2019 Volvo S90 Review

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Which S90 does Edmunds recommend?

The Momentum trim hits the sweet spot since it is well-equipped and offers many of the Inscription's features as options. There's simply more flexibility to configure a Momentum to your liking. As for engines, it's worth springing for the higher-output T6 engine over the T5.

Edmunds' Expert Review

  • Seat comfort is among the best in the class
  • Impressive interior materials throughout the cabin
  • Comes standard with a wide array of convenience and safety features
  • Rough ride when equipped with optional wheels
  • Steering is on the heavy side
  • Revisions to standard equipment and trim level contents
  • Part of the second S90 generation introduced for 2017

Overall rating

7.9 / 10

Volvo fully embraced its heritage when creating the S90. At the vanguard of elegant Scandinavian design, this luxury sedan is roundly attractive inside and out. Its sheet metal is crisp, and its cabin materials are first-rate. While it's not an overtly sporty luxury sedan, the S90 confidently goes its own way.

There's substance to back up the style, too — the 2019 Volvo S90 boasts a long list of luxury appointments and driver assistance features. Roominess is another virtue of the S90. While it's priced like competitors' midsize luxury sedans such as the Audi A6 and BMW 5 Series, the S90 is as long as sedans one class higher. This length gives the S90 a lot more rear legroom and a bit more front legroom than the midsize competition.

The S90 draws criticism for one thing: its four-cylinder engine. While the power specs are solid, it doesn't offer the same level of refinement as its competition's optional six-cylinder engines. The same could be said of the S90's ride quality, which can be overly firm for this class of vehicle. Overall, though, we think the Volvo S90 is an appealing pick for a stylish luxury sedan.

2019 Volvo S90 models

The 2019 Volvo S90 is offered in either Momentum or Inscription trim level with a choice of three powerplants. The T5 models are powered by a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine (250 horsepower, 258 pound-feet of torque) paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission that sends power to the front wheels. All-wheel drive is optional on T5 models. The T6 is both supercharged and turbocharged (316 hp, 295 lb-ft) and comes standard with all-wheel drive. The plug-in hybrid T8 adds an 87-hp electric motor to the T6 engine for a combined output of 400 hp and 472 lb-ft.

Standard features for the T5 Momentum include 18-inch alloy wheels, LED headlights, a panoramic sunroof, rear parking sensors, keyless entry and ignition, selectable drive modes, simulated-leather upholstery, wood interior trim, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, heated power-adjustable front seats, driver-seat memory functions, and power-folding rear headrests.

On the technology front, you also get Volvo On Call remote features, a virtual instrument panel, a 9-inch touchscreen with Volvo's Sensus infotainment system, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, a navigation system, and a 10-speaker audio system with satellite radio.

Standard advanced safety features include forward collision warning and mitigation, adaptive cruise control, blind-spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic alert, lane keeping assist, oncoming lane mitigation, a drowsy driver warning system, and a traffic sign reader.

The T6 Inscription trim extends the features list with 19-inch wheels, Harman Kardon premium audio, four-zone automatic climate control, a cooled glovebox, interior ambient lighting, upgraded wood interior trim, leather upholstery, leather coverings on the dash and door panels, ventilated front seats, power-adjustable front-seat side bolsters and thigh extensions, and power sunshades for rear windows.

An optional Advanced package adds parking assist, a surround-view camera system, upgraded headlights and a head-up display. For the Inscription only, Volvo offers the Luxury package, which includes massaging front seats, heated and ventilated rear seats, a heated steering wheel, and upgraded materials for the headliner and sun visors.

Trim tested

Each vehicle typically comes in multiple versions that are fundamentally similar. The ratings in this review are based on our full test of the Volvo S90 T6 Inscription Sedan (turbo 2.0L inline-4 | 8-speed automatic | AWD).

NOTE: Since this test was conducted in 2017, the current S90 has received some revisions, including the switch to a longer-wheelbase version. Our findings remain broadly applicable to this year's S90, however.

