2015 Volvo S60 Long-Term Road Test - Miscellaneous

2015 Volvo S60 Long-Term Road Test

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2015 Volvo S60: 20,000-Mile Sendoff for the Swede

by Brent Romans, Senior Automotive Editor on February 24, 2016

2015 Volvo S60

Our time with our 2015 Volvo S60 is up. It's been a year and the S60 has left our long-term parking garage. We'll have a final wrap-up article soon, but overall I think our S60 was an enjoyable addition.

Before it left, I noticed the S60's odometer was approaching 20,000 mile, our typical minimum goal for a long-term vehicle. My colleague Mike Schmidt suggested I give our S60 a final send-off by driving it to Kingsburg, also known as Central California's Swedish Village. I'd never been there, so it seemed fitting. Plus, it'd be an excuse to listen to some ABBA on the Harman/Kardon sound system.

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2015 Volvo S60: What's New for 2016

by Cameron Rogers, Associate Editor on February 19, 2016

2015 Volvo S60

If you've been reading the long-term test of our 2015 Volvo S60 and have decided to buy one for yourself, you've got a choice to make. You could walk into a dealership and possibly get a smoking deal on remaining inventory of 2015 models, or you could purchase a newer-than-new 2016 version. Sometimes waiting a year can make all the difference and sometimes there's no variation at all.

In a nutshell, the biggest changes for the 2016 Volvo S60 are the additions of the Inscription and Cross Country models and the T6 R-Design AWD's new engine.

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2015 Volvo S60: Sun Visors Don't Extend

by Brent Romans, Senior Automotive Editor on February 9, 2016

2015 Volvo S60

Occasionally, we'll have a long-term test vehicle that lacks sliding/extendable sun visors that provide full side window coverage. Complaining about it can perhaps come off as nitpicking. But if this were my 2015 Volvo S60, I'd still be irked that I couldn't extend the visor.

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2015 Volvo S60: Almost Makes the Grade

by Dan Frio, Automotive Editor on February 5, 2016

2015 Volvo S60

We didn't add the 2015 Volvo S60 to our fleet just to compare it to a BMW 3-Series.

Boring. Cliché. Overcooked. Been there, done it.

Instead we were more interested in its new four-cylinder engine that incorporates a supercharger and turbocharger and promises the best of both worlds: low-end bursts of power from the former, boosts of highway-passing speed from the latter, and hopefully pretty good fuel economy from both.

I'm still going to compare it to the 3-Series.

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2015 Volvo S60: Wiper Sprayers Need Adjustment

by Mike Schmidt, Vehicle Testing Manager on February 2, 2016

2015 Volvo S60

The windshield wiper sprayers on our 2015 Volvo S60 need to relax. They squirt in such a tight, concentrated stream that the glass hardly gets wet before the wipers swing in to whisk it away. I find myself holding the trigger longer than I would for a misty-style nozzle to reach the same level of saturation. And I have a feeling I am not alone with this technique.

Maybe that is why this warning greeted me when I climbed into the car yesterday:

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2015 Volvo S60: Adaptive Cruise Control, The Savior of Sanity

by Carlos Lago, Road Test Editor on December 15, 2015

2015 Volvo S60

Once or twice a week, I wind up commuting through Los Angeles's infamous rush hour traffic. I cover 45 miles in about two hours, staring at a sea of red brake lights and losing part of my soul in the process. That is, unless I'm in our 2015 Volvo S60.

Like many new cars, our S60 has adaptive cruise control. But unlike many new cars, Volvo's system works extremely well.

The plus and minus buttons adjust the target speed, while the buttons with the arrows on them set the follow distance. Once you get it going, the S60 smartly maintains speed and distance. When the car in front stops, so does the S60. When it's time to move again, the S60 gets back up to speed. No gas or brake pedal use required.

