Car Reviews

2023 Volvo XC90 Review: Design that stands the test of time

Professionals: Elegant, clear, minimalist design; highly effective PHEV powertrain obtainable; strong normal security and driver help suite

Cons: Whereas we just like the design, it’s due for an replace; upgrading to PHEV is dear

The 2023 Volvo XC90 is a three-row, full-size SUV that we like for its tasteful design, comfy inside house and glorious security. For 2023, the usual powertrains turn out to be mild-hybrid designs primarily based on a turbocharged 2.0-liter engine. The plug-in-hybrid XC90 Recharge model raises the worth significantly, however offers a beneficiant quantity of all-electric vary whereas being probably the most highly effective and enjoyable XC90 by far. It received’t present the sporty driving dynamics like a few of the efficiency fashions from BMW and Mercedes, however there’s loads to love about Volvo’s flagship crossover.

What Volvo does supply is oodles of security, with glorious crash take a look at outcomes yr after yr, and a strong suite of security and driver help know-how that doesn’t really feel prefer it’s working in opposition to you when you’re driving. The XC90 can be comfy and roomy, seating six to seven passengers in an inside that’s comfy and attention-grabbing to take a look at with out feeling overwrought or ostentatious.

The XC90 is getting slightly lengthy within the tooth because it’s now in its eighth yr since a whole redesign, however its distinctive, crisp design and fashionable know-how disguise its age properly. If you’d like one thing all-electric, although, you’ll have to attend just a bit longer. Volvo will launch its full-size EX90 as a battery-electric successor to the XC90, anticipated to go on sale in 2023 with an all-new design and extra security tech than ever earlier than.

Inside & Know-how   |   Passenger & Cargo House   |   Efficiency & Gas Financial system

What it is prefer to drive   |   Pricing & Trim Ranges   |   Crash Scores & Security Options

What’s new for 2023?

The 2023 XC90 switches to mild-hybrid powertrains as normal, full with built-in 48-volt battery and an built-in starter/generator added to the present 2.0-liter engines. The brand new B5 and B6 gentle hybrids subsequently exchange the outgoing T5 and T6 engines. The XC90 Recharge stays a plug-in hybrid possibility.

The XC90 switches to Google-based infotainment software program for 2023, incorporating Google Maps, Google Play and Google Assistant voice management. The XC90 additionally beneficial properties over-the-air replace functionality, which suggests Volvo can ship distant software program updates to the automobile, enhancing options over time.

Trim ranges are reorganized into Core, Plus and Final.

What are the XC90’s inside and in-car know-how like?

Irrespective of the trim stage, the 2023 Volvo XC90’s cabin is a lesson in refined minimalism. The vibe is completely different from any of the German or Japanese luxurious machines. The place BMW and Mercedes dashes are festooned with design thrives and apparent luxurious, the XC90 is laid again and staid. Muted wooden inlays grace the sprint of luxurious fashions, whereas steel inlays are used on sportier builds. You may get a dose of flash with the Final trim and its Orrefors Crystal shift knob, however even that piece pales compared to BMW’s gaudy glass-cut gear lever. 

The swap to Google built-in infotainment is an enchancment in usability over the previous Sensus software program. We just like the familiarity and ease of use of Google Maps, and the Google Assistant is without doubt one of the extra pure voice management packages you’ll discover in a automobile. All your local weather controls are positioned inside the display, so that you’re left with none bodily buttons there (although that was the case with Sensus as properly). A couple of audio playback buttons will be discovered under the display, nevertheless it’s nonetheless a tech fiend’s paradise. Volvo’s 12-inch digital instrument cluster comes normal, and it continues the minimalism theme with a easy format and restricted customization. As you’d count on in a giant luxurious crossover, this one will be loaded to the gills with fascinating options like a head-up show and massaging seats.

How huge is the XC90?

The XC90 is the most important Volvo, permitting for 3 rows of passengers to return alongside for the trip. Its size is just like different midsize crossovers just like the BMW X5, Mercedes-Benz GLE, Acura MDX and Genesis GV80. Nonetheless, not solely are you able to match six or seven passengers within the XC90, there’s an excellent probability that each one these passengers will truly be comfy. The third row is definitely liveable for adults, which is a rarity in luxurious crossovers other than larger, pricier fashions just like the BMW X7 and Mercedes-Benz GLS.

The XC90’s boxy form is well-suited to cargo, although, and is equally higher than most rivals. That’s notably true with all rows raised, as our XC90 Baggage Check confirmed it able to holding 4 medium suitcases behind the third row. You may be fortunate to suit two in most rivals. 

What are the XC90’s gasoline economic system and efficiency specs?

Volvo has moved to all-electrified powertrains for 2023, starting from mild-hybrid “B5” and “B6” powertrains for its gas-powered XC90, and soldiering on with the XC90 Recharge with the T8 powertrain if you wish to add a plug for 35 miles of all electrical vary. All 2023 XC90’s include an eight-speed automated transmission and all-wheel drive.

The B5 gentle hybrid is the bottom powertrain. Its turbocharged 2.0-liter engine produces 247 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque, and makes use of a braking-regenerated 48-volt battery and an built-in starter/generator to help the engine and enhance gasoline economic system. It’ll go from a cease to 60 miles per hour in 7.3 seconds. Its gasoline economic system is rated by the EPA at 22 miles per gallon metropolis, 28 mpg freeway and 25 mpg mixed.

The B6 gentle hybrid is ready to get 295 hp and 310 lb-ft out of its 2.0-liter inline-four that’s each turbocharged and supercharged. That makes it faster to 60 miles per hour, at 6.4 seconds, nevertheless it will get barely worse gasoline mileage at 20/26/22 mpg.

