Words & Photography: Team Just Urbane

Character, charisma and craft – three things that pretty much define the S60 for me. The mid-size sedan segment has seen a lot of action recently in our country and the S60 is the most compelling offering that has been made here. Hands down, it’s the most alluring car to look at. I don’t want to start my script will all praises, but what do you do when you come across a product so good that you only admire the craftsmanship and the efforts to put everything in a nutshell. Ever since Volvo has come up with the new design philosophy, their cars are a product you would not just buy and drive but as well love to boast of on every parameter a car is judged on. Yes! The new S60 is a heart and head matter. 

The S60 looks striking. The Thor’s hammer LED design in the headlamp, huge chrome grille with chrome surrounds, aggressive yet serious front fascia of the car coupled with plain and neat sweeping lines on the side profile and the big C shaped tail lamps along with the twin exhausts lend the car a very matured look. Everything on the outside seems extremely purposeful and well put together. Step inside the cabin and you are welcome by the most cosmopolitan interiors you have ever seen in this segment. It’s more of your personal workstation cabin that you carry your aura from after leaving the office and there is a homely feel to it.

It’s surely a car cabin inside, but more than that, personally I feel it’s your own business cockpit. The design exudes character and the sedate interiors are extremely functional and easy to get acquainted to. There is a sense of welcoming ness in the cabin, a quality Volvo has surely mastered. Even though the interiors might feel a bit conservative, there is a subdued understated elegance to the way everything is designed inside the cabin. The interiors feel extremely premium compared to what the segment offers, everything from the music system to the harness as well as the faux wood finish is very well built. The design slowly grows over you and there is a feel of premiumness that lends you a feeling that you have spent money wisely with this choice. The beige interiors in our test car surely lent a roomier feel, but the brown ones are the ones I personally loved, they add much more character to the cabin.

The S60 is not a car that will put a huge smile on your face as far as performance is considered though it will surely munch miles with extremely alacrity when need be. To pen down the figures, the S60 is powered by an in-line 4 cylinder 1969cc engine that develops maximum power of 190PS at 5000rpm and a peak torque of 300Nm mated to an automatic gearbox. The S60 isn’t as quick as other cars in its competition and the car loves to do things in a bit more easy and laidback demeanor. Brake bite is progressive but a sharper response would have been preferable. If performance is the key objective you are looking for, look elsewhere. That being said, there is always more than enough power to keep your drive engaging on every road you drive it on.

Luxury sedans are not extremely popular in our country due to a lot of reasons, primary reason being the condition of roads that we have. I deliberately took the S60 out of city area to check the ride quality. It’s surprising to note that the ride quality of the Volvo S60 is extremely supple despite its proportions and the meagre ground clearance. It soaked everything the roads threw at it without crashing at all and kept carrying speed.

Handling is not what the S60 is designed to boast about. The car does feel a bit heavy on its feet and because of this nature; it moves on the back foot over the corner-carving abilities and misses out on the outright driving fun. More focus is given to the ride to suit Indian road conditions and as a result, handling loses its teeth. Though, it’s an extremely sweet car to drive and holds its grip exceptionally well. 

Volvo has done an exceptional job with the amount of features they have loaded the S60 with. The S60 gets Harman Kardon music system and with proper music settings through the infotainment system, it feels like experiencing opera on wheels. The seats are extremely supportive and offer under-thigh support adjustment for the driver and codriver seats. Rear seats is something most of the owners will end up spending their time in and to set up the distinction, the rear seats on this car very well do justice to the position. The car boasts of fine stitching right from the dashboard to the seats which continues over the doors as well which lend an extremely sophisticated feel.

All good about the S60 then? Almost yes! The S60 has got everything a prospective buyer would love to have in a car of this repute. There is exactly nothing I could pull off that turns me off this car. Everything looks and feels that it’s the best be it the design, quality, features and the car overall. I personally feel that the Volvo S60 is for someone who loves to stand out in crowd by making their own distinct mark, it’s a car for someone who is extremely specific about what they want. 

In my personal opinion, the S60 isn’t just any other luxury car but it’s much more of an enriching experience that you get at its price. From my experience with Volvo cars from 10 years ago, the carmaker has made huge progress in each and every domain to make their products extremely compelling that they are setting benchmarks in so many domains and bettering themselves with the competition. Volvo has the distinction of making the safest cars in the world and the S60 benefits from the pedigree along with luxury and personal appeal being its paramount characteristics. With the new S60, Volvo surely has a winner in their hands.