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    William Maley

    Interactive Review: 2020 Volvo V60 T8 Polestar

      A mad Swedish Wagon arrives for a week-long review

    Taking the place of the Genesis G70 this week in the C&G Detroit Bureau is the 2020 Volvo V60 T8 Polestar. Aside from the long name, this Volvo gives us our first chance to check out the T8 powertrain. In Volvo terms, this is a 2.0L four-cylinder that comes super and turbocharged, and boasts two electric motors. This gives a total of 415 horsepower and 494 pound-feet of torque. It also gives the wagon an electric only range of 22 miles - something I'll be checking out once I get the battery fully charged.

    Pricing on this wagon comes in at an as-tested price of $68,940.

    Some first impressions below,

    • This powertrain pulls the V60 along like a train.
    • Being a Polestar Engineered model, the V60 comes with adjustable Ohlins Dampers and a stiffer front strut bar. I can't comfirm its handling characteristics yet, but can say ride quality is a bit on the rough side.
    • Gold seatbelts.

    I'll have a bit more to talk about as the week goes on with the V60 Polestar, so stay tuned. Also, drop a question or two on this speedy Swede.

    2020 Volvo V60 Polestar 3.jpg2020 Volvo V60 Polestar 2.jpgYV1BK0EP9L1354276.png

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    I honestly have to say this looks good, but complicated from a power train standpoint.

    Questions:

    1. Is this just a less luxury version of the V90?
    2. How does it compare room wise to the XC version inside?
    3. Other than a lower AWD auto, a comparison to the XC60 and how it compares to the 90 series would be great.
    4. Does it feel like your sitting in a hole when you get in?
    5. How does the Greenhouse feel over all from the inside? Bunker like?
    6. Is there any noticeable transition between ICE and EV?
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    1 hour ago, balthazar said:

    $69 grand for a volvo? 🥴

    You haven't seen anything yet, an XC90 can reach $100k.

    2 hours ago, David said:

    I honestly have to say this looks good, but complicated from a power train standpoint.

    Questions:

    1. Is this just a less luxury version of the V90?
    2. How does it compare room wise to the XC version inside?
    3. Other than a lower AWD auto, a comparison to the XC60 and how it compares to the 90 series would be great.
    4. Does it feel like your sitting in a hole when you get in?
    5. How does the Greenhouse feel over all from the inside? Bunker like?
    6. Is there any noticeable transition between ICE and EV?
    1. Not really, I would say the V60 and V90 are similar in terms of features and packages.
    2. No real change in terms of seating space when compared to the V60 Cross Country I drove earlier in the year. You will notice a shortage of storage space due to the battery.
    3. Will revisit later in the week as I need more driving time before comparing it to a S90. No experience with the XC60.
    4. Not really.
    5. Surprisingly airy.
    6. Not that I have come across yet. Will revisit after I have more time.
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    A wagon is going to be a non-seller.  I don't think $69k is a bad price for that level of performance and the fuel economy and electric range.  I think if this was a little cheaper it would be more compelling, also if it was rear wheel drive based.  On power they top the CT4/CT5-V and Genesis G70 and Acura TLX Type-S which is about $55k.  

    I assume this is available in sedan version or will be, I think the current Volvos look good on the inside and out, but I'd question the performance of the front wheel drive chassis compared to all the rear drive cars in the $60-70k range.  At $40k, it doesn't matter, you aren't getting big performance at that price.

     

    Question is he is how is handling and performance compared to the cheaper G70, because Volvo is pushing this as a performance car and nearing some AMG and M pricing.

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    1 hour ago, smk4565 said:

    A wagon is going to be a non-seller.  I don't think $69k is a bad price for that level of performance and the fuel economy and electric range.  I think if this was a little cheaper it would be more compelling, also if it was rear wheel drive based.  On power they top the CT4/CT5-V and Genesis G70 and Acura TLX Type-S which is about $55k.  

    I assume this is available in sedan version or will be, I think the current Volvos look good on the inside and out, but I'd question the performance of the front wheel drive chassis compared to all the rear drive cars in the $60-70k range.  At $40k, it doesn't matter, you aren't getting big performance at that price.

