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  • Writer's pictureAlain Kuhn Von Kuhnenfeld

Volvo V90 Cross Country

This week we are reviewing the Volvo V90 CC. Our vehicle was assembled at the Torslanda plant in Sweden and had an MSRP of $65,590 CAD.

Volvo V90 Cross Country
Photo by Alain Kuhn Von Kuhnenfeld

Perhaps because we have somewhat of a love & hate relationship with wagons in North America, Volvo only offers the battlewagon form of the V90 in Canada. The V90 Cross Country, a raised version of the classic V90, resembles more a crossover than a wagon. The market for wagons in North America has shifted to consumers looking for something equally fun to drive and practical for the family. These offerings are now found mainly in the luxury segment, mostly from German brands, resulting in a clientele flirting with vehicles getting very close to the six figures. Offering such a big wagon in this segment is figuratively a bargain.

Volvo V90 CC
Photo by Alain Kuhn Von Kuhnenfeld

Fun Factor: 7

Volvo has updated its engine lineup for the V90 CC, and the nameplates have changed from T6 to B6. The engine itself hasn't changed; it's still a 2.0L engine, both supercharged and turbocharged. The major update is that it's a mild hybrid with a 13-hp ISG (Integrated Starter Generator). This engine provides 295hp down 21hp from its predecessor; it now makes 310 lb-ft of torque, meaning you get 15 lb-ft of torque more. On paper, this should provide better fuel economy, improve engine responsiveness, and reduce noise and vibration of the engine. In reality, we barely noticed any fuel economy over the T6 engine with the cold weather. We also found the transmission programming full of hesitation. We wondered why Volvo hadn't gone the plug-in hybrid route for this vehicle, especially since they mastered this technology, as concluded in our S90 Recharge review.

Volvo V90 CC
Photo by Alain Kuhn Von Kuhnenfeld

Can it Family: 8

What hasn't changed is the comfort we are accustomed to with Volvo. The seats are well-bolstered and offer unparalleled support. Taller drivers will love the visibility around the cabin; smaller drivers, such as my spouse, who is 5ft1, may have more difficulty finding a position that offers the visibility needed to drive with assurance. What bothered her the most was the large "A" pillar, and the large headrest blocked some vital blind spots. Otherwise, this vehicle's visibility is excellent with all its windows. Testing Volvo's in the winter always brings joy, as we can rest assured that the heated seats will pass the most rigid cold-weather testing. The backbench will bring joy to anyone sitting in the back; the outer seats provide enveloping comfort. Due to the width of the V90 CC, even the passenger in the middle will find it hard to complain. Finally, the main reason for getting a V90 CC is the space in the trunk, and we can say right now that this spot is dog-approved!

Volvo V90 interior
Photo by Alain Kuhn Von Kuhnenfeld

Fuel-Friendly: 7

The average fuel economy observed with the Volvo V90 CC was 12.3L/100km. In the city, we saw an average of 10.5L/100 km, and on the Hwy, we were able to see fuel consumption as low as 7.5L/100km on average.

V90 CC cluster
Photo by Alain Kuhn Von Kuhnenfeld

HWY-warrior: 8

On the road, the Volvo V90CC has started to show its age even though it's only been a couple of years since Volvo overhauled all of its electronics systems & semiautonomous driving. It may have been at the forefront when it launched. Today, the system needs a little push to be in the spotlight again. As for the driving dynamics, it drives and feels like a Volvo. The added height doesn't compromise the feel or driving dynamics you can expect from a premium vehicle.

Volvo V90 CC trunk
Photo by Alain Kuhn Von Kuhnenfeld

Karaoke Friendly: 9

The Bowers and Wilkins Premium Sound System might be the best sound system in the industry. As pointed out in other reviews, the sound is crisp; it would fulfill any audiophile's dreams. The V90 CC has dropped the Sensus infotainment for a system powered by Google. This system might have its advantages as everything is directly built-in, such as google maps, an audio player, and many apps that you can download. At the time of testing Apple Car Play nor Android Auto were available wired or wirelessly. Thus, everything needs to be programmed through the car's infotainment and having your phone connected via Bluetooth. This may be a minor annoyance; however, similarly to the XC40, the integrated Google Maps would not always find certain destinations. It would have trouble connecting to a cell signal or not find a location we could see on our phone's Google maps. When it does work, you have a beautiful view directly within the cluster and can follow directions. Something we've been longing for years for a car manufacturer to implement is using Google maps instead of their own maps, which we all know don't get updated regularly. So kudos to Volvo for making this a reality!

Volvo V90 CC interior
Photo by Alain Kuhn Von Kuhnenfeld

Baby-friendly: 7

Installation of car seats is effortless as the ISOFIX ports are hidden behind a latch door that you can access by lifting the latch. The ISOFIX ports are easily accessible, and attaching the car seat is straightforward. We wish it would be different; if you want to connect your child's seat using the anchor hook, it will need to pass it over the headrest as the space between the headrest is too small. As for smaller kids getting into the back seats, they will not have any issues opening the door handle. What could be challenging for them is getting into the car; the door frame is profoundly shaped on the silhouette/rear wheel arch, giving a narrower access point that is quite high. Assisting smaller children will be necessary to help them get into their seats.

Volvo V90 CC rear seats
Photo by Alain Kuhn Von Kuhnenfeld

City Cruising: 4

The biggest fault we give the Volvo V90 CC in the city is its mild-hybrid system. The system doesn't offer much improvement in fuel economy. With all the technology under the hood of Volvos, we would have expected a hybrid or a plug-in hybrid. It's a shame that the PHEV system of the XC60 isn't found in the V90 CC. Suspension-wise, it's a dream over road imperfection in the city. Steering is very direct and will delight those who want a mix of comfort and sportiness.

Volvo V90 CC ISOFIX ports
Photo by Alain Kuhn Von Kuhnenfeld

Why would we buy the 2022 Volvo V90 CC, or what we like?

Being a rugged wagon makes this one of the more exciting entries in its segment. The trunk is humongous and offers a low loading floor, perfect for your four-legged friends or your Swedish furniture store visits. Seating is a highlight and makes it a dream on long distances.

Rear seats Volvo V90 CC
Photo by Alain Kuhn Von Kuhnenfeld

Why would we not buy the 2022 Volvo V90 CC, or what did we not like about it?

No hybrid, nor is there a PHEV version at this time. The V90 CC wagon offers less seating space than the S90 sedan. The B6 engine doesn't feel like a huge leap forward compared to the previous generation T6.

Volvo has lent us this vehicle for one week as a press vehicle. We have no affiliation with Volvo Canada. The above is a recollection of our personal opinion of the car referred above.

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