EdmundsScorecard

Overall7.9 / 10
Driving7.5
Comfort8.0
Interior8.0
Utility7.5
Technology8.5

Driving

7.5
The S90 doesn't wow you with performance, but it's plenty fast when called upon. The steering feels precise but needlessly heavy. The car's mass also makes it less snappy than its rivals in quick turns and corners. It can still hustle, but it's no sport sedan.

Acceleration

8.0
The T6 engine's turbo-supercharger tandem whips the S90 to highway-merging speeds in no time, but it sounds raspy at higher engine speeds. There's plenty of power almost anywhere in the first six gears; seventh and eighth are fuel savers only.

Braking

7.5
The firm, solid pedal feel transmits confidence, which is good since this is a heavy car for its size.

Steering

6.0
The steering requires more effort than we expect in a large luxury sedan. There's good feel on-center, and decent road feel is sent back to the driver, but extended driving will induce some fatigue.

Handling

6.5
All-wheel drive and grippy tires signal sporting intentions but feel outmatched by the car's mass. Handling is able but not inspired. The S90 feels less willing to change directions than some other cars in the class.

Drivability

7.0
The refined driving character is oriented more to comfort than speed or sport. Comfort mode is too sedate and dulls the S90's senses and accelerator response. Sport mode will be the default for most drivers seeking some spirit.

Comfort

8.0
What the S90 lacks in heart-racing performance, it makes up for in high-class cabin comfort. But the ride quality is too harsh, perhaps due to a poor wheel-tire combination. Smaller wheels might ease the thumping we observed.

Seat comfort

9.0
The firm but pliable seats have excellent support and shape. Ten-way power adjustments include thigh extenders and upper and lower lumbar. It's easy to dial in comfort and adjust for sustained comfort during long drives.

Ride comfort

7.5
The ride is regal and undisturbed on most road surfaces but jostles like a sports car over more severe bumps and imperfections. Our test car came with the optional rear air suspension, which helped, but also optional 20-inch wheels, which made it worse.

Noise & vibration

7.5
Wind and road noise is well suppressed, but there's a dull tire roar from the low-profile tires. Engine noise pipes in through the speakers. It's not a bad sound but not worth highlighting either.

Climate control

8.0
The stylish center console vent design has directional vents and adjustable fan speed for rear-seat passengers. The seat coolers emit some fan noise, but it's muted. Most functions are accessed via a touchscreen menu instead of buttons and knobs.

Interior

8.0
The S90 concedes nothing to its rivals in cabin design and materials. This interior is first-rate all around, from upholstery, touch points and surfaces to infotainment integration. However, the large rear pillars and a sloping roofline create blind spots and diminish headroom.

Ease of use

8.0
The button labels aren't always obvious, which leads to some confusion. The touchscreen is intuitive, so it's easy to access primary navigation, phone, audio and climate functions.

Getting in/getting out

8.0
Getting in and out of the front seats is easy thanks to a wide door swing and aperture. The sloping rear roofline means taller passengers might need to stoop slightly to get into the rear seats.

Driving position

7.5
The steering column has manual tilt-and-telescoping, though it should be power-adjustable at this price. A 5-foot-10 driver will have no trouble finding a good position, and we wouldn't anticipate trouble for taller or shorter drivers.

Roominess

7.0
There was enough legroom for a 6-foot passenger seated behind a 6-foot driver in the smaller-wheelbase S90 from last year, so we expect the 2018 long-wheelbase model to feel even more spacious. The sloping roofline eats a bit into the rear headroom, but headroom is on par with what competitors offer.

Visibility

6.5
The sloping roofline and wide pillars inhibit some rear corner visibility, but generally there's no problem quickly assessing the blind spot before a lane change or when reversing. Blind-spot monitoring sensors are optional, an odd circumstance for a car in this price range.

Quality

9.0
Time will tell with Volvo's latest family of new products. But to the eye, the S90 is free of unsightly gaps and obvious build quality issues. Early impressions suggest Volvo sweated the details.

Utility

7.5
A 60/40-split folding rear seat with a long-item/ski pass-through improves flexibility for what is an otherwise average-size trunk. The optional hands-free trunklid and a 12-volt outlet in the cargo area add some errand-running and tailgating utility.

