When the Volvo XC90 debuted earlier this year in Stockholm, we were floored by its super luxurious cabin and extremely smart PHEV powertrains that actually deliver huge horsepower -- and mileage. The 400-horsepower T8 is far ahead of any other seven-seat hybrid SUV, and is the world's first plug-in seven-seater.
But to be honest, the style of the normal two XC90's -- one body-colored and one with off-road pieces unpainted -- seemed extremely frumpy and dull.
The XC90 R-Design helped a great deal in those stakes, but it is always hard to get a sense of a car from renderings, let alone actual photos.
Let me just say: now that the new XC90 R-Design has landed in Detroit, the style and sex appeal of the new seven-seater is without question. It is low, cool, modern and sleek, but also butch and functional.
We absolutely love the design -- and think it shades the Audi Q7 S-line very easily on the style charts, to say nothing of the tired BMW X5 appearance lately.
2016 Volvo XC90 R-Design
Hooray for Volvo!
We are very excited for the XC90 launch and have a strong feeling that Volvo's efforts in the cabin and with the ultra-modern powertrains will be a big hit with shoppers.
But if one thing was missing from the XC90 announcement last week -- it might have been a bit of sex appeal. Where was the VaVaVoom of the Concept Coupe and Concept Estate? The new XC90 seemed a little too practical for its own good?
Luckily, the R-Design trim is now out and addresses many of these concerns. It looks hot -- and even hotter when we add window tinting in photoshop.
Europeans, my theory is, do not get on-board with OEM window tinting that is dark enough. That is because Europe is grey and dark all winter long, so they cannot imagine how hot it gets elsewhere in the world.
Go deeper into the privacy glass, my Swedish friends!
We Americans like 20% tint levels -- which is very, very dark.
2015 VOLVO XC90 R-Design
VOLVO CARS REVEALS THE ALL-NEW VOLVO XC90 R-DESIGN
Volvo Cars has released the first images of the R-Design version of the all new XC90, aimed at buyers looking for a head-turner that radiates a truly sporty and dynamic look.
“R-Design is created for people with a passion for things that add spice to life,” said Alain Visser, Senior Vice President, Marketing, Sales and Customer Service of Volvo Car Group. “It appeals to customers that love active driving and a personal, expressive design. Every single R-Design detail is designed to contribute to the individualistic and refined expression these customers desire.”
The visual promise of a dynamic ride is confirmed by the driver-centric interior featuring R-Design Contour sports seats in Nubuck and perforated leather. A choice of Drive-E powertrains offering up to 400 hp and the completely new XC90 chassis ensure an agile driving experience.
The release of the R-Design follows Volvo’s release of 1,927 individually numbered black First Edition XC90’s which were offered for sale exclusively online and sold out in 47 hours.
Distinctive R-Design detailing
The R-Design exterior includes a number of distinguishing details, such as grille, front spoiler, silk metal window surround, integrated dual exhausts, integrated silver roof rails and silver matt mirror covers. 20-inch R-Design alloy wheels complete the stylish, dynamic look.
Inside, gearshift paddles, plus the Contour sports seats and perforated leather steering wheel and gearshift knob are accompanied by special R-Design details, such as sports seats, pedals, floor mats and illuminated tread plates. The driver also gets an exclusive R-Design leather key remote control.
Tablet-like touch screen
The tablet-like touch screen in the centre and a 12.3-inch fully graphical driver display are of course included in the R-Design. The driver display also features a unique R-Design theme. The heart of the all-new in-car control is virtually button free and represents an entirely new way for drivers to operate their car and access a range of Internet and cloud based products and services.
New trim level strategy
The core of the new XC90 range will be the Momentum model. Above this sits two separate branches – for a sports-inspired look and feel, the R-Design offers exclusive features and design detailing. Meanwhile, for an elegant look and an even more luxurious experience, customers can opt for the richly equipped Inscription model.
“In principle, we have replaced the previous top level with the Inscription and R-Design versions. Both of them feature an elevated content, carefully chosen to emphasise each of their distinctive individual personalities,” said Alain Visser.
