I get a little charged up when I think about what Volvo is doing with hybrids and electrics these days. Back in the day, Volvo was known mostly for safety technology and sporty cars (many of which had a turbocharged engine). These days, the road-map seems to be on target for making the world more environmentally safe as well.
My brother-in-law is a major fan of Volvo cars and currently owns two of them (plus my nephew has one as well). The theme has always been — these are safe and sporty cars.
My nephew actually has his sedan decked out with some nice rims and exhaust. Of course, when I pulled up to show them the new 2021 Volvo XC60, they were impressed by all of the new technology on board.
The most noticeable, of course, is that you can charge the electric motor. I wish I still had a home charger, but I did manage to test out the range using a gas station charger.
You gain about 18 miles of electric-only driving, which is enough for quick trips to the taco shop. Yet, this is a Volvo XC60 through and through. It has a sporty, dynamic, and fun vibe, one that can switch over to the gas engine once you use up the electric power. Or you can drive in a hybrid mode which takes advantage of both engines at the same time.
I’m not at all against full electrics and would buy one if I had the resources, but hybrids like the XC60 are an excellent compromise because there is no range anxiety. (One point to make about range anxiety — of course, gas cars have the same issue. I’ve run out of gas before and it is not fun. The only difference is that recharging an electric takes more effort, so maybe the proper term should be range availability instead.)
During my test, it was fun to see all of the displays reminding me about how much power I was using. I don’t know of many car companies that provide such elegant displays in an interior cab that feels like it was designed by someone at Apple.
The truth is, Volvo has figured out how to make luxury cars that have purpose and meaning behind them. The safety tech is top-notch, offering standard options like adaptive cruise control but also everything else you’d expect for sensors and alerts about other cars.
They up the safety game by making the cars fast and nimble, cornering like a sports car but with a look and feel that suggests a daily commute. I packed in quite a few friends and a bike on one trip. And then, to take the next step and lead in the environmental arena as well.
It combines everything I love about cars into one package.