Small-item storage

7.0
The door pockets, center console and glovebox storage are all adequately sized.

Cargo space

7.0
At 13.5 cubic feet, the Volvo's trunk is roughly the same volume as the rest of the segment, give or take a cubic foot. The disappearing gooseneck hinges keep luggage from getting smashed.

Technology

8.5
We sampled only the high-end stereo system, but it sounds worth every penny. The navigation system also impressed with its precision. Wireless connectivity comes via 3G but should be 4G at this level. Semiautomated driving features work well both on the highway and in city traffic.

Audio & navigation

9.0
The optional Bowers & Wilkins audio system is top-shelf, with only slight bass distortion when cranked (the standard audio system was unavailable to test). Turn-by-turn navigation is impressively accurate.

Smartphone integration

8.0
There are no issues with standard Bluetooth connection. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are optional.

Driver aids

8.0
Pilot Assist coordinates adaptive cruise control, steering and lane keeping assist systems for semiautomated driving that works well at highway speeds and in stop-and-go traffic. Blind-spot monitoring and a 360-degree camera are available.

Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the Used 2019 Volvo S90.

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Most helpful consumer reviews

5 out of 5 stars
It’s a BIG and Plush vehicle. Review +1 year
Howie K,06/06/2019
T5 Momentum 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 8A)
I generally favor sportier cars, but now I am driving a Volvo S90 T5 which I got at a lease price that I could not refuse! [Actually less per month that my former Infiniti Q50.] So I will say I got a lot of bang for the buck. This is a luxury car that one would not mind being chauffeured in. The rear passenger area is HUGE and comfortable. I can finally sit in front passenger seat and not even have to think about adjusting the seat for rear passages leg room. The Driver’s seat is very pleasant for sitting and was designed by a Orthopedist. The package came with a Blonde (white) interior which (needs occasional cleaning), is wonderful and elegant. I would say it is the most nicely appointed car I ever owned. (And I have and had several MB and BMWs). The Tech is amazing! Though sometimes touch screen is a bit overwhelming. The great thing is that you can put the car on Auto Assist Pilot, play with it without worrying about hitting anything on the road. (PS I do not support being a distractive driver, but this practically eliminates it under the right conditions. Always be alert). The Auto Assist Pilot is from the future. It is not quite at Tesla level, but does much to keep you very safe while also removing the the tedium of Stop and Go traffic. Driving is now an ‘AHHH”. (My insurance rates actually went down when ordering this car.). It is a wonderfully solid vehicle. I will lend this Car to anyone of my family and know they will be safe in it. Gotta love that Swedish engineering. The trade off is the sporty feel of performance. The Volvo is powerful for a 4 cylinder, and I get 25.5 mpg. (Again better than my past Infinity). 0-60 is quite good for a car this size, but you do lose the ‘feel’ of lungeing acceleration. (But you can use electronic options). It is a great luxury (family) car before it is a sports car. The ride is firm as you ‘float’ over the road. It’s very nice and quiet. Long trips are a pleasure. All in all, it is a car to enjoy the ride in. If you can get great deal on this extremely plush car, don’t hesitate. (P.S. also drove the Volvo S60 for the while. The ride and feel of the S90 is much better). {A buying note: Volvo pricing is company set and it is difficult to negotiate a lower price When visiting other dealers. There is not much wiggle room so choose the dealership with the best service.} 1 Year Later - still the most comfortable car I ever owned. A pleasure to take a ride in for long road trips. Pros: Orthopedically Seats 5 w/ enough backseat legroom to play football in. No more squishing upfront seat to allow backseat room. Trunk is large doesn’t seem to be. I guess it is the awkward design. Low but deep. I Love how in winter seats & steering wheel heat up to settings automatically when temp is below 40 degrees. 3 individual temp settings (not even my son’s Tesla S has that.). The Swedes made it solid and sure foot in harsh weather. It is my go-to car in snow and slush. Much better handling than my wife’s Mercedes C Class (which isn’t bad). This car is tank-like sturdy. An idiot SUV driver already backed into my rear fender in a parking lot, and l had no major damage. Have no doubt it will do a great job protecting passengers and family in a crash. (HF). Con: I still find the screen controls cumbersome and confusing. The car has only driver 1 USB, so had to plug in a hub to use both phone and SD music card (no biggie). I have found that the autopilot is not perfect. It will veer of the road (not follow the road lines in certain situations, [with steep curves in road at higher speeds) so keep you hands on the wheel and pay some attention, [so NO napping!], but it is still a great feature 90% of the time.. But Is still a pleasure to take the stress out of everyday driving. Still love this car as the next evolution in driving. TWO YEARS IN; Still enjoying the ride. Still a very comfortable, plush and quiet car to drive. Volvo has engineered a great car. Some of the Lux tech is great. ex- I can preset the the temperature (like an alarm clock) so I can enter the car at my preferred climate for trips to and from work. However, center panel navi-entertainment system gets a bit tiresome. Not simple to operate. And the Nav system itself, while 98% accurate most of the time. Does not adjust best route for traffic & other delays. I miss my old Garmin made system (ie-MB). However, I do enjoy the S90’s ride.
5 out of 5 stars
Best car is Volvo, appeal for German cars gone
Fred Davis,01/19/2021
T6 Momentum 4dr Sedan AWD (2.0L 4cyl Twincharger 8A)
My cars have been M.B. up until the quality fell apart in the 80's, 90's, and currently. The BMW is so highly over rated it is a joke, and the electronics in that car with an emphasis to over engineer the car is sad and a finical nightmare. The VOLVO -S-90 has been very well received, great handling, wonderful supercharged to turbo-charged 6 cly engine that loves to driven hard, designed and built by Porsche, many years ago. The same engine won "Wards" best build. Have a total of 110 k on the clock and uses zero oil, never had an Audi that could do that!