The 2015 XC90 is official and it is fantastic!
At once both very futuristic and innovative, while also rebuilding on the Volvo luxury and family safety that have been brand pillars for decades.
The base price is $48,000 in the US market, where the first trucks will hopefully be arriving before year-end.
The two launch packages are likely one of the biggest choices to make when considering the new XC90:
-- Urban luxury: body-color trims and 21-inch wheels
-- Rugged luxury: grey body cladding and some very handsome 22-inch wheels
2015 VOLVO XC90 World Premiere
World premiere: the all-new Volvo XC90
Months of speculation ended today after Volvo Cars unveiled its all-new Volvo XC90, delivering on its promise to introduce a visually striking, seven-seat luxury SUV with world leading safety features, advanced powertrain technologies, an unrivalled combination of power and fuel efficiency and a superlative interior finish.
Three years in the making and part of an $11 billion investment program, the all-new XC90 marks the beginning of a new chapter in Volvo’s history, capturing its future design direction, incorporating its own range of new technologies and utilizing its new Scalable Product Architecture (SPA) technology.
“This is one of the most important days in our history. We are not just launching a car, but re-launching our brand. This day marks a new era for our company. The XC90 paves the way for a portfolio of exciting new cars to come in the following years,” said Håkan Samuelsson, President and CEO of Volvo Car Group.
Volvo’s new face
Symbolizing this historic day in Volvo’s 87 year history, the new XC90 will be the first of its cars to carry the company’s new more prominent iron mark logo, which has the iconic arrow elegantly aligned with the diagonal slash across the grille. Together with the T-shaped “Thor’s Hammer” LED daytime running lights, the iron mark introduces an entirely new, distinctive and confident face for Volvo’s forthcoming generation of cars.
The XC90’s larger hood with its new topography, the beltline and the sharpened shoulders connecting with the tattoo-like, new rear lights are other important design signatures that will be mirrored across the range.
To add more visual muscle from the sides, the XC90 comes with a range of wheel sizes up to 22 inches.
“The overall impression, both exterior and interior, has a strong connection to the key elements of the Swedish lifestyle: the generous space, the celebration of light and the focus on wellbeing,” said Thomas Ingenlath, Senior Vice President Design of Volvo Car Group.
First SUV without compromises
The XC90 is firm evidence of the “designed by Volvo for Volvo and its customers” strategy. Its outstanding combination of luxury, space, versatility, efficiency and safety will bring the luxury SUV segment into a new dimension, just as the original XC90 achieved in 2002.
“SPA has enabled us to create the world’s first SUV without compromises,” said Dr. Peter Mertens, Senior Vice President, Research and Development of Volvo Car Group. “You get the in-command feel, generous interior space and flexible capability combined with the agility and smooth comfort of a much smaller and lower car. The adrenaline rush that is key to true driving pleasure is delivered by powertrains that offer an unrivalled combination of power and clean operation. And since the XC90 carries the Volvo badge, world-class safety is standard.”
Unrivalled combination of power and fuel efficiency
The all-new XC90 offers 316 hp, 2 liter turbocharged and supercharged AWD engine, which provides an outstanding combination of performance and fuel-efficiency.
The top of the range XC90 Twin Engine plug-in hybrid, which combines a two-liter, four-cylinder supercharged and turbocharged petrol engine with an electric motor, offers an unrivalled combination of power and clean operation: around 400 horsepower with carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions of around 60 g/km (NEDC driving cycle). This will be the world’s first 7-seat plug-in hybrid.
Most comprehensive standard safety package
The all-new XC90 offers the most comprehensive and technologically sophisticated standard safety package available in the automotive industry. It includes two world first safety technologies: a run-off road protection package and auto brake at intersection capability.
In a run-off road scenario, the all-new Volvo XC90 detects what is happening and the front safety belts are tightened to keep the occupants in position. To help prevent spine injuries, energy-absorbing functionality between the seat and seat frame cushions the vertical forces that can arise when the car encounters a hard landing in the terrain.
