2022 Volvo XC60 Recharge First Drive Review

PALM SPRINGS, Calif — It may not seem like it on the outdoors, but the 2022 Volvo XC60 Recharge is a considerably current plug-in hybrid SUV. In simple fact, the total XC60 line is refreshed for the 2022 product yr, but we’re heading to zero in on the Recharge PHEV. 

Volvo enable us shell out a working day behind the wheel of the recently-introduced “extended range” Recharge product in sunny California, and we arrived absent with considerably extra thoughts than expected from this Swedish crossover. Just so everybody is on the identical web page, the “extended range” Recharge represents a mid-product-12 months refresh of the XC60 Recharge. There were 2022 design yr XC60 Recharge designs sold prior to right now that highlighted the very same electrical hardware as prior design many years, and hence showcased the aged EPA-approximated electrical vary of 19 miles on a whole demand. The “extended range” model that we drove bumps that all the way up to 36 miles, nearly doubling the past assortment. Volvo says that these new “extended range” types are the types transport to dealers now, not the older design. This is unquestionably anything to be informed of in later on a long time need to you uncover a applied 2022 XC60.

So, how has Volvo observed this a great deal extra range? The major variation is in the battery pack, heading from an 11.6-kilowatt-hour pack to an 18.8-kWh pack. Volvo managed to offer a third layer of cells into the pack that it didn’t have ahead of, and it did so in the same area as prior to — it continues to run alongside the car’s backbone in the center tunnel spot. Volvo statements that this far more electricity-dense battery pack will consider 5-8 hours to demand when hooked up to a 240V electrical power supply, so you should quickly get a comprehensive charge by leaving it plugged in overnight, assuming you have the applicable charging hardware. 

This new battery pack is paired with a absolutely revamped powertrain set up. The structure is the exact as just before. That implies there is an electric powered motor positioned on the rear axle that drives the rear wheels and a gasoline engine in front that completely powers the front wheels, thus offering the XC60 Recharge all-wheel travel. To our delight, the two the electrical motor and the gasoline motor are new this year.

The new rear electric powered motor signifies a major electrical power enhance, with 143 horsepower enormously surpassing the old motor’s 87 horsepower. Finally, this indicates that the XC60 Recharge is now considerably more fulfilling to generate in its purely electrical method (aptly named “Pure”). Electric power is additional than sufficient to retain up with exuberant traffic off the line, and it’ll even easily get you up to highway speeds prior to maxing out at 78 mph. So, not only can you go considerably further than ahead of employing battery electric power, but it’s also a significantly extra pleasurable expertise that will not have you pressured out about the car’s absence of acceleration. Alternatively, it limits the have to have for the gasoline motor to kick in under major throttle. 

These pleasant surprises preserve rolling when we get to the gasoline engine aspect of this hybrid XC60. The 2.-liter four-cylinder engine that was both of those supercharged and turbocharged in advance of is now only turbocharged. Sure, Volvo dropped the supercharger, but only for the Recharge (the XC60 Polestar Engineered carries on to make the most of one in its plug-in hybrid powertrain). To retain this powertrain sensation perky on the very low-close, Volvo instead takes advantage of a crankshaft-mounted integrated starter motor that the two eases the transitions among electric powered and gasoline electricity, and provides a torque boost when the supercharger was formerly supporting issues. To quantify that shove, Volvo says the new helper motor is able of furnishing 111 pound-ft of additional torque on takeoffs. The now-turbo-only engine can make 312 horsepower and 295 pound-toes of torque. All techniques mixed, the new Recharge powertrain gives 455 horsepower and 523 pound-toes of torque.

That is a heaping pile of ability, and the quoted -60 mph time of just 4.5 seconds feels spot-on. It is a half 2nd faster to 60 mph than the pre-refresh design, and we’ll attribute a great deal of that to the added leap it has off the line from the additional impressive electric motor. You will want to use the “Power” mode to get benefit of this additional thrust, as it keeps the motor running at all situations, allowing the two the motor and electrical motor to get the job done in parallel to 1 an additional.

