In the age of excessive electronic intervention (iDrive and self-parallel-park as two examples), the 2008 Volvo S60’s unique and uncluttered approach to technology is a refreshing departure from the luxury norm.
One of the most unique features of the S60 is its optional navigation system. Rather than integrating the nav screen with the radio display or computer/iDrive display a la BMW, Volvo tucks the screen neatly away inside the dash when not in use. Says Car and Driver, “most drivers had no trouble using the optional navigation system…it was easy to keep a peripheral eye on it while driving.” Toggle control buttons for the system are located on the back of the steering wheel, earning praise for their ease of use but jeers for lack of redundant controls for the co-pilot in the passenger seat. Of this feature, ConsumerGuide mentions the toggle buttons are “inaccessible to the front passenger” and finds the “dashtop screen…hard to read in daylight.” ConsumerGuide appreciates that this system “doesn't absorb audio or climate functions.”
Listing the S60’s notable optional features, Edmunds remarks that they “mostly come bundled in packages,” and “include an excellent 13-speaker Dolby Pro Logic surround sound system with an in-dash CD changer, a navigation system, Bluetooth, Sirius Satellite Radio, heated front seats, rain-sensing wipers and an interior air quality system”--not to mention a power glass sunroof, active bi-xenon headlamps with washers, rain-sensing wipers, and custom alloy wheels.
Car and Driver notes the radio, “unique because its functions are all controlled by turning knobs — even the radio presets.” They feel that it takes some getting used to, “but once learned, it was easier to use than most conventional units.”