Costs & verdict
Everyday costs, plus how reliable and safe it is
Costs, insurance groups, MPG and CO2
The XC60 is priced competitively against the Audi Q5, BMW X3 and Mercedes-Benz GLC and, going by Volvo’s online finance calculator, PCP finance can be extremely competitive for the class and you can get some pretty good cash discounts on the XC60, too. Officially, the D4 diesel produces really low official CO2 emissions, thanks partly to being offered with front-wheel drive.
The B4 and B5 mild hybrids also offer very competitive emissions and fuel consumption figures compared to the equivalent Audi Q5 — on a long run we managed a respectable 40-45mpg in a B4 diesel. A front-wheel-drive DS 7 Crossback is also worth looking at if low running costs are a priority.
Those considering an XC60 as a company car should consider the T8 plug-in hybrid version first, though, as it has the lowest CO2 emissions of the range, resulting in lower benefit-in-kind tax. However, it'll only actually save petrol among those who can keep its hybrid battery sufficiently charged to cover most of their commute on electric power alone, while the Polestar Engineered version is far too pricey to recommend. And, while the T4, T5 and T6 petrol versions will suit those who drive mainly in the city, none of these are especially economical if you constantly pound the motorways.
Equipment, options and extras
The Edition trim will be discontinued shortly, and we’d be tempted to stick with entry-level Momentum trim because it gives you all the essentials and quite a bit more on top. Climate control, keyless start, cruise control, automatic lights and wipers and heated leather seats all come as standard, so you only really need to add metallic paint to help out the resale values.
R-Design is also very popular, mainly because it offers sportier styling, bigger alloy wheels and dark tinted windows. Upper trim levels, such as the luxurious Inscription, which brings a more upmarket interior and fully electric seats, and the performance-focused Polestar Engineered with its beefier brakes and extra engine power, push the XC60’s price into the realm of altogether bigger and better cars, such as the Land Rover Discovery and Volvo’s own flagship XC90.
On most versions, you can opt for a Pro Pack that adds extra kit — commonly items such as keyless entry, a heated steering wheel, and a head-up display. With Polestar Engineered versions you're mainly paying for the mechanical changes, which don't really do the XC60 any favours.
In the 2019 WhatCar? Reliability Survey, the Volvo XC60 finished at the top of its class as the most reliable large SUV, according to our readers. As a brand, Volvo finished decently, placing 11th overall (out of 31 manufacturers). That puts them behind Lexus, but much higher than Jaguar, Mercedes, Audi and BMW.
The XC60 comes with a three-year, 60,000-mile warranty as standard, as well as a three-year paintwork warranty and 12-year cover against rust. This cover is par for the course in the premium large SUV class.
Safety and security
Thankfully, Volvo hasn't forgotten its safety-first roots; the latest XC60 has some of the most advanced safety features in the class. It scored the maximum five stars from Euro NCAP’s safety tests, with a brilliant 98% adult occupant safety score and 95% for safety assistance. Automatic emergency braking (AEB) is standard on all trims and recognises not only other cars but also cyclists, pedestrians and large animals. The system can even help you swerve around obstacles and back onto the correct side of the road, although this feature is only initiated if you start to make an evasive manoeuvre.
Blindspot monitoring is available as part of a pack that also includes adaptive cruise control, with what Volvo describes as Pilot Assist: a semi-autonomous driving mode that will steer for you on motorways.
As you'd expect in a car costing this much money, every model comes with an alarm and an immobiliser. Security experts Thatcham Research gave the model the maximum five stars for resisting theft and four stars for resistance to being broken into.
For all the latest reviews, advice and new car deals, sign up to the What Car? newsletter here