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MSRP: $35,800 - 55,400

2019 Volvo S60 Review

The 2019 Volvo S60 ranks in the top half of the luxury small car class. It has a strong engine lineup and an upscale, comfortable cabin. However, many rivals are more fun to drive.

Pros & Cons

  • Classy cabin
  • Blissful ride
  • Potent engine lineup
  • Some rivals have more athletic handling

Is the Volvo S60 a Good Car?

The Volvo S60 is a good luxury small car. Regardless of trim level, its cabin is lined with high-end materials, and its seats are some of the most comfortable in the class. It has powerful turbocharged engine options and a serene ride. On top of that, it has great fuel economy ratings. Some rivals have larger trunks and sharper handling, but Volvo’s redesigned S60 is still worth considering.

Should I Buy the Volvo S60?

The redesigned Volvo S60 deserves a look if you’re in search of a classy yet comfortable daily commuter. It is powerful yet fuel-efficient, and it delivers a tranquil ride. However, shoppers looking for more athletic handling or a bigger trunk may want to consider rivals like Audi A4 or BMW 3 Series.

Compare the S60, A4, and 3 Series »

Should I Buy a New or Used Volvo S60?

Volvo fully redesigned the S60 for the 2019 model year. The third-generation S60 has several improvements that make it more appealing than older models, including Volvo’s new Pilot Assist – a partially autonomous self-driving system – and a new T8 plug-in hybrid powertrain. It also gets revised exterior and interior styling, a revamped infotainment console, and more standard features, such as Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

You can likely save thousands of dollars with an older S60, but they’ll lack many of the new car’s updates. To research used S60 models, read our 2016, 2017, and 2018 Volvo S60 reviews. If you decide that an older model is right for you, check out our Used Car Deals page for savings and incentives on used vehicles.

Compare the 2017, 2018, and 2019 S60 »

We Did the Research for You: 11 Reviews Analyzed

To make our car rankings and reviews as consumer-oriented as possible, we do not rely on our personal opinions. Instead, we analyze hard data such as crash test results and reliability ratings, as well as the opinions of the automotive press. This Volvo S60 review draws on applicable research and data from all models in the S60's current generation, which launched for the 2019 model year.

Why You Can Trust Us

U.S. News & World Report has been reviewing cars, trucks, and SUVs since 2007, and our Best Cars team has more than 75 years of combined automotive industry experience. We care about cars, but we care more about providing useful consumer advice. To ensure our impartiality, an independent party handles our advertising, and our editorial team doesn’t accept expensive gifts from automakers.

How Much Does the Volvo S60 Cost?

The base S60 Momentum has a starting MSRP of $35,800. That’s about average among luxury small cars. Opting for stronger powertrains and higher trims raises the price, and a fully outfitted S60 Inscription plug-in hybrid costs about $62,000.

Volvo is also releasing an S60 T8 Polestar Engineered version. However, only 20 of these Volvo cars are available, and we do not have pricing on these models.

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great savings at your local Volvo dealer.

Volvo S60 Versus the Competition

Which Is Better: Volvo S60 or Mercedes-Benz C-Class?

The 2019 Mercedes-Benz C-Class is a good luxury small car. It’s available in sedan, coupe, and convertible body types, and it has several brawny engine options, including twin-turbocharged V8s in Mercedes-AMG models. The C-Class also has one of the nicest cabins in the class. On the other hand, the Volvo will save you money at the pump and at the time of purchase – its starting price is about $5,400 lower than that of the C-Class. The choice here largely comes down to personal preference and budget.

Which Is Better: Volvo S60 or Volvo S90?

The Volvo S90 is a luxury midsize car. As such, it has more room for passengers and cargo than its smaller sibling, the S60. Otherwise, these two Volvo cars are quite similar. Both have high-class cabins with supremely comfortable seats. They share the same powertrain options, though the S90 does not offer a limited edition Polestar Engineered or R-Design model. With a starting price of $48,100, the S90 also costs a lot more than the S60. If you want the extra space, that price jump may be worth it. Otherwise, the S60 is essentially a smaller version of a the S90.

Compare the S60, C-Class, and S90 »

S60 Interior

How Many People Does the S60 Seat?

The S60 can hold up to five people. Leatherette seats and power-adjustable front seats are standard. Full leather upholstery, heated and ventilated front seats, 10-way power-adjustable front seats, massaging front seats, heated rear seats, and a heated steering wheel are available.

