Volvo Rolls Into Power With XC90 SUV
by Jean-Philippe Blanchard
The announcement of the all-new XC90 Volvo SUV has been the talk of the auto industry. It’s said to be the most powerful SUV yet and will be fully revealed in August and launched later this year.
If you’re soon to be in the market for an SUV with “room to grow,” the XC90 has an impressive and incredible amount of space with three rows of seating, perfect for a big family or a road trip with friends. But before we get to the interior, let’s look at the power.
The all-wheel drive seven-seater offers drivers up to 400 horsepower, but with carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions of around 60 g/km (NEDC driving cycle). It has up to 400 hp and 640 torque with a new Volvo-developed Twin Engine technology. Peter Mertens, Senior Vice President of Research and Development of the Volvo Car Group said, “In the past you could either have power or low CO2 emissions. But with the all-new XC90 you can have both.”
It offers a range of Drive-E engine options, all of which provide an outstanding combination of performance and fuel-efficiency. The main distinguishing feature of the Drive-E engine range is that they are all four-cylinder engines.
Its ‘Twin Engine’ will carry the badge ‘T8’ and be a plug-in electric car, hybrid car and high-performance car rolled into one. Normal driving is conducted in the default hybrid mode. This utilizes a two-litre, four-cylinder supercharged and turbocharged Drive-E petrol engine that powers the front wheels and an 80 hp (60 kW) electric motor that drives the rear wheels.
It uses the supercharger to fill in the bottom end of the power range to give the engine a big, naturally-aspirated feel, while the turbocharger kicks in when the airflow builds up. The electric motor on the rear wheels provides immediate torque.
But at the push of a button, the driver can switch to quiet and emission-free city driving on pure electric power where the range will be around 40 kilometers, and then, when needed, immediately revert back to the combined capacity of the petrol engine and electric motor, with its combined output of around 400 hp and 640 Nm of torque.
Inside, the normal array of buttons are replaced with a large tablet-like touch screen, a head-up display and thumb controls on the steering wheel. The new tech system within the next XC90 generation has an interface, part of ‘Sensus’, which incorporates the latest touch screen hardware and software to allow drivers to build an instinctive understanding of how the system works, where the controls are located and how to operate them.
Sensus includes a broad selection of cloud-based applications with a branded look and feel. The selection of cloud-based services, which may vary depending on the market, includes Internet radio, connected navigation, finding and paying for parking, discovering new restaurants at the destination, seamless streaming of your favorite music and much more.
“The XC90 will not only tell you when it’s time to visit the garage, but also suggest an appointment for you at your Volvo dealership. The Connected Service Booking application is the first step in making the dealer workshop fully integrated into the connected eco-system,” said Dr. Thomas M. Müller, Vice President Electrics/Electronics & E-propulsion engineering of Volvo Car Group.
As another ‘first’ for Volvo, The XC90 also becomes the first Volvo car to offer Apple CarPlay, which brings selected features and services familiar to iPad, iPhone and iPod users directly into the car via the large center console touch screen display. Users will immediately recognize the well-known icons for their basic Apple applications, such as phone, messages, music and navigation.
The standard Comfort seats are available with intuitive, smooth power operation, including adjustable side bolsters, seat cushion extension, multi-directional lumbar support and vertical adjustment of the headrests.
Three settings can be stored in the memory. Ventilation and massage functions are optional.
The second row features three individual seats with recline adjustment. The sliding function can be used to create more legroom for the passengers in the third row, or to increase loading space if the third row seats are folded flat.
The XC90 has come a long way since it first launched back in 2002. It has revolutionized space and the SUV engine.
Be on the lookout for the unveiling later this summer.
More info at www.volvocars.com