Potential purchasers of a Volvo V60 Cross Country car could be faced with quite a dilemma when considering a deal for the rugged estate is available with two or four wheel drive with the 4x4 model costing over £6000 more than the entry level 2WD writes Bryan Longworth.
They could pay the premium for four wheel drive or they could save several thousand pounds by going for a similar vehicle from a competitor with 4x4 or they could go for the Volvo with two wheel drive that also looks like a tough all wheel drive car.
For both four and two wheel drive models have an additional 65mm of ground clearance with skid plates front and rear, side scuff plates and bumper extenders creating that imposing muscular image while the integrated tailpipes reflect its sporty side.
After testing the second least expensive V60 Cross Country with two wheel drive the V60 Cross Country D3 Manual SE Nav with a 2.0-litre turbo diesel engine I would go for this model and fit winter tyres in the autumn until next spring.
For from my experience of driving on winter tyres in this country and abroad they provide extremely good traction on snow and ice which is virtually as good as having four wheel drive and you also have the assurance of driving one of the safest and best quality vehicles in this class.
And the increased ride height means that this Volvo Cross Country vehicle is ideal for those owners whose lifestyle means they will at times be driving on dirt roads or onto grassed areas such as caravan sites or to horsey events on country estates like Chatsworth Park for horse trials and country fairs.
The lively four cylinder 150hp diesel engine provided plenty of power for press-on motoring linked to the smooth six speed manual gearbox and the firm handling provides the driver with a very reassuring and enjoyable driving experience.
So having resolved the problem of which model to go for I can assure potential buyers that my test car which cost £30,995 (prices start at £30,195) could be just that car because its other statistics are just as impressive with a combined fuel consumption of 67.3mpg a top speed of 127mph a zero to 62mph time of 9.1 seconds and CO2 emissions of 111g/km.
The roomy and comfortable interior has an up market ambience and the controls and instruments are extremely user friendly with a very easy to see speedometer and screen for features like the satellite navigation and audio system.
There is a roomy rear load area with easy access and underneath was a spare wheel and jack albeit an optional extra but well worth the £150 it added to the purchase price because of the peace of mind it provides for puncture situations.
As one expects from Volvo this was a good looking spacious safe and comfortable car for the owner wanting something a bit different especially for an outdoor lifestyle and for the first time for ages I found it difficult to find anything to grumble about! In my opinion as stated earlier this is the best V60 Cross Country to have for it is a premium product with good residual values but make sure you fit those winter tyres in good time so you are not caught out by early snowfalls and you will have superb traction and save all that money for the 4x4 model. Verdict: A quality cross country estate.
Model: Volvo V60 Cross Country D3 Manual SE Nav 2WD.
Engine: 2.0-litre four cylinder turbo diesel.
Output: 150hp. Transmission: Six speed manual.
Top speed: 127mph. Acceleration: 0 to 62mph 9.1 seconds.
Fuel consumption: 67.3mpg combined.
C02 emissions: 111g/km.
Price: £30,995 on the road.