing the S60 to the modern world. I will likely lease a T6 Inscription model (for the better seats and features) and would recommend this to many past Volvo owners, but also tell them to try the new infotainment system before buying. Even while now owned by Geely, the S60 and Volvo does still feel like a good ol' Swedish Volvo. While there are some cons (mainly the climate control being associated with the touchscreen), I do feel the overall pros outweigh them, at least in my case.


Hope you enjoyed my review! Here's a few pics of my loaner, again great looking car, but awful color.










 

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Nice perspective and nice pics.

I am always curious why do people cover the license plate info in pics? I understand the need for “privacy” but the license plate is the least private part of any vehicle. :cool:
 

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Nice perspective and nice pics.

I am always curious why do people cover the license plate info in pics? I understand the need for “privacy” but the license plate is the least private part of any vehicle. :cool:
Everyone uses a nich name not the real name to post here. So it is similar. Name is public info but we still prefer not to advertise it everywhere on Internet.

Sent from my Z978 using Tapatalk
 

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Nice review, on-point and helpful, thanks!


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My main issue is the climate control system. I really wish it was separated from the touch screen. In a winter day, I worry about how easy it will be to quickly get to my heated seats and steering wheel functions. While the system has been improved in response times, I did start the vehicle later in the day and found that it needed "a moment" to catch up and perform my functions. I feel that the bottom row of buttons and volume knob would have been better suited to the climate control.
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:thumbup: Exactly


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The 2.0L 4 cylinder Volvo is offering is plenty adequate for their customers. I doubt many owners will drag race their cars or care about engine/speed so the base T5 Turbo 4 is plenty, although if you want AWD (like I do) the T6 which is supercharged and turbocharged is the base engine choice for AWD.
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I really hope they make T5 available with AWD for US customers!..

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Here's a few pics of my loaner, again great looking car, but awful color.
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Maybe that's why it's a loaner?. It is a really dumb move on Volvo USA part to restrict the color choices for US customers. Bright Silver, Onyx Black and Bursting Blue should be made available ASAP, as they are already in other markets. Exterior paint options are limited and very bland (except Fusion Red, which may explain why it is in every S60 commercial). Get rid of Pebble, replace Denim Blue with a true dark blue tone (Navy, Caspian, etc..), replace Pine Grey with a pure green metallic (light or dark). Reintroduce Vibrant Copper and Power Blue, add a darker red metallic...

Offer Contour seats in Blonde, Amber and Maroon leather as an option for Momentum trim. I would gladly pay $1500 for this option, but it will probably never happen.
 

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Steering heaviness is different in dynamic mode. Maybe brake firmness could be different there too but I don't remember.
You can also create individual mode to save your preferred settings.

People seeking for a sporty car usually have quite different feelings and preferences about steering, braking, cornering, suspension etc. For example, sporty drivers would usually prefer to firmer brake but you want longer brake pad movement. My impression is Volvo isn't trying to provide a lot sporty customization.

One thing I do like if possible is to increase the suspension dampening a little more. On my XC60 it takes a few swing to settle down from any road bumper. It makes the car feel like more brisk but I'd prefer to more dampening and less swing. Maybe need different struts but not sure if possible at all with air suspension on my car.

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Re: FusionRedXC60

I didn't experience any noticeable steering changes in dynamic mode. All I noticed was a tad better throttle response, steering still felt very light. From what I've read steering seems to be best in the R-Dynamic, but annoyingly you can't get ventilated or any other color option than black for the R-design, so I will likely deal with it like I currently do, as this is my DD. I have my Z4 for when I need something fun with heavy steering.

Makes sense that they aren't providing a sporty customization, they have the R-dynamic for that, and I'm sure most Volvo owners won't care about driving dynamics. I just found that the brake pedal was surprisingly firm, not a bad thing, just seem un-Volvo like if you get what I mean.
 

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Technology
This is a mixed bag. While looking modern, the touch screen is both intuitive, but also unintuitive. Its intuitive when it comes to its home screen. Large areas to tap for main functions are very nice and easy to use, while the shortcuts menu, which can feel a bit overwhelming, does put everything all in one place that will be used mainly. My main issue is the climate control system. I really wish it was separated from the touch screen. In a winter day, I worry about how easy it will be to quickly get to my heated seats and steering wheel functions. While the system has been improved in response times, I did start the vehicle later in the day and found that it needed "a moment" to catch up and perform my functions. I feel that the bottom row of buttons and volume knob would have been better suited to the climate control. Luckily I feel that I can possibly deal with this, but I do worry for those who aren't leasing, how the reliability of this system will be. Anyways, on to other things, the back up camera is much clearer and HD, blind spot monitoring is more noticeable, and the digital gauges are cool. I had the basic gauge cluster, but I would say its more than enough, although the fuel level looks ridiculous as its 16+ lines all stacked on top of each other just to display that the car's gas tank was full, a bit overkill and confusing to look at. A full digital cluster and more safety tech is optional, but my loaner didn't have this. Overall this is where most previous Volvo owners may find some trouble in my opinion.
A note on the climate bit, I think that you can pre-set a lot of the climate functions to automatically turn on when the temperature is at a certain point. I would have to go through and look again considering it's spring, but I believe that is an option on MY2019 S60s.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
A note on the climate bit, I think that you can pre-set a lot of the climate functions to automatically turn on when the temperature is at a certain point. I would have to go through and look again considering it's spring, but I believe that is an option on MY2019 S60s.
I'm sure thats a possibility, but the problem is that to change any climate option (seat heaters, temp, ac) you still have to look away from the road. Its something that's a little more difficult to adapt to. In my current s60, I just find the knob and turn it a few times without taking my eyes off the road. Honestly the whole touch screen is a very strange approach to infotainment coming from a brand who prides themselves on safety. I'm sure I will eventually adjust to it, but physical buttons still have their place in cars.
 

