Most people would agree that since Thomas Ingenlath took over the Volvo Cars’ vice-president of design position in July 2012, Volvo’s designs have progressively developed a character and design identity.
The designs have improved so much that people no longer refer to the look of Volvo’s vehicles as boxy but safe due to its dull and squarish design. Now, people appreciate and are attracted to its looks.
Previously, we reviewed the S90 and V90 T5 variants. This time around, we took the S90 T6 R-Design for a spin and were overwhelmed by its performance and sporty looks.
The T6 comes in all-wheel drive train system and it gets a more powerful engine due to the additional supercharger that boosts its output to 320hp at 5,700rpm and 400Nm between 2,200rpm and 5,400rpm. It is mated to an Aisin eight-speed automatic transmission.
Volvo claims that the T6 can sprint from standstill to 100kph in 5.9 seconds with a top speed of 250kph. Its fuel consumption is rated at 7.5 litres per 100km.
The Volvo T6 measures at 4,963mm in length, 1,879mm in width, 1,443mm in height, with a wheelbase of 2,941mm and weighs at 1,840kg. It has 500 litres of boot space and 60 litres of fuel tank capacity.
As for its standard features, the T6 is equipped with a keyless entry, keyless start, automated parking, dual-zone automatic climate control with CleanZone filtration, rear air vents, 12-way power-adjustable front seats with lumbar support and driver’s side memory, 12.3-inch instrument cluster display, Sensus Connect infotainment system, 9-inch touchscreen and the 10-speaker 330W sound system.
The T6 comes with the illuminated door handles, puddle lamps, laminated side windows, power sunroof, rear sunblinds, 360º view camera, head-up display, paddle shifters, Navigation Pro with Road Sign Information, powered boot lid, power-folding headrests, sport chassis and a Nappa leather-wrapped key fob.
In addition, it comes with the signature “Thor’s Hammer”” LED headlights with active bending lights, active high-beam control, LED tail lights with adaptive brake lights, 19-inch diamond-cut five-spoke alloy wheels, the sportier contour seats finished in Nappa leather, charcoal headlining and carbon fibre inlays.
It also has the R-Design appearance package, which consists of a more sporty and aggressive front bumper, gloss black grille, side skirts, front fog lights with cornering function, satin silver door mirror caps, rear diffuser with quad exhaust exits, and R-Design emblems on its steering wheel, gearlever as well as its pedals.
As for the safety aspects of the T6, it is equipped with six airbags, seat belts pretensioners for all seats, anti-lock braking system, electronic brake distribution, brake assist, stability control with active yaw control, ready alert brake, fading brake support and the IntelliSafe suite of active safety features such as the city safety autonomous emergency braking, which operates at speeds between 4kph to 70kph. It can also detect cyclist, pedestrians, large animals and vehicles.
Other safety features include the Volvo’s pilot assist semi-autonomous driving with adaptive cruise control, queue assist, lane keeping aid, driver alert control, run off road mitigation and protection with road edge detection, lane departure warning, rear collision warning and mitigation, blind spot information system and cross traffic alert.
The Volvo S90 T6 R-Design is priced at RM453,888 without insurance and comes with a five-year/120,000km warranty.
The S90 T6 R-Design is an attractive, sporty, powerful and elegant sedan. In fact, the look of the car is so distinctive and appealing, that strangers honked at us on a highway, overtook us and then gave us thumb-ups to indicate that the car looks great.
Even in a parking lot, someone would walked up to us and compliment on the car’s design. For sure, its distinctive look makes it a visual knockout. Its interior is luxurious, the selection of materials used, like the Nappa leather, charcoal headlining and carbon fibre inlays, boost the exquisite premium feel to the car.
It has the similar interior design layout as the XC-90, just short of the crystal-glass shift knob from Swedish glassmaker, Orrefors.
Driving the T6 is straightforward and predictable. It is so powerful that even with a full load of passengers and cargo, it did not slow down the sporty sedan. Even in the city and passing by rural areas, the slightly stiff ride provides comfort and relaxation to all the passengers.
Its 19-inch wheels cause the car to be more sensitive to road conditions. Therefore, when driving on rough or damaged roads, one can feel a slightly bumpy ride. However, the T6 R-Design offers maximum grip and responsive, as well as directive handling going in and out, slow or even fast corners.
The sophisticated pilot assist semi-autonomous system is useful especially for long-distance driving. It can assume responsibility for steering and braking to “follow” traffic and lane markings on the highway at speeds of up to 130kph. It allows the driver to take their hands off the wheel for a maximum 15 seconds a time.
Its infotainment system is direct and simple to operate. The 10-speaker 330W sound system plays clear and sharp treble, but it is short of solid bass ohm, as well as the clarity of a concert sound quality.
We clocked 7.9 to 9 litres per 100km while we were cruising on the highway within speed limit. On an average city and highway driving, it recorded 10.1 to 11.7 litres per 100km on its instrument cluster. After an aggressive acceleration driving, it consumed 14.2 to 15.8 litres per 100km.
Even though the S90 T6 R-Design is an excellent car, there is still room for improvement. We find the rear seats are short of headroom for passengers above 183cm. It also lacks of shoulder room to fit three medium and large framed adults.