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2019 Volvo XC60 Review

The 2019 Volvo XC60 has one of the finest interiors in the class – an elegant, relaxing space fused with an appealing amount of standard safety and tech features. The current generation's expected reliability is below average, which is why the XC60 ranks in the middle the luxury compact SUV class.

Pros & Cons

  • Superb amount of standard and available safety features
  • Elegant, spacious, and comfortable interior
  • Smooth ride and handling
  • Excellent towing rating
  • Current generation has below-average predicted reliability

New for 2019

  • New front-wheel-drive base model
  • Heated front seats (AWD models only) and drive modes now standard
  • Synthetic leather replaces genuine leather as standard upholstery
  • More standard features added to uplevel trims

Is the Volvo XC60 a Good SUV?

The 2019 Volvo XC60 is a splendid luxury 2-row SUV. Its interior is one of the best in the class, with divine seats, luxurious materials, sophisticated styling, and a lavish list of standard safety features. The XC60's refinement extends to its powertrains and ride quality as well. The three available engines are among the most powerful in the class, and both engine upgrades are equipped with a turbocharger and supercharger. This lineup also includes a plug-in hybrid powertrain that is quick off the line and remarkably fuel-efficient. Ratings on safety and predicted reliability are still pending for the 2019 model year. The 2018 XC60 earned a perfect safety score but a subpar predicted reliability rating.

Should I Buy the Volvo XC60?

The XC60 is an excellent SUV if you’re looking for a sophisticated ambiance, cutting-edge technology, and a good amount of room in the second row and cargo area. It's also a solid pick if you want a brisk, fuel-efficient engine or plan to tow a small boat or trailer. The XC60's tuning is focused on comfort; it isn't a very athletic SUV. Competitors that provide a higher level of agility include the Audi Q5, Jaguar F-Pace, and Acura RDX.

Compare the XC60, Q5, and F-Pace »

Should I Buy a New or Used Volvo XC60?

Fresh off a redesign for 2018, the new Volvo XC60 comes with a few additional changes. A new front-wheel-drive model will likely shave some money off the starting price, though Volvo has not yet released prices for the 2019 XC60. More standard features have been added across the line, with heated front seats in every all-wheel-drive model and more safety and technology features in uplevel trims. Volvo is also swapping out leather seats (which were standard in 2018 models) for synthetic leather in the base Momentum trim.

These modifications join a lengthy list of improvements that were part of the 2018 redesign. Enhancements over the previous generation include a better base infotainment system, more room for passengers, and an improved suspension system. You can read more about the changes in our 2018 XC60 review, and see details on the older generation in our reviews of the 2016 XC60 and 2017 XC60. If you aren't set on the changes made for the 2019 model year, consider shopping for a used model to save some money. Of the prior model years, we recommend the 2018 XC60 because it offers significant improvements over the prior generation.

We Did the Research for You: 13 Reviews Analyzed

Our Volvo XC60 review includes far more than just one person's opinion. We collected professional evaluations from 13 sources and combined them with concrete data like fuel economy estimates, safety features, and performance specs to help you make an informed buying decision.

Why You Can Trust Us

The Best Cars team – a division of U.S. News & World Report – has been reviewing cars, trucks, and SUVs since 2007. With more than 75 years of combined automotive experience, our editors, writers, and analysts rank a wide variety of new and used cars and issue three annual awards: Best Cars for the Money, Best Cars for Families, and Best Vehicle Brands. To keep our recommendations unbiased, we decline expensive gifts from carmakers, and a third party handles our advertising.

How Much Does the Volvo XC60 Cost?

Volvo has not yet announced pricing for the 2019 XC60. Expect similar prices to the 2018 models, which started just above $41,000 for the base trim level. MSRP in 2018 reached as high as $45,300 for the top-level Inscription. In 2018, the plug-in hybrid trim levels were priced from $52,900 to $56,700, with a $5,002 federal tax credit available.

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

Volvo XC60 Versus the Competition

Which Is Better: Volvo XC60 or Volvo XC90?

