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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I want a V60 RD, 6 cylinder. I've driven both the RD, and the P*. For aggressive driving the R works well for me. I have track experience, but those days are gone. Why do I need expensive Brembo brake repairs? Expensive winter wheels with limited choices? The RD seems to make a lot of sense, but there are more P* on the market these days. I may have missed my window of 2015.5's coming off lease. There is a terrific RD sedan locally, but I'm holding out for a V. I like the Rebel Blue, and Nubuck, but not for 10K extra. How many of you are driving at 9/10th's? Am I missing a significant driving experience difference here?
 

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I want a V60 RD, 6 cylinder. I've driven both the RD, and the P*. For aggressive driving the R works well for me. I have track experience, but those days are gone. Why do I need expensive Brembo brake repairs? Expensive winter wheels with limited choices? The RD seems to make a lot of sense, but there are more P* on the market these days. I may have missed my window of 2015.5's coming off lease. There is a terrific RD sedan locally, but I'm holding out for a V. I like the Rebel Blue, and Nubuck, but not for 10K extra. How many of you are driving at 9/10th's? Am I missing a significant driving experience difference here?

The Polestar models have manual adjustable Ohlins suspension. I think it's a great suspension. Expensive too. Also the active stainless steel exhaust which have flaps, that are half open under standard driving mode and fully open under Sport mode. It sounds real good with the 6 cyl. 15-16 model. Also some carbon fiber strut brace and other Polestar unique parts are installed. The big brakes are actually Brembo GT with floating 2 piece design rotors and 6 piston calipers. They will be like $5000 for the parts if you want to add them to R design car. And they work well I think in any Audi RS or Mercedes AMG are similar expensive beefy brakes. The turbo charger I think is also bigger compared to R design. What I'm saying the hardware in the Polestar is top notch and expensive. The wheels you will get anyway if you buy a Polestar so what. I have all season Continental DWS on the 20's no drama here with tires. Can buy OEM 19" Polestar wheels for $400/piece so is not that expensive.

I was skeptical buying a Volvo in general because they didn't make good cars under Ford and before were kind of heavy boats with not so smooth transmissions etc...Anyway I'm an Audi guy who also had bunch of fast Subarus, but got tired modifying cars and wasting time and money so I wanted somewhat practical wagon with decent stock power and extended warranty so I can focus on other things and just drive it. I had a 15' Audi S4 B8.5 with rear Sport differential and the V60 Polestar feels more stable and can get in corners with higher speed so I think the Ohlins suspension is world class if can do it better that Audi's Sport diff, that is dedicated only for S and RS models. I doubt with R design you can keep up with Audi S4 in canyons. I wanted a wagon so I bough a 16 V6 P* for $7K cheaper , than I sold my 15' S4. No regrets. I'm sure R design will have almost as much power , but not sure about the overall handling.
 

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I'm not a pro track driver by any means. I'd say my range of experience in performance is farm tractors up through a few first gen Dodge Vipers, so nothing to extreme. I have only driven the Drive E Polestar and only a few miles. My take away was... it was the best driving sedan I had ever experienced if only it had a manual transmission. If it had a manual I'd say it's worth $10k more all day... without it... meh... it's awesome... but it's still not a manual. If that's not a factor for you then I think it is worth it. I know manuals aren't as quick or fast as today's automatics... but you could make the same argument for artificial insemination, and be equally missing out on the fun.
 

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I have owned both.

P*
Accurate steering
Stiff springs, but the DVT shocks do a wonderful job of reducing harshness (just the opposite of the R-Design)
Aggressive brakes
Exhaust noise - fun for a while, but there is droning when on highway (car is noisy also partly due to the OE Michelins)

R-Design 6 Cylinder
Better daily driver
Ability to add a spare that you can use in front and back (std spare will not fit around Brembo calipers)
Smaller turbo, more responsive at low RPM
Transmission shifting (first to second) much better. I heard programming on the P* is delayed for 1-2 gear change to protect transmission.
 

