Ratings: 2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - The best sports sedan in class

Arif · Mar 13, 2021 10:40 AM

Ratings: 2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - The best sports sedan in class 01

Having tested the Volvo S60 T8 R-Design last year, we have to say, we were quite impressed. The Volvo outperformed segment rivals like the Mercedes C-Class and BMW 3-Series when it came to ride comfort and luxury features.

Well, now it is time to see how the Volvo S60 scores in our WapCar Ratings.

Ratings: 2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - The best sports sedan in class 02

2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design: Driving Performance - 37/50 pts, More than enough power

2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - Facts and Figures
Engine 2.0-litre 4-cyl supercharged and turbocharged with hybrid system
Transmission 8-Speed Automatic
Power 320 PS @ 5,700 rpm (engine); 87 PS (electric motor)
Torque 400 Nm @ 2,200 - 5,400 rpm (engine); 240 Nm (electric motor)
Weight 2,037 kg
0-100 km/h 4.9 seconds
100-0 km/h 38.9 metres

The Volvo S60 T8's powertrain itself is very interesting. Not only is the 2.0-litre engine supercharged, it is also turbocharged and gets further assistance from a hybrid system.

Ratings: 2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - The best sports sedan in class 01

Launching the car was fastest in "hybrid" mode, giving us a 0-100 km/h time of 4.9 seconds. Impressive numbers for a car that weighs over 2,000 kg.

Ratings: 2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - The best sports sedan in class 02

Power delivery is instantaneous and smooth thanks to the electric motors. Even the transition from electric motor to the petrol engine while driving is seamless.

Ratings: 2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - The best sports sedan in class 03

Hybrid mode is the fastest if you wish to launch the car.

What the Volvo S60 could improve on are the brakes - they're great for daily driving, but for spirited driving, the calibration could be improved.

Ratings: 2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - The best sports sedan in class 04

Overtaking manoeuvres in the S60 are effortless and the car feels very solid and stable at high speeds. 

Ratings: 2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - The best sports sedan in class 05

While the Volvo S60 drives very well as a luxury saloon, it isn't the most dynamic driving machine in its class.

2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - Driving Performances Breakdown
Engine Acceleration 4.5 / 5
In-gear Acceleration 4 / 5
Throttle Response 4 / 5
Transmission Shift Logic 3 / 3
Smoothness 4 / 5
Sport/Manual Mode 2 / 3
Steering Accuracy 2 / 3
Response 2 / 3
Weight & Feel 2 / 3
Braking Distance 2 / 3
Feel 1 / 3
Handling Chassis Balance 2 / 3
Grip 2 / 3
Load Reaction 2.5 / 3
Total   37 / 50 pts

2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design: Ride Comfort - 39.5/50 pts, Best in class

Ratings: 2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - The best sports sedan in class 06

Having driven the Volvo S60 back-to-back with a German rival, it is obvious that the Volvo S60 excels in comfort. The seats are probably the best in class, complementing the already comfortable suspension setup.

The lumbar support is excellent and the front seats provide a snug fit.

Ratings: 2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - The best sports sedan in class 07

Rear passengers have not been ignored, as the S60 provides excellent seats in the second row too. You'd have no problem doing long-distance driving with the S60.

Ratings: 2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - The best sports sedan in class 08

For cabin noise, S60 excels in hybrid mode. With the engine working at higher speeds, its cabin noise levels are pretty average in its class with a 68 dB reading at 110 km/h.

2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - Noise Level
60 km/h 59 dB
90 km/h 63 dB
110 km/h 68 dB

At lower speeds of 60 km/h and 90 km/h, the Volvo S60 is quieter than its rivals.

Ratings: 2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - The best sports sedan in class 09

The engine is refined, although you do get to hear the occasional supercharger whine.

Ratings: 2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - The best sports sedan in class 10

2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - Ride Comfort Breakdown
Sound Proofing 8 / 10
Suspension 7 / 10
Passenger Comfort 8 / 10
Seat Support 5 / 5
Ergonomics 3.5 / 5
Engine Refinement 8 / 10
Total points 39.5 / 50 pts

2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - 44/50 pts, Almost a perfect score

Ratings: 2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - The best sports sedan in class 11

2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - Panel Gaps (mm)
Location Driver Side Passenger Side Difference
Bonnet 2.5 2.5 0
Front Fender 4.0 4.0 0
Front to Rear Door 4.0 3.5 0.5
Rear Door to quarter panel 3.5 4.0 0
Tailgate 4.5 5.5 1

The excellent paint thickness consistency and panel gap symmetry are expected from a car of this marque and price. 

2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - Paint thickness (µm)
Location Driver Side Passenger Side
Front Bonnet 122
Front Fender 137 138
Front Door 126 142
Rear Door 128 143
Rear Quarter Panel 139 138
Tailgate 134
Roof 124
Average paint thickness: 134 µm ±7

The overall build is solid and well done.

2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - Exterior Material Use
Bonnet Soundproofing Material Thick
Struts Gas
Front Fenders Soundproofing Material No
Doors Front Windows Single Glazed
Rear Windows Single Glazed
Construction Single Piece
Tailgate/Boot Opening Manual 

The interior materials are excellent, but the S60 is in favour of more subtle styling - no multi-colour ambient lights or fancy trim pieces here.

Ratings: 2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - The best sports sedan in class 12

There are no high contrast patterns or fancy trims in the cabin. If we were to nitpick on the S60's cabin, the glare from the paino black and chrome pieces dan be a little annoying.

Ratings: 2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - The best sports sedan in class 13

2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - Cabin Material Use
Seat Seat Cover Leather
Armrest Armrest Cover Leather
Dashboard Upper Section Soft plastic
  Lower Section Soft Plastic
Front Doors Upper Section Soft Plastic
  Middle Section Leather
  Lower Section Soft Plastic

In terms of luxury, the S60 ticks almost all the boxes in our scoring checklist.

