• Warning sounds. While there is still the occasional beep, there are some warnings, like if we don’t put our seatbelt on straight away, which sound more like an angelic ‘eep’. We rate it.
  • The looks. The XC90 looks lovely. From the bold lines of the big SUV to the diamond shaped driver mode control in the centre console.
  • The options. The XC90 as a model comes with a whole range of options that can take it up a level. We particularly enjoyed the 360 degree surround camera, sunroof, heated seats and steering wheel, and the Driver Support Package.
  • A quiet diesel engine always gets a tick in our books. And this one gets a big golden one.
  • The XC90 clocks in pretty decent fuel figures. We drove the diesel Inscription from Melbourne to Adelaide and then on to the Barossa Valley in SA on one tank (71 litre tank in the Inscription D5).
  • The seats fold down flat to create more space in what is already a spacious car. Even passengers in the back two seats can sit fairly comfortably. Our Lifestyle Ed’s mother (who is 5 foot 3, sat back there on a trip to the beach and mentioned several times how comfortable it was.)
  • With the Driver Support Package extra, the XC90 basically drives itself. We’re not even joking; it comes with Pilot Assist which means you push a button and it drives for you – as long as the roads are clearly marked, there’s a car in front of you and you’re sitting below 50km/h.


  • It was surprisingly annoying that there weren’t more cup holders in the front. There were two in the centre, but none on the doors.
  • There’s only one USB port in the XC90. A very strange omission but also #firstworldproblems.
  • The air con is particularly noisy and results in the turning up the radio to block out the blowing noise.
  • The centre touchscreen means you can access almost every part of the car from a few taps, but it’s not always easy to find, and boy do those finger prints drive us insane!
  • Turning circle. The XC90 has never been known for its turning circle, and while the newer model has improved, it’s still not great.