     

    Question is he is how is handling and performance compared to the cheaper G70, because Volvo is pushing this as a performance car and nearing some AMG and M pricing.

    Your FWD assertions are irrelevant since this an AWD only model. The Mercedes CLA 45 AMG doesn’t seems to face the same scrutiny despite its FWD roots though. I wonder why?

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    7 hours ago, surreal1272 said:

    Your FWD assertions are irrelevant since this an AWD only model. The Mercedes CLA 45 AMG doesn’t seems to face the same scrutiny despite its FWD roots though. I wonder why?

    I’d gladly match up the CLA45’s performance against the V60 Polestar.  The CLA45 is 700 lbs lighter, that’s a lot less weight to haul around.  
     

    Also Volvo S60/V60 are sized and priced more like a C-class.  The problem with these Polestar Volvos, or any Volvo, is they don’t have better performance than an AMG or M or Tesla, don’t have a better interior than an Audi or Mercedes, aren’t priced better than a Genesis.   So the brand is kind of lost.

     

    And does this performance Volvo have a top speed of 112 mph because of safety restrictions?

     

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    1 hour ago, smk4565 said:

    I’d gladly match up the CLA45’s performance against the V60 Polestar.  The CLA45 is 700 lbs lighter, that’s a lot less weight to haul around.  
     

    Also Volvo S60/V60 are sized and priced more like a C-class.  The problem with these Polestar Volvos, or any Volvo, is they don’t have better performance than an AMG or M or Tesla, don’t have a better interior than an Audi or Mercedes, aren’t priced better than a Genesis.   So the brand is kind of lost.

     

    And does this performance Volvo have a top speed of 112 mph because of safety restrictions?

     

    Missed the point by a country mile. We will skip the part where, duh, yes the CLA is lighter. That’s because it’s a smaller car and add to the fact that the Volvo is a hybrid. It does not change my point or statement whatsoever. The time you spend tearing down anything without that precious tri-Star on the hood is simply baffling. 

    Edited by surreal1272
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    2 hours ago, surreal1272 said:

    Missed the point by a country mile. We will skip the part where, duh, yes the CLA is lighter. That’s because it’s a smaller car and add to the fact that the Volvo is a hybrid. It does not change my point or statement whatsoever. The time you spend tearing down anything without that precious tri-Star on the hood is simply baffling. 

    I didn't tear it down, I said it isn't a bad price for the combo of performance and fuel economy.  But wagons are non-sellers in general.  And this new era of Volvo is much better than it was in the Ford ownership days, but I don't think a single product they make is considered near the top in their segment and a 2 liter 4 cylinder is the biggest engine the brand has.  That's a fine engine for small sedans and crossovers but can you imagine Cadillac saying the biggest engine they will offer is a 2 liter 4 cylinder?  Or that the CT5-V will have a top speed of 112 mph?

    And the CLA45 has great performance for front wheel drive, but it is doesn't have the performance of a C63 or GLC63 that send power to the rear wheels.  I am not anti front wheel drive, I am anti-front wheel drive for $70,000 when there are significantly better performing rear wheel drive cars at that price.  

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    On 8/21/2020 at 1:20 PM, balthazar said:

    $69 grand for a volvo? 🥴

    Good thing that this one at that price, the final assembly at least in Sweden.  not say, China.

    Edited by regfootball
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    9 hours ago, regfootball said:

    Good thing that this one at that price, the final assembly at least in Sweden.  not say, China.

    Some V60s are built in Belgium...the S60 sedan is assembled in S. Carolina.

    Edited by Robert Hall
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    On 8/22/2020 at 12:36 PM, smk4565 said:

    I didn't tear it down, I said it isn't a bad price for the combo of performance and fuel economy.  But wagons are non-sellers in general.  And this new era of Volvo is much better than it was in the Ford ownership days, but I don't think a single product they make is considered near the top in their segment and a 2 liter 4 cylinder is the biggest engine the brand has.  That's a fine engine for small sedans and crossovers but can you imagine Cadillac saying the biggest engine they will offer is a 2 liter 4 cylinder?  Or that the CT5-V will have a top speed of 112 mph?

