Station Wagons might not be the most popular of all body styles but the V90 Cross Country brings in new dynamism to this otherwise moribund segment. People generally go for popular sedans or SUV’s, but this Crossover from Volvo provides the finesse of a sedan and the muscle of an SUV. It’s injustice to the Station wagon as they combine the best of sports car specifications and SUV storage capacity, especially since this Volvo does it withsuperior comfort and sophisticated technology. It’s not that they do not sell elsewhere, it is quite common to have a station wagon in Scandinavian countries and with a growing economy like ours, customers do demand versatility to meet their overall necessities, this station wagon from Volvo might just do the trick for the free spirited Indian. And the good news is that we are expecting this stalwart to hit our shores end of July.
Exterior - Now if you are familiar with the S90, the V90 will not be a surprise package as it is an estate version of the S90. But the V90 crossover, however is a beefed up version and can be driven through those rough and weary patches. Although a wagon, by no means does it look like a van. In many ways then this looks like a ruffed up version of the V90. It does have that SUV appeal but looks very refined like a sedan. The design although good feels a bit too elongated, but that’s expected of a wagon. It adorns to the Volvo legacy rather well, what is different from the standard V90 is that the lower body comes with black plastic cladding and there are modifications on the front and rear bumpers. The grille is very impressive, concave with vertical bars which comes with tiny chrome studs. The car sports 19 inch diamond cut alloys and compared to the standard V90 it has a higher ground clearance which means it sits almost 6.5 centimetres higher than the standard V90. What all this means is that you can trail past those mountains, valleys and shores with utmost ease, and it does it in all sorts of weather. Pretty cool isn’t it?
Interior – You will love it once inside and more so will the case be for the people you are accompanied by. Once again Volvo has ensured that for India it will be the - brown leather package with a metal trim combination. You won’t miss out on any features that are found on the original S90, for instance you still get the Sensus system with that huge super responsive touchscreen for navigation and infotainment and Apple Car Play comes as standard. The seats are extremely comfortable but you will miss out on the Heating features that the European counterpart gets. Being a station wagon has its perks – there is tonnes of space onboard. With the second row in place, you get 560 litres of boot space and 1526 litres to the max. Now because of that higher roofline you get adequate headroom. Unlike an SUV getting into the car is not a problem at all, and that’s good for old people at least. This thing is filled with features and that’s what Volvos are known for – you get radar-guided cruise control, and a rather large panoramic roof which you won’t find in a usual car, the head-up display, the premium Bowers & Wilkins audio systemwhich ensures the car remains in jive. The car then has something called Clean Zone which filters particulates in the air. Now when in the wilderness you can counter something out of the blue, and for that Volvo provides you with a safety feature which can detect such hindrances. And in those treacherous journeys you get aided by Pilot assist. So all this you get in a car which feels like it was tailor made for the sophisticated jungle boy.
Drive - Typically crafted for the snowy alps will it withstand tropical India? Mind you we drove it and although our roads comes jagged up with all those potholes and rough patches, this Swedish crossover marauds it without much haste. What we mean is that like the S90 it is comfortable largely due to the rear air suspension and mephors in the front. And although the car has a high ground clearance it remains planted to the road because of its longish structure and long wheelbase. The steering can be a problem as it is light and might not be the best to have in an unexplored terrain. But the light steering ensures that parking remains hassle free. It comes in Eco, Off Road, Dynamic, Comfort and Individual modes. It is powered by an all-powerful 235 bhp D5 spec 2.0 litre diesel engine. Now it might not be as dynamic like its German cousins, but that kept in mind overtakings are never going to be an issue with that heavy load of torque – 480 Nm.
Should you have one –Well if you are looking for a car that can carry your surfboard, cycle, neighbours children, pet dog etc, with racing prowess this tusker will not disappoint. You can relate it many ways it is not a full-fledged caravan but behaves like one, it isn’t an SUV but is real tough, it isn’t a sedan but is more sophisticated than one. And if you are willing to pay uptoRs. 70 lakh for versatility grab the keys and get into on
Words : Ritin Paul
Images : Stenny Joseph