Test – 2011 Volvo S60 T6 AWD – rpmGo.com

2011 Volvo S60 T6 AWD

The 2011 Volvo S60 T6 AWD is built on the same platform as its bigger sibling, the S80 and is a little bit bigger and heavier (176 pounds more) in comparison with the S60R. The car is equipped with a 3.0-liter transversely mounted power unit that is supercharged. This engine is not new to Volvo as they have been using it for the XC60 SUV and S80 we have mentioned before. The distinction is that for the S60, the engineers over at Volvo implemented an internal friction-reduction treatment and increased the power of the engine from the original 281 hp to 300 hp, at 5600 rpm. The torque level was also boosted, from 295 pound-feet to a more impressive 325 pound-feet level, at a higher 2,100 rpm.

With the help of this updated engine, the 2011 Volvo S60 T6 AWD needs about 5.5 seconds to reach 100 km/h which is a little bit more than the 335i, but less than the 328i from BMW. The model is offered with Volvo’s proprietary Dynamic Chassis setup (the much softer Touring Suspension System is available for no extra money), and although it has big 18-inch rims and performance tires (W-rated 235/40R-18 Continental ContiSportContact 3), the car is very easy to drive and not at all abusive; plus it is very quiet from the cockpit, much like most of the Volvos. In terms of handling, it acts pretty much the same as the Audi A6 3.0T, which is very good considering the German standards over at Audi.

The previous generation of the S60 had a steering feel that was considered by many as something purely theoretical, but things have changed with the 2011 version. Engineers over at Volvo affirmed that they have been working very hard to significantly improve the feedback and they said that the new steering hack of the S60 has gotten 100% stiffer in torsion. For the steering there are three driver-adjustable effort settings, most likely the drivers will pick the middle configuration as it will offer the perfect balance. The car comes with a very elegant and comfortable leather steering wheel that telescopes and tilts. The interior has also an elegant look thanks to its sweet-potato-colored leather upholstery. The plastics inserted in the dashboard of the car are gloss-free and resemble to animal hide. The switchgear is just about the same as the bigger brother has, the S80.

2011 Volvo S60 T6 AWD

For $2100 more, you could get the Technology Package that consists of a radar-based collision warning system, adaptive cruise control plus the now popular and useful lane-departure & pedestrian warnings. Similar to the system implemented in the S80, the car will alert flash a strip of red LEDs at the top of the car’s dashboard and at the same time make a very weird sound. If you continue snoozing, the car will reduce speed gradually until it will stop thus avoiding a very unhappy accident.

Being a Volvo, it has a lot of safety gear that luckily did not have a negative effect on the beautiful stylish aspect of the car. The S60 continues the design pattern chosen by Volvo, and this new model resembles with the S80, but it has a truncated tail and a tapered nose. When compared to the S80, the height and width are almost the same. The difference is mostly in the wheelbase and length.

We mentioned before the $2100 Technology Package available for the S60. Part of this optional is the proprietary pedestrian-detection system that uses a camera that is installed near the top of the windshield and relies also on the cruise control’s grille-installed radar that detects pedestrians and will stop the S60 automatically. For those of you that are interested about how this system works, keep reading.

The camera is aimed at the road ahead and sends photos to the S60’s onboard computer that will try to match these pictures to the database that the computer has, which consists of more than 10,000 pedestrian photos. By doing so, the system will find out if the object that is located in front of the car is an actual person. If the computer of the car senses that there is a person in the path of the car, the radar will kick in and will find out how far away that person is. The car will continue approaching the pedestrian and the collision-warning alarm that is installed at the base of the S60’s windshield will begin to flash and make alert sounds in order to warn the driver of an imminent accident. During the time the computer warns the driver, the S60 “prepares” the brakes for a full stop by moving the brake pads closer to the rotors. If the driver will ignore these signals, the car will automatically start fully braking until the S60 is stopped. If the driver is traveling with a speed of up to 22 mph, this system can stop the car before having an impact with the pedestrian. Anything above that will help reduce the force of the impact which will result in fewer injuries, hopefully.

Source: CarAndDriver.com

Post tags: Tags: s60, Volvo