    And the CLA45 has great performance for front wheel drive, but it is doesn't have the performance of a C63 or GLC63 that send power to the rear wheels.  I am not anti front wheel drive, I am anti-front wheel drive for $70,000 when there are significantly better performing rear wheel drive cars at that price.  

    Well good thing its not FWD. It’s AWD and while you rag on the lack of cylinders, you skip the fact that it is over 400HP and pulls like a train and is faster off the line than the Benz E450 (with a price that is only slightly higher than the CLA45 AMG with its FOUR cylinders and less power). And where in the article does it mention a 112MPH limit (which doesn’t mean $h! anyway in the U.S. given that we have this little thing called “speed limits”)? Oh, thats right. It isn’t limited to 112. Here are the numbers from another source:


    TEST RESULTS
    Rollout, 1 ft: 0.3 sec
    60 mph: 4.4 sec
    100 mph: 10.9 sec
    130 mph: 21.7 sec
    Rolling start, 5–60 mph: 4.8 sec
    Top gear, 30–50 mph: 2.4 sec
    Top gear, 50–70 mph: 3.4 sec
    ¼-mile: 12.9 sec @ 107 mph
    Top speed (governor limited): 131 mph
    Braking, 70–0 mph: 152 ft
    Roadholding, 300-ft-dia skidpad: 0.96 g

     

     

     

    If you’re going to slam a non-Mercedes car, make sure you slam it with actual facts.

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    Some quick updates on the V60 Polestar after a few days

    • On 120V, a full charge takes between 8-10 hours. I don't know if the charger can handle a 240V outlet, going to bring in the owners manual to find out.
    • Able to squeeze out around 24 miles on just electric power alone
    • Handling is pretty decent with minimal body roll and quick steering. But you can tell there is a lot of weight because of the battery pack and electric motor
    • Volvo Sensus has been actually behaving unlike in the previous S60/V60 I drove earlier in the year. Boots up slightly faster and hasn't run into performance bottlenecks.

     

    On 8/21/2020 at 10:55 PM, smk4565 said:

    Question is he is how is handling and performance compared to the cheaper G70, because Volvo is pushing this as a performance car and nearing some AMG and M pricing.

    I would say the G70 is better, mostly due to it being lighter than the V60 Polestar and having slightly better steering. 

    And yes, you can get the S60 in Polestar form.

    On 8/22/2020 at 8:10 AM, smk4565 said:

    And does this performance Volvo have a top speed of 112 mph because of safety restrictions?

    I don't believe so, but I can double check that shortly. I think that 112 mph limit is going to be on future models, and it is really non-issue unless you're driving on the Autobahn or arguing on a forum.

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    9 hours ago, surreal1272 said:

    Well good thing its not FWD. It’s AWD and while you rag on the lack of cylinders, you skip the fact that it is over 400HP and pulls like a train and is faster off the line than the Benz E450 (with a price that is only slightly higher than the CLA45 AMG with its FOUR cylinders and less power). And where in the article does it mention a 112MPH limit (which doesn’t mean $h! anyway in the U.S. given that we have this little thing called “speed limits”)? Oh, thats right. It isn’t limited to 112. Here are the numbers from another source:


    TEST RESULTS
    Rollout, 1 ft: 0.3 sec
    60 mph: 4.4 sec
    100 mph: 10.9 sec
    130 mph: 21.7 sec
    Rolling start, 5–60 mph: 4.8 sec
    Top gear, 30–50 mph: 2.4 sec
    Top gear, 50–70 mph: 3.4 sec
    ¼-mile: 12.9 sec @ 107 mph
    Top speed (governor limited): 131 mph
    Braking, 70–0 mph: 152 ft
    Roadholding, 300-ft-dia skidpad: 0.96 g

     

     

     

    If you’re going to slam a non-Mercedes car, make sure you slam it with actual facts.

    First off the E450 is a whole size class bigger than the V60, and the E-class interior blows away an S90, let alone the V60.  Secondly, the V60 has a transverse engine and transmission so all that weight sits over top of the front wheels.  The last V60 Polestar has a 60/40 weight split which is no bueno.  

