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Volvo V90 T8 R-Design Pro

Date: 10 January 2018   |   Author: Debbie Wood

Launched in the summer of 2016, the Volvo V90 estate has quickly become a key player in the executive estate class, thanks to its successful combination of exquisite interior quality and exceptional comfort.

Initially available with just two diesel engines, the range has expanded of late to respond to changing customer demand, with new petrol engines joining the range in November. Now comes a T8 hybrid that claims to offer up to 28 miles of electric power alone.

Matching up well against rivals like the BMW 530e and Mercedes E350e (although both are only available in saloon guise), on paper the V90 T8 makes a huge amount of sense thanks to low CO2 emissions of 46g/km and a  141.2mpg official combined figure (the same as the 5 Series), the latter should only be used as a benchmark to compare cars and not a realistic figure tio achieve, though.

V90 Charging

Performance figures for the V90 T8 are seriously impressive too. With 400hp and a 0-62mph acceleration time of just 4.8 seconds, you'll never feel short changed when you put your foot to the floor.

 'Hybrid' is the car's default mode, which uses the electric motor at low speeds and start-up, and there's also a 'Pure' setting that uses just the electric battery up to 78mph. Opting for 'Power' mode unleashes the car's full performance potential. 

Although the official combined fuel economy figure is impressive, if you don't use the electric battery to its full potential you'll find the 2.0-litre petrol expensive to run, so ensuring the plug-in hybrid is the right fit-for-purpose choice is paramount here.

V90 Estate Front

Overall, the V90 is effortless to drive and supremely comfortable, especially on the motorway, while the lack of diesel grumble means you can virtually hear a pin drop in the cabin at cruising speeds. That said, the V90 T8 is no sports car. The handling is very neat and the steering expertly weighted with plenty of feel, but with a kerb weight of 2,011kg, it's on the heavy side and you'll feel it on the road, especially in the corners.

Ride quality is always an area where the V90 has excelled and this T8 model is no different. Practicality credentials also remain unchanged from the standard estate, with a large 560-litreboot  and ample cabin space for five to stretch out. Interior quality is also excellent, while the portrait-style infotainment system is among the best in its class, proving intuitive to use and providing excellent resolution.

The T8 engine is only available in higher R Design and Inscription Pro grades, and costs considerably more than the other powertrain options in the range - prices for the T8 start at £58,400. However, there's a long list of standard equipment available, and thanks to its sub 50g/km CO2 emissions, BIK tax costs are kept low for such a luxurious car.

V90 Estate Front

Overall, the V90 T8 is a worthwhile choice thanks to its elegant and luxurious design and those low BIK tax costs. Just make sure you've got the right driving profile for hybrid power, otherwise this car will cost you dearly in fuel bills. 

P11D Price: £58,400

Fuel consumption: 141.2mpg

CO2 (BIK Band): 46g/km (9%)

BIK 20/40% a month: £88/£175

Engine size/power: 1969cc/320hp + 87hp electric motor


Verdict


8/10
  • Luxurious interior
  • Ride quality
  • Low BIK tax costs
  • Expensive
  • Petrol engine isn't very efficient

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