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I have also owned both. The RD is a great car but is missing brakes, suspension, exhaust, and a few other things which were all addressed by the Polestar. The incremental cost when new to move up from a RD platinum to a Polestar was $7.5k, a pretty good deal for what you get. If those things aren't important to you then get the RD - If the Polestar hadn't come along I'd probably still have it. I agree that the RD would be the better commuter car. I don't put a lot of miles on mine (train station, weekends) so it works for me. If I was commuting 60-70 miles a day I'd probably look for something else.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks to all for the helpful input! Truly good arguments for either version. The smaller turbo and lower rpm pull is interesting. So is the 1-2 shift programming. I wish I liked the 4 cylinder super/turbo better. There are lots of cars on the market now, including a brand new 2017 leftover RD. I have a feeling I would wind up happy with the 4 as my daily driver too. It's just that the 6 puts a smile on my face. I drove the 4 cylinder P* S60 as well. I will say I enjoyed that car a lot! I've owned some nice cars, '77 911, '87 911, '86 535i 5 sp, 88 M5, a couple S6 Avants, and my last car, a 2006 Subaru Legacy GT wagon (hence, my name here). The 4 cylinder R feels like an upgraded version of the Subaru. The Volvo seats are heavenly too. I'm sure I can't go wrong with any of these choices. The V60 was not even on my radar until I drove by a Volvo dealer with a used 2015.5 RD. It had an accident in the history, and I passed on it, but it turned me on to a great sporty wagon option.
 

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I'm not a pro track driver by any means. I'd say my range of experience in performance is farm tractors up through a few first gen Dodge Vipers, so nothing to extreme. I have only driven the Drive E Polestar and only a few miles. My take away was... it was the best driving sedan I had ever experienced if only it had a manual transmission. If it had a manual I'd say it's worth $10k more all day... without it... meh... it's awesome... but it's still not a manual. If that's not a factor for you then I think it is worth it. I know manuals aren't as quick or fast as today's automatics... but you could make the same argument for artificial insemination, and be equally missing out on the fun.
Very valid points. I too was hoping for a manual. And I think there was a niche on the market for wagons especially manual wagons after 2008 when Subaru stopped making the turbo outback ХТ, Forester XT Sport manual which was detuned STI version (Only car I regret selling https://imgur.com/a/OlnT2 ), Audi stopped doing manual Avants in 2008 as well. BMW followed . I think it was a great chance for Volvo, that they missed big time to attract much wider audience to the brand with their sporty line if they offered manual transmission option for a model, that was supposed to be an advertisement anyway. And they had a manual prototype built anyway !

But then had Volvo ever built a production model with real good manual transmission ?

I personally like the value of used V60 15-16 Polestar a lot. Low mileage ones go for hight 20's . What other car can you get in that price range ? Especially with such high quality hardware. I don't commute a lot so I stay at low miles and I have 2 young kits. Nobody has complained about comfort in the V60 Polestar. I can totally live with it as daily if don't need to put a lot of miles on it. But I do have manual wagon as well :)
 

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But then had Volvo ever built a production model with real good manual transmission ?
Unfortunately no, but I think you knew that. ;)

Maybe the Jay Leno Polestar had a decent one?

My '04 S60R had the manual and it wasn't great - vague, long throws, etc. There are better manuals out there.
 

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The manual problem is mostly an EPA problem... I have some hope that once we go EV we might see manuals make a comeback because the cars won't have to get certified separate anymore. That might just be dreaming though.
 

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The manual problem is mostly an EPA problem... I have some hope that once we go EV we might see manuals make a comeback because the cars won't have to get certified separate anymore. That might just be dreaming though.
Isn't the previous Ford Focus RS based on that platform? AWD, manual 6 speed box.
 

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The manual problem is mostly an EPA problem... I have some hope that once we go EV we might see manuals make a comeback because the cars won't have to get certified separate anymore. That might just be dreaming though.
EPA aside, I just don't think the demand is there for manufacturers to want to go through the hassle of offering both. Fewer and fewer new drivers are learning to drive manual transmission cars. Sure, some models will always be available with manual transmission but I think that will continue to dwindle. I hope I'm wrong.
 