    A more fair fight for the Volvo would be a a CLA45 shooting brake if they make another one, or even a GLB45 would be closer in size, price and performance.   The plus for Volvo is no direct competitor exists, this is like a luxury trim Subaru STi Wagon.  

    Although a Tesla Model Y Performance with Autopilot is $69k and is very close in size to a V60 Polestar, and the Tesla is more efficient and does 0-60 in 3.5 seconds.

    As far as top speed, Volvo said a year ago that they would start limiting all their products to 112 mph top speed.  

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    2 hours ago, smk4565 said:

    First off the E450 is a whole size class bigger than the V60, and the E-class interior blows away an S90, let alone the V60.  Secondly, the V60 has a transverse engine and transmission so all that weight sits over top of the front wheels.  The last V60 Polestar has a 60/40 weight split which is no bueno.  

    A more fair fight for the Volvo would be a a CLA45 shooting brake if they make another one, or even a GLB45 would be closer in size, price and performance.   The plus for Volvo is no direct competitor exists, this is like a luxury trim Subaru STi Wagon.  

    Although a Tesla Model Y Performance with Autopilot is $69k and is very close in size to a V60 Polestar, and the Tesla is more efficient and does 0-60 in 3.5 seconds.

    As far as top speed, Volvo said a year ago that they would start limiting all their products to 112 mph top speed.  

    The CLA is as short compared to the V60 as the V60 is to the E Class and you totally missed the point of it any way. You were wrong on the speed limit (only took me thirty seconds to find the numbers posted above from another publication) and as William said, that limit doesn’t mean squat unless you live in Germany. The V60 weighs pretty much the same as an E Class wagon (depending on trims). Despite its much heavier weight and “only” a four banger under the hood, it moves pretty damn well and at a faster pace than that larger and equal weight E Class.

     

    BTW, the Tesla Y is twelve inches longer than the Volvo so if we can’t compare the Volvo to the E Class, then you can’t compare it to the Y. 
     

    And as unpredictable as a Volvo can be, in the reliability department, Tesla’s (on average) are even worse. 
     

    Edit: While starting in 2021, a Volvo’s will be speed limited to 112, this is a 2020 model which is not. Still a pointless argument unless the Autobahn is your main route to work everyday. 

    Edited by surreal1272
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    6 minutes ago, surreal1272 said:

    The CLA is as short compared to the V60 as the V60 is to the E Class and you totally missed the point of it any way. You were wrong on the speed limit (only took me thirty seconds to find the numbers posted above from another publication) and as William said, that limit doesn’t mean squat unless you live in Germany. The V60 weighs pretty much the same as an E Class wagon (depending on trims). Despite its much heavier weight and “only” a four banger under the hood, it moves pretty damn well and at a faster pace than that larger and equal weight E Class.

    The V90 is their E450 wagon competitor.  

    The V60 Polestar has good performance, but there are better performance/luxury cars for $69k.  

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    10 hours ago, smk4565 said:

    The V90 is their E450 wagon competitor.  

    The V60 Polestar has good performance, but there are better performance/luxury cars for $69k.  

    Name ONE current wagon, in its class and price range, thats better.

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    On 8/21/2020 at 1:03 PM, David said:

    I honestly have to say this looks good, but complicated from a power train standpoint.

    Questions:

    1. Is this just a less luxury version of the V90?

    It's a different size class.  The V90 is E-Class sized. The V60 is C-Class sized.  Though those are external measurements.  Both are roomier than their Benz counterparts.

    On 8/21/2020 at 5:09 PM, balthazar said:

    Prolly why I never see any.

    Or maybe it’s ‘notice’.

    It's probably "notice".  The XC90 is one of their best sellers.  I see a bunch of them around. The $100k ones are rare though, but aside from fancier wheel's there is nothing externally that differentiates them from the $60k ones.

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    On 8/22/2020 at 8:10 AM, smk4565 said:

    I’d gladly match up the CLA45’s performance against the V60 Polestar.  The CLA45 is 700 lbs lighter, that’s a lot less weight to haul around.  
     

