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Volvo Announces V60 Plug-In Hybrid Wagon

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author photo by Nick Palermo October 2011

Volvo's newest sports wagon is also the Swedish automaker's first hybrid automobile. Nearly production-ready, the V60 Plug-in Hybrid is expected to go on sale in Europe late next year. With its rare combination of diesel and electric power, plug-in capability and hybrid-specific safety technology, the plug-in V60 is engineered to meet future demand for efficient vehicles while maintaining Volvo's reputation for world-class performance and safety.

In a unique all-wheel-drive configuration, a 215-hp turbodiesel drives the front wheels while a 70-hp electric motor delivers power to the rear axle. The plug-in V60 offers drivers the performance of their choice, from thrifty to sporty, through three driving modes - Pure, Hybrid or Power. At one end of the spectrum, Pure mode maximizes full-electric power for low-emissions, high-efficiency driving. The Hybrid mode balances economy with performance, while the Power setting provides the muscle of both the diesel and electric motors for a combined 285-hp and a 0-60 time under seven seconds.

On electric power alone, the V60 Plug-in hybrid has a range of about 30 miles, allowing drivers to make shorter trips using only cost-effective electric power. But the range concerns of pure electric vehicles are not an issue for this hybrid. Volvo expects the plug-in V60 to top 700 miles before requiring a stop to refuel or recharge. The car's Save for Later switch allows the driver to conserve battery power for later electric-only driving.

The V60 Plug-in Hybrid includes advanced safety systems found on conventional Volvo vehicles and others designed exclusively for the hybrid. Collision Warning with Full Auto Brake and City Safety are Volvo's collision avoidance and brake assist systems now available on several of their sedans, wagons and SUVs. New safety considerations for the hybrid include protection of the battery pack and electrical components in the event of a collision. Active and passive safety systems monitor, control and protect the electrical system and can shut it down if a crash or problem is detected.

While Volvo arrives late to the hybrid game, their timing with the V60 Plug-in Hybrid may be ideal. Plug-in hybrids combine the best of pure electrics and conventionally-powered vehicles. Few such models are currently available and most of those use small gas engines. The versatility of the turbodiesel-electric Volvo may win many admirers by overcoming the limitations of other green vehicles.

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This image is a stock photo and is not an exact representation of any vehicle offered for sale. Advertised vehicles of this model may have styling, trim levels, colors and optional equipment that differ from the stock photo.
Volvo Announces V60 Plug-In Hybrid Wagon - Autotrader