Review: Volvo S60

first_imgVolvo has done the unthinkable. The Swedish automaker has upped the ante in the uber cool department by adding the much needed ‘oomph’ factor in the new S60 T6. The 2011 S60 T6 claims to be “naughty” and, going by the tagline, it is not just a tease. With 304 bhp, the S60 is responsive and downright quick. Combined with a turbocharger for additional performance, the 3-litre unit is loaded with urge. Maximum torque of 440 Nm kicks in from just 2000 rpm, so acceleration is brisk, with abundant power remaining on tap throughout the rev range.Another benefit of the turbocharged engine is that it doesn’t lose power at higher elevations, where naturally-aspirated engines easily run out of breath. In some ways the torque masks the less impressive six-speed transmission, which is often too eager to change into higher gears. The only error or omission we felt was that the sportiest Volvo ever made deserved paddle shifts. There’s a charismatic whirr under hard acceleration, but otherwise the engine is refined and quiet. The engine never protests even when you’re all the way up to its 6000 rpm redline. The S60 is not as sharp as its German counterparts as the steering still lacks quick response that lets you feel the road through your fingertips. Even though the wheel is a tad heavy it won’t dissuade you from trying to push the car to go where no Volvo has ever dreamt of before.The ride quality of the S60 is superb. Even with 18-inch runflats, the S60 does not crash into potholes ensuring it isn’t a tear-jerking experience. A hint of firmness, slight bouncing and jiggling is felt but the trade-off is a more surefooted feel at speed. Another plus is that the cabin is completely isolated from road and wind noise. Volvo’s latest pedestrian safety technology is a first in the S60. The “Pedestrian Detection with Full Auto Brake” uses radar and a camera to spot pedestrians in the path of the car. At up to 35 kmph, the system will stop the car if it is about to hit a person. Frankly speaking, one has to get used to it for the car suddenly braking itself can be scary.At the end of the day, “stylish”, “modern” and “appealing” are the words that come to the mind when describing the all-wheel-drive S60. Its 3-litre engine produces the kind of torque that gives it surprisingly brisk acceleration while peak output is more than enough to pitch it against the sportiest of sedans and come out on top. Seating comfort is exceptional up front, thanks to Volvo’s orthopaedically correct seat design. The S60 holds appeal for those who take a shine to its trendy design and want an entry level luxury sedan with power aplenty, comfortable ride and tidy handling too. Not to forget state-of-the-art safety.Engine: 2953 ccMax power: 304 bhp@5600 rpmMax torque: 440 Nm@2000 rpmGearbox: 6-speed autoWheelbase (mm): 2776LxWxH (mm): 4628 x 2097 x 2776Top Speed: 250 kmph0-100 kmph: 6.1secPrice: Rs. 34 Lakh, ex-showroom, DelhiRating: ****Tour reportThe Volvo S60 has a 380-litre boot, which, though not the largest, will suffice for cargo space requirements of most people. The fact that the rear seats can be folded down in a 60:40 split ratio ensures that the boot can be used flexibly. The car should make for a decent vehicle to tour in, courtesy its comfortable seats, ride quality and powerful engine.Close upThe S60’s 3-litre engine develops a very healthy 440 Nm of peak torque at a low 2000 rpm, which makes it very driveable. The peak power output is a whopping 304 bhp.The S60 is made of fine materials and the plushness can be felt throughout the cabin. The controls also feel crisp and nice to operate, while ergonomics are top notch with every button, lever or switch falling into hand almost intuitively.A coupe-like roofline, aggressive haunches and stylistically treated cornering headlamps and bonnet up the good looks quotient of the Swedish sedan.A low loading lip height makes it easy to access the boot. Both rear seats fold down and there’s a separate ski pass-through as well for accessing the boot from inside the car.TVS Apache 180 ABSResearch shows that majority of motorcycle accidents happens when braking goes wrong. It can happen while avoiding an obstacle or when riding over poor roads or even changing road conditions like slippery roads thanks to the first drizzle or an oil spill. But, if you ride motorcycles, you probably know it already because, like me, you must have had numerous heart-stopping moments and a few crashes as well. The new TVS Apache 180 ABS now comes with a cure for this: ABS or Anti-Lock Braking System. Just like in cars, the system offers better control, especially in low grip conditions. Of course, we already have ABS on bikes in India, but those are all imports, and unquestionably, very expensive. So, the Apache not only becomes the first Indian-made motorcycle to sport one, but also the first one in the world for motorcycles under 200 cc. But, we are mainly excited because, ABS can actually allow you to ride faster, on both road and track. The ideal way to brake for a corner, you’d agree, is to get on the brakes hard initially and then get progressively lighter, making the bike stable at turn-in and through a corner. We start braking gingerly to get a feel of the road (to avoid lock-ups and skidding), then begin braking hard and end up slower, unsure, and twitchy.With the new Apache, no matter what, you can simply grab the brake lever really hard, feel the ABS working through the pulsating lever and then modulate it depending on how fast you want to enter the corner. Soon one tends to feel comfortable with hard braking and the control alongside that it becomes impossible to ride slowly! I seriously recommend that all should have a go at it because the benefits of ABS truly need to be felt to be believed. Price: Rs. 78,800 ex-showroom, Delhi.–Vikrant Singhadvertisementadvertisementlast_img

Leave a Comment