There’s plenty of head- and legroom in both rows, even in models equipped with the moonroof. The seats are among the most comfortable in the class.

S60 and Car Seats

The S60 has two complete sets of LATCH child-seat connectors and a tether-only connection for the middle seat.  

S60 Interior Quality

The third-generation Volvo S60 has a high-end cabin lined with premium materials. Its uncluttered and elegant design falls in line with its siblings, the Volvo V60, XC60, and S90.

S60 Cargo Space

The Volvo S60 has 11.6 cubic-feet of space in the trunk. That’s about average in the class, though rivals such as the BMW 3 Series luxury sedan, Volvo V60 wagon, and the all-new Volvo XC40 SUV surpass this measurement. A hands-free trunk lid is available.

S60 Infotainment, Bluetooth, and Navigation

This luxury sedan features the Sensus infotainment system with a 9-inch touch screen, along with a 10-speaker stereo, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, Bluetooth, satellite radio, and two USB ports. A navigation system is optional, as are a head-up display, a 13-speaker Harman Kardon stereo, and a 15-speaker Bowers and Wilkins stereo.

The infotainment system responds better than the interface in earlier models, but there are few physical controls, and it can take some time to master the tablet-style touch screen and menu layout. Standard Apple CarPlay and Android Auto is a plus.

For more information, read What Is Apple CarPlay? and What Is Android Auto?

Read more about interior »

S60 Performance

S60 Engine: Vol-Woah

There are three powertrain designations for the 2019 S60: T5, T6, and T8. The T5 uses a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine that makes 250 horsepower. T6 models have a turbocharged and supercharged version of this engine that produces 316 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque. Lastly, the T8 adds electric motors to the T6’s setup. This plug-in hybrid produces 400 horsepower and 495 pound-feet of torque. An eight-speed automatic transmission is standard with all models.

Acceleration is brisk overall. Models with the base engine will get you around just fine, while the T6 and T8 zoom effortlessly along the freeway.

S60 Gas Mileage: Fantastic

With its base engine and front-wheel drive, the Volvo S60 earns an EPA-estimated 24 mpg in the city and 36 mpg on the highway. That’s one of the best ratings in the class, slightly surpassing rivals such as the Audi A4 and BMW 3 Series. All-wheel-drive models earn 21 mpg in the city and 32 mpg on the highway.  

The plug-in hybrid T8 model is estimated to have around 21 miles of all-electric range.

S60 Ride and Handling: Tranquil Ride

Like other Volvo cars, the redesigned S60 offers a serene ride that soaks up most road blemishes. This is not a sports sedan but rather a relaxing cruiser. Shoppers looking for something more athletic might consider the BMW 3 Series, a Mercedes-AMG model, or even Volvo’s all-new XC40. Front-wheel drive is standard in the S60, and all-wheel drive is available.

Read more about performance »

S60 Reliability

Is the Volvo S60 Reliable?

The 2019 S60 does not have a predicted reliability rating from J.D. Power as of the date of this review.

Volvo S60 Warranty

Volvo cars are covered by a four year/50,000-mile limited warranty. Many luxury small cars have similar coverage.

Read more about reliability »

S60 Safety

S60 Crash Test Results

As of this writing, neither the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration nor the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has crash tested the S60.

S60 Safety Features

Standard safety features include a rearview camera, run-off road mitigation, road sign recognition, lane keep assist, and Volvo’s City Safety system, which consists of forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, and pedestrian detection.

There are also a number of available safety features, including blind spot monitoring with rear cross traffic alert, a surround-view parking camera, parallel park assist, adaptive headlights, front and rear parking sensors, a semi-autonomous self-driving system called Pilot Assist, and adaptive cruise control.

Read more about safety »

Which Volvo S60 Is Right for Me?

Volvo offers the 2019 S60 in three trim levels: Momentum, Inscription, and R-Design. Technically, there is a fourth trim level, which is another plug-in hybrid named the T8 Polestar Engineered. However, Volvo only offers 20 Polestar Engineered models.

The Momentum, R-Design, and Inscription can be further classified by T5, T6, and T8, each of which refers to a different powertrain. T5 models have a turbocharged four-cylinder engine and front-wheel drive, while T6 sedans feature a turbocharged and supercharged version of that same engine paired with all-wheel drive. T8 cars take the T6’s engine and add electric motors.

