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 petrol187kW350Nm6.8 sec
T6 petrol235Nm400Nm5.9 sec
D4 diesel140kW400Nm8.4 sec
D5 diesel173kW480Nm7.2 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 Momentum187kW/350NmR686 546
Volvo XC60 T5 Inscription187kW/350NmR730 646
Volvo XC60 T5 R-Design187kW/350NmR732 946
Volvo XC60 T6 Momentum235kW/400NmR738 034
Volvo XC60 T6 Inscription235kW/400NmR782 184
Volvo XC60 T6 R-Design235kW/400NmR784 484

Petrol Alternatives

Audi Q5 2.0TFSI quattro185kW/370NmR754 000
BMW X3 xDrive30i185kW/350NmR753 151
Jeep Cherokee 3.2L Limited200kW/315NmR688 900
Mercedes-Benz GLC300180kW/370NmR775 391

DIESEL RANGE

Volvo XC60 D4 Momentum140kW/400NmR666 024
Volvo XC60 D4 Inscription140kW/400NmR710 124
Volvo XC60 D4 R-Design140kW/400NmR712 424
Volvo XC60 D5 Momentum173kW/480NmR735 636
Volvo XC60 D5 Inscription173kW/480NmR779 836
Volvo XC60 D5 R-Design173kW/480NmR782 036

Diesel Alternatives

Audi Q5 2.0TDI quattro140kW/400NmR704 000
BMW X3 xDrive20d 140kW/400NmR693 869
BMW X3 xDrive30d195kW/620NmR881 213
Jaguar F-Pace 20d Pure132kW/430NmR785 704
Mercedes-Benz GLC220d125kW/400NmR706 010
Mercedes-Benz GLC250d150kW/500NmR730 436

IOL Motoring