    Also Volvo S60/V60 are sized and priced more like a C-class.  The problem with these Polestar Volvos, or any Volvo, is they don’t have better performance than an AMG or M or Tesla, don’t have a better interior than an Audi or Mercedes, aren’t priced better than a Genesis.   So the brand is kind of lost.

     

    And does this performance Volvo have a top speed of 112 mph because of safety restrictions?

     

    The Volvo interiors are definitely on-par with Benz or Audi when comparably equipped. The Volvo design is just different compared to the highly technical look of the Germans (particularly the Audi). I really love the minimalist design of the Volvo interiors and their seats are The. Best. In. Comfort. Periodt.

    In the earlier versions of this platform, the infotainment system could be a bit laggy and frustrating, but they've increased the processor and ram on them and they operate well now.

    Due to a quirk in the trade in market right now, we may trade the Encore in on an S90 fairly soon.  Carvana is offering $10k for it and for a 7 year old, 100k mile car with a few dings, I'm thinking I should take it.  Other dealerships are only offering $7,200.

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    22 hours ago, surreal1272 said:

    Well good thing its not FWD. It’s AWD and while you rag on the lack of cylinders, you skip the fact that it is over 400HP and pulls like a train and is faster off the line than the Benz E450 (with a price that is only slightly higher than the CLA45 AMG with its FOUR cylinders and less power). And where in the article does it mention a 112MPH limit (which doesn’t mean $h! anyway in the U.S. given that we have this little thing called “speed limits”)? Oh, thats right. It isn’t limited to 112. Here are the numbers from another source:


    TEST RESULTS
    Rollout, 1 ft: 0.3 sec
    60 mph: 4.4 sec
    100 mph: 10.9 sec
    130 mph: 21.7 sec
    Rolling start, 5–60 mph: 4.8 sec
    Top gear, 30–50 mph: 2.4 sec
    Top gear, 50–70 mph: 3.4 sec
    ¼-mile: 12.9 sec @ 107 mph
    Top speed (governor limited): 131 mph
    Braking, 70–0 mph: 152 ft
    Roadholding, 300-ft-dia skidpad: 0.96 g

     

     

     

    If you’re going to slam a non-Mercedes car, make sure you slam it with actual facts.

     

    16 hours ago, William Maley said:

    Some quick updates on the V60 Polestar after a few days

    • On 120V, a full charge takes between 8-10 hours. I don't know if the charger can handle a 240V outlet, going to bring in the owners manual to find out.
    • Able to squeeze out around 24 miles on just electric power alone
    • Handling is pretty decent with minimal body roll and quick steering. But you can tell there is a lot of weight because of the battery pack and electric motor
    • Volvo Sensus has been actually behaving unlike in the previous S60/V60 I drove earlier in the year. Boots up slightly faster and hasn't run into performance bottlenecks.

     

    I would say the G70 is better, mostly due to it being lighter than the V60 Polestar and having slightly better steering. 

    And yes, you can get the S60 in Polestar form.

    I don't believe so, but I can double check that shortly. I think that 112 mph limit is going to be on future models, and it is really non-issue unless you're driving on the Autobahn or arguing on a forum.

    For clarity Volvo brand will have the top speed limit, but anything Polestar will negate that. Polestars won't be governed. 

