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Video Review: Volvo XC90

By Anna Kantilaftas, 18 Feb 2016 Car Reviews

Volvo are raising the bar with their new XC90, adding a touch of flair to the practical 7-seater.

Volvo XC90 Video Review

The Volvo XC90 looks the part.

From the Thor-like hammer shaped headlights to the bold lines of the big seven-seater SUV, Volvo have stepped up their game in the design stakes to create the Volvo XC90.      


It’s a given that the Volvo is made for families. With the addition of two extra seats and plenty of space, there’s no questioning the true meaning of life for the XC90.

Volvo XC90 interior


True to Volvo’s reputation, the XC90 is packed to the brim with safety features.

As standard it’s got technology-leading gear, like its self-parking system, stylish interiors and of course, a few safety features. But, for a brand synonymous with safety, a number of the shielding features come at an extra cost.  

It’s also versatile. The middle-row is adjustable, it’s got build in booster seats and then there are the additional two seats in the back. 

But its most exciting features come in the form of the optional extras. There’s plenty to choose from to bubble wrap what is already a safe car. Stand out options include air suspension, temperature control seats in the front and back, panoramic sunroof, and a 360 degree camera view – trust me, when you’re driving a car this big, it really comes in handy. 

Then there’s the driver support package – a luxury choice but full of useful features. Adaptive cruise control is always a plus on a long trip, and the pilot assist and auto parking are a nice novelty.

Volvo XC90 booster seat


Features aside, the XC90 has more power than we expected it to, granted its performance isn’t class leading. But It’s an effortless ride for something so big; even in a typically noisy diesel engine, the XC90 is smooth and quiet.

This comes as an added bonus when we talk fuel economy. For a car that weighs in at almost 2 tonne, one tank of fuel will get you pretty far. The diesel Inscription variant managed to drive from Melbourne to Adelaide, to the Barossa and back to Adelaide on less than one tank of fuel. Anything that takes a bit of the stress out of such a mammoth drive is alright in my books.

Then there is the space. As soon as you see the beast that is the XC90, you know it’s not going to falter in the space department. The seats fold down flat so there’s enough room in the boot to move a small apartment. 

Obviously, being a seven-seater, this space is compromised when the extra seats are clicked into space, but even then it manages to fit enough gear for a family outing to the beach. Not to mention the back seats fit my mum who made a conscious effort to tell me how comfortable she was – granted she’s only 5ft2. 

Volvo XC90


For a brand synonymous with safety, we wonder why the all-singing, fully-specced XC90 doesn't come with the safety features as standard.

There are a few things missing though, like the limited storage in the front, and no rear USB ports, which I think is a strange omission. 

The noisy air conditioning was annoying and the centre touch-screen, which looks like a tablet, isn’t as responsive as one would hope – plus, fingerprints drive me insane! 

As for the turning circle, let’s just say we hope you’re comfortable with 3 point turns.


I’d love to challenge a stereotype here and tell you the Volvo XC90 can be enjoyed by everyone. And in some regards, it can – it’s nice to sit in, safe and I grew attached. But it reaches its full potential when filled with a family.

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