With nearly identical scores in our rankings, the Volvo XC90 and XC60 are both fine choices, though there are a few differences. The XC90 is larger by about 10 inches and has more cargo room. While it comes standard with two rows of seats and seating for five, uplevel models carry anywhere from four to seven people, with a set of second-row captain's chairs or a third-row bench seat among the options. Other choices (including trim levels and powertrains) are similar between the two, so your main decision boils down to whether the XC90 is worth an extra $5,000 or so.

Which Is Better: Volvo XC60 or Volvo XC40?

The Volvo XC40 is a brand-new model for 2019. This luxury subcompact SUV is the smallest SUV from Volvo, though its seats are plenty spacious. It is less expensive than the XC60 (by about $8,000), has less cargo space, and comes with fewer standard features. Both are good choices, though, so pick the one that matches your size needs and budget.

Which Is Better: Volvo XC60 or Audi Q5?

If you want an SUV that’s energetic and athletic, the Audi Q5 is a sublime choice. Like the Volvo, the Audi's interior has a top-notch build quality and lots of cargo space. Both are a good buy, though the XC60 comes standard with more safety features.

Compare the XC60, XC90, and XC40 »

XC60 Interior

How Many People Does the XC60 Seat?

The XC60 has five seats, and both rows of seats are spacious and comfortable. The front seats come with 10-way power adjustments. Synthetic leather upholstery and heated front seats are standard. You can dial up the swankiness by opting for upgrades such as Nappa leather, massaging and ventilated front seats, and heated rear seats.

XC60 and Car Seats

There are two sets of lower anchors and three tether anchors in the back of an XC60. The LATCH hardware is easy to use, though it can be challenging to maneuver around the lower anchors while clipping in a car seat.

XC60 Interior Quality

Boasting a selection of high-grade materials paired with excellent fit and finish, the XC60's cabin exudes sophistication. The atmosphere is especially light and airy, thanks to the standard panoramic moonroof. The base model takes a slight step down for 2019, as synthetic leather upholstery replaces the previous model year's leather seats. An array of first-class options are available, though, including matte driftwood inlays, upgraded aluminum trim, and Nappa leather.

XC60 Cargo Space

With the rear seats folded down, the XC60 has one of the largest cargo holds in the class at 63.3 cubic feet. The Jaguar F-Pace is one of the few rivals with a similar amount of maximum cargo space. The XC60's 22.4 cubic feet behind the second row is closer to average for a compact SUV.

XC60 Infotainment, Bluetooth, and Navigation

The bulk of the XC60's audio, climate, and vehicle settings are adjusted through its Sensus Connect infotainment interface and its 9-inch touch-screen display. Its menus are easy to navigate through, and the system is relatively responsive. This Volvo is also loaded with lots of standard features, including a 10-speaker sound system, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and voice commands.

Read more about interior »

XC60 Performance

XC60 Engine: 3 Lively Choices

Three engines are available in the 2019 XC60 – the base 250-horsepower T5, the 316-horsepower T6, and the 400-horsepower T8. All come with a polished eight-speed automatic transmission.

Of the three, the upgraded T6 four-cylinder is the favorite among critics. With both a turbocharger and a supercharger, the T6 feels more like a potent V6 engine. The base T5 is also turbocharged. While it isn't as brisk as the T6, it's still energetic, and it's a good alternative if you don't want to spend the roughly $3,400 for the T6 upgrade. With the T8 plug-in hybrid powertrain (which adds an electric motor and a lithium-ion battery to the T6 engine), you'll increase both your horsepower rating and fuel economy.

XC60 Gas Mileage: From Very Good to Great

The XC60's fuel economy ratings with the T5 engine – 22 mpg in the city and 29 mpg on the highway – are above average for this class. Both ratings drop by 2 mpg with all-wheel drive, and the city rating drops to 19 mpg with the T6 engine. Compared to the base powertrain, you can save almost $550 a year with the Volvo XC60 T8. This plug-in hybrid can drive about 17 miles on all-electric power. When both the electric motor and gasoline engine are in use, it earns 58 mpg-equivalent combined and 26 mpg combined once the battery is depleted.

