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2016 Volvo V60 Cross Country Review
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By: On: 09-08-2015 Model(s): The Volvo V60 Cross Country continues unchanged for 2016. 2016 Volvo V60 Cross Country
Author Experience: Expert review

The Volvo V60 Cross Country continues unchanged for 2016.

The 2016 Volvo V60 Cross Country would seem to have the ingredients to be one of the most appealing utility vehicles on the market. Here's a stylish, well-equipped and refined wagon that boasts extra ground clearance, a taller view out and tougher styling than the standard V60. Not being an SUV should provide sharper handling and a certain degree of distinctiveness, while the Cross Country's standard all-wheel drive should make it appealing to those in need of foul weather or off-road traction.

Unfortunately, it's that standard all-wheel-drive system that torpedoes its fuel efficiency and makes the V60 Cross Country difficult to recommend. Or, more accurately, all-wheel drive is tied to a less efficient engine and transmission combination than the newer powertrain available in the front-wheel-drive V60 Drive-E model. We've noticed a difference of at least 6 mpg, while the disparity is little better compared to competing all-wheel-drive wagons. Acceleration is slower than the pack as well, and there are other less desirable attributes, such as subpar handling and braking that result from less-than-grippy tires. Then there are elements shared with the regular V60, such as relatively tight rear legroom and modest cargo capacity.

If you're looking for a wagon and don't need all-wheel drive, we recommend the V60 wagon. Essentially it has most of the things we like about the Cross Country, but without most of the things we do not. If you do need or want all-wheel drive, the top-rated BMW 3 Series wagon is available with it and doesn't come attached to a significant fuel economy penalty (it's even offered with a frugal diesel engine). The Audi Allroad is admittedly only slightly more efficient and is getting on in years, but it, too, comes standard with all-wheel drive and some extra ground clearance. And, if you're not terribly concerned with a luxury badge, an upper trim level of the Subaru Outback delivers greater space and capability. There are also any number of desirable compact SUVs, such as the similarly priced Volvo XC60.

Frankly, it's hard to make a strong case for the 2016 Volvo V60 Cross Country by the numbers, as the handful of alternatives (including those offered by Volvo) are more versatile and efficient overall. Though there is much we love about this characterful little wagon, it's impossible to ignore its foibles.

The 2016 Volvo V60 Cross Country is a four-door, five-passenger wagon available in Premier and Platinum trim levels. It differs from the standard V60, reviewed separately, with extra ground clearance, different powertrains, standard all-wheel drive and unique styling elements.

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