Why a Volvo SUV is a Smart Utility Vehicle
INTEGRATED BOOSTER CUSHIONS
Volvo pioneered integrated child booster cushions at the start of the 1990s (in the 960) and the XC90 and XC60 continue to offer this industry-unique feature. The XC90’s centre middle seat (main image) may not look out of the ordinary, yet squeeze a lever below and a section of the seat pops up to create a clever booster cushion for younger passengers who have outgrown regular child seats. The booster cushion provides two height settings to cater for varying child sizes. The XC60’s dual-stage child booster cushions are integrated into the outer-rear seats.
CITY SAFETY WITH STEERING SUPPORT
Volvo Cars was the first car maker to incorporate autonomous emergency braking into its vehicles, and continues to lead the industry in crash-mitigation technology. City Safety has evolved continually since its debut in the 2008 XC60, and today it is capable of detecting vehicles, pedestrians, cyclists and large animals ahead of the vehicle, day or night. The system will warn of such potential hazards and, if you don’t react, will apply the brakes automatically. A Steering Support function added to the latest XC60 also enables safer obstacle-mitigation manoeuvres – providing additional steering input if required, while automatic braking applications help to straighten the vehicle after the initial swerve.
INGENIOUS STORAGE (ABOVE)
As an SUV designed for urban life, the XC40 saves owners from the daily problem of cabin clutter thanks to its ingenious approach to storage. Opening the front doors immediately reveals one of the Volvo’s radical solutions: audio speakers have been removed from this common position – with a world-first, air-ventilated dashboard-mounted subwoofer implemented instead – to create door compartments capable of fitting both a laptop and a tablet device, or a couple of drink bottles. Shopping or take-away bags can be placed on a small hook that folds out of the glove box, both front seats feature hidden compartments underneath, the dashboard includes slots for credit/service cards, there’s a large storage area in the tunnel console under the armrest, and the front cabin even features a removable waste bin.
Our exceptional, world-famous seats are central to the Volvo cabin experience. Beyond being upholstered in luxuriously soft leather-accented as standard, Volvo seats are created in collaboration with ergonomic experts – just as they have been since the 1960s – to ensure driver and passengers arrive fresh at their destination whether the journey is long or short. For an even higher level of indulgence, some Volvo models are available with a massage function in the backrest, plus ventilation and heating functions in the cushions.
As detailed elsewhere in this edition of I Roll, Volvo Cars is pursuing an ambition to increase the quantity of sustainable plastics in its vehicles. The XC40 is already demonstrating the company’s intent with its optional lava-orange carpet trim that is made predominantly from recycled plastic bottles. You can also read in more detail elsewhere in this edition of I Roll how Volvo is aiming to increase the percentage of recycled plastics used in its vehicles to at least 25 per cent.
As the inventor of the three-point seatbelt in 1959, protecting vehicle occupants has always been a priority for Volvo Cars. While we continue to innovate with technology to help prevent or mitigate an accident, the foundation of Volvo’s new generation of cars is a strong passenger compartment constructed from a high percentage of ultra-high-strength boron steel – four to five times stronger than normal steel – to create a protective cage around you and your passengers.
INTUITIVE FUNCTIONALITY (ABOVE)
It’s part of Volvo’s philosophy to make your life easier and more enjoyable, so at the heart of every Volvo SUV interior is our Sensus 9-inch touchscreen. Inspired by the traditional, functional design of Swedish homes, the portrait-format centre display reduces the need for multiple physical buttons – creating not just a stylishly minimalist aesthetic but providing highly intuitive operation of navigation, entertainment and comfort functions. The display’s distinctive shape is also perfect for displaying maps, allowing you to see more of the route ahead than conventional guidance set-ups. Bold, clear graphics make it easier to absorb information at a glance, while a head-up display is standard on XC90 models and optional on XC60 and XC40.
Even Volvo’s most compact SUV, the XC40, provides comfortable legroom and headroom for rear passengers. The XC90 can accommodate up to seven occupants with high levels of comfort in every seat. Theatre-style seating – with second- and third-row seats positioned higher than the front seats – also ensures great vision for all. The XC90, XC60 and XC40 all feature rear seats that can be folded in individual sections to increase cargo space without losing all rear seats, or folded completely to create a fully flat load floor. (An option for the XC60 and XC40 allows this operation to be performed at the touch of a button from the rear of the car.) The second-row seats of the XC60 and XC40 also include a load-through hatch so the seats don’t need to be folded to carry long objects.
CLEANER CABIN AIR
Volvo Cars’ commitment to a cleaner environment even extends to the cabin of your car. CleanZone encompasses a dual approach to better interior air quality. Firstly, all materials used in your Volvo are hypoallergenic and do not emit harmful gases. Then there’s a highly effective filter for dust, pollen, particulates and odours – with intakes closed automatically if excessive pollutant levels are detected. An optional Interior Air Quality System adds a further stage via an active carbon filter.