Johannesburg - Volvo has been keeping its rivals on their toes of late, having seriously upped its SUV game - first with the classy second-generation XC90 back in 2015 and more recently with the funky new XC40.

The middle child in the line-up, Volvo’s XC60, has also been completely renewed, and this second-generation model has now been launched in South Africa. The new XC60 certainly puts its mid-sized dimensions to good use in that it appears more mature than its aforementioned smaller sibling, yet sportier than its bigger brother.

Rearing to take on the latest Audi Q5, BMW X3 and Mercedes GLC, the XC60 shifts onto Volvo’s modern and flexible SPA platform that also underpins all the latest ‘90’ models and the new SUV comes jam-packed with safety tech.

The City Safety auto-braking feature, for instance, gains steering assistance, while a new function called Oncoming Lane Mitigation also uses this feature to help mitigate head-on collisions. City safety is standard along with Volvo’s Lane Keeping Aid.

The Pilot Assist semi-autonomous driving package, which includes active cruise control, and which can assist with acceleration, braking and steering on well-marked roads up to 130km/h, is a R19 200 option.

As has become the norm for Volvo in SA, customers will be offered a wide variety of engine and spec options, with D4, D5, T5 and T6 engines all available in either Momentum, R-Design or Inscription trim guises. A T8 flagship, powered by Volvo’s 300kW plug-in hybrid drivetrain, is under consideration for our market.

All of the petrol and diesel engines offered are Volvo designed, 2-litre turbocharged units, with varying outputs:

Engine Power Torque 0-100km/h
T5 petrol 187kW 350Nm 6.8 sec
T6 petrol 235Nm 400Nm 5.9 sec
D4 diesel 140kW 400Nm 8.4 sec
D5 diesel 173kW 480Nm 7.2 sec

All engines are paired with an eight-speed automatic gearbox and Volvo’s permanent all-wheel-drive system, and for an extra R26 750 buyers can opt for air suspension with four driver-selectable modes, including an ‘Off Road’ function.

The cabin, and we say this very thankfully, follows the same design direction as the larger XC90, with a feast of soft-touch surfaces sprinkled with satin chrome trimmings and some classy stitching - and garnished with a wave-like inlay that runs across the middle of the dash, which can be finished in a variety of metal or wood trims depending on the model selected.

Your command centre is Volvo’s tablet-like Sensus touchscreen infotainment system with satnav, which is standard along with Volvo’s 31.2cm digital instrument cluster - meaning it’s an all-digital affair from the get-go.

Also standard fitment on all XC60 versions is dual-zone climate control, power-adjustable front seats, cruise control, auto lights and wipers and a multi-function steering wheel.

As for the trimmings, seats are upholstered in leather across the range and base models roll on 18-inch alloy wheels, while opting for the R-Design or Momentum grades gets you fancier-looking 19-inch alloy wheels and various trim-specific styling tweaks.

Generous as the standard amenities are, there is still a fairly substantial list of optional items, including among others, head-up display (R14 900), massaging front seats (R5600), Park Assist Pilot (R7900) and a 360-degree camera (R12  750).

All models are sold with a five-year/100 000km warranty and maintenance plan.

VOLVO XC60 PRICES

PETROL RANGE

Volvo XC60 T5 Momentum 187kW/350Nm R686 546
Volvo XC60 T5 Inscription 187kW/350Nm R730 646
Volvo XC60 T5 R-Design 187kW/350Nm R732 946
Volvo XC60 T6 Momentum 235kW/400Nm R738 034
Volvo XC60 T6 Inscription 235kW/400Nm R782 184
Volvo XC60 T6 R-Design 235kW/400Nm R784 484

Petrol Alternatives

Audi Q5 2.0TFSI quattro 185kW/370Nm R754 000
BMW X3 xDrive30i 185kW/350Nm R753 151
Jeep Cherokee 3.2L Limited 200kW/315Nm R688 900
Mercedes-Benz GLC300 180kW/370Nm R775 391

DIESEL RANGE

Volvo XC60 D4 Momentum 140kW/400Nm R666 024
Volvo XC60 D4 Inscription 140kW/400Nm R710 124
Volvo XC60 D4 R-Design 140kW/400Nm R712 424
Volvo XC60 D5 Momentum 173kW/480Nm R735 636
Volvo XC60 D5 Inscription 173kW/480Nm R779 836
Volvo XC60 D5 R-Design 173kW/480Nm R782 036

Diesel Alternatives

Audi Q5 2.0TDI quattro 140kW/400Nm R704 000
BMW X3 xDrive20d 140kW/400Nm R693 869
BMW X3 xDrive30d 195kW/620Nm R881 213
Jaguar F-Pace 20d Pure 132kW/430Nm R785 704
Mercedes-Benz GLC220d 125kW/400Nm R706 010
Mercedes-Benz GLC250d 150kW/500Nm R730 436

IOL Motoring