XC60 Ride and Handling: Tuned for Comfort

The XC60 is designed to provide a relaxing ride, and it does. The ride is smooth, particularly with the optional air suspension system, and body movements are kept nicely in check. Five drive modes are now standard in every model – Comfort, Eco, Dynamic, Off-Road, and Individual – giving you the option to adjust elements such as acceleration, shift points, steering response, and body height. A new front-wheel-drive T5 model is available for 2019. You can match all engines with all-wheel drive.

XC60 Dimensions and Weight

The XC60 is 15.4 feet long. Curb weight ranges from 3,888 to 4,716 pounds.

XC60 Towing Capacity

The XC60 boasts outstanding numbers when it comes to towing. The T5 and T6 engines can pull trailers up to 5,291 pounds, and the T8 powertrain can tow up to 4,409 pounds. By comparison, the Mercedes-Benz GLC has a maximum tow rating of 3,500 pounds, and the Audi Q5's hitch tops out at 4,400 pounds.

Read more about performance »

XC60 Reliability

Is the Volvo XC60 Reliable?

Predictions on the reliability of the 2019 XC60 are not yet available, but the outlook isn't good based on the 2018 model. J.D. Power gave the 2018 XC60 a below-average rating of two out of five. That's the lowest rating a vehicle can receive.

Volvo XC60 Warranty

The 2019 XC60 comes with a four-year/50,000-mile warranty.

Read more about reliability »

XC60 Safety

XC60 Crash Test Results

Though the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has not yet released ratings for the 2019 XC60, it did score the 2018 model, which is nearly identical. The 2018 XC60 aced every IIHS crash test. It received an IIHS Top Safety Pick designation and was scored Superior for its ability to prevent a front crash. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has not yet issued crash test information on the second-generation XC60.

XC60 Safety Features

The bulk of the safety features offered in the 2019 XC60 are standard. These include advanced systems that step in if you are at risk of running off the road (run-off road mitigation and protection), cross over into the wrong lane (oncoming lane mitigation), or are getting too sleepy to drive (driver drowsiness monitor). Other standard safety features include collision mitigation with active braking, automatic braking after a collision, active high-beam headlights, traffic sign recognition, lane keep assist, and a rearview camera. The XC60 can also scan the road ahead and alert drivers of intersections, cyclists, pedestrians, and large animals.

Among this Volvo's safety options is Pilot Assist, a semi-autonomous system that monitors conditions around the vehicle to help keep you centered in your lane at a safe distance from the vehicle in front of you. Note that this system still requires the driver's attention and will disengage if your hands are off the steering wheel for too long. Additional upgrades include blind spot monitoring with steering assist, rear collision warning with braking, rear cross traffic alert, active park assist, front and rear parking sensors, adaptive cruise control, distance alert, a head-up display, and a 360-degree camera.

Read more about safety »

Which Volvo XC60 Model Is Right for Me?

For 2019, the Volvo XC60 comes in three trims (Momentum, R-Design, and Inscription), each of which can be matched with one of three available engines. The base T5 engine is a 250-horsepower, turbocharged four-cylinder. The 316-horsepower T6 engine sports both a turbocharger and a supercharger, while the 400-horsepower T8 is a plug-in hybrid powertrain. The T5 is the only engine that can be paired with front-wheel drive (all-wheel drive is optional with this engine and standard with the other two). An eight-speed automatic transmission is the only gearbox choice.

We delve into the particulars of each trim level below. Pricing, though not yet available for 2019, will likely be close to the 2018 model's prices. A federal tax credit of around $5,000 will likely be available for XC60s outfitted with the T8 plug-in hybrid powertrain.