Ratings: 2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - The best sports sedan in class 14

There is a panoramic sunroof, power seats, excellent upholstery, and a fully-adjustable steering wheel.

Ratings: 2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - The best sports sedan in class 15

What about safety? Well, the S60 comes with a full suite of ADAS and gets full points here. 

Ratings: 2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - The best sports sedan in class 16

Lane Keep Assist (LKA), Front & Rear Collision warning, Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA), Blind Spot Information System (BLIS), and Active Cruise Control (ACC), are all available.

Ratings: 2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - The best sports sedan in class 17

In terms of convenience, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are both available on the S60. A few in-car apps become available too upon connection with a mobile device.

Ratings: 2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - The best sports sedan in class 18

The navigation map pops up on the digital meter cluster too, allowing you to stay focused while driving.

Ratings: 2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - The best sports sedan in class 19

2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - Quality & Feature Breakdown
Exterior Paint Finish 4 / 4
Panel Gaps 3 / 4
Assembly Quality 2 / 2
Interior Build Quality 4 / 5
Materials Used 4 / 5
Features Safety 10 / 10
ADAS 5 / 5
Luxury 5 / 5
Convenience 3 / 5
Infotainment 4 / 5
Total   44 / 50 pts

2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design: Space and Practicality - 29.5/50 pts, Spacious second row

Ratings: 2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - The best sports sedan in class 20

Relating to the ride comfort, the Volvo S60 scores well in terms of interior space too, specifically in the second row. Front row space is average for its class.

Ratings: 2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - The best sports sedan in class 21

With a 177cm tall adult in the back seat, there's plenty of legroom (3.5 tennis balls), and ample headroom for a low-slung saloon.

Ratings: 2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - The best sports sedan in class 22

The Volvo S60's 442-litre boot space is outsized by the 455-litre boot of the Mercedes C-Class and the 480-litre boot of the BMW 3 Series.

The S60 loses points in practicality too as the version that we get here in Malaysia does not come with foldable rear seats. What it only has instead is a "ski hatch" that can be used to haul long but narrow items.

Ratings: 2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - The best sports sedan in class 23

Ski hatch of the Volvo S60

Elsewhere, you can option the Volvo S60 to be equipped with a spare wheel at the expense of a higher boot floor. The Malaysian-spec comes with a tyre repair kit only.

Ratings: 2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - The best sports sedan in class 24

Screw jack is missing from this particular unit

Storage space is almost non-existent in the centre console since that is where the hybrid battery is. The door bins are small and the glovebox is only of average size.

Ratings: 2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - The best sports sedan in class 25

Not much space here
2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - Interior Space Breakdown
Front Row 8 / 10
Middle/Back Row 9 / 10
Third Row 0 / 5
Boot Space 2 / 5
Practicality 3 / 5
Storage Space 2 / 5
Visibility 2 / 5
Storage Flexibility 2 / 5
Total 28 / 50 pts

2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design: Fuel Consumption – 18.5/20 pts, The hybrid system helps

Ratings: 2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - The best sports sedan in class 26

Travelling for 168 km, starting at around 50% charge, and driving in hybrid mode, an average fuel consumption of 5.9 l/100km was recorded.

The claimed 2 l/100km fuel consumption is almost achievable with an initial battery charge of 100%.

Ratings: 2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - The best sports sedan in class 27

The 11.6 kWh hybrid battery has a 49 km pure electric range (ideal conditions). At its maximum charging rate (3.7 kw), 3 hours is needed for a full charge. With the standard 3-pin plug at home, about 5 hours is needed for a full charge.

Ratings: 2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - The best sports sedan in class 28

If you have the convenience of "destination chargers" in your short daily commute (less than 49 km), running entirely on electricity is virtually possible.

Ratings: 2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - The best sports sedan in class 29

Don't hog public chargers once your car is at 100%.
2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - Fuel Consumption Test Breakdown
Fuel Consumption 14 / 15
Eco Mode 2 / 2
Indicator Accuracy 2.5 / 3
Total points 18.5 / 20 pts

2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design: Purchase and Cost – 25/30, good value for money

Ratings: 2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - The best sports sedan in class 30

The Volvo S60 T8's price starts at RM 282,540, much lower than the BMW M340i xDrive at RM 389,234 and Mercedes-AMG C43 at RM 401,115. 

*OTR price without SST

The given warranty is of 5 years/120,000 km mileage.

2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - Purchase & Cost
Purchase Car Price 14 / 15
Warranty 3 / 5
Cost Maintenance 3 / 5
Fuel Cost 5 / 5
Total   25 / 30 pts

2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design: Conclusion - 192/250 pts overall

Ratings: 2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - The best sports sedan in class 31

Overall, the Volvo S60 is an excellent luxury car with the performance and features to back it up. While other marques have sacrificed their ride comfort, the Volvo has not. The seats are great, complementing the comfortable suspension setup.

The hybrid system not only reduces fuel consumption, it also gives ample boost to the driving experience.

Ratings: 2020 Volvo S60 T8 R-Design - The best sports sedan in class 32

What the Volvo S60 lacks is practicality and storage space as seen at the centre console and the rear seats that don't fold. There's really not much else to complain about it.

The Volvo S60 is the highest scoring compact executive saloon in our books for the time being with a total score of 192/250 points with its key strengths being the excellent ride comfort and value proposition.

 

 

Arif

Writer

Previously an engineer in an automotive manufacturing company and a highway concessionaire. A part-time research student on biofuels and diesel engines. Obsessed with vehicle electrification and the future of transportation.

Comments

Up to 20% higher than average trade-in price

2019 Volvo S60 T6

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