Stylish saloon is packed with advanced safety kit and technology
- Sleek, stylish looks
- Huge list of safety kit
- Spacious and comfortable
- Upmarket, tech-laden interior
- Limited engine range
- Unsettled ride on higher-spec models
- Not as good to drive as 5 Series
- Pilot assist not as smooth as rival systems
This is the Volvo S90, the Swedish company's saloon version of the V90 estate. It's based on the same underpinnings as the larger XC90 and features similarly eye-catching design features, like the T-shaped Thor's Hammer LED daytime running lights.
There’s some fierce competition from established cars like the Audi A6 Saloon, BMW 5 Series Saloon, Jaguar XF Saloon and Mercedes-Benz E-Class Saloon; all of which are highly competitive and very desirable.
However, the S90 is off to a good start with sleek styling and a well-crafted interior boasting a choice of tactile trim and leather upholstery. There is a bewildering array of advanced safety and driver assistance technology available, as well as a range of efficient engines and a driving experience dubbed ‘Relaxed Confidence’ by Volvo.
Volvo S90 trim levels
The S90 is available in six trim levels: Momentum, Momentum Pro, R-Design, R-Design Pro, Inscription and Inscription Pro.
Volvo S90 engines and gearbox
While there aren’t many to choose from, there should be something to satisfy most needs. The range consists of two diesels, one petrol and one hybrid; all of which are mated to an eight-speed automatic gearbox.
The choice of two diesels in the S90 – one called D4 and the other D5 PowerPulse - are 2.0-litre, four-cylinder engines. The D4 produces 190hp while the D5 produces 235hp and sends power through an all-wheel drive system.
The sole petrol engine available in the range – badged T4 – produces 190hp and 300Nm of torque.
These three engines are available on all trim levels ranging from Momentum, through to R-Design Pro.
There’s also a plug-in hybrid petrol-electric model badged T8 due later in 2017, which already features in the XC90. It produces a combined output of 407hp, yet offers claimed fuel economy of more than 100mpg and ultra-low CO2 emissions.
Huge list of safety and driver assistance tech
Volvo is known for focusing on car safety and the S90 delivers when it comes to the amount of technology it offers, keeping the car and its occupants out of harm's way.
Falling under what Volvo calls Intellisafe, the S90 features as standard City Safety autonomous emergency braking with pedestrian, cyclist and large animal detection. Add to this adaptive cruise control featuring Pilot Assist, which can control the car in queues and keep it in lane.
You can have additional assistance systems from the options list too, including automatic parking.
The Parkers Verdict
The Volvo S90 remains to be an attractive alternative to its established rivals, offering style, generous equipment levels and safety kit. The interior quality doesn’t quite match rivals from Germany but this is still a comfortable place to spend long journeys in.
The more expensive variants have a firmer ride quality though, so we’d recommend trying them before buying to see if they suit your needs.
Read the full Volvo S90 review to find out if it’s an executive saloon that should be on your shortlist.