What’s even additional outstanding than the sheer acceleration from this new powertrain is its additional refinement. The previous T8 powertrain with the supercharger was 1 of the rougher and extra unrefined boosted 2.-liter engines out there. Now, it’s a shockingly sleek operator with none of the vibration harshness or gruff noises we’ve complained about in the earlier. Volvo’s assert of the integrated starter motor smoothing transitions out couldn’t be more true.

An additional location of smoothness we value problems Volvo’s freshly-extra a single-pedal driving method for the XC60 Recharge. Plug-in hybrids usually don’t have a a person-pedal drive mode — you will see possibilities for various concentrations of automatic regenerative braking, but to have correct 1-pedal driving in a PHEV is taking the benefit element to the level of a whole EV. The system is potent plenty of to deliver enough deceleration in just about all conditions exterior of major brake apps, but if you do not want it, Volvo enables you to swap it off for a regular braking practical experience. This a person-pedal manner is also available on the S90 Recharge for 2022, and Volvo states it’s coming to the relaxation of its PHEV lineup in the foreseeable future.

In the realm of things that aren’t incredibly unique involving this XC60 Recharge and the a person ahead of it is dealing with. Inspite of the rear motor being much a lot more effective, the XC60 still drives like a front-drive-biased SUV. Torque steer is current when you attempt and get the electric power down out of corners, and although it isn’t debilitating, the sensation is omnipresent when traversing up and down a mountain street with tight switchbacks. Stiffen the adaptive dampers up slide the toggle around to a manner virtually known as “stiffen steering experience,” and the XC60 is a willing enough associate. On the other hand, it’s just not likely to hold toe-to-toe with any of the functionality-targeted SUVs in its class that are all considerably additional exciting to drive.

You are a great deal improved off settling back into the Wool Blend upholstered seats (noticed in our take a look at car or truck) that look and really feel like pure luxury. The new-for-2022, 9-inch infotainment system jogging Android Automotive OS is the very same as what is discovered in the electrical C40 and will soon be the infotainment method in just about every Volvo model. It is inside of here that you can swap between push modes (the old roller wheel on the centre console is long gone), turn the updated Travel Pilot driver assistance methods on and off, and interact with the default Google apps like Google Assistant and Google Maps. Apple CarPlay is not but supported in this Google-centered infotainment procedure, but Volvo suggests it’s coming as an in excess of-the-air update in the long run.

Those who will be applying the updated XC60 Recharge to tote their household all around will be happy to know the upgraded battery potential hasn’t come at the cost of inside room. Rear legroom is precisely the same as before, and cargo potential hasn’t modified either, meaning the XC60 stays just one of the extra household helpful possibilities in the class. 

If you had been considering of upgrading for the aesthetics — never — this XC60 Recharge is mostly about what is underneath, not what’s on the exterior. That said, Volvo gave the XC60 a new grille, which include a new Iron Mark brand that integrates the radar programs that is also heated to resist ice and snow buildup on the sensors. It gets a somewhat diverse front fascia and also integrates the exhaust pipes less than the rear bumper and out of sight. Over and above new wheel and shade selections, the new XC60 is challenging to distinguish from the pre-refresh variation.

The gentle aesthetic variations aren’t just detrimental to us, although, as the XC60 Recharge appeared fantastic ahead of, and now it drives even greater. In its most simple type, the XC60 Recharge Extended Assortment stickers at just $55,345. This is comparable to the Lexus NX 450h+, and a couple grand extra than the Lincoln Corsair Grand Touring – the only other plug-in hybrid compact luxurious SUVs. Like the Lexus, the XC60 is now eligible to get benefit of the full $7,500 tax credit score because of to the more substantial battery pack dimension, creating it an even a lot more cost-effective option. The model we drove crested $70,000 on account of it becoming a absolutely-loaded Inscription design, but you really don’t want to tick each and every one box to have a outstanding plug-in hybrid driving expertise. 

This update is actually one that addresses our major issues about Volvo’s earlier T8 Recharge designs, and it turns the XC60 into a hugely-viable PHEV option for someone who may possibly not be all set to just take the plunge into a entire battery electrical motor vehicle. The “Extended Range” powertrain is an update that is scheduled to be unveiled across the total Volvo PHEV lineup, far too, modernizing all of the Recharge designs in what looks to be an exceptional way.

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