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2015 Volvo S60: Quick, Painless 10,000-Mile Service

by Reese Counts, Vehicle Testing Assistant on December 8, 2015

2015 Volvo S60

Shortly before we hit the 10,000-mile mark in our long-term 2015 Volvo S60, a notification popped up on the infotainment system informing us that service was due. The S60 offered to search for the nearest Volvo dealer, but that wasn't necessary. We know there's a dealer mere blocks from our Santa Monica office.

Rather that scheduling an appointment, News Editor Kelly Hellwig dropped the car off at Volvo of Santa Monica's service department on her way into the office on a Monday morning. I arrived about 10 minutes after her and the car was still not checked in.

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2015 Volvo S60: 15,000 Miles, Trouble-Free

by Kelly Hellwig, Managing Editor on November 27, 2015

2015 Volvo S60

As the odometer digitally "clicked" past the 15,000-mile mark, I realized our 2015 Volvo S60 test car is now in the final quarter of its year-long test.

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2015 Volvo S60: Twin-Charging That Just Works

by Carlos Lago, Road Test Editor on November 20, 2015

2015 Volvo S60

Computer graphics in film work best when you don't see it. Mad Max: Fury Road used tons of CG, but it wasn't obvious. The effects improved scenes in ways you didn't notice while sitting in the theater watching a rad movie. The engine in our 2015 Volvo S60 is less rad, but similar. It is remarkably complex, but this complexity is invisible to its driver.

The 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine is twin-charged, meaning it uses both a turbocharger and a supercharger. This has always been an interesting concept, but much like how Rube Goldberg machines are interesting. A few rally cars famously employed the concept in the 80's, though it's been uncommon in production cars.

What's the concept? Let's back up a bit.

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2015 Volvo S60: Best Steering Wheel Controls in the Fleet

by Cameron Rogers, Associate Editor on October 9, 2015

2015 Volvo S60

A weekend in the 2015 Volvo S60 has convinced me that it has the best steering wheel controls in our fleet. The S60 steering wheel incorporates buttons that control only the most commonly used features. That may seem obvious or redundant to say, but many automakers can't pull off this simple design.

Let's look at the buttons that the S60's wheels has and how the controls differ from other manufacturers.

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2015 Volvo S60: Those Little Things That It Do - And Don't

by John O'Dell, Senior Editor on September 25, 2015

2015 Volvo S60

Volvo makes pretty good cars. So it's the little things that start to matter. I collected a few on a recent trip to Las Vegas in our 2015 Volvo S60 to cover the unveiling of the 2016 Toyota Prius.

1: The A/C works really well. That may not sound like much, as most modern cars have air conditioners that function well. But when it's 108 outside, the system's ability to maintain a nice, even 69 degrees inside is something you notice

2: The Volvo S60 is a lot prettier than the new Prius, IMO.

3: The S60, outfitted as ours is (fully loaded, of course), is a wonderful car for a long-distance drive. We've got a number of long-term posts attesting to this, so I won't go on except to say, again, that this is a great road car. The sport seats are also superb.

4: The lane keeping assist system is helpful, but can toss you an unwelcome surprise now and then.

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2015 Volvo S60: Nicks-n-Cuts on the Center Console

by Kelly Hellwig, Managing Editor on September 16, 2015

2015 Volvo S60

I like to think we're mostly respectable people here at Edmunds. The editorial staff is used to driving test cars, we respect all of our vehicles, and do our best to keep them up to snuff.

That's why I was disappointed when I noticed a few deep nicks in the center console of our 2015 Volvo S60.

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2015 Volvo S60: Love Those Big, Modern Wheels

by Kelly Hellwig, Managing Editor on September 9, 2015

2015 Volvo S60

I know a thing or two about Volvos, as I happen to own one. No, I don't own a current-gen car like our 2015 Volvo S60. Instead I have a "classic" 1998 V70 GLT hidden in my garage. With just 57K miles on the odometer, my wagon is patiently waiting for my 15-year-old daughter to get her driver's license.

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2015 Volvo S60: No Longer Under the Radar

August 24, 2015

2015 Volvo S60

I had a weekend road trip planned and had my eyes on our long-term Sonata. That didn't pan out, and neither did the road trip unfortunately, but in lieu of the Sonata, fleetmaster Mike suggested the 2015 Volvo S60  instead.

