Premium Swede » 2017 Volvo S90 T6 AWD

03-Dec-2016
Tested

After a long and sticky summer, we welcomed some truly refreshing news from Scandinavia in the shape of the all-new luxury sedan from Volvo. The new S90 is the company’s entry ticket to the exclusive club of premium sedans, a departure from the company’s old corporate style and a welcome breath of fresh air in the high-end scene dominated by over-chromed and over-weight luxury barges.

Following in the footsteps of the suave new XC90 and sharing the same scalable platform, the S90 replaces the dated S80, bringing about an exciting mix of sleek exterior design, well appointed interior, a sophisticated powertrain and the proverbial safety. Yes, it has taken almost a decade to release the all new model, but it was all well worth the wait.

Thumbs up for such a simplistic approach to designing a luxury sedan. The use of clean and flowing body lines, combined with a total absence of gimmicks, add-ons or any kind of bling, results in a sleek, mature looking and elegantly styled large sedan. To me, this is the equivalent of using white space in graphic design. Loving it!

The front of the all-new Volvo S90 is dominated by the new, extra wide and sleek grille that protracts into the flat bumper face, and the new, slim headlights featuring attractive, Thor hammer-inspired running daylights. A simple yet aggressive front bumper houses matching faux side intakes and a slim, twin blade lower grille, a design that combines aerodynamic efficiency, elegance and sportiness. The silhouette of the vehicle is clean and simple, with a coupe-like roof line, without any visual drama or accentuated body lines, almost a generic design that would fit fine on quite a few of its German competitors. Another win!"

The surprising rear lights caught me off guard, definitely not what I'd expect on a new Volvo, distinctive and a great fit, strongly supporting the sporty elegance of the S90. The rear end is the most individualistic and freshest looking one in a long time, easily surpassing the deja vu or recycled visual solutions from its competitors. And Volvo just proved that chrome does not equal elegance, it is all in the design and style. Touche!"

Open any of the doors of the new S90 and enter one of the best cabins we've seen lately. Not the most luxurious, not the best equipped either, just refined and tasty, oozing quality, comfort and class. The combination of the cabin's materials, colours and its simplistic but inspired design tend to make a strong first impression, whether you're a car connoisseur or a mere passenger, even a young one. And then there's the comfortable leather seats..."

The centerpiece of the extensive equipment list is the iPad-like infotainment screen with crisp graphics and a host of options at your fingertips, providing you're willing to spend a lil' time getting used to its interface. Every other option you can possibly think of thus plenty of cutting edge technology are all included in the top model, only adding to the premium feel of Volvo's new forerunner."

Another brilliant piece of technology is the twin-charged T6 powerplant, combining a supercharger and a turbocharger to deliver low rpm torque, smooth power delivery and efficiency, while never sacrificing driving pleasure. While some might deem the 2.0L engine too small for a premium sedan, we found it more than adequate, well paired with the new 8-speed auto gearbox and the new all-wheel drive system. With a power output of 316 horsepower and a healthy torque of almost 300 Nm, both relaxed cruising and spirited driving are performed with flying colors. Refined or rough, this motor can do both"

Refinement and comfort spring to mind first in trying to describe the S90 daily driving experience, be it highway cruising or the leisurely evening drive. Quiet and smooth, the big cat purrs as it piles miles effortlessly. But once you've dropped the family and you're on your own, you can easily switch to a more dynamic kind of experience. Floor the throttle and the twin-charged motor responds in the blink of an eye, generating considerable forward thrust and sounding sporty while at it. The sprint from 0-100 km/h takes only 5.6 seconds, a respectable time taking the size and weight of the car into consideration. A great new chassis and well tuned suspension deliver good handling, even though tuned primarily for comfort, the S90 does allow you to corner hard, although you should not expect the Polestar kind of prowess.

The new Volvo S90 is one of the biggest yet least known surprises of the year, an elegant and intelligent premium sedan that entered this segment with the intention to do well first time around. Eight years in the making, the Swedes have taken their sweet time to hone a fine machine. Nothing on this car is spectacular, yet as a whole the new S90 is one of Volvo's best cars ever. Grown up, sophisticated, capable and packed with the finest tech, the Premium Swede is sure to be going places."