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I don't feel need for physical buttons. Maybe because climate is mild in my area, climate adjustment is never anything urgent for me and I do it when I am not busy on driving.
And voice control works quite well for climate adjustment.

I have very good suggestion to make it much easier, but they are stubborn and won't take my proposal, unless I can hack into it and change the UI to my design.

I only need + and - button on home screen, to switch between neutral / auto, warm-fan3, hot-fan5, cool-fan3, cold-fan5.
 

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Yep, the one area where voice commands work well is with climate control. I’ve had to change my habits but I’m now at with using VC for that purpose if going to the screen is inconvenient.


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A note on the climate bit, I think that you can pre-set a lot of the climate functions to automatically turn on when the temperature is at a certain point. I would have to go through and look again considering it's spring, but I believe that is an option on MY2019 S60s.
Yes. My heat, steering wheel and rear defrosterare set to come on automatically at temperature appropriate times. Generally have set the car at 68, automatic settings and leave it.
 

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This may be a strange question, and slightly off topic (in reference to 5th pic in the original post), but is it possible to display the coolant temp gauge and not sacrifice the tach dial as well? I have my display set to performance (with the red gauges), and I enjoy having the tach as I actually use the shift paddles some of the time. Most of the photos I see that show the coolant temp gauge are usually with a different color display, and with only the speedo. Just curious if your loaner came this way, or you changed something in the settings to display this.
 

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I know the Koons dealership (we're in the same state). I've had an S90 since 2017, T6 Inscription, loaded. I just ordered a 2020 S60, T6, Inscription, with Polestar. The Inscription is fantastic. The Touch Screen is very easy to use and easy to get used to. I don't miss the knobs, and you can use voice to change the temperature, among other things. Having CarPlay is a necessity for me. The S60 is a bi nimbler than the S90. The only car I've ever owned that had the amazing turning radius of a Volvo is a Saab.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
This may be a strange question, and slightly off topic (in reference to 5th pic in the original post), but is it possible to display the coolant temp gauge and not sacrifice the tach dial as well? I have my display set to performance (with the red gauges), and I enjoy having the tach as I actually use the shift paddles some of the time. Most of the photos I see that show the coolant temp gauge are usually with a different color display, and with only the speedo. Just curious if your loaner came this way, or you changed something in the settings to display this.
Actually those are physical gauges for the coolant and fuel. This loaner model doesn't have the full 12.3in digital gauges that most ads/cars are equipped with so I don't think I can answer your question.This model had a smaller digital gauge with a center mounted speedometer (a small side mounted tachometer appears in dynamic mode). I no longer have the loaner for pictures, but here's an image of gauge cluster I found on the internet.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
The only car I've ever owned that had the amazing turning radius of a Volvo is a Saab.
Really? I've always found Volvo's to have larger turning radiuses, my 2016 S60 is a prime example of this, the steering only rotates 1.5 times round, and I find that I wish it would turn more and have a smaller radius when making u-turns. My son who has an 05 X3 I find has a better steering radius despite the larger vehicle, that and the steering wheel rotates 2 times round, and feels like it has a smaller turning radius when performing u-turns.
 

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Really? I've always found Volvo's to have larger turning radiuses, my 2016 S60 is a prime example of this, the steering only rotates 1.5 times round, and I find that I wish it would turn more and have a smaller radius when making u-turns. My son who has an 05 X3 I find has a better steering radius despite the larger vehicle, that and the steering wheel rotates 2 times round, and feels like it has a smaller turning radius when performing u-turns.
2016 S60 is totally different chassis. Try 2019 model you will know.

Fusion · Red · T8 · XC60
 

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2016 S60 is totally different chassis. Try 2019 model you will know.

Fusion · Red · T8 · XC60
He/she did - that was the point of this thread.;)
 

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Actually those are physical gauges for the coolant and fuel. This loaner model doesn't have the full 12.3in digital gauges that most ads/cars are equipped with so I don't think I can answer your question.This model had a smaller digital gauge with a center mounted speedometer (a small side mounted tachometer appears in dynamic mode). I no longer have the loaner for pictures, but here's an image of gauge cluster I found on the internet.
Thanks, that makes perfect sense now. All of the photos I have looked at were taken mostly at an angle. I didn't even notice that it wasn't part of the full display (which mine is).
 

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Actually those are physical gauges for the coolant and fuel. This loaner model doesn't have the full 12.3in digital gauges that most ads/cars are equipped with so I don't think I can answer your question.This model had a smaller digital gauge with a center mounted speedometer (a small side mounted tachometer appears in dynamic mode). I no longer have the loaner for pictures, but here's an image of gauge cluster I found on the internet.
Here's a photo showing the "T5" base single-ring instrument cluster, showing the rather bizarre tachometer "semi-ring" to the left of the speedometer ring in Dynamic mode. It seems that you cannot get the coolant-temperature gauge with the 2-ring instrument set-up in the "upper-scale" version -- only with this single-ring set-up ... truly bizarre. And it's also bizarre that the tachometer doesn't show up in most driving modes in the single-ring set-up. I'm wondering what the Volvo engineers are thinking here, because it is very stupid.

V90CCT5tacharc.jpg
 
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