Thank goodness he had. I'd been missing out.

I hadn't spent much time in the S60. Our long-term Volvo has never really been on my radar and up until I grabbed its keys this time, I'd only been in it once — and that was just because Cameron Rogers made me sit in it to show off how comfy the seats are. 

Blame it on my past life as a car salesman.

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2015 Volvo S60: Daddy, Your Car is Broken

August 20, 2015

2015 Volvo S60

At two hours, my commute home was yesterday extraordinarily long. What I really needed was to pull our 2015 Volvo S60 into the driveway and decompress a bit. What greeted me at my sanctuary instead was a four-year-old staring, pointing, and asking "Daddy, what is that thing sticking out of the bottom of your car?"

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2015 Volvo S60: A Few Too Many Buttons

July 31, 2015

2015 Volvo S60

Although I agree with most of the other editors on staff that the interior of our 2015 Volvo S60 is elegant and functional, the cluster of buttons you see here is not its best design feature.

Too many buttons that look too alike is the short version of my complaint. Even after driving it for a while, I'm still not used to where everything is at first glance.

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2015 Volvo S60: Do Canadians (and Minnesotans) Really Appreciate This?

July 9, 2015

2015 Volvo S60

It was obvious as soon as I sat behind the wheel. Our 2015 Volvo S60 was anxious to tell me that it needed windshield washer fluid. Its prominent warning message even included a helpful underhood diagram to show me where to put it.

So I drove to my local filling station and bought a gallon jug of the stuff. At this point, I started having flashbacks.

The voices of Canadian product quality engineers began to ricochet around my skull. They dated back to the mid-1990s when I was working as a vehicle development engineer for the Toyota Technical Center.

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2015 Volvo S60: Sextuple Washer Jets

July 2, 2015

2015 Volvo S60

That's a lot of tuples. I didn't expect to get fired on from six different angles when I sprayed our 2015 Volvo S60's windshield for the first time. I was so fascinated by the barrage that I let it flow for like 20 seconds (two videos' worth), so if any subsequent drivers were wondering about the residue on the Volvo's roof, well, now you know.

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2015 Volvo S60: The Windshield Squiggles

June 30, 2015

2015 Volvo S60

As noted in the intro, we checked the box for the $1,550 Climate package on our long-term 2015 Volvo S60. The package includes heated front and rear seats, a heated steering wheel, heated washer nozzles, an active cabin filter that Volvo calls IAQS (Interior Air Quality System) and...drumroll...a heated windshield.

That last item is why our S60 simulates the experience of having a lot of long squiggly floaters. From the driver seat, the windshield's embedded heating elements are everywhere you look. It's annoying at best, and I can see how it could be distracting, too, since it puts an extra layer of visual data between your eyes and what they're supposed to be looking at.

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2015 Volvo S60: Sleepy Style, Luxury Appeal

June 18, 2015

2015 Volvo S60

Recently, I was talking with a fellow parent after dropping my kids off at school. "What are you driving?" he asked. "A Volvo S60," I replied. He paused for a moment, brow slightly furled. Presumably, he had to mentally call up what an S60 was. And I don't think he knew much.

"Huh. What do you think of it?" he finally asked.

"It's pretty nice," I replied. "It's got a lot of what people shopping for a car like this will want." But as we were standing there looking at the car, I added, "It just doesn't stand out all that much."

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2015 Volvo S60: Double The Boost, Double the Trouble?

May 27, 2015

2015 Volvo S60

Turbocharged and supercharged. It still sounds a little ridiculous, like some sort of powertrain combo your little brother cooked up in Gran Turismo for his fully-modded 600-horsepower Toyota MR2. But a real world car? A front-wheel-drive, four-cylinder Volvo no less? No way.

Yet here we are in our 2015 Volvo S60 T6, a car that doubles down on boost like a card shark in Vegas with an 11 at the blackjack table.

