Last month I introduced Diesel Car’s brand new Volvo V60 by immediately taking it on a 1,200-mile tour of Scotland. Since I got back, it’s had a much easier life, but with a number of photoshoots and various trips lined up over the summer, the mileage will soon mount up. This is a car that I could quite happily run for the next ten years, so it’s a shame that the loan doesn’t run that long. According to a recent JD Power survey, the Volvo V60 is more reliable than all of its rivals, though admittedly this is a reflection on the previous-generation car. That is according to 11,530 owners of cars aged between one and three years old, so the prospect of long-term Volvo ownership shouldn’t be especially stressful – not that the marque has ever had a reputation for a lack of dependability.
As you’d expect, our V60 has been completely reliable so far, but then it’s only just breached the 3,000-mile barrier. It’s utterly usable too, with seats that are supportive and comfortable, while also looking fabulous. It’s only when you analyse them that you realise how complex their design is, and that’s also true of the exterior styling. It was only when I washed the V60 for the first time that I realised just how many design flourishes there are, with black inserts dotted around the car, along with an array of features that make the car a looker, without it being fussy.
Interior space is very good with ample head and legroom for four, and refinement levels are excellent too. It’s only on really poorly surfaced roads that you get some tyre roar, but wind and engine noise are commendably hushed. The lack of background noise makes it much easier for the audio system to sound really good; this is controlled by a large portrait-format touchscreen display that’s generally user-friendly, but not always as intuitive to use as you might have hoped for.
Where the multi-media system was really shown up was when using the navigation in remote parts of Scotland, including Mull and Skye. Many of the villages weren’t in the system, which made it rather useless. I’d taken my trusty TomTom on the trip, as it’s often better than the factory-fit systems we have to test, and sure enough, even in the wilds of the inner Hebrides, the TomTom knew what was going on. However, with the road network of Mull effectively consisting of two single-track loops in a figure of eight, even if you’ve got no navigation system to rely on at all, as long as you know on which loop your destination is located, you’d be really hard pushed to get lost.
Date arrived 12th April 2019
Fuel economy 45.6-51.4mpg (combined) 45.4mpg (on test)
Not only do the LED headlights look superb with the Thor Hammer inserts, but they’re incredibly effective at turning night into day.
To start the engine, you have to twist a console-mounted switch clockwise – and to switch it off you have to do the same. Anti-clockwise to switch off would make more sense.