2015 Volvo V60 T5 Drive-E Long-Term Update 4
A week ago, our Web team received a Volvo V60 AWD Cross Country for a First Test review. This gave me a unique opportunity to compare a different variant of my long-term V60 T5. It was interesting to see how notable the similarities and differences were.
Although the front-wheel-drive Drive-E comes with an eight-speed Geartronic automatic transmission, the all-wheel-drive Cross Country is equipped with a six-speed, both with Advance Quick Shift and paddle shifters. Driving the Cross Country at a spirited pace through the twisty roads of Palos Verdes, California, I got more immediate throttle response from gears one through three than in the Drive-E. I'm sure the Cross Country's extra 10 hp and 8 lb-ft of torque helped a bit with that.
The AWD Cross Country gave a more satisfying shift and throttle response, but the suspension was not made for sport driving. Our long-term Drive-E with its Sport package comes with Volvo's Sport Chassis and 19-inch alloy wheels (and lower-profile tires), providing a stiffer, more planted ride through the corners. In contrast, the Cross Country was a bit softer with its touring chassis and 18-inch alloy wheels, which came in handy once I got off the pavement and onto the dirt.
Associate online editor Kelly Pleskot and I took both the V60 Drive-E and the Cross Country up into the mountains behind Los Angeles to compare the two's off-road ability on a small dirt loop near one of the campgrounds. The 2.6 inches of additional ground clearance on the CC came in handy while traversing the beat-up, wildfire-ravaged road, straddling football-size rocks, and creeping over various bumps and sizeable dips. The Drive-E did a fair job, as well, just with a rougher ride and more timid approach speeds through said dips and bumps.
Additionally, the Cross Country came with the Climate package, providing heated front and rear seats, steering wheel, windshield, and washer nozzles, plus an interior air quality system. It got chilly toward the end of our photo shoot up in the mountains, but we didn't really put any of those to the test, except maybe the heated seats. Call us thin-skinned California girls.
More on our long-term 2015 Volvo V60 T5 E-Drive here: