2015 Volvo S60 T6 Drive-E Check Drive: Towards A Brilliant Potential

The Volvo S60 T6 Drive-E proves an important stage: You really don’;t require a large engine to generate a whole lot of power. In fact, the Swedish automaker is staking its entire potential on that really concept.

It is phasing out the company’s lengthy-running 5- and 6-cylinder engines in favor a new generation of 4-cylinders, produced with an $ 11 billion investment from its owners Zhejiang Geely Holding Group, a Chinese Industrial group that bought Volvo from Ford in 2010. The new engine technology is referred to as Drive-E.

The specific engine that is the concentrate of this review is the so-known as “T6” 4-cylinder. It is specific because it has a turbocharger and supercharger. But don’t confuse it with the lesser “T5” engine, which is only turbocharged and does not have a supercharger.

But why use each a turbo and a supercharger when so many organizations only use a single or the other?

The solution is, unfortunately, a bit esoteric. You see, a turbocharger utilizes recirculated exhaust gases to enhance electrical power, and even however the technological innovation has enhanced drastically in current many years, it even now produces a bit of a lag in power delivery as the turbocharger spools up.

That’s the place the supercharger comes in. A supercharger does the exact same thing a turbocharger does, but in a different way. It forces more air into the engine to improve energy, but it is driven straight off the crankshaft of the engine, so it’s often operating. As a result, the supercharger gives power instantaneously, even at minimal speeds, in which 4-cylinder engines have a tendency to truly feel their weakest. In other phrases, it sort of buys time for the turbocharger to spool up and begin offering improve.

The end consequence of this so-known as “twin-charger” setup in Volvo’s new T6 Drive-E engine is a 4-cylinder engine that feels like a large-functionality 6-cylinder. It genuinely functions as well, even though delivering 26 % much better fuel economy.

The 2015 Volvo S60 T6 in the desert outside Las Vegas. (Credit: Matthew de Paula)

The 2015 Volvo S60 T6 in the desert outside Las Vegas. (Credit: Matthew de Paula)


The Volvo S60 looks normally Scandinavian: spare and understated, nevertheless sophisticated.

It is both familiar and new. The S60 is reminiscent of past Volvos in its total type and specified information, such as the pronounced shoulder that runs along the car’s midsection. But the style is sleeker than the prior model’s, thanks to small updates manufactured for the 2014 model yr that carry in excess of to the 2015 edition. A wider front grille and reshaped bumper, hood and fenders give the auto a sportier stance.

Much like effectively-crafted Scandinavian furnishings, the 2015 S60‘s design doesn’t contact consideration to itself. It is subdued and unobtrusive, but pleasing to the eye.

Our check car was painted silver but didn’t appear bland as silver cars sometimes can. An optional R-Layout bundle with more substantial wheels and styling tweaks assisted in that regard.


Sitting inside the 2015 Volvo S60 is like visiting an previous buddy who just got a makeover. The seats, dashboard, instrument panel and center console are pleasingly acquainted. Volvo, like Porsche, helps make mostly incremental design and style changes from one vehicle generation to the following.

Pulling the door handle, flicking the flip signal, and rotating the volume knob impart a sense of good quality and substance, as does the leather upholstery and nicely-completed plastic surfaces of varying textures.

While other automakers consider to reinvent interior ergonomics—often producing a mess of them—Volvo sticks with a verified formula that is the 2 practical and attractive. Yet again, the Scandinavian furnishings analogy comes to thoughts.

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