2015 Volvo XC70


#8 out of 9 in 2015 Wagons

$22,827 - $30,962

2015 Volvo XC70 Performance Review

Note: This performance review was created when the 2015 Volvo XC70 was new.


Performance: 6.9

Reviewers like the 2015 Volvo XC70’s comfortable ride, wet-weather traction and powerful new base engine. However, they say its handling isn’t nearly as sharp as that of its competitors.

  • "Dynamically, the XC70 is safe and predictable rather than athletic and sporty." -- Left Lane News
  • "The 2015 Volvo XC70 is a tasteful and discreet luxury station wagon that can handle the latest snowstorm or bounce up to that vacation cabin without looking worse for the wear." -- Edmunds
  • "If you want a spacious, well-equipped hauler that tackles snow and light trails like an SUV, but drives and maneuvers like a car, the XC70 deserves your attention." -- Kelley Blue Book

Acceleration and Power

The base Volvo XC70 T5 Drive-E has a 240-horsepower, turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine and an eight-speed automatic transmission, which are both new for 2015. The XC70 3.2 AWD comes with a 240-horsepower, 3.2-liter six-cylinder engine, while the XC70 T6 AWD features a 300-horsepower, turbocharged 3.0-liter six-cylinder engine. A six-speed automatic transmission is standard on 3.2 AWD and T6 AWD models. The XC70 T5 Drive-E gets an EPA-estimated 24/31 mpg city/highway, which is good for the class.

Test drivers are impressed with the strong acceleration provided by the 2015 XC70’s new base engine. Critics add that the top-of-the-line XC70 T6 AWD is faster than some sports cars. Some reviewers recommend avoiding the XC70 3.2 AWD because of its slow acceleration, but others think it has sufficient power around town and on the highway.

  • "The 240-horsepower 4-cylinder has impressive power delivery, and the matching 8-speed automatic transmission is excellent. Go full boat with the 300-horsepower turbocharged inline-6, and you'll have a station wagon that can beat some sports cars off the line. In the middle is the naturally aspirated (non-turbo) inline-6, which provides acceptable power for passing and getting up to speed." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "The 3.2 AWD is slow and delivers unimpressive fuel economy; we'd recommend avoiding it. A better choice is the T5 Drive-E, as it delivers more energetic acceleration and excellent fuel efficiency, but you're stuck with front-wheel drive, which severely limits the functionality of this Volvo. The T6 AWD is arguably the best pick here, though again, it returns significantly lower fuel economy than the T5." -- Edmunds
  • "In 3.2 models, power is adequate from a stop, and there's enough reserve muscle for drama-free passing and merging. T6 is notably stronger and does not suffer from turbo lag." -- Consumer Guide (2013)

Handling and Braking

The 2015 Volvo XC70 T5 Drive-E comes with front-wheel drive, while higher trims have standard all-wheel drive. Automotive journalists report that the 2015 Volvo XC70 rides very comfortably, and they praise its ability to traverse mud and snow. However, they write that it’s less nimble than many wagons and crossover SUVs, noting that the XC70 leans during cornering and has steering that’s too light and numb.

  • "Where the XC70 shines is with its premium ride, which pleasantly eradicates the nastiest bumps and potholes and handles smaller road annoyances with a supple indifference, too. The too-light steering doesn't seem to match the controlled ride, though, and the XC70 corners less nimbly than many taller crossover SUVs." -- Edmunds
  • "Despite its potentially surprising straight-line acceleration, you'll want to dial it down in the corners. Volvo's big wagon sits higher than a normal vehicle and has a suspension made to soak up bumps, not tear around tarmac." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "Though accurate, the steering is quite light and lacking in feel, while a fair bit of body roll in turns is the price paid for the wagon's SUV-imitating ride height." -- Left Lane News

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