What Is It?
The 2017 Volvo V90 is a large premium wagon, based on the same platform as the excellent Volvo XC90 crossover SUV, and it’s coming to the United States.
Look up and down any American street and you might see one wagon, possibly none. Now that everyone’s buying crossovers, the wagon appears to have wheeled off into history. But if any single marque has a special tradition with this kind of car, it’s Volvo. Those big, square V70 wagons (and their predecessors) were strong, roomy, comfortable, safe and wonderfully practical. More useful than a comparable crossover, actually, but the latter’s high driving position seems to be the winning factor.
When the 2017 Volvo V90 arrives, however, the company is hoping that its good looks (inside and out), plethora of advanced safety features, high degree of functionality and hybrid drivetrain will cause some potential premium crossover buyers to think twice.
There might be other drivetrains, but the V90 is set to offer a plug-in hybrid version that makes 410 horsepower and can cover 30 miles with just electric power. Semi-autonomous driving features will also play a major part. There’s a brand-new function that detects large animals — a deer in the road, for example — and can then apply the brakes. And the V90 might be the first-ever car to not have a key — it locks and unlocks by using a smartphone app.
While we’re on the subject of all things 90-ish, the 2017 Volvo XC90 Excellence has also been unveiled. The regular XC90 large luxury SUV can seat up to seven occupants. The Excellence — “the most luxurious car in Volvo Cars’ 89-year history” — feels that four is enough. That way, there’s more space for long legs, wide shoulders and some of the finer things in life, such as a small refrigerator, heating/cooling/massaging seats, heated/cooled cup holders, folding tables, leather upholstery, hand-crafted crystal glasses and a top-flight Bowers & Wilkins audio system.
The XC90 Excellence is based on the T8 Twin Engine model, which is a plug-in hybrid.
To be announced.
When Can You Get It?
Volvo starts V90 production in spring 2017. The Excellence can be ordered later in 2016.
Add It to Your Shopping List Because…
It’s handsome, handy, classy and different.
Other Cars to Consider
2016 Mercedes-Benz E350 4Matic wagon — Rivals to the V90 are few and far between. This is the only other premium contender that’s a bona fide wagon. Plenty of Mercedes-Benz goodness along with 57.4 cu ft. of cargo space.
2016 BMW 5 Series Gran Turismo — Is it a hatchback, a crossover or a wagon? BMW’s enigma, wrapped in a riddle, wrapped in a strange-shaped car body still manages to encompass 63.6 cu ft. of cargo space.
2016 Porsche Panamera — Not as practical as a V90 because of that steeply sloping roof, this luxury car has a tailgate rather than a trunk lid.
Used Land Rover Range Rover — This would be an alternative to the XC90 Excellence. It’s really quite excellent itself.