Volvo V60: Best Wagon To Buy 2021

January 4, 2021

Our highest-rated wagon comes from the company known for wagons. It's a Volvo.

The Volvo V60 could almost be called a niche vehicle due to its low sales volume. Spotting one on dealer lots or on the roads would be as rare as spotting a California Condor, but unlike the Condor, Volvo sells the V60 in all 50 states. Spoiler: Ordering one would be a wise idea as its The Car Connection's Best Wagon To Buy 2021.

To qualify, our finalists in each category have to cost less than $50,000, have an above average safety rating, and be available nationwide. The Audi A6 Allroad may be our favorite wagon, with the 2021 Mercedes E450 All Terrain right behind it, but they cost about $70,000.

The V60 gets lumped into our review of its sedan sibling, the S60, which has a TCC Rating of 7.7 thanks to potent turbocharged engines, first-class seats, and a minimalist cabin design. The V60 is the wagon we love, but it does have a cramped rear seat and plig-in hybrid variants aren't cheap.

This year's runner up is the 2021 Subaru Outback with a TCC Rating of 6.7; if the Outback is analogous to a hiking boot, then the V60 is an Ecco loafer with a design that is simple yet chic. How very Scandinavian.

2019 Volvo V60

2019 Volvo V60

2020 Volvo V60 Cross Country

2020 Volvo V60 Cross Country

2020 Volvo V60 Cross Country

2020 Volvo V60 Cross Country

The V60 can be had as a traditional wagon or can be butched up a bit for that Colorado and Pacifica Northwest hiking life with a 2.5-inch raised ride height to 8.3 inches of ground clearance and plastic body cladding in V60 Cross Country form.

Inside, all V60s feature a minimalist cabin with a 12.3-inch digital gauge cluster and 9.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system with an iPad-like interface that's easy to use. Wrapped in ribbons of metallic trim and swaths of synthetic or genuine leather, it's a calm place to spend time.

2019 Volvo V60

2019 Volvo V60

V60s are powered by a 2.0-liter turbo-4 with 250 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque sent to the front wheels, though Cross Country models have all-wheel drive. An expensive plug-in hybrid model adds a lithium-ion battery pack and electric motor to the mix to up power output to 415 hp and 494 lb-ft sent to all four wheels.

The T5 turbo-4 is the smoother engine as it simply has less going on. It's perky and has enough punch for highway passing, though it's unlikely to win any drag races. The plug-in hybrid (which isn't available in the high-riding Cross Country trim) has 22 miles of range on electricity alone and has an EPA efficiency rating of 69 MPGe. The turbo-4 in more pedestrian V60s is still fairly efficient with EPA ratings in the low to mid 30s on the highway, though ratings drop to the low 20s around town. 

2020 Volvo V60 Cross Country

2020 Volvo V60 Cross Country

Volvo's known for interiors and the V60 lineup is no exception. The front seats should win their own award for comfort. Do these things come as desk chairs? Asking for myself. The rear seats have a modest 35.2 inches of leg room and can fit two adults comfortably, though three will be a squeeze. Cargo carrying capacity is SUV-like with up to 23.2 cubic feet of space behind the rear seats that swells to 50.9 cubic feet when they're folded down.

The V60 hasn't been crash tested, but its sedan sibling, the S60, was named a Top Safety Pick by the IIHS. Every V60 has standard automatic emergency braking and active lane control along with blind-spot monitors and adaptive headlights. Also standard: Volvo's Pilot Assist system allows the driver to remove their hands from the wheel for about 15 seconds at a time. Drivers will find fantastic outward vision from behind the wheel of the V60 thanks to thin pillars and lots of glass around the greenhouse.

With a base price of $42,590 the V60 isn't the cheapest family hauler in town, but it's one of the most comfortable. With a Swedish design to kill, great standard safety, and user-friendly tech, it's hard to make an argument why anyone in the market for a wagon shouldn't get the V60. The only question now is whether the Cross Country's off-road inclinations are needed for your lifestyle.

Read all about the winners of The Car Connection's Best Car To Buy 2021 awards—and find out which vehicles took home our annual Driver’s Choice awards as well as top honors from our sister sites, Motor Authority and Green Car Reports

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