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    • By William Maley
      The 86's exterior has undergone some significant changes. The most apparent is the front where the front bumper has been swapped to give the coupe a slightly more aggressive look. There are also new headlights with the "86" logo seen on the outside edge. These changes, along with a rear wing really help the 86 still look quite fresh. A feat when you take into consideration that this car, along with its sister, the Subaru BRZ has been around for eight years. The interior boasts a new steering wheel, updated instrument cluster with a color trip computer; and a seven-inch touchscreen radio featuring Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility.  Trying to find a comfortable position the 86 took longer than I expected due to the limited amount of adjustments on offer. The sport seats provide excellent bolstering to hold you in during enthusiastic driving but falter in terms of comfort when it comes to long drives. As for the back seat, I would only recommend it for either very small kids or extra storage space. We come to the key weak point of the 86, the engine. It is the 2.0L Flat-Four from Subaru which produces 205 horsepower and 156 pound-feet of torque when equipped with the six-speed manual - figures drop by five when equipped with the automatic. Not much has changed in the performance department. At low speeds, the 86 goes along merrily. But then the power band falls off a cliff and you're left wondering when it will come back.  It doesn't help that the engine note of the 2.0L sounds like a bucket of bolts dumped into a dryer. This doesn't encourage wanting to climb higher in the rev band and giving the illusion of going faster - something Mazda does quite well with the MX-5 Miata. On my test car, an optional TRD exhaust was fitted and it somehow makes the noise worse. It sounded like a group of cats fighting one another to get that prime spot in the box from an Amazon delivery. The manual transmission does not like being shifted quickly as it becomes slightly stiff and bulky. Go slowly and the gear lever responds with a smooth and positive feel. An option that was ticked on this vehicle was the TRD handling package which adds a set of SACHS dampers. The SACHS do make an improvement in terms of body control as the 86 doesn't really exhibit any sort of roll. What you get a vehicle that is fun to toss in the corners. Helping out is the steering that responds quickly and provides a decent feel. But there is a downside to the TRD Handling package and that is the ride quality. I found the FR-S to be quite stiff and transmit most bumps and road imperfections. This package only increases the frequency and impact them. I would highly recommend driving a standard 86 against one with the Handling Pack to see which one you would prefer. The 86 GT starts at $30,115 and my tester with the two TRD options and some other items stickers at $34,783. If you drop the TRD options, then it becomes slightly better at just under $32,000.  Who is the 86 for? The obvious answer to this is someone who wants something fun to drive but doesn't have that much to spend. Of course, there are other options that offer more performance, the 86 shines on a winding road. But as someone pointed out in our interactive review, the 86 is a good option for someone who wants a blank canvas. This and the BRZ have a large aftermarket which means an owner can build their coupe to their desires. Want to upgrade the suspension and brakes? There are parts available. Feel like dropping in a larger engine? That is possible. It's a blank canvas ready for someone to make it their own. Disclaimer: Toyota Provided the 86, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas
      Year: 2020
      Make: Toyota
      Model: 86
      Trim: GT
      Engine: 2.0L DOHC D-4S 16-Valve Flat-Four
      Driveline: Six-Speed Manual, Rear-Wheel Drive
      Horsepower @ RPM: 205 @ 7,000
      Torque @ RPM: 156 @ 6,400
      Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 21/28/24
      Curb Weight: 2,817 lbs
      Location of Manufacture: Ota, Gumma, Japan
      Base Price: $30,115
      As Tested Price: $34,783 (Includes $995.00 Destination Charge)
      Options:
      TRD Handling Package - $1,270.00
      TRD Exhaust System - $1,100.00
      TRD Sway Bar - $550.00
      Special Color - $425.00
      Center Armrest - $199.00
      All-Weather Floor Mats - $169.00
    • By William Maley
      Back in the spring, I spent some time with two different Volvo 60 series models - the S60 Momentum and V60 Cross Country. I came away impressed with the work Volvo had done, picking Cross Country as my favorite. A couple months back, another 60 series model rolled up for a week long evaluation. This one is very different.