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2015 Volvo S60: That Familiar Swedish Competence

May 26, 2015

2015 Volvo S60

I grabbed the keys to our 2015 Volvo S60 recently and one of the first questions that popped in my head was: Didn't we just have an S60 in our fleet? The exact details were fuzzy, but when I checked, sure enough there it was: our 2012 S60, a T5 model highlighted by its spiced pumpkin latte-hued color.

Both our 2015 car and the older 2012 are of the same generation, but the new T6's main differentiating quality is its 302-horsepower four-cylinder engine. To the mainstream, it's a small difference, but to Volvo the turbo-four represents its future, as the engine will proliferate across the automaker's lineup.

My lack of immediate recall on the old car also speaks to an inherent quality of the S60. This is not a shock-and-awe sedan that addles your memory synapses. Instead, it just stays in the background to deliver a balanced luxury sedan experience.

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2015 Volvo S60: 5,000 Miles of Praise, A Few Peeves

May 21, 2015

2015 Volvo S60

Our long-term 2015 Volvo S60 just cleared 5,000 miles. We normally try to capture the moment when the odometer clicks over, but the jet-lagged editor who took this photo didn't notice the five-grand mark until his personal fog had cleared 100 miles later.  

Taking a look back at our Volvo S60 T6 Drive-E, so far there have been zero mechanical failures and zero reasons to visit the dealer. For the most part, this Swedish sedan has been easy to live with, praised for its powerful engine, good handling-to-ride compromise, classy interior and comfy front seats. It should be noted the S60 has also been panned for its seats, but Mike Magrath is an "outlier," as we say. I don't want to imply his opinion doesn't count, but...

Truth is, we don't love everything about Volvo's new supercharged/turbocharged four-door. In fact...

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2015 Volvo S60: Taming the Hills of San Francisco

May 8, 2015

2015 Volvo S60

In Los Angeles, we don't really get to try out features like hill-start assist. But when I drove our long-term 2015 Volvo S60 around San Francisco recently, I tested that feature like crazy. It was a godsend there, especially considering that my best friend who I visited lives on that insanely steep hill in the photo.

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2015 Volvo S60: Auto Braking by City Safety

March 31, 2015

2015 Volvo S60

Caroline and I were driving into our office complex after a lovely lunch when we were met with a rather abrupt surprise.

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2015 Volvo S60: Active Headlamps

March 27, 2015

2015 Volvo S60

Our long-term 2015 Volvo S60 test car has optional bi-xenon active headlamps. It's not earth shattering technology. Even the famed Tucker "Torpedo" had at least one headlamp that followed the direction of the steering wheel back when the earth was still cooling.

But what's nice about our Volvo is that owners may choose to disable this functionality, as well as others, on this screen. Although we can't think of a reason we'd like to de-select this light show, so click through to see video of exactly how active these Volvo active headlamps truly are.

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2015 Volvo S60: Five-Star Safety Rating

March 25, 2015

2015 Volvo S60

Crash test results are in, and the 2015 Volvo S60 earned the top five-star safety rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

The 2015 S60 received five stars in the front, side and rollover crashworthiness tests.

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2015 Volvo S60: Finger-Pinching Door Handles

March 11, 2015

2015 Volvo S60

The first time I opened a door on our 2015 Volvo S60 T6 Drive-E down in the Edmunds parking garage, I pinched my finger.

"Ow!"

Vehicle Testing Assistant Cameron Rogers was down there with me, laughed, and asked if I needed a tutorial on door opening.

Now I'll give you that one pinch of the finger is probably a fluke. But when it happens a second time (as it did this past weekend), well, that's when it starts to become a "hmm..." kind of moment. Three times? I'm sorry, but there is something a bit off about the S60's door handles.

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2015 Volvo S60: Speed Limit Can't Keep Up

February 26, 2015

2015 Volvo S60

Some cars display the current speed limit based on GPS data and some read the street signs. Our long-term 2015 Volvo S60 obviously reads the street signs. The problem is that in Los Angeles you don't always get a street sign.

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Past Long-Term Road Tests