2011 Volvo XC60

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$32,400

starting MSRP

2011 Volvo XC60
2011 Volvo XC60

Key specs

Base trim shown

Overview

The good:

  • Stylish interior and exterior
  • Handling
  • Turbo six-cylinder's performance
  • Highway stability
  • Optional integrated booster seats

The bad:

  • Front seats may be too firm for some
  • Light-colored lower dashboard
  • Navigation controls on back of steering wheel
  • Snug backseat
  • Rear backrests don't recline

4 trims

Starting msrp listed lowest to highest price

Wondering which trim is right for you?

Our 2011 Volvo XC60 trim comparison will help you decide.

Notable features

  • Five seats
  • 240-hp six-cylinder or 300-hp turbo six-cylinder
  • FWD or AWD
  • Standard City Safety collision avoidance system
  • More power for 2011
  • New 3.2 R-Design model

2011 Volvo XC60 review: Our expert's take

By

The verdict:

Versus the competiton:


The policeman was right. I was speeding. I have an explanation, which is not the same as an acceptable excuse. Nor is it meant to be. But it is the truth. I had slipped into the Joy Zone.

It is a hazard inherent in the operation of an exceptional automobile, which was the case that crisp November morning when I was driving the 2011 Volvo XC60 R-Design wagon heading north on Lee Highway in Northern Virginia.

How ironic!

I was driving one of the world’s safest vehicles. Yet I ran into a speeding ticket that will cost me $200.

I am tempted to blame distraction, the cause of 90 percent of our nation’s traffic accidents, especially in urban areas. But seduction is much closer to the truth.

I was seduced, snookered, suckered by the smoothness of the new XC60’s turbocharged 3-liter in-line six-cylinder engine – 300 horsepower, 325 foot-pounds of torque. That’s 19 more horsepower and 30 foot-pounds more torque than was available in the 2010 version of that engine.

But I can’t really blame those power increases, either. Many cars have high-horsepower, high-torque engines. There is little about them, however, to lure you into the Joy Zone.

That zone is a special place, where driver and car become one. Only the finest cars can take you there. You think. Limbs move. The car goes. It is a machine totally in sync with human movement and emotion.

The better it performs, the better you feel, until reality intrudes.

I am lucky that intrusion came in the form of a speeding ticket. Other motorists aren’t as fortunate. Their Joy Zone leads to injury, or death. I’ll take the fine, thank you very much.

But the irony remains vexing. The XC60 R-Design wagon is so rock-solid safe. For example, it is available with an optional Volvo-patented technology, “City Safe.” At 18 mph or below, an infrared detection system automatically slows or stops the wagon if a stationery or slowing vehicle, or human being, is detected in its path.

City Safe can be turned off in congested traffic where automatically stopping to avoid striking a vehicle in front of you can cause another motorist to slam into your rear end.

Nothing’s perfect. But I appreciate Volvo’s effort to put as much safety into its cars and wagons as possible. Other XC60 technology, such as an audible lane-departure warning system, represents a successful attempt by Volvo to improve on safety systems introduced by rivals. Ditto the XC60’s available blind-side warning system, which can prevent motorists from swerving into unseen (by the human eye) trailing traffic.

It’s all good stuff. But it is absent an important complement – my proposed Joy Zone Warning Device. It seems only fair that such technology be included in the XC60, considering that Volvo has gone out of its way to make the wagon accelerate and handle in the manner of a well-engineered sports car.

The Joy Zone Warning Device would detect dangerous fantasy levels, such as when a motorist, lost in the wow-zee of it all, exits a high-speed expressway and enters a more speed-restricted city street. It could issue dumbbell or knucklehead alerts, something like “Hey, knucklehead, slow down! You’re on a city street. Slow down!”

I’d happily pay a couple of hundred bucks or more for that system. Heck, I’m paying for it anyway.

Consumer reviews

Rating breakdown (out of 5):
  • Comfort 4.6
  • Interior design 4.5
  • Performance 4.5
  • Value for the money 4.2
  • Exterior styling 4.6
  • Reliability 4.4

Most recent consumer reviews

5.0

Great car for the money.

This vehicle was exactly what I was looking for. The dealer was awesome and made this transaction very easy to deal with. I would buy again from them.

5.0

one of the best, safety, reliable 4 wheel drive

I have 3 Volvo's in my drive way, comparing with any other brand, Volvo is the best, I've been using Volvo since 9 or 10 years now

2.3

More of the most least reliable cars I've ever own

This car is very disappointing. This is my sixth Volvo and I'm very disappointed with this vehicle. I brought this car used with 75K miles and purchased an extended warranty. In the past three years I only put 28K on it and it was service on regular basis. But within the last month it appeared that everything went wrong at once. My repairs cost me over $3800 and my extended warranty did not cover all the repairs per the contract. This has been an eye opening event for me. I will never buy another Volvo or extended warranty. My experience has been a night mare to say the least.

See all 21 consumer reviews

Warranty

New car and Certified Pre-Owned programs by Volvo
New car program benefits
Bumper-to-bumper
48 months/50,000 miles
Corrosion
144 months/unlimited distance
Powertrain
48 months/50,000 miles
Roadside assistance
60 months/unlimited distance
Certified Pre-Owned program benefits
Maximum age/mileage
Less than 5 years/less than 80,000 miles
Basic warranty terms
5 years/unlimited miles , upgradeable up to 10 years
Powertrain
N/A
Dealer certification required
170- plus point inspection
Roadside assistance
Yes
View all cpo program details

Have questions about warranties or CPO programs?

Compare the competitors

2010

BMW X3

$38,850

starting MSRP

2012

Mitsubishi Outlander Sport

$18,795

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2013

Volvo S80

$38,950

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See all 2011 Volvo XC60 articles