When it comes to value, the XC60 Momentum offers the best combination of amenities and price. Its set of advanced safety features is impressive, and the base sound system features several user favorites, such as the ability to connect your smartphone via Apple CarPlay or Android Auto. Match this trim level with the powertrain of your choice, with prices estimated to range from around $40,000 to $53,000.

Volvo XC60 Momentum

True to the Volvo reputation of a focus on safety, the starting-level XC60 Momentum comes with a remarkable number of advanced safety features. Collision mitigation with active braking, the ability to scan for potential complications (such as intersections, cyclists, pedestrians, and large animals), traffic sign recognition, a driver drowsiness monitor, active high-beam headlights, and a rearview camera are included in the base model. In-car technology comprises the Sensus Connect infotainment system, a 9-inch touch screen, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, voice commands, Bluetooth, satellite radio, and 10 speakers. Heated front seats are now standard, but leather seats (previously standard) have been replaced by synthetic leather upholstery. Other standard features include dual-zone automatic climate control, a panoramic moonroof with a power sunshade, and an in-cabin air filtration system. Pricing will probably be close to 2018's MSRPs of $41,500 for the T5 Momentum AWD, $44,900 for the T6 Momentum AWD, and $52,900 for the T8 Momentum AWD.

Volvo XC60 R-Design

The XC60 R-Design builds off the amenities of the Momentum trim, and adds a 14-speaker Harman Kardon sound system, front and rear parking sensors, active park assist, blind spot monitoring, a proximity key, and power-folding head restraints and seats in the second row. It also boasts a sportier appearance, with unique styling elements such as a special grille and wheels, cloth and leather sport seats, and R-Design badging. Prices will likely be about $44,800 with the T5 engine, $48,200 with the T6 engine, and $56,200 with the T8 plug-in hybrid powertrain.

Volvo XC60 Inscription

The XC60 Inscription has the same amenities as the R-Design, aside from that trim’s exclusive sports aspects, and adds four-zone automatic climate control, driftwood trim, Nappa leather upholstery, and a navigation system. Based on 2018 prices, this edition will likely cost around $45,300 for the T5 Inscription, $48,700 for the T6 Inscription, and $56,700 for the T8 Inscription.

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

See 2019 Volvo XC60 specs and trims »

The Final Call

From its sophisticated interior to its polished performance, refinement is everywhere you look in the 2019 XC60. The XC60 boasts high-tech standard and available safety systems, and the current generation earns excellent crash test ratings (though ratings for the 2019 model are not yet available). Some drivers will yearn for more agility than the XC60 offers, but this SUV has no significant drawbacks in this area. Its below-average predicted reliability rating (as measured on the 2018 XC60) is a concern, though. A half-dozen rivals best the XC60 in this category.

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

  • "This 2-row/5-passenger compact-luxury SUV is an alluring alternative to rivals such as the BMW X3, Mercedes-Benz GLC, Audi Q5 and Acura RDX thanks to its sensual design, strong roster of standard features, and variety of sophisticated powertrains. … Volvo is known for being at the vanguard of safety, and the XC60 carries that mantra with a standard suite of accident-avoidance features." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "Indeed, you get an awful lot of car for your money in the 2018 XC60. … But no matter the dollars and sense, the XC60 should definitely be considered alongside that pair or anything else in the segment. It has the equipment, space, quality and safety to be considered a smart buy, along with the style and character to make it an impulse one. Just don't expect many surprises." -- Autoblog (2018)
  • "What Volvo's done with the XC60 is take a perfectly comfortable and capable contender and made it even more comfortable and capable, but this time with a bit of Scandinavian sensuality. Is that enough to make it best in class? Not just yet, but it's certainly more than just another Swedish Fish in the sea this time around." -- New York Daily News (2018)

Buying

Expert Advice

Last Updated: November 21, 2018

Rising Demand: Redesigned for 2018, the Volvo XC60 is crushing the sales game compared to this point in 2017, with demand currently up by 43.9 percent. However, the competition is winning out at the moment as the XC60’s sales hover in the middle of the luxury compact SUV segment.

Research more buying advice »
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