India-bound Volvo S90 revealed
Volvo’s new S90 has been unveiled ahead of its public debut at the Detroit motor show in January. The car will replace the S80, earlier on sale in India, and Volvo says it will launch it here almost simultaneously with other markets; as early as the end of next year.
The new luxury sedan features an extremely long wheelbase, a XC90 like vertical nose and distinctive ‘C’ shaped tail lights at the rear. The car’s exterior styling in fact offers a more elegant look than the chunky, heavy-shouldered saloons Volvo has produced in recent years. Inside there are clear cues from the XC90 too with the use of natural materials, including a slab of wood that forms part of the fascia. Also similar to the XC90, the S90 gets a large portrait-layout touchscreen infotainment display which includes controls for several of the car’s systems, including sat-nav and audio.
“Our idea was to bring something entirely new that exudes leadership and confidence on the exterior,” said Thomas Ingenlath, senior vice president of design at Volvo Car Group. “On the inside, we have taken the S90 to the next level, delivering a high-end luxury experience.”
Dr Peter Mertens, senior vice president, R&D, at Volvo Car Group, said: “The S90 has taken a big stride forwards in terms of driving dynamics, performance and ride. We have completely redesigned the Volvo driving experience from the ground up to deliver a sense of precision, engaging control and comfort.”
Safety features, also borrowed from the XC90, include the Pilot Assist semi-autonomous driving feature that keeps the car between motorway road markings up to 80mph, but the S90 adds a new feature the Volvo’s City Safety system that detects large animals and warns the driver or primes the brakes. It however isn’t clear as to which of these systems will make it here.
Built on the Volvo’s new Scalable Platform Architecture, the new S90 will go up against rivals like the BMW 5 Series, Audi A6 and Mercedes E-Class when it comes to India. The two litre diesel is expected here initially, either in D4 or D5 trim. While the former is tuned to deliver a healthy 188bhp, it’s the more powerful 232bhp D5 we are likely to get first. And Volvo says it will get the top of the line ‘Inscription’ version too. Pricing, however, will be ‘extremely competitive’ with other luxury cars in its class, meaning the S90 could go on sale with prices starting at around the 45 or 46 lakh mark. Stay tuned.