2016 Volvo S60 Inscription FWD Review

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Volvo fans are rightly focused on the excitement happening at the upper reaches of the company’s model range, where the XC90 crossover and the upcoming S90 flagship sedan have been capturing headlines. There’s an addition to the firm’s more mainstream S60 range for 2016 that shouldn’t escape notice, though. Salient facts about this S60 Inscription model are that it has a 3.1-inch-longer wheelbase to add 3.0 additional inches of legroom into the back seat and, like many other Volvos of late, its drivetrain is a fresh 2.0-liter direct-injected turbo four mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission.

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Oh, and it’s built in China, homeland of Volvo’s corporate parent, Geely. This stretched Volvo was devised for and is built only in that country, where many owners prefer to sit in the rear and let someone else deal with Sino-traffic nightmares. There, it’s called the S60L and, presumably, pride attaches to local assembly in Chengdu. Here, it’s a sort of pioneer—among all production cars available in the U.S. as of this writing, the Inscription alone wears Made in China labels (other S60s hail from Sweden).

Instead of S60L, the model is known here as the Inscription, which at least it has the distinction of being a word rather than another alphanumeric complication in a range that already has plenty of those. Available with either front-wheel drive (as in our test car) or all-wheel drive (which brings a 2.5-liter turbo five-cylinder and a six-speed automatic), the Inscription comes in two trim levels, Premier or Platinum. This example was a Platinum, which bumps the buy-in upward by three grand and brings premium sound (Harman/Kardon), high-tech headlights (bixenons that point where you steer and have their own washers), and equipment Premier buyers get only by choosing both the Convenience (passive entry, grocery-bag holders, power-retracting mirrors) and Technology option packages (a long list of safety add-ons we’ll address later).

What a front-wheel-drive Inscription can’t have is any other powertrain. The turbocharged 2.0-liter makes 240 horsepower in this T5 guise. Volvo makes a T6 version using both a supercharger and a turbo to generate 302 horsepower, but offers it only in the standard-wheelbase model, which we tested previously. Our most recent S60 test was of the special-edition Polestar variant propelled by a 345-hp inline-six engine that has no place in Volvo’s future, mated to a six-speed automatic (also not part of the brand’s long-term plans) and all-wheel drive. Complete review on www.caranddriver.com, by Michael Simari

This review is about 2016 volvo s60 inscription fwd review.