Jeremy It’s the last day for our Volvo XC60 . With snow forecast for tomorrow I’m going to regret handing over the keys for all sorts of reasons. This is the model that buries the myth that all Volvos are boxy estates driven by conservative types. The flowing lines of the bodywork and beautifully crafted dashboard are light years ahead of Volvos of old – a pretty SUV estate that manages to put a smile on your face every morning. I think it looks sensational from most angles – apart from head on, which is about to be rectified with a new, re-nosed version due out this summer. Solid, robust and capable of 4X4-type forays into the semi-rough stuff, the XC60 is a thoroughly modern estate car that will tick a lot of boxes for most families. Arriving tomorrow at Car Couture is the new Jaguar XJ 3.0 Supercharged V6. Find out how we get on with the luxury saloon every day next week.
Jeremy This isn’t some new dealer incentive but a chance to go very fast down an icy tube with my eyes shut. Volvo has invited Car Couture to take part in the British Bobsleigh Championships in Innsbruck this weekend. Jessica was suddenly ‘otherwise engaged’ and so I’m scribbling this from Gatwick Airport. Hopefully, I won’t do a John Noakes flip the thing over – but I’m pretty sure I will have my eyes shut. Volvo sponsors British bobsleighing and, at the moment, the UK No. 1 team is fifth in the world.
The XC60 has just averaged 47mpg on the run down from Wiltshire, which I think is more than respectable for an SUV. And those blind spot warning lights on the doors are proving very useful – especially with kamikaze courier motorcyclists on the M25. Now Saab is no more, I’m also give my ‘Most Comfortable Seat’ award to the R-Design set in our XC60. Let’s hope the bobsleigh is equally as relaxing…
Jeremy I have just driven our XC60 to London-based Rootstein, who are the Rolls-Royce of mannequin makers in the fashion world that Jessica frequents. It’s a bright, sunny day and the doors of their Kensington fashion studios are highly polished and squeaky clean. Fortunately, the mirror image is sparkling enough to reflect the XC60, as it rolled driverless down the road behind me…
TheXC60’s multi-function key has six options but not one of them can ‘apply handbrake’ remotely from where I watched gaping. The irony is that the XC60 is otherwise so incredibly safe it almost dispenses with the need for birth control. However, for some strange reason, is equipped with one of those push button handbrakes that screams ‘accident’ every time I don’t apply it.
W14 is fairly flat so I was able to out-sprint Usain Bolt before any damage was done. Then I used the front blind spot camera to squeeze into a parking space, with rear sensors on standby and the pedestrian airbag ready to bounce anybody who is unfortunate enough to get in my way.
For the drive home, I was able to relax in the knowledge that blind spot indicators would alert me if somebody overtook, lights at the foot of the windscreen would flash if the computer decided I was too close to the car in front. If XC60 doesn’t like my iPod playlist, I’m certain it would have probably switched to a more middle-of-the road David Grey too.