Volvo has given the S90, V90 and V90 Cross Country a bit of a makeover for 2020, including a new range of mild hybrid powertrains.
If you get a car right from the start, do you need to change how it looks half way through its lifespan to make sure it continues to sell? Not if you’re Volvo.
Having delivered a makeover for the XC90 this time last year which, my any measure, was so minor you’d need the new XC90 next to its pre-facelift equivalent to tell the difference, and even then you’d struggle, Volvo are now back to do the same for the Volvo S90 and its pair of estate siblings – the Volvo V90 and V90 Cross Country.
The cosmetic makeover wrought by Volvo’s designers on the outside of the S90 and V90 amounts to a bit of a redesign of the front bumpers – not too much, mind – new fog lamps and, on the V90, new LED tail lights and sequential indicators. Oh, and there are some new paint and alloy wheel options.
Inside there are more non-leather options than before, extra USB-C points, wireless phone charging, the Advanced Air Cleaner climate control originally developed for the China market to clean cabin air in just a few minutes, and new premium B&O Sound.
The powertrain tweaks are all about ‘electrification’ – in the mildest sense – of the S90 and V90’s powertrains, with the same mild hybrid tech using a 48-volt battery and integrated starter generator with energy recovery system promising improvements in economy and emissions of 15 per cent which is now fitted to the XC90.
Confusingly, as we already know, the new powertrains are badged as ‘B’ whether they’re petrol or diesel so, for example, the V90 pictured above is actually a V90 B6 with a petrol engine, not a V90 T6, but you could have what was a petrol V90 T5 which is now badged as a V90 B5. And so is the diesel version.
Never mind though; when Volvo gets rid of its diesels the confusion will go.