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Volvo XC90 a good selection for a SUV

Nauman Farooq | Interrobang | Sports | April 2nd, 2007

In today's market, there is no shortage of new and appealing SUV's.

So how good can an aging SUV be in this segment. After all, the Volvo XC90 has been with us for a long time, and while upon its unveiling it was lauded as the best in its category, is it still good enough now?

It took me about five minutes to realize, that yes, this is still one great SUV.

The model that I had was equipped with the new 3.2, six-cylinder engine, which produces an impressive 235 hp. Trust me, that is enough. This might not be a rocket, but it is more than fast enough to handle your daily needs. Couple that with a brilliant six-speed automatic gearbox, and all you get is smooth and responsive motoring for your day-to-day chores. Plus, it is not too bad on gas either. I averaged about 14.4-liters/100km, which is great for a big truck like this.

All this came as a surprise because I actually did not think I would enjoy driving this, but I did. It just felt good... hard to explain, but this is one of those vehicles that just make more and more sense the more you drive it, and the more you drive it the more you enjoy it.

Not only is it good to drive, but it also has a great interior. Sure the interior design might not look flashy, in fact it looks dull upon first entering it, but when you start using it, you realize how intelligently designed it is in here.

All the switches fall easily to hand, and it is easy to figure out, no I-drive nonsense here.

However I do have some gripes. I wish it had a heated steering wheel, a heated windshield and some of the switches are a bit small, but that is the only thing small in here. In every other area, this XC90 is big, especially on space.

It might not look it, but it is actually a seven-seat vehicle, and a comfortable one at that. Sure an adult might not want to spend a long time in the final row of seats, but kids will be fine.

I like features like the split opening tailgate, which serves as a nice bench for soccer moms. Such features indicate that Volvo was actually thinking practically when designing the XC90. Good job at that.

However I do wish it were good to look at from the outside. This is not a pretty vehicle from any angle however I will say this, once you spend a bit of time with one, you will not care how ugly it might look. Its beauty really lies under the skin, and it's those qualities that make me want to have one.

With base prices starting at $51,000, its not that expensive either, so if you are in the market for a proper SUV, look very deeply into one of these.
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