2020 Volvo S60 Polestar Canada Review – It can be difficult to understand the uniformity and comfort of the Californian climate. Blue skies, sunny and cloudless, combined with perfect sunsets, are the norm in this relaxed state, perfectly positioned by Mother Nature. Let me put it this way. When the Angels rain, and I mean just a few hours of light rain, people start to panic. “Can we still drive there? Is school cancelled? “He starts to wonder: Is this beautiful climate still special for local residents or does it just become a monotonous affair?
2020 Volvo S60 Polestar Canada Review
No matter, it’s the perfect place to launch the new Volvo S60 2019. Los Angeles is full of beautiful connecting roads and mountain curves, the perfect testing ground to test the new sports intentions of the S60. And, contrary to popular belief, this Swedish entry-level compact sedan is sportier than you might think.
Currently there are three models S60 on deck: S60 T5 FWD ($42.400), S60 T6 AWD ($47.400) and S60 T8 Polestar engineered (prices still to be announced). Adjustment levels remain as momentum, R-Design and inscription. The basic T5 model is for front wheel drive only and comes with a turbocharged of 2.0 liters in line: Four impellers of 250 hp and 258 lb-ft, while the T6 is only for traction on all wheels and improves the four pots with a supercharger and turbocharger for a Respectable 316 hp and 295 lb-ft. The T8 is a plug-in hybrid, which uses an electric motor with this latest engine to deliver a healthy 415 hp (328 HP + 87 hp). Currently, the T8 is only available in the Polestar engineered package, but Volvo Canada promises an independent T8 model in the future.
We were offered a lot of S60 pre-production models to drive, but without a T5 available, we started with enthusiasm with the T6 R-Design AWD in a brilliant Fusion Red paint that felt like home enjoying the glitter of Santa Monica Sunrise.
Swedes know how to design a vehicle. In my opinion, the S60 uses the new design language of Volvo better. Think of a S90 but light it in a more compact and better packaged silhouette. The headlights of Thor-hammer are as impressive as ever, and the taillights are unique but always very refreshing in a luxury market full of Teutonic and clinical participants.
If you have driven a modern Volvo, then the minimalist design of the S60 cabin will be familiar. All the indicators are digital, the change lever is the same as that obtained in the S90, and the T8 plug-in models receive the Orrefors Glass gear knob that we love. The golden seat belts on the Polestar engineered models are also an elegant touch, as are the double glazed windows.
The big screen entertainment and entertainment type tablet is still the star of the show. For 2019, they’ve added a faster processor to accelerate the drive. Still, the load times can be slow and take a few seconds to record the buttons ‘ commands. Once the computers get hot, the response times are much faster.
Surprisingly and one of the best features of the S60 are the rear seats. Unlike competitors like Genesis G70 and Infiniti Q50, these rear seats are incredibly spacious and usable. I can sit behind my six-foot car with extra space to move my head and legs.
On the streets of Mulholland Drive, full of celebrities, the roads are full of hairpins that do not drool and are full of thorns. The S60, which moves on the same platform as the S90 and XC90, maintained its composure and showed its stellar tuning of the chassis. The management is what really stood out, and is the most improved component compared to other modern Volvos. Not as electric or as vague as the S90 or XC60, the direction of the S60 offers an organic weight gain and faithful to turn. It provides a clear telephone line to the front wheels, keeping the front nose lively and vigilant, an attribute that the others were not.
The engine didn’t lose any rhythm either. With the supercharged compressor that deals with the low-end growl while the turbo reels, this tag-team Association offers an excellent and, above all, soft propulsion. We tested this engine earlier in the S90 and the XC90, where we always felt it was on its limits and trying to catch our breath, but in this smaller sedan app, it feels like home. There is almost no delay between the pedal and forward motion, although the racket and whistles of the engine are evident and can be detached from some ears.
That said, the S60 T6 is not as composed as a BMW series 3 on its limits. There is a bit of body sway when taking curves at higher speeds, and there are no adjustable shock absorbers or adaptable throughout the S60 board. In addition, the gear shifts of the standard 8-speed automatic transmission, although smooth when left to their own devices, do not provide the same quick exchanges when invoked through the blades. I’ll be frank and say this is all just a pinch of what I think is an excellent sports sedan. On the challenging open roads, the S60 T6 proved its worth and its willingness to meet vigorous driving.
Looking at the S60 from a different lens, one focused on luxury and comfort, the S60 protrudes above the majority. Passing quietly through Sunset Boulevard, the exchange of transmission relations and the marriage between the motor train and the chassis go unnoticed, as are the potholes and imperfections of the road. The S60 T6 offers greater comfort than performance, and that’s a lot.
The following in the file was the S60 T8 Polestar engineered (PE). While it is not a complete model of Polestar like the one we tried before, this is the gateway that unites the two. Think of it as the M-Performance models of BMW or 43-AMG by Mercedes. Except in this case and for now, it is combined exclusively with the T8 hybrid power train. The PE also receives a handful of performance enhancements such as manually adjustable Ohlins shocks, the largest Brembo brakes with gold-painted tweezers, light rims, black exhaust pipes, golden safety belts and, of course, a ECU Melody. At the end of next year, PE treatment will also be available on the V60 and XC60 models.
While the power goes up from the T6, so is the weight. With all that instant electric power pushing the S60 off the line, you’d expect it to be incredibly fast, but the weight really drags it down. I’ll be honest and say it doesn’t feel like a 415 hp sedan, and it doesn’t emit the same sense of acceleration that a BMW M3 has. That said, the S60 PE is quite fast and really comes to life in the low and middle range of the power band, where the uptake is immense and surprisingly powerful. 0-100 km/h comes in respectable 4.7 seconds, compared to the 5.6 seconds of the T6 AWD and 6.5 seconds of the T5 FWD.
The shock absorbers are possibly the best part of the S60 PE, and are incredibly well adapted to address the famous mountain roads of Los Angeles. Tight in the corners and without showing a pinch of body balancing, he would call it witty and athletic, hiding much of the weight that aground it during the acceleration maneuvers in a straight line.
The biggest drawback is with the regenerative brakes. As with all hybrids, the brake pedals are used with electric motors to recover the kinetic energy produced during braking to recharge the battery supply. The result is an elastic brake pedal that all car manufacturers have struggled to perfect. The S60 PE is no different. The first 20% of the pedal’s depression is linear and predictable, but reaches 21% and is filled with bananas. Make sure all your items are tied, as they will fly through the windshield if you are not delicate with the pedal. Even after a few hours behind the wheel, I could not get used to modulate it to produce a smooth and linear slowdown to zero.
The S60 T8 Polestar engineered is a wonderful addition to the sedan line, and it really shows what this platform and chassis are capable of. We can’t wait to see what happens to the complete Polestar model, but in the meantime, the T6 AWD is still our preferred option on these roads. The front nose was more athletic and anxious, and actually felt like a 300 hp sedan. Now that I think about it, the Polestar engineered package would have been epic in the T6 AWD. We have our fingers crossed.
That does not remove the fact that the S60 is a compact sedan impeccably suitable for the brand Volvo, which is quite underestimated. It is more sporting than we imagined and a dance partner welcome in the mountains embedded in the California coast is not an easy feat. Just look at the Genesis G70 or the Infiniti Q50 Red Sport compared, both in their infancy too, but have not managed to get any soul or sportsmanship on their way. The S60, on the other hand, balances both the sport and the comfort in a master execution hit. Volvo will have no problem selling these S60. It has the look, the impulse and the potential to be among the Giants.