When it comes to European luxury sedans, the first country that usually springs to mind is Germany. But some want to stand out in the luxury car crowd. If you're in the market for a plush sedan (that isn't German), perhaps it's time to check out something from Sweden.
We're talking about Volvo, and they just facelifted their flagship sedan, the S90. But at first glance, it seems that they didn't do much with the car. The thing is, you'll have to take a closer look to see what's new with the big Volvo.
Exterior changes are relatively minor. There are the new fog lights, a new spoiler design, and a new lower front bumper. Also new for 2021 is a range of new exterior colors and wheel options to keep it up to date. When compared to its German competitors, the updates are subtle, but one could say it makes the S90 less polarizing.
But it's not just the sedan that gets cosmetic enhancements. Both the V90 station wagon and V90 Cross Country benefit from a few visual upgrades, too. It gets the same tweaks as the sedan, but the rear gets some attention as well. At the back is a new rear light design, including full LED-powered signature lighting and a sequential turn indicator that seems to be the rage with luxury automakers these days.
Inside, it seems that Volvo wants to appease the vegans with its cabin materials. They call it the leather-free interior option, and it's for the top-spec variants. Leather is still available, but they're bringing in wool as an option as well. The rest of the cabin looks the same as before.
However, Volvo replaced all the 12-volt sockets with USB-C ports, and wireless charging is now available for all variants and body styles. Another new interior feature isn't immediately visible, but your lungs will appreciate it. It's the Advanced Air Cleaner with a PM 2.5 particle sensor. First developed for the Chinese market, Volvo made it standard for global models.
Now for the technical highlight, the engines. All facelifted S90 sedans, V90 wagons, and V90 Cross Country crossovers get mild-hybrid powertrains. All of the large Volvos use a 2.0-liter engine with different power outputs. There are three mild-hybrid, turbo-gas engines available with power ratings of 197 PS, 250 PS, and 300 PS. Even the diesel benefits from electrification, and it has 235 PS.
Of course, there's also a plug-in hybrid version, and it's the most potent 90-series Volvo around. Combined output is rated at 390 PS and 640 Nm of torque, giving it a 0 to 100 km/h time of just 5.1 seconds.
Volvo may not be a mainstream choice here, but it's an interesting, left-field choice. Plus, with specifications like that, you can't call the S90, V90, and V90 Cross Country a derivative of the German establishment.