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The Volvo V60 is a spacious, stylish and well-made rival to the BMW 3 Series Touring, Audi A4 Avant and Mercedes C-Class Estate.
LED headlights, powered tailgate, dual-zone climate control, sat-nav, rear parking sensors, smartphone connectivity with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto
150hp 2.0, 190hp 2.0
Momentum, Momentum Pro, Inscription, Inscription Pro
Six -speed manual, eight-speed automatic
Volvo has demonstrated for quite some time now that it has the style, substance and quality to go toe-to-toe with any of its premium German rivals.
Led by its excellent SUV range, and backed up by the S90 saloon and V90 estate, Volvo's latest model - the super-stylish and tech-packed executive V60 estate - lends even more credence to the company's credentials.
Taking a relaxed, refined, Scandi-cool approach, it's a refreshingly different and highly desirable alternative to established German rivals - but is it the estate of choice?
It's important to mention that the new V60 shares Volvo's 'Scalable Product Architecture' platform with the popular XC60 and 90 series cars, which have been the collective force behind the company's successful global sales performance in recent years. The V60 is therefore almost identical to the larger V90 in terms of design language, with only slight alterations to the front and rear bumpers setting it apart from its more expensive sibling. We figure the upcoming S60 saloon is also likely to mirror this svelte design direction.
Like the V90 range, the V60 only comes with four-cylinder engines, including a 150hp D3 diesel, a 190hp D4 diesel and a 250hp T5 petrol. The D4 diesel claims an economy figure of 62.9mpg - a figure that's pretty much on par with similarly powered engines in rivals. CO2 emissions of 119g/km are reasonable, too.
Volvo has already said that, from 2019, it will only offer engines with some form of electrification. For this reason, V60 buyers can choose from two plug-in hybrid options at launch, both of which combine a petrol engine with an electric motor, although they weren't available to test on the launch. An eight-speed automatic gearbox is expected to be standard across the range.
At the launch, we jumped into the 190hp D4 model. Overall, it's a very impressive car. Quiet, comfortable and relaxed around town, as well as delivering confidence inspiring predictability when riding over the windy and mountainous roads of our test drive. Granted, you don't get quite the same levels of interaction through the steering and suspension as you do with a BMW or Audi, but overall, the Volvo's quiet, calm demeanour just works. It's also exceptionally refined when settled into a motorway cruise.
The interior is stunning, adopting the same look as the larger S90 and V90. It's dominated by the Volvo Sensus 9in touchscreen in the centre of the dashboard. This is one of the classiest cabins in its class, and achieves high quality through a minimalist look and feel.
The V60 is also the longest car in its class and the boot is simply enormous at 529 litres. There's oodles of leg and headroom throughout and loads of space for all your touring holiday luggage
Standard equipment for all V60s includes LED headlights, a powered tailgate, dual-zone climate control, sat-nav, rear parking sensors, and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. The Inscription trim we tested also came with heated and ventilated massaging seats, and an impressive Bowers and Wilkins stereo system.
As safety is such a key focus for Volvo, this model gets the City Safety package as standard, which includes autonomous emergency braking with cyclist, pedestrian and large-animal detection, and steering support.
Volvo also supplies the Pilot Assist system that provides semi-autonomous steering and acceleration control, as well as keeping the car in the right lane and at the driver's chosen speed. It's easy to use and we think it's one of the best systems on the market.
Prices for the V60 start from £31,550 in P11D for the lowest Momentum trim, a thoroughly competitive price, considering the amount of equipment you get. The D4 Momentum model we tried is a little more at £34,100.
It's hard to find many bad things to say about the V60 and, while the manufacturer has a bit of a challenge on its hands tearing customers away from their German favourites, we don't think it will struggle too much. Basically, if you're after a practical, well-built and comfortable estate with plenty of room, the V60 is probably your best bet.
Volvo V60 Estate 2.0 D4 190hp Momentum Auto8
On sale July
Residual value 40.8%
Service, maintenance and repair £27.3p
Cost per mile £71.7
Fuel consumption 62.9mpg
CO2 (BIK band) 119g/km (28%)
BIK 20/40% a month £159/£318
Boot space529 litres
Engine size/power 1969cc/190hp
Comfortable, minimalist, but stylish cabin, calm but smooth drive.