      Unlike most performance wagons that grab a bullhorn and shout for attention, the V60 Polestar goes for a more sedate approach. From afar, it looks like your standard V60. Get closer and you begin to see the small changes such as the lowered ride height, 20-inch grey wheels that cover up the massive gold brake calipers, and the two Polestar badges. Only changes for the interior are the Polestar logo embossed on the front headrests and gold seatbelts. Under the hood is Volvo's T8 powertrain. This is the 2.0L twin-charged four-cylinder paired with an electric motor on the rear axle to produce a total output of 415 horsepower and 494 pound-feet of torque. This setup also provides all-wheel drive. It is quite shocking (pardon the pun) as to how fast the V60 Polestar goes. Step on the accelerator and it feels like you have engaged warp drive as the two powertrains work together.  But there were times where the gas engine and electric motor didn't seem to be on the same page. There would be the odd delay or surging of the gas engine when driving around town in the hybrid mode. Hopefully, this is something that could be addressed with an update to the engine software. The other party trick of the V60 Polestar is the ability to run on electric power alone. This comes from an 11.6 kWh lithium-ion battery pack underneath the cargo floor. Volvo claims a range of 22 miles on electric power alone, but I was able to stretch it out to around 23 to 25 miles throughout the week. Recharging took around eight to eleven hours if the battery was near or fully depleted.  For the week, I saw an MPGe average of 52.1. With the battery drained, I saw the average fall to around 29.1 MPG.  Volvo turned to suspension supplier Öhlins to develop something bespoke for the V60 Polestar. What was delivered is a special set of dampers that are manually adjusted by gold-colored aluminum knobs. You'll easily find the ones in the front by opening the hood - sitting on top of the shock towers. The ones in the back are slightly harder to find as they're located above the wheels in the wheel housing. This is something that feels like more of a talking point when showing off the wagon, not something you want to mess with unless you are knowledgeable on damper tuning. The V60 Polestar may be the best handling Volvo I have driven in quite some time. The Öhlins dampers do make a difference as they minimize body roll. But the dampers cannot fully hide the massive weight of the Polestar - tipping the scales at 4,522 pounds. This makes the wagon not feel as nimble. In terms of ride quality, the V60 Polestar does well on smooth roads. Take it on a road with a litany of bumps and potholes and the ride becomes very choppy. This is where I wished Volvo had gone for a computer-controlled damper system to make the ride slightly smoother. A price tag of over $68,000 is a bit much for a Volvo, but you need to take into consideration that you're getting everything as standard. That includes the premium B&O audio system, full LED headlights, Nappa leather upholstery, heated/ventilated front seats, Pilot Assist, and more. The only option on our tester is the metallic paint. Despite the price tag and rough ride, I'm happy to see Volvo venturing out and doing some wild as the V60 Polestar. This vehicle is a prime example of having your cake and eating it by delivering excellent performance and efficiency in one package. The fact that this package is in a wagon shows this for someone who doesn't want to follow the Joneses and get a performance crossover. Would this be the 60 Series model I would buy? No, that honor falls to the V60 Cross Country I drove in the early spring. But the Polestar runs a close second. Disclaimer: Volvo Provided the V60 Polestar, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas
      Year: 2020
      Make: Volvo
      Model: V60
      Trim: T8 Polestar Engineered 
      Engine: 2.0L Twincharged DOHC 16-Valve Four-Cylinder, Two AC Electric Motors
      Driveline: Eight-Speed Automatic, All-Wheel Drive
      Horsepower @ RPM: 328 (gas), 46 (electric motor front), 87 (electric motor rear), 415 (combined)
      Torque @ RPM: 317 (gas), 111 (electric motor front), 177 (electric motor rear), 494 (combined)
      Fuel Economy: Combined MPGe/Gas - 69/30
      Curb Weight: 4,522 lbs
      Location of Manufacture: Gothenburg, Sweden
      Base Price: $67,300
      As Tested Price: $68,940 (Includes $995.00 Destination Charge)
      Options:
      Metallic Paint - $645.00

