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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I suspect that denizens of this thread will greet this post with an I-told-you-so smirk, but here goes anyway. My 2012 XC70 T6 is in the shop over the weekend awaiting delivery and installation of a new speedometer. That should be another thread in another forum. However, I have a brand-spanking new 2012 XC60 T6 with 1100 miles on the clock for a loaner.

I am a bit embarrassed to admit that I am enjoying the XC60 a lot more than I might have expected. I don't consider myself an XC/SUV kind of guy; I got the XC70 only because the V70 was no longer available in this country. I didn't even consider the XC60 six months ago; the two models had roughly equivalent MSRPs similarly equipped, but the XC70 was leasing a great deal better at the time. And it was as close as I was going to get to a V70. But the XC60 has turned out to be an unexpected guilty pleasure. :D

FWIIW, here are a few random observations about my experience with the XC60 loaner: first, it feels a lot lighter and more spritely than the XC70. That caused me to have a look at the tech specs for both vehicles, which turned up the unexpected information that the two cars are about the same weight -- actually, the XC60 is slightly heavier. The XC60 suspension is a bit tighter, but not objectionably so. Ride quality is different but a toss-up between the two cars.

I am getting the same gas mileage on both cars, about 24 mpg on mostly local roads with a bit of highway driving. That might change with more highway driving, because of the XC60s higher profile. I am wondering if the engine/transmission software mapping is different on the XC60 than on the XC70, because the former feels a lot lighter and more responsive. Any techs out there have any info on this issue?

The biggest difference to me, however, is the steering: the XC 60 has much faster, cleaner, and more accurate steering response, and the steering effort is appreciably lower. One of the few gripes I have had about my XC70 is that the car is more tiring to drive on long road trips, because of the greater steering effort at highway speeds. After eight hour trips, I feel it in my arms and shoulders, although maybe that is just a function of my increasing age. The car wants to pull straight ahead and requires more effort than I would like to negotiate long gradual curves. I suspect that the XC60 would be less tiring to drive on longer trips.

I am not yet ready to jump ship from my XC70, but I am really enjoying the XC60 a lot more than I might have expected. Maybe it is just the thrill of a new romance... ;)
 

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I would expect the XC70 to be a bit more comfortable since it seems to have a bit softer suspension AND about a 2" longer wheel base. The shorter wheelbase of the XC60 probably enhances the feel of quicker steering too (not sure if the ratio is actually quicker or not). We actually have the R-Design which is about 10% quicker still - one of my favorite features about the RD actually....made more apparent whenever we have gotten a non RD loaner). I am pretty surprised there is a such a difference in the feel performance-wise - I think the 60 is maybe half a second quicker to 60.
 

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buff, your experience mirrors some of the comparisons I made between our '07(the very last 'old' model unit sold by our dealer) XC70 and our former '10XC60. I felt the stiffer suspension first thing upon taking delivery of the 60(VERY short test drive...basically bought the vehicle sight unseen). Of course, the vehicle was brand new, but the shorter length is immediately apparent. I never noticed a difficulty in steering the 70, but the 60 was quicker, for sure. Our gas mileage was a fair bit lower in the 60, averaging just below 20mpg for three years of spirited mixed driving(with the A/C on 75% of the time).

IF we needed the extra cargo length(it is easier when loading bicycles) and DW didn't 'mind' the slightly lower seat height, we'd be looking at the 70 once again. Actually, if the 70 lost the extra 7-8" in overall length, it would be the perfect size(but then it would almost be the 60!). Probably the biggest influence in our purchase decision back in '09 was the 'brand new' design of the 60 vs the couple-year-old style of the 70(actually, I prefer the 'classic' style of the previous XC70 like our '07). Our 70 was the 2.5T so the engine change would likely make the newer 70 even more attractive to me. ;)

Bottom line...if we NEEDED the rear seat for humans(our Scottie is pretty small) or NEEDED the extra cargo length, we could go back to the 70 in a hurry. The 60 size just makes sense for folks like us, but the 70 is a very nice vehicle!
 

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I'll try and hold back any suggestion of "I told you so", but........

