For years, Volvo’s much-deserved claim to fame was their peerless safety features rather than sexy lines as the boxy rides resembled rolling security-laden refrigerators. Not the most alluring silhouettes, but at least you had a great chance of arriving in one piece.
Thankfully, Volvo designers have heard the shouts of customers demanding their safety in beautiful packages. Good on them.
The all-new 2022 XC60 B6 AWD R-Design SUV checks all the boxes for those desiring classy luxury, security, wonderful technology and yes, beauty. The tester’s R-Design option is the second of four packages that still provides plenty of luxurious enjoyment.
The XC60 R-Design in Fusion Metallic Red offers some serious good-looking chops up against a highly competitive upscale SUV market. The exterior exudes a clean, elegant appearance with a hint of drama. Outrageously sexy “Thor’s Hammer” headlights (auto high beams!) illuminate the road and rotate when turning. Sightlines offer a fresh SUV appearance from any angle and a blunt front allows Volvo to satisfy European pedestrian impact regulations. The rear includes dramatic vertical LED brake lights and dual chrome exhausts.
Darkened 21” 5-spoke Diamond Cut Black R-Design Alloy Wheels are welcome accessories. The low-profile roof rails look great on the sporty R-Design. Thus, the overall shape and trim delivers some sexy panache.
The B6 powertrain includes an eight-speed transmission coupled with a twin-charged (Super & Turbo-charged) 2.0 liter 295 HP/310 lb-ft. torque. You may think that wouldn’t provide enough oomph moving some 4,400 pounds, but the dual charged power along with additional 48-volt mild hybrid battery adding 13ph to deliver admirable smoothness and pep for the targeted audience along with an imperceptible auto/stop that’s a blessing in stop and go traffic. And the impeccable AWD with Instant Traction is a joy when confronted with inclement weather. Four-corner Air Suspension with Adaptive Dampers soak up bumps and potholes—even with low profile tires.
There’s one driving mode (Comfort) but you can adjust the steering and suspension firmness in the tablet settings. I normally solely embrace Sport modes, but the Comfort was just right thank you. One note is you need to move the gearshift twice to go from park to reverse or drive. I’m guessing that’s so you don’t accidentally shift to neutral. Also, the manual shifter goes side to side rather than up and down.
You’ll notice the engine bay is far larger than the engine. As usual, Volvo used safety-first thinking to allow a good distance buffer between engine, bumper, and cabin for reducing collision calamities. Genius.
Gas mileage is a decent 21city/27 highway.
Everything about the interior is superb – especially for a two-row human hauler. Creature comforts abound in the spacious cocoon and the already lovely, scented Nappa leather and contrasted stitched appointments improve even further in the upgraded packages. Soft-touch materials, attractive trim and a perfectly formed steering wheel (heated!) will delight the inhabitants. Think high-end IKEA.
The TFT Instrumentation is clear and attractive. Several ambient lighting choices will accentuate your every mood. An excellent Head’s Up Display shows speed and applicable speed limit signs on the windshield. Plus, the wiper fluid is dispensed through the wipers themselves, thus no more annoying over spray when cleaning the windshield.
Volvo spent seven years redesigning the heated and vented seats with renowned chiropractors resulting in near perfection with zero pressure points to endure. In fact, the XC60 automatically braces the passengers if the car goes airborne or detects an imminent crash from behind. Safety plus!
A large double-panoramic moon roof provides oodles of headroom and looms above abundant rear seating. Graduated stadium seating allows all passengers excellent views. Drivers can also fold down all the rear headrests when traveling alone with one button for increased visibility. Finally, a mere sweep of your foot underneath the bumper opens and closes the trunk lid for entry into a spacious cargo area (17.8 with the rear seats up/63.6 cu.ft. when folded down).
The XC60 now uses the tablet themed Sensus Technology for its infotainment system. The 9.3” vertical touchscreen is sublime and so intuitively easy to swipe and scroll. In addition, Volvo incorporates the seamless voice-activated Google Assistant that works very well for directions, information and even provides jokes.
Given it’s a Volvo, there is a plethora (nearly an entire column) of very worthy safety features. The Lane Departure firmly brings you back when weaving while ignoring the lane signal. For grins, I drove over three miles hands free on the Tollway with nary a concern but plenty of admiration.
Audio availability is either a capable Harmon Kardon Surround Sound 10-speaker surround sound system or the amazing optional 15-speaker Bowers & Wilkins for you audiophiles.
The 2022 Volvo XC60 B6 AWD R-Design is an extraordinary ensemble embodying luxury, driving chops and cutting-edge technology. Thus, it’s the epitome of what a customer desires to arrive safely while coddled in luxurious appointments inside a striking figure. You’d be wise to give it a go when looking for a terrific that checks all the boxes.
Golf Bags: More than two
Curb Appeal: That’s a Volvo?
0-60: 6.1 sec
Mileage: 21/27. Observed 21.5 overall
Must-Haves: B6 package
Warranty: 4year/50K miles
Base Price: $55,100
Price as Tested: $63,360
Who Buys It? Families desiring unparalleled safety and upscale comfort
Finish Line: A terrific vehicle that checks just about the entire wish list
Test-drive the 2022 Volvo XC60 B6 AWD R-Design at Crest Cars in Frisco and Park Place Volvo in Dallas.