I don’t think I’ve ever been so surprised by a car. My tester this week is the 2013 Volvo S60 T6 R-Design. Of course you immediately think safety when you think Volvo, and this S60 lives up to that legend with 5-Star safety ratings in every category. With this Volvo, you can add luxury and sportiness to the list of accolades.
Let’s start under the hood, where you’ll find a 3-liter V6 that is turbocharged and produces 325-horses, but feels more like 375. Acceleration is strong, very strong in fact, yet smooth as silk with no turbo lag. It comes with a 6-speed automatic transmission that has a sport mode, and the sedan is all-wheel drive.
The story here is the ride and handling. This car shocked me how well it performed. It drives and handles every bit as well as the Audi S4 I had last week.
Inside the car, the interior is drop-dead gorgeous. The front seats are as comfortable as I’ve ever sat in. Everything is controlled from the center stack, and after a short learning curve, everything is easily operated.
This car has a terrific navigation system, an upgraded stereo, power moonroof, rearview camera, pushbutton start, power heated seats, and Xenon headlights that follow the path of the steering wheel. The air conditioning system is very good. It has two power folding rear headrests which is a nice touch. Be aware that the rear seat room is limited with the front seats back most of the way. The R-Design gives you unique 18” wheels, a sport chassis, front and rear spoilers, chrome exhaust, leather seats with accent inserts, blue instrumentation cluster, aluminum pedals, and a great sport steering wheel with controls.
The S60 comes standard with City Safety, Volvo’s system that will stop the car by itself when approaching a stationary object at speeds less than 20 miles per hour.
This car is a true luxury sports sedan. It is the complete opposite of any Volvo I have ever driven. The gas mileage is good considering the performance of the car. This is a strong statement, but this is the best driving sedan I have ever been in for under $50,000.
What I liked most: The handling, driving feel, and performance.
What I would change: Come on Volvo, make blind spot monitoring standard.
MSRP: As tested, $48,195
Fuel Economy: Rated at 18 in town/25 Highway and getting it.
Warranty: 4-Year/50,000 mile bumper-to-bumper.
2013 Volvo S60 R in a few words: Safety and performance meet here.