The XC90 is the first car in the world with technology that features automatic braking if the Volvo driver starts to turn in front of an oncoming car that is going quicker than expected. This is a common scenario at busy city crossings as well as on highways, where the speed limits are higher.
City Safety becomes the umbrella name for all of Volvo Cars’ auto brake functions, which are standard equipment in the all-new XC90. It now covers vehicles, cyclists and pedestrians in front of the car, day and night.
“The new technologies will take us a significant step closer to our vision that no one will be killed or seriously injured in a new Volvo car by 2020,” said Dr Mertens. “Our starting point on safety is the same today as it was when the company was created almost 90 years ago: real-life situations. We study data. We crunch numbers. We innovate. The result is one of the safest cars ever made.”
Three focus areas will help Volvo Cars to reach Vision 2020: safety, connectivity and autonomous drive.
“With the XC90, we take the first step towards self-driving cars. A new function that automatically follows the vehicle ahead in stop-and-go traffic will provide a radically simplified, semi-autonomous driving experience,” said Lex Kerssemakers, Senior Vice President, Product Strategy and Vehicle Line Management of Volvo Car Group.
The XC90’s interior is the epitome of Scandinavian luxury. The most striking feature is a tablet-like touch screen control console, which forms the heart of an all-new in-car control system. This system is virtually button free and represents an entirely new way for drivers to control their car and access a range of Internet-based products and services. It also helps create an interior that is modern, spacious and uncluttered.
“The new interior is pure and uncluttered, while still radiating the sophisticated confidence and formality that luxury SUV customers expect. The simplicity is perfectly in tune with our Scandinavian design heritage. It opens up generous surfaces and gives us the opportunity to create a modern, luxurious interior architecture,” said Mr Ingenlath.
The new XC90 interior combines materials such as soft leather and wood with handcrafted details, including a gear lever made of crystal glass from Orrefors, the famous Swedish glassmaker, and diamond-cut controls for the start/stop button and volume control. Craftsmanship has been in sharp focus during the whole development work.
The genuine seven seater features new, innovatively designed seats that also free up interior space for passengers both in the second and third seat rows. The third row seats were designed to accommodate passengers in class-leading comfort up to 5’7” inches tall.
One of the top audio systems in the world
The XC90 features one of the top audio systems available in the automotive world after Volvo Cars audio experts joined forces with their counterparts at the renowned British audio equipment company Bowers & Wilkins.
The top-of-the-line system in the XC90 features a 1,400 Watt Class D amplifier and 19 Bowers & Wilkins speakers. It also includes one of the first air-ventilated subwoofers in a car. Integrated into the car body, it turns the whole interior space into a giant subwoofer.
The latest sound processing software has been used to manage the timing of the sound and co-ordination of the speakers. This brings the emotional experience of a world-class live performance into the car.
Two main accessory themes
The all-new XC90 is available with a range of accessories that makes it possible for the owner to create a truly personalized car. There are two major exterior styling themes:
The Urban Luxury package combines a color coordinated body kit with polished stainless steel details, such as front deco frames, front and rear skid plates and side scuff plates. The 21-inch exclusive polished wheels complete the elegant look.
The Rugged Luxury kit enhances the ruggedness of the XC90 SUV with tech matte black exterior trim, stainless steel skid plates, running boards with illumination and integrated exhaust pipes. This version is supplemented by unique 22-inch wheels.
Full details on the pricing will be announced at a later date, but a well-equipped XC90 T6 AWD will have a starting price of $48,900. The XC90 T6 AWD will come standard with such luxurious features as Navigation, 19” wheels, a power laminated panoramic sunroof, state-of-the-art car connectivity and is expected to deliver best-in-class power and fuel efficiency.
All-new Volvo XC90: 1,927 limited First Edition cars available only via digital commerce
The initial series of 1,927 cars celebrates the year Volvo was founded 87 years ago