Teknologia

Electrifying performance

Electrification is at the heart of Volvo Cars’ vision to combine effortless performance with incredible efficiency. The new S60 T8 Twin Engine, a plug-in hybrid, is the next step forward – a car that’s ready for the future, today.

BY LEO WILKINSON

“The future is electric – and it’s something to look forward to. Electrification makes cars more powerful and helps to reduce tail pipe emissions and air pollution. It’s a more efficient, sustainable form of power. That’s why, in 2017, Håkan Samuelsson, president and CEO of Volvo Cars, announced that from 2019 every new Volvo car would have an electric motor. The brand will launch five fully electric cars between 2019 and 2021, he added, with the aim of putting one million hybrid or all-electric Volvo cars on the road by 2025. It was an announcement that made headlines around the world.

And this bold vision is already becoming a reality thanks to cars such as the new S60 T8 Twin Engine. This plug-in hybrid driver’s sedan builds on the success of T8 Twin Engine versions of the XC60, S90, V90 and XC90. It provides very strong performance yet it also offers near-silent zero-emissions running.

Per-Arne Reinholdsson, technical director, hybrid cars at Volvo Cars, says that making a plug-in hybrid the range-topping variant of its new-generation cars was a brave, visionary move justified by just how much these electrified, high-performance cars have to offer. “As well as being the best-equipped and most powerful models in their ranges, the T8 Twin Engine models are also the most efficient when you make use of their plug-in capabilities. They show Volvo Cars at its most progressive,” he says.

Like all of Volvo Cars’ new-generation plug-in hybrid cars, the S60 T8 Twin Engine combines a turbocharged and supercharged four-cylinder petrol engine driving the front wheels with a powerful electric motor at the rear. The result is effortless performance and a strong, consistent response when you press the accelerator. “You could say that T8 is the new V8,” says Per-Arne. “This is a very dynamic car, and it has the performance to match.”

If thrilling pace is one way that S60 T8 Twin Engine redefines the driving experience, its ability to provide peaceful, near-silent travel is another. “It’s a luxury experience,” says Per-Arne. “You can drive through the city on electric-only power and barely hear a thing. The car becomes a sanctuary where you can enjoy the calm.”

The S60 T8 Twin Engine also transforms the commute – its electric-only mode is enough to get most people to and from work with zero emissions. And it’s a car that adapts to differing needs, offering a choice of Pure, Power and Hybrid driving modes that allows the driver to select whatever is right for their journey and circumstances. An All-Wheel Drive mode improves traction in slippery conditions, while an Individual mode allows the driver to select their own combination of settings. “This car is all about power, control and efficient performance – and electrification allows the driver to really tailor their experience. It puts them at the centre of everything,” says Per-Arne.

Plug-in hybrid technology is the right solution at the right time, states Per-Arne. “It’s a very good combination of existing and new technologies. It really gives you the best of everything.”