- The 2015 Volvo V60 goes on sale in the U.S. in January 2014.
- It's the first Volvo to get the automaker's all-new 2.0-liter four-cylinder, but will also come with five- and six-cylinder engines.
- Pricing will be announced in October.
SAINT-PAUL-DE-VENCE, France — More than three years after its launch in Europe, the Volvo V60 wagon will finally go on sale in the U.S. The 2015 Volvo V60 hits dealerships in January 2014. It will be the first Volvo to use the automaker's new 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine.
Of course, this is not just any 2.0-liter engine. Rather, it's part of a new family of all-aluminum, direct-injected gasoline and diesel engines, all 2.0 liters in displacement, that Volvo hopes will form the backbone of a simplified powertrain strategy for years to come. Initially, the U.S. will get only the gasoline engine, which Volvo plans to offer in four states of tune.
The most potent version will use both a supercharger (for low-rpm response) and a turbocharger (for power at high rpm) to deliver 302 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque. It will be offered in the S60 and XC60, most likely very early in the 2015 model year (in the January to February time frame). The base front-wheel-drive V60 will get a less powerful version of the new 2.0-liter that uses only a single turbocharger and is rated at 240 hp and 258 lb-ft of torque. You'll also see the 240-hp 2.0-liter in base versions of the S60, S80, XC60 and XC70.
Included with all the new 2.0-liter engines is an Aisin-Warner-sourced eight-speed automatic transmission with paddle shifters. Vehicles with this engine also make the switch to electric-assist power steering, which improves efficiency and allows Volvo to offer an active lane-keeping assist system. Volvo pegs 0-60-mph acceleration at 6.1 seconds for 2015 Volvo V60s with the 240-hp 2.0-liter inline-4 and eight-speed automatic. The company anticipates a 29 mpg combined EPA rating as well.
Although Volvo is planning to transition to an all-four-cylinder-engine lineup within the next few years, initially the V60 will also be offered with the company's familiar five- and six-cylinder engines as well. All-wheel-drive V60 wagons will use both a turbocharged 2.5-liter inline-5 (250 hp, 266 lb-ft) and a turbo 3.0-liter inline-6 (325 hp, 354 lb-ft). These engines will pair with a carryover six-speed automatic. No manual gearbox will be offered.
Pretty as the V60's lines are, Volvo officials are eager to snuff out the station wagon stigma before it starts. Joe Haslem, brand manager for the S60, V60 and XC60, carefully refers to it as a "sports wagon" and "an S60 with a larger rear cargo area."
Volvo sales have sagged mightily in the United States in recent years, but withholding desirable product from the U.S. is not the solution to the problem, Peter Mertens, Volvo's senior vice president of research and development, indicated in an interview this week at the 2013 Frankfurt Auto Show.
"There were decisions made a long time ago for cars not being shipped or not being sold in the U.S., which I think were a mistake and we need to try to fix that," Mertens told Edmunds.
"We have difficulties with the very strong Swedish kronor versus the dollar, but we need to get our act together in the U.S. and do a better job and follow the market.
"I personally believe very much that [the V60] will be a success in the U.S., even though station wagons are known not to be as liked as they were a long time ago. But this is not really a station wagon. This is more like a sports wagon, and I think it will very well suit the taste of our U.S. customers."
While meeting with members of the media in France, Haslem noted, "We expect growth [from the launch of the V60] to be almost strictly incremental."
Edmunds says: Times are hard for Volvo in the United States. You can help out by purchasing this lovely station wagon.