Drum roll please...behold the 2018 Volvo S90 is here with us! This luxury sedan will receive a few changes here and there. Well, maybe not a few, considering the fact that this car is now several inches wider and 4 inches longer, allowing more room for the rear-seat passengers. Manufacturing of the S90 is now in China. This is a new move which totally makes business sense for Volvo. The new S90 is in a market where the buyers, most of whom choose to be chauffeured, will be weighing it against competitors like the Mercedes Benz E-Class and the BMW 5-Series. The good news doesn't stop there; the S90 also receives a third powertrain, a new 400 hp plug-in hybrid dubbed the T8. All-wheel drive is also newly available as an option on the base model, the S90 T5.
Which features stand out for the 2018 S90?
This Scandinavian chic is strikingly beautiful, and its grille is reminiscent of the Volvo of the good old days without the need to overdo anything. Its redesigned fastback-esque shape is a real attention drawer, especially from the side. From the rear, the taillights appear to go around the edge of the S90 in an outstretched-arm like fashion.
The inside of the base S90 is absolutely stunning, to say the least. The ride gets even firmer with the optional 20-inch alloy wheels. Other changes for 2018 include active lane control capable of nudging a drifting S90 back to its lane, a better infotainment system and a cluster of optional features.
Which engine options are available for the 2018 S90?
Under the hood, there is a trio to pick from. The turbocharged 2.0 liter 4-cylinder churning out 250 ponies in the T5, a supercharged and turbocharged 2.0 liter 4-cylinder producing 316 horses in the T6 and a supercharged, turbocharged inline 4-cylinder coupled with an electric drive system in a top of the range T8. The T8 is a powerhouse expected to pump out 400 horsepower on paper.
All three powertrains are mated with a stellar 8-speed automatic transmission. The T5 model comes standard with front-wheel drive (with the option of all-wheel drive) while the T6 and T8 models get all-wheel drive by default.
What are the prices for the S90 trims?
As you probably predicted, Volvo has raised the starting price by $1,105 for the base T5 model bringing the cost to $49,095. The second in line T6 now starts at $55,095 while the range-topping T8 hybrid (plug-in) goes for $64,645. On top of these figures, you will have to fork out a mandatory $995 destination charge.
How does it feel like to drive the 2018 S90?
The T5 and T6 are in essence the same cars underneath regardless of their model; their chassis is obviously tuned more for comfort than performance. The T5 excels really well until you hook it up with those fly 20-inches which will rob you of some driving compliance. Standard models zooming around on 18 and 19 inches handle exceptionally well around twisty and rough roads.
The optional air suspension gives you a smooth ride without feeling all feathery especially with the difference made by one of the three available drive modes on air suspension- Comfort, Dynamic and configurable Individual.
How safe is the all-new S90?
Volvo has for a long time considered safety its forte, and you bet it will hold more Gothenburg lifetime achievement awards for safety than Kobe did in his outstanding career in the NBA. The 2018 S90 is a perfect blend of high-grade steel and aluminum plus it is packed with airbags.
Active safety features on the S90 include: standard low- and high-speed automatic emergency braking that'll bring it to a halt day or night if it detects impact with a human or an animal, blind-spot monitors, active lane control capable of detecting cars coming up from behind in addition to painted lane markers, a rearview camera and road sign detection whose data is transmitted directly to the cabin. We are still waiting for NHTSA to smash some T8s and tell us what they find out from those crashes.