The Smartest Plug-In Hybrid SUV On The Market


The rise of SUVs (Sport Utility Vehicles) was a tad unexpected, given the way sedans and hatchbacks had dominated the market for years. However, once people started to appreciate the functionality of SUVs, well, there was no turning back. Carmakers have not stood still either though, and creative minds at Volvo have taken some massive strides forward with the latest model of the Volvo XC60 plug-in hybrid.

Google power for a smarter drive

Technology is integrated throughout the vehicle, helping ensure a smooth and safe ride. A 9-inch infotainment touchscreen and a 12.3-inch digital gauge display come with a host of driver-assistance features, but the real upgrade happened in the infotainment system. The XC60’s Sensus system has been replaced by a Google-powered system that makes the whole driving experience a joy to behold.

Google Maps is fully integrated into the system, meaning you’ll get real-time traffic info and automatic rerouting, which let you reach your destination with less hassle. This also means that Google Assistant is your riding partner, so you can get directions, enjoy entertainment, keep in touch with friends, family and colleagues and fine-tune your cabin environment – all without taking your hands off the wheel. Simply say, “Hey Google” to get started.

Being safe is always smart too, and Volvo’s commitment to safety is evident in the XC60. There are three key driver-assistance features, which set the standard going forward. First off is the automated emergency braking system, which also comes with pedestrian detection. The second is the lane-departure warning feature that reminds you to keep to your lane, while the third is the option of adaptive cruise control that also comes with a semi-autonomous driving mode.

Beneath the hood

As much as the above-mentioned features add to the pleasure of driving, the real fun is below the bonnet. Volvo offers two different powertrains, B5 and T8, in the XC60, all mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission and all-wheel drive. Under the hood of base B5-badged XC60s is a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine and a 48-volt hybrid system making 247 horsepower.

The plug-in hybrid T8 powertrain has a set of electric motors for a total of 425 horsepower in the Recharge model, giving an estimated 54km electric-only range. The XC60 T8 can be charged at a public charging station or at home, but Volvo also provides a handy self-charging feature where the battery can be charged with energy generated from the SUV’s gasoline engine when needed.

Volvo XC60 engines & performance | Autocar

The XC60 takes corners well and feels tied to the road while cruising, so you can drive through Malta’s more winding roads with more confidence.

Looking to buy an SUV? Get in touch with GasanZammit to find out why the Volvo XC60 is the one for you!