Volvo has released full details of the S60 AWD – its first electronically controlled all-wheel-drive car.
The car goes on sale here later this week with a $68,950 pricetag.
Rather than an XC-style occasional off-roader, the latest addition to the S60 will be promoted by Volvo as a car with forgiving road manners that won't disappoint enthusiast drivers. The S60 AWD will do so, Volvo says, by providing "optimal road-holding and stability in all conditions" that is dialled-in without driver intervention.
"In other words, drive distribution fore and aft, as well as left-to-right across the axles, is monitored and managed automatically," Volvo says.
The car is said to react "... instantaneously to changes in prevailing surface conditions and available traction levels".
The engine is the same all-aluminium 2.4-litre, 20-valve five-cyclinder that's also standard in the S60 T. It gets the same intercooled twin-scroll turbocharger.
Volvo claims peak power of 147kW at 6000rpm and a maximum 285Nm of torque available from 1800rpm to 5000rpm.
Standard transmission is Volvo's five-speed automatic with lock-up torque converter, adaptive shift program and Geartronic clutchless manual shifting gate. A five-speed manual is also available as a no-cost option.
Performance is said to be strong across a broad rpm-range, with acceleration from 0-100kmh in 8.1 seconds.
AS2077 fuel consumption is a respectable 6.99L/100km and 10.91L/100km (highway and city cycle, respectively).
The all-wheel-drive system has been developed in collaboration with Swedish drive-system specialist, Haldex. For the technically-inclined, it uses a wet multi-plate Haldex clutch, an hydraulic circuit and intelligent computer control to vary the drive front to rear.
Volvo?s TRACS traction control and management system oversees cross-axle torque transfer by application of ABS-style intervention strategies. The system operates up to 120kmh and maximises tractive effort because it does not restrict engine torque production at any stage during its operation.
Under normal driving conditions, the vehicle is predominantly front-wheel drive, switching to all-wheel-drive when the system detects loss of traction. Volvo says the all-wheel-drive control system also determines when AWD engagement is unwarranted.
The system won't engage during parking manoeuvres, for example, and Volvo says it eliminates "the inertial clunks and bumps that plague some other AWD control systems".
The S60 AWD gets 17-inch Amalthea alloy wheels with 225/45 tyres, sports seats with leather/fabric trim, brushed aluminium interior highlights on doors and glovebox, and an S60 AWD badge at the rear.
Like all the S60s, the AWD also comes with Volvo?s Side Impact Protection System, Inflatable Curtain and Whiplash Protection System.