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- Great safety scores
- Broad lineup
- Strong acceleration
- Exceptionally comfortable seats
- High-buck feel inside
- Bland, dated styling
- Old-school infotainment
- Even at its best, not all that fun
- Light on personality versus Volvo’s latest
The 2018 Volvo S60 is a pleasant car, but rivals and even the rest of Volvo’s lineup have left it in the dust.
The 2018 Volvo S60 is a traditional luxury sedan with a moderately sporty flair.
With its comfortable interior, broad lineup, efficient powertrains, and high safety scores, the 2018 S60 is a good choice unfortunately let down by an outdated infotainment system. It scores 6.8 out of 10 on our scale. (Read more about how we rate cars.)
The Volvo S60 is available in a wide array of trim levels—Dynamic, Inscription, Inscription Platinum, R-Design, Polestar, and the off-road-oriented Cross Country—each with many packages and individual options. The wagon version of the S60, the Volvo V60, is covered separately but is essentially the same vehicle aside from its more utilitarian cargo hold.
This year may be the current S60’s last. To mark the occasion, heated seats and a heated steering wheel are now standard instead of optional. The S60’s basic design dates back to the 2011 model year, which makes it among the oldest in a competitive set that includes such stalwarts as the BMW 3-Series, Audi A4, and Mercedes-Benz C-Class.
Parked next to newer designs like the larger S90 sedan in Volvo’s showroom, the S60 can look a little frumpy and dated. Its organic lines are clean, but not as crisp as those Volvo’s designers have shown us they can draw. Still, Volvo should be commended for offering the S60 with many different wheel designs, interior and exterior hues, and even suspension heights. The taller S60 Cross Country looks suitably buff for a day exploring the wilderness, while the S60 Inscription’s wheelbase stretches an extra three inches for added rear-seat room.
Inside, the S60’s dashboard is littered with buttons, an optional all-digital instrument cluster keeps it from looking too dated. Its infotainment system features a bright 7.0-inch screen, but there’s no Apple CarPlay and the non-touchscreen setup is cumbersome compared to more modern rivals (and the gorgeous vertical display in Volvo’s fresher designs).
While all S60 sedans come with an 8-speed automatic, three different variants of a 2.0-liter inline-4 engine can be found underhood. S60 T5s feature a turbo-4 rated at 240 hp and can be paired with either front- or all-wheel drive. The 302-hp S60 T6 and the high-performance, 362-hp S60 Polestar use versions of a turbocharged and supercharged turbo-4 that sends power to all four corners. The S60 Cross Country features a small suspension lift and is only available with the 240-hp motor and all-wheel drive.
No S60 leads its class in terms of fuel efficiency, but the 29 mpg combined for the base, front-drive model is certainly competitive. More powerful S60s are thirstier.
Base S60s are serene, while Polestars are strong but not as thrilling as their body kits, big brakes, fancy suspension, and available Cyan Racing Blue paint scheme might suggest. Volvo has traditionally been better at safety than performance, even though the brand’s Polestar division is hinting it has some exciting designs up its sleeves.
All S60s include low-speed automatic emergency braking, while full-speed automatic emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, blind-spot monitors and active lane control are reasonably priced options.