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Volvo V60 gains off-road ability in Cross Country form

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Following the sales success of full-size off-roaders, a new breed of off-road estate is also snowballing in popularity, the latest of which is the Volvo V60 Cross Country.

Building on the strengths of the standard V60 – namely its supremely comfortable interior and powerful but economical engines – the Cross Country features a substantial 65mm hike in ground clearance along with the option of four-wheel drive, which together should help it to traverse inhospitable terrain and deal with slippery surfaces. The car’s styling also differs from the standard V60 with new plastic body cladding plus skid plates at both ends.

Volvo staked a claim to introducing the upmarket off-road estate car with its V70 Cross Country in 1997 and as the latest car to bear the Cross Country name, the V60 aims to offer a useful amount of off-road ability, without sacrificing the standard car’s on-road ability, or drastically cutting down on fuel economy.

Surprisingly, four-wheel drive isn’t standard, leaving buyers to choose an economical front-wheel drive Cross Country for its looks alone, or go the whole hog with the four-wheel drive range-topping model. The range will consist of two front-wheel drive versions – the 134bhp D3 and 179bhp D4 diesels – and the D4 kitted out with four-wheel drive for extra grip.

Unlike many sportier models, the Cross Country cars will offer 18 and 19-inch alloy wheels with high-profile tyres to give a comfortable ride. The interior should offer a blend of practicality and luxury with black leather sports seats with contrasting brown stitching plus the option of several two-tone interior designs.

The Volvo V60 Cross Country was unveiled at the recent Los Angeles Auto Show in November. Prices and trim levels are yet to be confirmed. Volvo will start taking orders for this new model at the start of 2015 with the first models being delivered for summer.

Author: Christofer Lloyd


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