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While I have not driven a P* to compare, I have a '15 S60 T6 RD w/P* on 19" wheels and I don't understand why everyone trash talks the RD suspension. Sure, it's firm, but it's not harsh. I use this as a daily and I think it's the most comfortable car I've ever had. If you have rough roads, most any car with 18"+ wheels will probably seem harsh, but I wouldn't discount a V60 RD based on suspension alone. Good quality tires make a difference, too. Just my $.02!
 

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I also have a 2016 V60 rdesign. I have driven both polestar and rdesign. While the polestar is quicker and you get the fancy bits along with the price tag I just couldn’t afford one at the time. So I bought the V60 rdesign and shopped around for the polestar parts. So far I’ve found the whole brake setup for $1800, full polestar exhaust $1200 and front bumper Winglets for $200. Other than the carbon fiber on the interior I have the same seats minus the blue stitching. I found the polestar suspension to harsh for the roads I drive on also


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Probably the biggest reason folks sell their Polestar's is the firmness, harshness, whatever of the suspension on long commutes or under certain road conditions (concrete highways, expansion joints). I find myself taking a different car sometimes if I know the roads I will be traveling on are not great. Probably another reason why Volvo is only offering the SPA S60/V60 Polestar in the US with 19's only. The extra sidewall does make the ride a little better. My winter set are 19's and I've shopped around a bit for another set of 19's to run during the rest of the year - BBS SR's are on the short list.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I hope I can hold out for a regular old R-Design 6 cylinder. How much is a left over 2017 V60 R-Design, new, worth?? Interesting car, but the 4 cylinder. I've driven the 4, and I could live with one, if the 6's dry up!
 

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EPA aside, I just don't think the demand is there for manufacturers to want to go through the hassle of offering both. Fewer and fewer new drivers are learning to drive manual transmission cars. Sure, some models will always be available with manual transmission but I think that will continue to dwindle. I hope I'm wrong.
I don't think you're wrong Wayne. However, with the EPA out of the way, users would be free to legally modify the car themselves. No smog tests to pass and you could get parts shipped from overseas where the market still does exist. It would be illegal currently to convert a US Spec Volvo to manual, even if your not in a area likely to have it checked, as your interfering with the smog equipment. I've never driven an electric manual so I don't even know if I should expect a similar level of fun, but it can't be any worse than auto..... right?
 

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I don't find Polestar's suspension harsh at all. It's subtle to me. I'm on the factory settings and have two young kids. My 2.5 yrs old daughter prefers to ride and sleeps better in the V60 P*, than in my wife's Subaru Forester. Sometimes we go on a ride just to allow her to fall asleep in the car. When we get in the garage she points us towards the P* and don't want to get in the Forester. Also my wife noticed she falls asleep easier and sleeps better there. My 2 cents.
 

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I hope I can hold out for a regular old R-Design 6 cylinder. How much is a left over 2017 V60 R-Design, new, worth?? Interesting car, but the 4 cylinder. I've driven the 4, and I could live with one, if the 6's dry up!
I don't know what a new left over '17 RD would be worth. I would look at a few sites like NADA or KBB to get an idea.
 

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If you have a RD, I would suggest to not pursue the P* mark, but instead build to a more generic high performance standard. As an example, why spend money on a Brembo setup, when many P* owners are swapping out the Brembos for a Rotora Street Challenge kit, that outperforms the Brembos by a wide margin. Same for the engine. Your car and my P* have rhe same exact long block, only the turbo and ECU program are different. Install a kt4 turbo and a Hilton tune and your block will outperform a stock P*. Winglets? The front valance from ERST for the RD looks amazing. Struts, I would never recommend the P* OE Ohlin setup to anyone, the FoMoCo plastic strut bearings are crap, go with a quality coilover instead.
Same with exhaust, there are many quality choices out there.
Take care.
 
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