      View full article
    • By William Maley
      Back in the spring, I spent some time with two different Volvo 60 series models - the S60 Momentum and V60 Cross Country. I came away impressed with the work Volvo had done, picking Cross Country as my favorite. A couple months back, another 60 series model rolled up for a week long evaluation. This one is very different.
      Unlike most performance wagons that grab a bullhorn and shout for attention, the V60 Polestar goes for a more sedate approach. From afar, it looks like your standard V60. Get closer and you begin to see the small changes such as the lowered ride height, 20-inch grey wheels that cover up the massive gold brake calipers, and the two Polestar badges. Only changes for the interior are the Polestar logo embossed on the front headrests and gold seatbelts. Under the hood is Volvo's T8 powertrain. This is the 2.0L twin-charged four-cylinder paired with an electric motor on the rear axle to produce a total output of 415 horsepower and 494 pound-feet of torque. This setup also provides all-wheel drive. It is quite shocking (pardon the pun) as to how fast the V60 Polestar goes. Step on the accelerator and it feels like you have engaged warp drive as the two powertrains work together.  But there were times where the gas engine and electric motor didn't seem to be on the same page. There would be the odd delay or surging of the gas engine when driving around town in the hybrid mode. Hopefully, this is something that could be addressed with an update to the engine software. The other party trick of the V60 Polestar is the ability to run on electric power alone. This comes from an 11.6 kWh lithium-ion battery pack underneath the cargo floor. Volvo claims a range of 22 miles on electric power alone, but I was able to stretch it out to around 23 to 25 miles throughout the week. Recharging took around eight to eleven hours if the battery was near or fully depleted.  For the week, I saw an MPGe average of 52.1. With the battery drained, I saw the average fall to around 29.1 MPG.  Volvo turned to suspension supplier Öhlins to develop something bespoke for the V60 Polestar. What was delivered is a special set of dampers that are manually adjusted by gold-colored aluminum knobs. You'll easily find the ones in the front by opening the hood - sitting on top of the shock towers. The ones in the back are slightly harder to find as they're located above the wheels in the wheel housing. This is something that feels like more of a talking point when showing off the wagon, not something you want to mess with unless you are knowledgeable on damper tuning. The V60 Polestar may be the best handling Volvo I have driven in quite some time. The Öhlins dampers do make a difference as they minimize body roll. But the dampers cannot fully hide the massive weight of the Polestar - tipping the scales at 4,522 pounds. This makes the wagon not feel as nimble. In terms of ride quality, the V60 Polestar does well on smooth roads. Take it on a road with a litany of bumps and potholes and the ride becomes very choppy. This is where I wished Volvo had gone for a computer-controlled damper system to make the ride slightly smoother. A price tag of over $68,000 is a bit much for a Volvo, but you need to take into consideration that you're getting everything as standard. That includes the premium B&O audio system, full LED headlights, Nappa leather upholstery, heated/ventilated front seats, Pilot Assist, and more. The only option on our tester is the metallic paint. Despite the price tag and rough ride, I'm happy to see Volvo venturing out and doing some wild as the V60 Polestar. This vehicle is a prime example of having your cake and eating it by delivering excellent performance and efficiency in one package. The fact that this package is in a wagon shows this for someone who doesn't want to follow the Joneses and get a performance crossover. Would this be the 60 Series model I would buy? No, that honor falls to the V60 Cross Country I drove in the early spring. But the Polestar runs a close second. Disclaimer: Volvo Provided the V60 Polestar, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas
      Year: 2020
      Make: Volvo
      Model: V60
      Trim: T8 Polestar Engineered 
      Engine: 2.0L Twincharged DOHC 16-Valve Four-Cylinder, Two AC Electric Motors
      Driveline: Eight-Speed Automatic, All-Wheel Drive
      Horsepower @ RPM: 328 (gas), 46 (electric motor front), 87 (electric motor rear), 415 (combined)
      Torque @ RPM: 317 (gas), 111 (electric motor front), 177 (electric motor rear), 494 (combined)
      Fuel Economy: Combined MPGe/Gas - 69/30
      Curb Weight: 4,522 lbs
      Location of Manufacture: Gothenburg, Sweden
      Base Price: $67,300
      As Tested Price: $68,940 (Includes $995.00 Destination Charge)
      Options:
      Metallic Paint - $645.00
    • By William Maley
      This week at the Cheers & Gears' Detroit bureau sees the 2020 Lexus RX 350L Lux come in for an interactive review. It has been some time since I last drove any version of the RX and it has gone some significant changes. The key one is the introduction of a three-row version - designated by the L at the end. Another welcome change is an introduction of a touchscreen for the Lexus Enform infotainment system.
      Power comes from a 3.5L V6 with 290 horsepower and 267 pound-feet of torque. This is paired with an eight-speed automatic and all-wheel drive. Out the door, this RX 350 comes with an as-tested price of $63,540 with a $1,025 destination charge.
      Here are some quick thoughts,
      Acceleration isn't the RX's strong suit. The V6 moves the crossover at an adequate speed. The touchscreen makes a huge difference in overall usability with Enform. I find myself not screaming at it - both internally and externally. Third-row does eat up a lot of cargo space when up. I'll be trying to squeeze myself into the third-row along with other items throughout my week in the RX. In the meantime, drop off any questions you have.


      View full article
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