For 2011, the Volvo S60 only comes to the U.S. in top T6 trim. You get a very well-equipped vehicle, at a moderate price for this class, but options can drive its price way up.
The S60's interior, in addition to being sleek and curvy, is very functional. The instrument panel is particularly well-designed, with a bin just behind the 'floating' center stack, as well as a large center-console bin, with USB input inside, for small electronics and smartphones.
The control layout is also refreshingly intuitive compared to that of some luxury sedans. Volvo provides real buttons for most commonly used features—along with that rotary switch on the steering wheel, so you can simply press one of the buttons on the center stack, like 'radio' or 'nav,' then roll through the menus with the steering-wheel controls.
Standard features are aplenty, including heated outside mirrors, steering-wheel audio controls, a trip computer, cruise control, dual-zone climate control, a power driver's seat, and a 160-watt sound system with HD Radio, Sirius Satellite Radio, and auxiliary and USB inputs.
The new sound system—from Audyssey Laboratories, a company that's made its name with home and professional theater systems—is one you'll want. It sounds great, and uses 12 speakers with a digital amp. A USB port is included, inside the center console so you can hide the goods away, and when we hooked up an iPhone it allowed seamless control of the music and podcasts through the steering-wheel rotary toggle.
A Multimedia Package (nav, real-time traffic, rear park assist, and premium sound) and a Climate Package (heated seats, headlight washers with heated nozzles, rain-sensing wipers, and headlight washers) are also on offer.
Pricing could be an issue for some shoppers. The S60 starts at $37,700, and many of the desirable entertainment and safety features are optional, as well as some of the most distinctive interior materials and trims. A loaded 2011 Volvo S60 can top $50,000.