Our favourite powertrain of the lineup is the costliest, but additionally probably the most highly effective and environment friendly. The Recharge’s T8 plug-in hybrid options — you guessed it — a 2.0-liter turbocharged fuel engine, however that is paired with a battery with a plug and a 143-hp electrical motor on the rear axle. The powertrain is sweet for 455 hp and 523 lb-ft of torque, which shrinks the 0-60 time to a flat 5 seconds. Curiously, with the fuel motor powering the entrance axle and the e-motor powering the rear, the XC90 T8 operates as a rear-wheel-drive automotive when solely utilizing electrical energy, and front-wheel-drive when solely utilizing fuel. It blends fuel and electrical energy concurrently to supply all-wheel drive. The EPA hasn’t launched its vary and gasoline economic system rankings for the 2023 mannequin as of this writing, however Volvo expects as much as 32 miles of all-electric driving and 58 mixed mpg-equivalent.

What is the XC90 prefer to drive?

Just a little 2.0-liter four-cylinder might not sound adequate sufficient for a big automobile just like the XC90, nevertheless it truly has loads of grunt to shove this crossover together with ease. The brand new gentle hybrid engines don’t change a lot on paper, and we don’t count on them to really feel a lot completely different than the outgoing T5 and T6 they’re primarily based on. We nonetheless count on the B5 to be noticeably slower than the others, however the torque from the turbo ought to nonetheless be sufficient to maintain up with site visitors. The B6, with its further energy, ought to make it really feel slightly extra wanting to match freeway speeds, dropping the 0-60 time from 7.3 to a extra respectable 6.4 seconds. The Recharge is the quickest of the bunch, as energy comes on sturdy instantly with the assistance of the electrical motor. Even with the rear axle getting energy from this motor, there’s nonetheless sufficient energy going ahead to spin the entrance tires up and get torque steer.

Dealing with is nothing to get enthusiastic about, nevertheless it’s nonetheless loads responsive for a automobile of its stature. Each the BMW X5 and Mercedes-Benz GLE are extra enjoyable to drive quick. Volvo’s non-obligatory air suspension can stiffen and enhance physique management marginally, nevertheless it’ll by no means come near matching the efficiency of the Germans.

The trip is plush whenever you go for the smaller wheel sizes, however it may get uncomfortably jarring should you go for the non-obligatory 21-inch wheels. Simply as a very good luxurious automobile ought to be, the XC90 is quiet on the freeway. Its Pilot Help driving help system tracks within the middle of lanes properly and makes freeway driving simply that a lot simpler.

What different Volvo XC90 opinions can I learn?

2021 Volvo XC90 Recharge Highway Check

Managing Editor Greg Rasa owns a ’17 XC90 T5. He explains how a lot has modified over time, plus the variations between the bottom turbo inline-four and the range-topping plug-in hybrid. 

2020 Volvo XC90 T8 First Drive Evaluate | A vroom with a view

We drive the XC90 for the primary time after its most up-to-date replace. Volvo massaged the styling, added tech and re-worked its lineup final yr.

2020 Volvo XC90 Inscription Inside Driveway Check | A lesson in minimalist luxurious

We take a deep dive into the inside of the 2020 Volvo XC90 T8 Inscription. Learn this to see the within of this crossover from each angle.

2020 Volvo XC90 Baggage Check

We see how a lot baggage matches behind its raised third-row seat.

2020 Volvo XC90 T6 R-Design Drivers’ Notes | With a contact of Polestar

Our workers takes a spin within the sporting center little one of Volvo’s XC90 lineup. Our tester was outfitted with a Polestar Optimization, which will increase energy by a tune from the manufacturing facility.

What’s the 2023 XC90’s worth?

A base B5 in Core trim begins at $57,095, together with $1,095 in vacation spot charges. It comes normal with all-wheel drive, 19-inch wheels, four-zone local weather management, panoramic moonroof with energy sunshade, Google built-in infotainment with 9-inch show, a 12-inch instrument panel, Volvo’s Pilot help driver help system, leatherette upholstery, seating for seven, heated entrance seats, and 4 years of Google Assistant, Google Maps and Google Play. Stepping as much as both the Plus or Final trim brings a lot of different options alongside for the trip. Yow will discover a full breakdown of options, specs and native pricing for the XC90 right here on Autoblog (and right here for the XC90 Recharge).


  • B5 Core: $57,095
  • B5 Plus: $60,995


  • B6 Core: $61,995
  • B6 Plus: $64,495
  • B6 Final: $70,295


  • Recharge Core: $72,995
  • Recharge Plus: $74,695
  • Recharge Final: $80,495

What are the XC90’s security rankings and driver help options?

Volvo’s repute for security precedes itself. So in fact, an enormous variety of driver help methods are made normal on the XC90. These embody lane-keeping help, entrance and rear collision warning, automated emergency braking, and blind-spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic alert/braking. A wise and succesful adaptive cruise management system with lane-centering steering help referred to as Pilot Help can be normal tools.

Whereas the 2023 XC90 hasn’t been crash examined by third events as of this writing, we don’t count on it to alter from the 2022 mannequin. The Nationwide Freeway Site visitors Security Administration awarded the 2022 XC90 5 (out of 5) stars total, with five-star rankings for frontal and aspect crashes, and 4 stars for rollover. It additionally earned the Insurance coverage Institute for Freeway Security’s highest High Security Decide+ designation, with excellent rankings throughout.


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