2010 Volvo XC60
For more than a generation, Volvo has built its American reputation on two things: safety and its premium station wagons. Even when wagons fell out of favor at other brands, they remained an attraction for Volvo purists. But, some of those fans did defect to the Volvo XC90 Crossover. Now, with the all-new XC60, it’s possible that a lot more just might be tempted to follow suit.
The 2010 Volvo XC60 may be a late entry into the premium compact-to-midsize crossover race, but don’t expect this stylish and sporty utility to trail behind for too long.
The XC60 will compete directly with the BMW X3, the Acura RDX, and the Mercedes Benz GLK.
Styling hints of the XC70 and XC90, but from there the familiar Volvo DNA runs a little wild. The modified trapezoidal grille is flanked by dramatically flared headlamps.
The XC60’s wedge-like forward-leaning profile makes this crossover look like it’s ready to pounce. A muscular shoulder line, lower body cladding, and a coupe-like greenhouse all add to its athletic presence, as do the 18 or 19-inch wheels.
Further distinction comes from a well-sculpted back-end. But the most eye-catching cue is, no doubt, the exaggerated boomerang-like LED tail lamp design.
Offered currently as a single T6 all-wheel-drive model, the XC60 is moved by Volvo’s familiar 3.0-liter turbocharged inline-6, producing 281 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque. Max towing capacity is a reasonable 3,300 pounds.
Power is managed by a six-speed automatic with manual mode which feeds Volvo’s latest Haldex 4 all-wheel drive system with Instant Traction torque transfer. For the more adventurous, Hill Descent Control is also available.
But this wouldn’t be a Volvo road test without a truly novel safety breakthrough. That would be Volvo’s City Safety System. City Safety is a low-speed rear collision avoidance system that utilizes an infrared laser in the rear view mirror to detect a stopped car ahead. City Safety will automatically apply the brakes at speeds up to 18 miles-per-hour to prevent a crash.
We don’t recommend you trying City Safety out just for grins like we did since it doesn’t activate until the last possible second. And stops are quite abrupt and really get your attention.
At the track, the XC60 also impressed us with its quickness. 0 to 60 in just 6.7 seconds and the quarter-mile in 15.2 seconds at 97 miles-per- hour. This crossover has a strong, smooth pull all the way up to the redline. Shifts, however, were not as quick as we would have liked them to be.
Sharing some chassis elements with the V70 and S80, suspension is front MacPherson strut/rear multi-link, with a three-mode active chassis option coming later. Aiding cornering now is an enhanced Dynamic Stability Control System, Roll Stability Control, and for towing maneuvers, new optional Trailer Stability Assist.
Maybe we expected too much, since this is a luxury car, but ride definitely rules over handling. The XC60 exhibits a top-heavy feel and reached its limits somewhat quickly.
Braking redeemed the XC60. Four-channel all-disc ABS with Brake Assist delivered average stops from 60 of a short 127 feet. They were solid and straight with minimal nose dive.
On everyday roads, the ride was soft and plush, perfect for Monday-through-Friday commutes. But with 9.1 inches of ground clearance, taking the XC60 off the pavement for a weekend adventure does not have to be a second thought.
The interior of the five-passenger XC60 is a continuation of the clean and modern Scandinavian design we liked so much in the XC70 and C30. Gauges and controls are smartly laid-out and exude an artful sophistication.
The XC60’s seats are well-contoured and supportive, featuring stitched seams and optional heat.
The slim, floating center stack design includes an available navigation screen that’s slightly angled toward the driver. It includes real-time traffic, and remote control.
There’s also a Rear Park Assist Camera packaged with the Nav system.
And not to be forgotten, our tester’s upgraded Dynaudio Premium Sound System with surround sound, for memorable listening enjoyment.
Other characteristic Volvo safety gear includes six airbags, anti-whiplash seats, and optional Lane Departure Warning.
The rear bench seat is fit for three, but it’s not the most spacious we’ve seen. Its 40/20/40 split, however, is family friendly, as are a pair of optional integrated child booster seats.
Cargo room is a generous 30.8 cubic feet with the seats up, and a very competitive 67.4 with the seats down.
Government Fuel Economy for this crossover is an underwhelming 16 city/22 highway on premium gas. We managed to get 20.6 miles-per-gallon in real-world driving.
Base pricing for the XC60 starts at $38,025. That’s less than a BMW X3, but more than the Acura RDX and the Mercedes-Benz GLK.
The eye-catching 2010 Volvo XC60 offers everything an upscale family could wish for - innovative safety, strong performance, true multi-purpose capabilities, and a comfortable, sophisticated cabin. For a company steeped in the tradition of the station wagon, the XC60 is a nice step up that doesn’t’ forget its roots.
