Raised V90 wagon set for Australian debut in the first half of 2017.
As far as crossover models go, the jumped-up wagon is as niche of a model as it is rare. Only a handful of car makers such as Subaru, Peugeot, and the Volkswagen Group produces such models that offer a particular blend of SUV-like ground clearance and capability, without the typical bulkiness and high seating position.
Even so crossover wagons have become a constant fixture to Volvo’s model line-up with their ‘Cross Country’ derivatives, and their new V90 wagon is the latest model in their stable to receive the ‘Cross Country’ treatment.
Far from being just a V90 wagon with black cladding wrapped around it as though it is sporting a pair of wading boots, the V90 Cross Country has been adapted for more adventurous endeavours. Its ground clearance of 210mm is 65mm higher than the V90’s, whereas its front and rear tracks are now wider with wheel offerings being upsized an inch to a range of 18-inch to 21-inch.
Designing a Volvo Cross Country is not a styling exercise, a plastic job. It is based on honest capability.
To live up to its ‘all-road, all-weather’ promise, Volvo maintains that the V90 Cross Country has been subjected to vigourous testing, with the model being developed in the frozen north of Sweden and the searing deserts of Arizona to ensure that it can tackle the elements.
“Designing a Volvo Cross Country is not a styling exercise, a plastic job. It is based on honest capability,” said Thomas Ingenlath, Senior Vice President of Design at Volvo Cars. “It will continue the genuine tradition of the Volvo Cross Country with a new recipe – the blend of powerful off-road capability in a most elegant, sophisticated, tailored wagon suit.”
Underneath its bonnet are similar powertrain options to that found in the S90/V90 range, with two petrol and two diesel variants available, all of which use 2-litre four-cylinder engines from Volvo’s Drive-e engine family.
The V90 Cross Country range of petrol engines features the 187kW/350Nm turbocharged variant in the T5 AWD, and 235kW/400Nm twin-charged mill in the T6 AWD. Both engine offerings come paired with an eight-speed automatic as standard.
As for its diesel powertrains, the entry-level D4 AWD makes do with 140kW and 400Nm, whereas its higher-tune D5 AWD has 173kW and 480Nm of twist. When it comes to transmission pairings, the D4 AWD is the only variant in the V90 Cross Country range to offer a six-speed manual, otherwise both D4 AWD and D5 AWD will come fitted with an eight-speed automatic.
Only the S90/V90’s range-topping T8 twin-engine plug-in hybrid variant is absent from the V90 Cross Country range. And in keeping with its intent for all-weather and all-road conditions, all variants of the V90 Cross Country come fitted with an all-wheel drive system as standard.
On the inside the V90 Cross Country carries over the same cabin design and layout that is found on the S90/V90 pair, along with the Sensus multimedia system that blends in-car connectivity functions, navigation, entertainment, and car control features together.
Likewise the V90 Cross Country also adopts the full suite of advanced driver assistance and safety technologies that is available to the XC90, S90, and V90.
The V90 Cross Country is a direct descendant of the 1996 V70 XC, the model that started Volvo’s range of crossover wagons, and was later succeeded by the XC70. With the ‘XC’ moniker now used to denote Volvo’s SUV range, Volvo has retired the XC70 name and returned to adopting the ‘Cross Country’ name on its crossover derivatives.
Currently the V90 Cross Country represents the fourth and final installment of their ‘90’ series models, which started with the second-generation XC90.
According to Volvo South Africa, the V90 Cross Country is expected to go on sale here in the Second half of next year, with prices and specifications to be determined closer to its date of introduction.
Do you prefer wagons like the V90 Cross Country over an SUV? Tell us what you think in the comments below.