2018 Volvo S90 Review

S90

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2018 Volvo S90 Overview

The Volvo S90 debuted as an all-new model for 2017. Usually this would be followed by a model year with nothing other than a few minor changes, but the S90 bucks that trend. Not only does it grow by 4 inches to provide an expansive rear seat perfect for lounging on long drives, it also adds a new plug-in hybrid powertrain option.

The full-size S90 luxury sedan is available in four different trim levels starting with the base T5 Momentum, which is your only choice if you want front-wheel drive (FWD). It’s priced at $48,100, with the all-wheel-drive (AWD) variant coming in at $50,300. Power for the T5 comes from a turbocharged 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine mated to an 8-speed automatic transmission for an output of 250 hp and 258 lb-ft of torque.

Standard features on the S90 T5 Momentum trim include rich leather upholstery, wood inlays, a large panoramic roof, and power front seats with lumbar support. The Sensus Connect infotainment system has been updated for 2018 and includes a touchscreen, navigation, and a 224-watt audio system with 10 speakers. A Bowers & Wilkins premium sound system is optional throughout the lineup for an extra $3,200. It adds a 19-speaker sound system with a 12-channel amplifier and 1400-watt output, all specially designed for optimal acoustics. Download the Volvo On Call app and you can send directions directly from your smartphone to your car or add meeting destinations from your personal calendar. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are also included at all trim levels, making smartphone integration quick and easy.

Stepping up to the S90 T6 Momentum trim, with a starting price of $54,100, brings a more powerful supercharged and turbocharged 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine good for 316 hp and 295 lb-ft. This trim is only available with all-wheel drive (AWD) and adds heated front seats and 18-inch 10-spoke alloy wheels.

Increased luxury comes with the S90 T6 Inscription, which is priced at $58,600 before options. The interior features Nappa leather upholstery, 4-zone electronic climate control, illuminated sills, ventilated front seats with power side support and cushion extensions, and power sun shades on the rear window and rear side doors. The exterior boasts 19-inch alloy wheels, illuminated door handles, high-pressure headlight cleaning, automatic high beams, and chrome accent trim.

New for the S90 this year is the T8 plug-in hybrid, starting at $63,650 for the Momentum or $68,150 for the Inscription. It features a direct-injected turbocharged and supercharged engine paired with an electric motor for a total output of 400 hp. Mated to an 8-speed automatic transmission, it can run in pure electric mode for up to 25 miles or in hybrid mode, where it uses the engine to drive the front wheels and the electric motor for the rear wheels.

The T8 Momentum and Inscription trims include similar features as in the T6, with a few exceptions. An Orrefors crystal gearshift knob is an exclusive standard item for both T8 trims, and the T8 Inscription comes with active bending lights that are only available as an add-on for the other trims.

As with any Volvo, the S90 is equipped with a multitude of standard safety features. Every S90 includes automatic post-collision braking, blind-spot monitoring and cross-traffic alert, a brake pedal release, a City Safety collision-avoidance system, hill-start assist, a lane-keeping aid, LED headlights with daytime running lights and active high beams, and LED front fog lights with cornering lights. The Pilot Assist semi-autonomous driving system also comes standard and offers both adaptive cruise control and steering support to help keep your vehicle within lane markings.

As Volvo’s flagship sedan, the S90 follows closely in the footsteps of the highly-praised XC90 SUV. It offers a luxurious experience even at the base trim level, and the new plug-in hybrid powertrain and expansive rear seat only increase the car’s versatility, making it even more well-suited for long drives.

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Nicole Wakelin's passion for cars started on the day she went for a ride in a bright red Ferrari as a teenager. She writes reviews and covers everything cars for CarGurus, The Boston Globe, BestRide, and Be Car Chic and blogs all things geek over at TotalFanGirl.

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