- Engine: 3.0-Liter Turbocharged Inline-6
- Horsepower: 281
- Torque: 295 Lb Feet
- 0-60 MPH: 6.7 Seconds
- 1/4 Mile: 15.2 Seconds @ 97 MPH
- 60-0 MPH: 127 Feet
- EPA: 16 MPG City/ 22 MPG Highway
- Mixed Loop: 20.6 MPG
2023 BMW X7
Should Keep The BMW Faithful Coming Back For More
While BMW got serious about their SUV game around the same time as most other luxury brands, it took them until just a few years ago to deliver a 3-row example. This year, that X7 is updated with new style and new tech. So, let’s see if that makes it the ultimate premium 3-row family machine.
When it comes to utility vehicles, bigger seems to be better for a lot of people. So, for BMW, there’s none bigger or better than the X7 3-row utility, which for 2023 gets a comprehensive update after just 4-years on the market. That includes a facelift to bring it more in line with the new 7-series carline, which is to say joins the more vertical, aggressive grille party. Also, the actual headlights have been moved lower in the front fascia, with squinty DRLs above for the first time on a BMW. In back, taillights take on a 3D posture, with a new chrome bar connecting them.
There are also multiple new M Sport packages to choose from to spice up the exterior, with larger air intakes up front, high-gloss black trim, upgraded exhaust, cascade grille lighting, and 22-inch wheels, as well as M Sport brakes…
…and the interior too, with aluminum trim and exclusive steering wheel. But, by far the biggest change inside for ‘23 is a new dashtop curved display that eliminates the typical BMW well-hooded gauge pod and blends 12-inch Live Cockpit Pro into the 15-inch infotainment touchscreen, which now features iDrive8. Both a Head-Up Display and a large panoramic sunroof are standard.
Whether set up for 2 or 3 passengers, 2nd row seat room remains plentiful, and though the X7 doesn’t look ungainly large like many of its competitors, access to the 3rd row is quite good. Cargo space is reached through a fairly unique, Range Rover-style, split tailgate, which is quite oddly satisfying to watch unfold. There’s room for 48.6 cubic-ft. of goods behind the 2nd row, with a max of 90.4 cu.-ft.
The base xDrive40i has always been the sensible choice, even more so now with a new inline-6 turbo getting a significant bump in horsepower from 335 to 375, and a 48-volt mild-hybrid system that results in a total of 398 lb-ft. of torque.
At our Mason Dixon test track, there was enough to blast this big beast to 60 in just 5.4-seconds. That’s only about half a second slower than the V8 did the deed back in 2019. Making that optional 523-horsepower V8 simply overkill at this point. Our best ¼-mile pass was 13.9-seconds at 100 miles-per-hour. All X7s get a quick shifting sport-tuned 8-speed automatic transmission, which adds a new Sprint Function that finds the lowest usable gear instantly and maxes electric boost with a hold of the left shift paddle. What fun!
New looks and updated tech are cool, but BMW has also addressed dynamics as well, with a retuning of all chassis systems, including the optional Dynamic Handling Package which adds adaptive suspension with roll stabilization and uses GPS and camera data to prepare for what’s coming. We’re not sure if our slalom course was anticipated, but the X7 sure felt well-equipped to handle it. All-wheel drive is standard on all X7s, along with comprehensive drive modes.
In our braking runs, the pads bit down hard quickly, stopping us from 60 in just 115-feet with very little nosedive.
Government Fuel Economy Ratings for the 6-cylinder are 21-City, 25-Highway, and 22-Combined. We averaged just 21.0 miles-per-gallon on Premium.
There’s an average Energy Impact Score; 13.5-barrels of oil yearly, with CO2 emissions of 6.5-tons.
Pricing starts at $78,845, and it’s a significant step up from there to $104,095 if you want the V8. Even more reason to stick with the 6-cylinder as far as we’re concerned.
It took the ultimate driving machine folks quite a bit of time to enter the 3-row family crossover segment, but when they did, they were able to create their largest utility ever and keep it consistent with their values. For 2023, the BMW X7 gets even more dynamic, embraces new tech, and looks better too. All things that should keep the BMW faithful coming back for more.
- Engine: I-6
- Horsepower: 375
- 0-60 mph: 5.4 seconds
- 60-0 Braking: 115 feet (avg)
- MW Fuel Economy: 21.0 MPG
- Transmission: 8-speed automatic
- Torque: 398 lb-ft.
- 1/4 Mile: 13.9-seconds at 100 mph
- EPA: 21 City / 25 Highway / 22 Combined