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The equipment in the new XC90 Excellence hybrid is almost extravagant,even for a Volvo

THE NEW hybrid XC90 might be the most frugal of SUVs, but its performance and luxury features are anything but. Even though the luxury SUV space in India is choc-a-bloc with all the Porsches, Land Rovers, BMWs, Audis and Mercedes, Volvo’s new entry is carving a whole other niche for itself.

Hybrid bred
On the outside, the XC90 Excellence resembles the regular diesel variants of the car launched earlier this year. Based on Volvo’s modular Scalable Product Architecture (SPA), the XC90 design is typically Volvo. The front is dominated by the signature ‘Thor’ head lamps and the marquee’s insignia on the grille. But the Excellence trim comes with additional chrome on the B- and C-pillar cappings and lower door mouldings. The XC90’s plug-in hybrid powertrain comprises a 2.0-litre supercharged and turbocharged petrol engine, and a 9.2kWh lithium-ion battery. Transmission is carried out by an eight-speed automatic. Combined output is an impressive 402PS of power with a peak torque of 640Nm.

A class apart
But it’s the cabin that truly sets it apart from other luxury offerings on the road. Unlike the other five- and seven-seater SUVs, the seating capacity in the new Volvo is limited to just four. The rear seats come with Excellence Consoles, which are touchscreen tablets for controlling the seating position and temperature. The high-end feel is further accentuated with the Bowers & Wilkins sound systems, Nappa leather upholstery in blonde and black, a beverage cooler and a set of hand-crafted Swedish Orrefors crystal glasses. Even the handle for the gear shifter is made from the same crystal. The Sensus Connect function allows the user to connect a smartphone with the car via Bluetooth or WiFi. Moreover, the cabin isn’t just luxurious, it’s also quiet, thanks to the Pirelli Noise Cancelling System tyres (PNCS). If the safety equipment on the XC90 is anything to go by, then Volvo is making good on its promise of making its car zero-casualty zones by 2020. It also comes equipped with the IntelliSafe system, which includes a parking assist, a 360 degree camera and head lamps that automatically dim the beam, in order to prevent blinding other road users.
`1.25 crore (ex-showroom, Delhi) Details: volvocars.com/in/cars/new-models/xc90-excellence

—Team MotorScribes
@motorscribesind

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