Safety

Our experts like the S90 models:

Pilot Assist
Maintains a gap between the S90 and the car in front and keeps the S90 in its lane, giving the driver an additional layer of safety.
Blind-Spot Information System
Notifies the driver if a car is lurking in the blind spot as well as if cars are approaching from the sides when backing up.
Collision Mitigation Support
Warns the driver if a front collision is imminent and applies the brakes if no action is taken.
IIHS Rating
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.
  • Side Impact Test
    Good
  • Roof Strength Test
    Good
  • Rear Crash Protection / Head Restraint
    Good
  • IIHS Small Overlap Front Test
    Not Tested
  • Moderate Overlap Front Test
    Good

More about the 2019 Volvo S90

Used 2019 Volvo S90 Overview

The Used 2019 Volvo S90 is offered in the following submodels: S90 Sedan, S90 Hybrid. Available styles include T5 Momentum 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 8A), T6 Inscription 4dr Sedan AWD (2.0L 4cyl Twincharger 8A), T8 Inscription Twin Engine Plug-In Hybrid 4dr Sedan AWD (2.0L 4cyl Twincharger gas/electric hybrid 8A), T6 Momentum 4dr Sedan AWD (2.0L 4cyl Twincharger 8A), and T8 Momentum Twin Engine Plug-In Hybrid 4dr Sedan AWD (2.0L 4cyl Twincharger gas/electric hybrid 8A). Pre-owned Volvo S90 models are available with a 2.0 L-liter gas engine or a 2.0 L-liter hybrid engine, with output up to 400 hp, depending on engine type. The Used 2019 Volvo S90 comes with front wheel drive, and all wheel drive. Available transmissions include: 8-speed shiftable automatic. The Used 2019 Volvo S90 comes with a 4 yr./ 50000 mi. basic warranty, a 4 yr./ unlimited mi. roadside warranty, and a 4 yr./ 50000 mi. powertrain warranty.

What's a good price on a Used 2019 Volvo S90?

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Which used 2019 Volvo S90s are available in my area?

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Can't find a used 2019 Volvo S90s you want in your area? Consider a broader search.

Find a used Volvo S90 for sale - 5 great deals out of 21 listings starting at $19,793.

Find a used Volvo for sale - 3 great deals out of 17 listings starting at $23,164.

Find a used certified pre-owned Volvo S90 for sale - 8 great deals out of 13 listings starting at $18,129.

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Should I lease or buy a 2019 Volvo S90?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

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