Your experience pretty much mirrors ours from 12 months or so ago when we were looking at replacing our '05 XC70. At the time we road-tested over two sucessive weekends and XC60 and XC0 back-to back. We put nearly 300km (180 miles) on each over the roads and routes we normally use. The comparison in our mind was like night and day. I make no apology for my criticism of the current model XC70 in many of my previous posts. Compared with our P2 XC70 it was like driving a beached whale. Yes it was very comfortable and roomy, but the steering (even with the optional adjustable steering) and general body roll was a huge letdown after our P2 XC70. Sure the P2 XC70 was no sports car, but in our mind it was a good balance between comfort and driving pleasure. With the current model XC70, Volvo went too far to the comfort side of the equation. Don't get me wrong, many people have liked this, but for us it a huge letdown.

By constrast, the XC60 was much closer to the balance we had with our P2 XC70. A perfectly acceptable ride (as long - I suspect - you stay with 17" wheels), but with steering feel and handling that was remarkable for a "top heavy" SUV. And yes it continues to amaze me that both the XC60 and current XC70 weigh pretty much the same. It just shows what Volvo can do if they try.

So I would very much agree with the comments posted here - that is, unless you need the extra room of the XC70, the XC60 is to me an illustration of what the P3 XC70 could have been.

Tony
 

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The biggest difference to me, however, is the steering: the XC 60 . . . steering effort is appreciably lower. One of the few gripes I have had about my XC70 is that the car is more tiring to drive on long road trips, because of the greater steering effort at highway speeds. After eight hour trips, I feel it in my arms and shoulders, although maybe that is just a function of my increasing age. The car wants to pull straight ahead and requires more effort than I would like to negotiate long gradual curves. I suspect that the XC60 would be less tiring to drive on longer trips.
I'm surprised by this, though maybe it's a difference between 2011 and 2012 models? Anyway the one thing I wish was different on our XC70 was the steering - it is WAY TOO LIGHT! I wish it was firmer like my R...
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I'm surprised by this, though maybe it's a difference between 2011 and 2012 models? Anyway the one thing I wish was different on our XC70 was the steering - it is WAY TOO LIGHT! I wish it was firmer like my R...
It has occurred to me that the steering issue might possibly be caused by the tires. The 2011 and early production 2012 XC70 T6s were equipped with 18" Pirelli Scorpion Zero Asimmetrico tires, whereas later production 2012 XC70 T6s, including mine, were provided with Pirello Scorpion Verde A/S tires. The latter are much cheaper (probably the reason for the substitution), quieter, have somewhat better traction, less rolling resistance, and perhaps marginally better gas mileage, but they may be the cause of the straight-ahead pull at highway speeds that I find tiring to fight for long periods of time.
 

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Interesting to hear. I was really considering a 2012 XC70 T6, but decided on the XC60 R instead. Glad I made the right call.
 

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I'll try and hold back any suggestion of "I told you so", but........

Your experience pretty much mirrors ours from 12 months or so ago when we were looking at replacing our '05 XC70.

So I would very much agree with the comments posted here - that is, unless you need the extra room of the XC70, the XC60 is to me an illustration of what the P3 XC70 could have been.

Tony
This is a snapshot of the change made in the XC70 with the new model, I believe. For me, it was as much about style as it would have been(IF we had considered the new XC70)about performance. Not sure what we would have done if the 60 had not come out. The new styling of the 70 just didn't click with us(too space-shippy, although the all black is gorgeous). The white would have been our first choice if it didn't remind me so much of Star Wars fighters. :) The '07 green had a classic 'ranch' wagon sort of look that I felt was perfect here in Texas. I certainly don't regret the 3+ years we had in the XC60, but I miss the 70 from time to time. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Well, I turned in my XC60 loaner to the dealership today. We had eight wonderful days together, sharing trips in the beautiful autumn weather, and it was a very sad parting. We both knew our affair couldn't last forever; it was truly "a trip to the moon on gossamer wings". Despite the superficial physical attraction, we finally had to admit that we were just two very different individuals with different personalities, different needs, and different expectations. It was great fun, but it was just one of those things, just one of those crazy flings. And I am happy to be back together again with my XC70.
 
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