Test Drive: 2015 Volvo S60 T6 E-Drive Review

I have to admit, it never occurred to me that you could put a turbocharger, and a supercharger on the same engine, and I damned sure didn’t expect Volvo to be the one to do it. Yet, that is exactly what I find myself sitting behind this week.

Let’s look at the results of this combination called E-Drive; it is a 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine, and it is putting out 302-horses. Let that sink in a minute. It was not too long ago that you had to invest in a V8 engine to top 300-horses. You also get 295 pound-feet of torque for fast starts if you wish, and the best is yet to come…I am averaging 30-miles per gallon combined, and I haven’t tried to maximize fuel economy. This car is doing 25 in town, and 35 on the highway consistently. Now I see why Volvo engineers came up with this engine, it is much improved from Volvo engines of the past.

E-Drive features low friction technology, innovative engine management systems, common rail direct fuel injection and combined super-charger/turbo technology are some of the secrets behind this utterly amazing engine. The super-charger gives more torque at low revs for a great throttle response, with the turbo boost kicking in at higher speeds. It’s actually quite brilliant because turbochargers tend to have a noticeable lag from a dead stop, while super-chargers do not. Lag problem solved! To make the driving experience even better, Volvo hooked an 8-speed automatic with paddle shifters so you can better control the shifting to your liking.

Let’s talk about the car itself. First, the interior upgrades on the S60 are exceptional. The leather seats are very plush and incredibly comfortable. The dash layout for 2015 is terrific, and the configurable gauge cluster is among the best I have seen. Volvo kept the flow through center stack, which is unique and eye-catching. There is a nice amount of backseat room, and headroom is good for people up to about 6’2”, maybe slightly more. The view of the road from the driver’s seat is exceptional, and trunk room is more than I expected. Steering wheel controls are terrific.

My silver review car is loaded, including the Platinum Package, which gives you navigation with real-time traffic, premium audio, accent lighting, an integrated garage door opener, power retractable mirrors, a rear park assist camera, and grocery-bag holder for $3350. It also has the Technology Package, and for $1500 you get Adaptive Cruise Control, Collision Warning with Full Auto Stop, Pedestrian/Cyclist Detection, Lane Departure Warning, Active High Beam, Road Sign Information, and other high-tech driver aids. The Blind Spot Information Package includes park assist, Cross-Traffic Alert, Lane Change Merge Aid and adds $900. Heated seats add $500, active Xenon headlamps with washers run $800, 19-inch diamond-cut wheels, which make the car look great on the outside are $1250, and the metallic paint is an add-on of $500.

Standard equipment highlights include power sunroof, leather power seats, keyless entry and push-button start, rain sensing wipers, Bluetooth connectivity, and electronic emergency brake.

The S60 T6 E-Drive has start/stop technology, which means the engine shuts down at stops after it is warmed up. When you touch the gas pedal, the engine starts up again- but when stopped-you don’t lose the power accessories, air conditioning, etc. Generally, I find this option annoying, but there is very little vibration with this car, and I don’t mind it at all.

There are just a couple of things that keep me from giving this car a 5-Star rating. The controls on the center stack that control everything are not at all intuitive and there is a steep learning curve to get it all down. Second, Volvo needs to figure out how to eliminate torque-steer in this car. It will take a pretty hard left or right upon heavy acceleration.

Volvo stuck to its roots of building a super-safe car. S60 has a 5-star NHTSA rating in every category across the board, the only luxury car in America that can boast that, and it is a top safety pick of the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.

The S60 T6 E-Drive handles great, it is very quiet inside, and it just feels sporty. It also looks sporty on the outside, especially with the addition of the 19” wheels. I am impressed with the engine performance, the technology in this car, and the outstanding interior.

2015 Volvo S60 T6 E-Drive

  • What I liked most: The engine, the fuel economy, and the interior.
  • What I would change: The accessory controls, and the torque-steer.
  • MSRP: Base price $38,150; as equipped $47,925.
  • Fuel Economy: Stated at 24 in town/35 highway/28 combined, but doing better.
  • Odometer reading when tested: 4186 miles.
  • Weight: 3433 Pounds.
  • Fuel Tank Capacity: 17.8 gallons.
  • 2015 Volvo S60 T6 in a few words: Safety meets luxury and performance.
  • Warranty: 4-year/50,000 mile bumper-to-bumper with roadside assistance, and you get free maintenance at 10,000, 20,000, and 30,000 miles.
  • Manufacturers website: Volvo
  • Dealers: We have great dealers for all Volvo products in DFW, Houston, and Lubbock.
  • Click here for a list of Car Pro Dealers: Car Pro Certified Dealers
  1. David Munoz 4 years ago

    Test drove the 2015 S-60 T-5 Drive-E and it’s all that you said about it. One thing that bothers me about it is Volvos’ Electrification portion of the engines design. I don’t know if it’s there now in the 2015 models but is there a battery pack mounted underneath the body? I don’t trust battery technology because of possible fires or battery failures. Myself, I keep a car for at least ten years before I get rid of it. If the battery pack fails and is out of warranty how much to replace it.?

    • Jerry 4 years ago

      Good to hear from you. We don’t have a lot of info on the new Volvo engine, but it is certainly a good performer. In general terms, battery packs are running $4000 or so, but seem to be getting cheaper as time goes on.

      I like this Volvo powertrain, I think it’s a good choice.

      Thanks for listening to the show!

      Jerry Reynolds, President
      Car Pro Radio Network

  2. Ron Johnson 4 years ago

    Hi Jerry-

    You have me looking at two cars right now. One I can currently see and drive and one that is coming next year that I need you to do a road test on as soon as you can. I speaking of the 2015 Volvo XC 90 T model. The Toyota Highlander AWD 4dr V6 Limited is on my radar now but the more I read about the redesigned XC 90 the better it sounds albeit for another $10-15k. Your review of the S60 T6 gives me a bit of an idea what to expect in terms of engine performance and interior layout. Any chance of you getting behind the wheel of the 2015 XC 90 before the end of the year? As a side note I would be very curious to hear you do a proper evaluation of some of these electronic driver aids you mention in the S60 article. Do these things really work as advertised? Thanks, Ron Oakland, CA

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