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- Highs Attractive exterior design, upscale interior digs, Polestar Engineered model combines speed with hybrid efficiency.
- Lows New infotainment system isn't as user-friendly as the old, Polestar model rides stiffly.
- Verdict For SUV avoiders, the V60 and V60 Cross Country wagons offer similar space and flexibility with more driving verve.
For car buyers who want something larger than small hatchback but don't want to park an SUV in the garage, the 2023 Volvo V60 and V60 Cross Country are a rare pair of compact station wagons that can address that need. We love wagons; they ride lower to the ground, often weigh less than similarly sized SUVS, and tend to handle better—so they’re more fun to drive. If you’re mind conjures a dowdy image at the mention of the “w” word, know that the V60 models are anything but drab. Upscale exterior styling gives way to a luxe interior with ample tech features. Driving enthusiasts with distinct wagon tendencies will drool over the hottest Polestar Engineered model and its punchy 455-hp plug-in hybrid powertrain, but the base engine in the V60 Cross Country will likely be more than adequate for everyone else. If you need more room for cargo, the larger Volvo V90 Cross Country offers a similar luxo-wagon vibe—and luxury station wagons from other makers, such as the Audi A4 Allroad and Mercedes-Benz E-class All-Terrain, are worth a look too.
What's New for 2023?
The V60 and V60 Cross Country station wagons both receive a light styling refresh for 2023 that includes new wheels and reworked front and rear bumpers. Volvo's new Google-based infotainment system has been added as well, which includes an updated interface to the car's digital gauge display and the central vertically-oriented touchscreen.
Pricing and Which One to Buy
We're partial to the racier Recharge T8 Polestar, which forgoes the Cross Country's lifted suspension and SUV styling cues for a more performance-oriented look. Its ride is on the stiff side, but that's a compromise we're willing to make for the T8 powertrain's extra power and electric-only driving mode. If the Polestar's performance just isn't for you, we won't judge you for choosing the Cross Country. Honestly, they're both good choices.
Engine, Transmission, and Performance
The Cross Country model is powered by a 250-hp turbocharged four-cylinder and comes with all-wheel drive. When we tested the T5 powertrain, we found it to be a strong performer, with a 60-mph time of 6.4 seconds. As long as you're not pushing it too hard, the V60 feels agile and responsive through corners. The souped-up Recharge T8 Polestar comes with a 455-hp plug-in-hybrid powertrain that pairs a turbo- and supercharged four-cylinder with electric motors and all-wheel drive. This arrangement is far quicker than the T5 model, leaping to 60 mph in just 4.4 seconds. The Recharge T8 Polestar also comes with a manually adjustable suspension—something driving enthusiasts might think is cool—so the owner can dial in the car's riding behavior to their preference.
Fuel Economy and Real-World MPG
The Cross Country model earns ratings of 22 mpg city, 31 highway, and 25 combined. Despite being the lineup's performance-oriented model, the V60 Recharge T8 Polestar's plug-in-hybrid powertrain is fairly efficient, earning a fuel-economy rating of 74 MPGe, with up to 41 miles of claimed electric-only driving range. We haven't had a chance to test the V60 on our 75-mph highway fuel-economy test route but we'll update this story with details when we do. For more information about the V60's fuel economy, visit the EPA's website.
Interior, Comfort, and Cargo
Volvo designs some great interiors, and the V60's is no exception, largely mimicking those of the S60 sedan and the XC60 SUV. The cabin is spacious, the seats are comfortable, and the design is undeniably upscale. But Volvo's minimalist approach means that many controls are hidden away inside the infotainment system. Like other Volvos of this vintage, the cabin looks and feels more expensive than it is, which makes it all the more impressive. Cargo capacity is great, too, something we expect from a station wagon. In our testing, we fit eight carry-on suitcases behind the rear seats and a total of 22 with the seats folded. For reference, the Audi A4 Allroad fit two fewer carry-ons in both tests.
Infotainment and Connectivity
The V60 and V60 Cross Country come standard with Volvo's Google-based infotainment system. The new interface runs on the same vertically-oriented 9.0-inch touchscreen as the old Sensus Connect system, but operates much quicker and more fluidly. New it is, but not flawless; the interface features on-screen icons that are too small for easy use while driving. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are both standard, as is Bluetooth connectivity and an onboard Wi-Fi hotspot powered by a 4G LTE data connection.
Safety and Driver-Assistance Features
Volvo's safety-focused ethos means driver-assistance features such as lane-keeping assist, automated emergency braking, and other collision-avoidance technologies are standard. For more information about the V60's crash-test results, visit the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) websites. Key safety features include:
- Standard automated emergency braking with pedestrian detection
- Standard lane-departure warning with lane-keeping assist
- Available adaptive cruise control with semi-autonomous driving mode
Warranty and Maintenance Coverage
Volvo's standard protection plan doesn't break from the luxury-brand norm, offering four years or 50,000 miles for both powertrain and limited warranty coverage, but it does add some value in the form of a three-year complimentary scheduled maintenance plan.
- Limited warranty covers four years or 50,000 miles
- Powertrain warranty covers four years or 50,000 miles
- Complimentary maintenance is covered for three years or 36,000 miles
2020 Volvo V60 Cross Country T5 AWD
front-engine, all-wheel-drive, 5-passenger, 4-door hatchback
ESTIMATED BASE PRICE
turbocharged and intercooled DOHC 16-valve inline-4, aluminum block and head, direct fuel injection
120 cu in, 1969 cc
250 hp @ 5500 rpm
258 lb-ft @ 1800 rpm
8-speed automatic with manual shifting mode
Wheelbase: 113.2 in
Length: 188.3 in
Width: 72.8 in
Height: 59.0 in
Passenger volume: 93–95 cu ft
Trunk volume: 19 cu ft
Curb weight (C/D est): 3950 lb
PERFORMANCE (C/D EST)
Zero to 60 mph: 6.4 sec
Zero to 100 mph: 16.4 sec
Standing ¼-mile: 15.0 sec
Top speed: 130 mph
EPA FUEL ECONOMY
Combined/city/highway: 25/22/31 mpg