T6 cars cost $4,500 more than T5s, and T8 plug-in-hybrid models cost $12,500 more than the T5.

The Momentum trim is a fine choice for most shoppers. It has a sizable helping of standard equipment, and it’s available with numerous packages that up the S60’s luxury quotient. Shoppers looking for a T8 plug-in hybrid model will need to consider an R-Design or Inscription trim.  

Volvo S60 Momentum

The Volvo S60 Momentum has an MSRP of $35,800. That gets you a 250-horsepower turbocharged engine, a panoramic moonroof, alloy wheels, rain-sensing windshield wipers, dual-zone automatic climate control, power-adjustable front seats, and leatherette upholstery. You’ll also get a few tech goodies such as a 10-speaker stereo, Bluetooth, two USB ports, satellite radio, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone integration, and the Sensus system with a 9-inch touch screen.

The S60 Momentum also comes with a slew of safety features, including a rearview camera, Volvo’s City Safety Collision Avoidance (forward collision warning with automatic emergency braking and pedestrian detection), lane keep assist, road sign recognition, and run-off road mitigation.

Both the T5 and T6 Momentum trim offer a few packages. For $750, you can get heated front seats – plus heated rear seats with the T6 – and a heated steering wheel. For $2,050, the Premium package adds blind spot monitoring with rear cross traffic alert, front and rear parking sensors, proximity keyless entry, and a hands-free trunk. The Advanced package outfits the S60 with adaptive headlights, a surround-view parking camera, a head-up display, and the Pilot Assist semi-autonomous driving system with adaptive cruise control – all for $2,500. A Multimedia package adds a Harman Kardon premium sound system, a 12.3-inch gauge cluster screen, and navigation for $2,500.

Volvo S60 R-Design

With a starting MSRP of $42,545, the R-Design trim is the sporty sedan in this lineup. It adds the contents of the Multimedia and Premium packages, as well as fog lights, 10-way power-adjustable front seats, and a sport steering wheel with shift paddles.

Heated front seats, heated rear seats in the T6, and a heated steering wheel remain available, as does the Advanced package. Parallel park assist is offered for $200, while a 15-speaker Bowers and Wilkins premium stereo costs an extra $3,200. T5 and T6 models also offer a Sport Chassis for $200.

Volvo S60 Inscription

With an MSRP of $42,900, the Volvo S60 Inscription builds off of the Momentum’s equipment. It features leather seats and quad-zone automatic climate control, along with the contents of the Premium and Multimedia packages.

The same heating options remain available. Each Inscription – T5, T6, and T8 – is available with the Luxury package. With a cost of $2,200, this package adds massaging front seats, ventilated front seats, and power-adjustable side bolsters. The Advanced package is also available in T5 and T6 models.  

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great savings at your local Volvo dealer.

See 2019 Volvo S60 specs and trims »

The Final Call

The redesigned Volvo S60 is a good luxury small car. It has swift acceleration and a sporty R-Design trim, but like the Volvo V60, this car prioritizes comfort over all else. Its seats are exceptionally inviting, and this sedan glides right over rough surfaces without flinching. Although some rivals have sportier handling or larger trunks, the new S60 is still a car worth considering.

Don’t just take our word for it. Check out comments from some of the reviews that drive our rankings and analysis.

  • "For now, the 2019 S60 completes the transformation of Volvo's lineup. It's as solid, stylish and easy to like as every other new Volvo, and better positions the S60 within the highly competitive class of compact luxury sedans." -- CNET
  • "So, we have a few technology quibbles, but overall the 2019 Volvo S60 is a worthy challenger against the A4, the 3 Series and the C-Class. Its elegant styling whispers rather than shouts, yet its impressive performance is certainly deserving of some bravado. This S60 overflows with quiet confidence by artfully blending comfort, safety and technology at a price that makes it slightly more accessible than its German rivals. Even with the knowledge that a redesigned BMW 3 Series is just over the horizon, we're confident the Volvo S60 will remain a top choice for quite some time." -- Edmunds
  • "The 2019 S60 is a testament to how far Volvo has come in recent years. The outgoing car wasn’t bad, but when the XC90 came out, everything else in its lineup felt instantly ancient. The new S60 now has everything good that has turned Volvo around, in one compact package. And the Polestar Engineered stuff opens the door for even more performance models, another good thing. Just don't let the S60 get so far behind next time, OK Volvo?" -- Autoweek
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