The Volvo V90 Cross Country has arrived in South Africa and it brings a combination of 'wagon practicality and off-road prowess to the executive sedan/estate market.
Cross Country is an important moniker for the Volvo brand; such-branded models from the Scandinavian manufacturer has garnered a small, but loyal, following. The badge represents typical Volvo style and safety, with a healthy dose of practicality and off-road ability added to the mix.
“We know that South African buyers in the premium crossover segment have limited choices, and so we are delighted that the new Volvo V90 Cross Country is now able to cater better for this discerning audience. It is the only crossover in its segment that is available in South Africa, allowing us to continue to lead with a lifestyle enabler that brings all of Volvo’s latest technology and design excellence to the fore,” says Greg Maruszewski, Managing Director of Volvo Car South Africa.
The Cross Country is built on the same Scalable Product Architecture (SPA) as its S90 and XC90 siblings. For this application, the Cross Country benefits from additional 60 mm of road clearance, bringing it to a substantial 210 mm, which is well-suited to South African conditions. The tyres have been uprated too, the new rubber has a softer ride and offers more grip.
The vehicle's electronic chassis control has been reworked and this includes tweaks to the all-wheel drive, hill descent control, continuously controlled damping (CCD), electric power steering and electronic stability control. In terms of offroad ability, the vehicle's BorgWarner AWD setup apportions power efficiently between the front and rear axles.
On dry surfaces, the majority of power goes to the front wheels, but up to 50% of the delivery can be sent to the rear wheels. Interestingly, the system engages full all-wheel drive at a standstill, resulting in maximum traction upon pullaway.
Lauded Volvo tech carried over
The dashboard is not too dissimilar to that of Volvo's other products. The Cross Country features the acclaimed Sensus Connect 10-speaker infotainment system, which controls features such as navigation, climate control and entertainment. Bluetooth/USB/auxiliary connectivity is standard, but if you opt for the Smartphone Integration Package, you gain Apple CarPlay and Android Auto functionality too.
The V90 Cross Country further features the semi-autonomous technology known as Pilot Assist, which takes some of the driving off your hands at speeds of up to 130 kph. There's also Adaptive Cruise Control, where the car uses a camera and radar to match the speed of the vehicle it is following.
Driving modes in the newcomer include Comfort, Eco and Dynamic, which are self explanatory, but the Offroad application requires explanation: when going off the tar and onto rough terrain, Offroad mode activates hill descent control, adjusts throttle/transmission mapping, and if you have the optional air suspension, it'll also adjust the ride accordingly.
In terms of safety, the Volvo V90 Cross Country features a plethora of features, all of which are standard. ABS, EBD, EBA, stability and traction control, hill start assistance and six airbags, and Volvo’s Side Impact Protection System (SIPS) and Whiplash Protection System (WHIPS) are included. According to Volvo, "the V90 Cross Country was also recently named one of the three safest cars ever tested by industry safety benchmark testers Euro NCAP, having scored full points for autonomous emergency braking for pedestrians (made possible by pedestrian detection, part of City Safety)." The other two were also Volvo products, which goes to show how seriously the Swedes take safety.
Choice of Engines
The Volvo V90 Cross Country comes with a choice of 2 turbopetrol and 2 turbodiesel engines. All derivatives feature all-wheel drive and an 8-speed automatic transmission.
D4: 2.0-litre 4-cylinder turbodiesel with 140 kW and 400 Nm. Average consumption is rated at 5.2 L/100 km.
D5: 2.0-litre 4-cylinder turbodiesel with 173 kW and 480 Nm. Average consumption is rated at 5.3 L/100 km.
T5: 2.0-litre 4-cylinder turbopetrol with 187 kW and 350 Nm. Average consumption is rated at 7.4 L/100 km.
T6: 2.0-litre 4-cylinder turbo- and supercharged petrol with 235 kW and 400 Nm. Average consumption is rated at 7.7 L/100 km.
Choice of Trim
The Volvo V90 Cross Country features 2 trim levels per derivative, with both offering generous levels of kit. Momentum starts off the range, with Inscription offering more luxury. There are 13 exterior colours and 12 interior schemes to choose from.
Momentum features glossy black window detailing, electric folding side mirrors, matt chrome roof rails, automatic full-LED headlights with Active Bending and Active High Beam, front LED fog lights, rain-sensing wipers, rear parking sensors, chrome-tipped exhaust outlets and 18-inch alloy wheels.
Inside, there's full leather upholstery with the innovative pearl seam, comfort seat padding, a electrically adjustable driver’s seat with variable lumbar support and memory function, Black Walnut décor inlays, a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster, the 9-inch Sensus Connect interface, satellite navigation, a 10-speaker high-performance audio system, 2-zone automatic climate control, split-folding rear seats with a ski hatch, mid-level interior illumination, a leather steering wheel with full multifunction support, a leather gear lever, the diamond-cut Drive Mode selector, fully-automatic and laminated windows all-round, metal door sill mouldings, and a 12V power socket in the boot.
Inscription features 19-inch alloy wheels, a leather-clad key, Nappa soft leather upholstery, an electrically-adjustahle passenger seat with memory function, power-adjustable side support and extendable cushions for both front seats, high-level interior illumination with adjustable ambient colour settings, and illuminated door sill mouldings as standard.
Volvo South Africa is also offering pocket-friendly option packs for those who want some additional features. Want to go full Cross Country and embrace the lifestyle? We'd suggest looking at the Adventure Pack, which includes a panoramic roof, 360-degree surround view camera, auto-dimming mirrors all-round, integrated compass, powered folding rear seats, air suspension and a 230V power outlet. You can further customise your Cross Country with bike racks, scuff plates, boot mats, mud flaps, dog crates and harnesses, tow bars, and roof boxes.
Volvo V90 Cross Country prices in South Africa (May 2017)
D4 Geartronic AWD Momentum R794 800
D4 Geartronic AWD Inscription R825 200
D5 Geartronic AWD Momentum R839 500
D5 Geartronic AWD Inscription R869 900
T5 Geartronic AWD Momentum R770 900
T5 Geartronic AWD Inscription R801 300
T6 Geartronic AWD Momentum R890 900
T6 Geartronic AWD Inscription R921 300
All models come standard with a 5-year/100 000 km full vehicle warranty, full maintenance plan and roadside assistance, as well as laminated glass and Tracker Connect as standard.
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