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2014 Volvo S60 R-Design and XC60 R-Design: New York Auto Show

What it is:

In New York, Volvo debuted the 2014 Volvo S60 R-Design and XC60 R-Design, sporty trim levels of its S60 and XC60 midsize luxury sedan and crossover models that both offer front- or rear-wheel drive. Upgrades on the outside include new front and rear fascias, black-accented 19-inch wheels and rear diffusers. The cars were also lowered for better handling and a more aggressive look. Most important, Volvo’s Polestar tuning arm has increased power from 304 to 329 hp on top-line T6 models.

How much:

Volvo hasn’t announced pricing, but we’d expect the new models to be $2,000 to $3,000 more than the regular S60 and XC60 models.

When you can get it:

The R-Design Volvos will go on sale this summer.

Add it to your shopping list because:

The R-Design models combine the practicality and safety of a Volvo with bold styling and sporty touches. While the new models will be offered on several S60 and XC60 trims, the one to get is a T6 model with the optional Polestar power bump. The available 329 hp makes the XC60 T6 one of today’s most powerful crossovers — and it lowers the model’s 0-to-60 time to just 6.9 seconds. It also gives the 2014 Volvo S60 T6 more power than the BMW 335i, Lexus IS 350 or other sport sedan rivals. It’s a good compromise for shoppers who are torn between safety and sporty.

Other cars to consider:

Audi S4: With 333 hp, the S4 nearly matches the S60 T6 R-Design on power. Its starting price above $48,000 is a little higher than the Volvo’s, but the S4 comes with a long list of standard equipment. It also touts great steering and handling.

BMW 335i: The 335i is a competitor to the S60 T6 R-Design. It starts around $44,000 and offers 300 hp. Despite the power disadvantage, its driving experience is among the best in the business.

BMW X3: The X3 xDrive35i uses the same 300-hp turbocharged engine as the 335i. Like the XC60, it combines sportiness and practicality. And shoppers can get an xDrive35i model with the performance-oriented M Sport package for around $50,000.

Lexus RX 350 F-Sport: The newly updated RX 350 F-Sport boasts sporty handling and crisp styling. Priced from $48,000, its 270-hp V6 isn’t quite up to challenging the XC60’s Polestar-tuned turbo engine. But it’s larger inside and includes a long list of standard equipment.

Doug Demuro
Doug DeMuro writes articles and makes videos, mainly about cars. Doug was born in Denver, Colorado, and received an economics degree from Emory University in Atlanta. After graduation, Doug spent three years working for Porsche Cars North America. Eventually, he quit his job to become a writer, largely because it meant that he no longer had to wear pants. Doug’s work has been featured in a... Read More

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