Staying with Volvo, the XC60 is the mid-sized SUV, between the XC40 and the XC90. The XC90 was the first to be introduced and its reputation meant it was held in arguably higher esteem than some of the premium brands.
The XC60 continues the same theme. And the even better news is that the D4 model, on test here, is the best compromise of fuel economy and performance.
The ‘D’ means it’s diesel – and it still packs a reasonable punch with 190PS. Its other figures are good, too, with a 2.0 litre four-cylinder engine managing 0-62mph in 8.4 seconds, returning 50mpg with the help of an eight-speed automatic. The XC60 is also very comfortable, with air suspension as an optional extra allowing you to adjust the ride. It’s an expensive option, though, and the standard suspension is perfectly adequate.
It handles well, too, with the steering feeling heavy when you’re at speed in a straight line and going light when you’re taking lowspeed corners.
Inside, it feels very well put together and it all looks simple but very refined. There’s plenty of room in the front and the back, and you get 468 litres of boot space. The D4 is very safe, too, scoring a top five-star NCAP safety rating, with a blind-spot monitoring system and Pilot Assist keeping you in lane and at a distance from the vehicles ahead.
Overall, the D4 is as close to premium as you’ll get without getting there. It isn’t the best in its class, but it’s certainly knocking on the door of the ‘best of the rest’.