What is the best Volvo XC90 2020? Here is our guide (2023)

HeXC90The luxury SUV with three rows of seats is Volvo's flagship, carefully equipped and exquisitely designed. We love the current generation of the square ute enough to win our SUV of the Year award in2016. Built on the same platform that underpins all of Volvo's 90 and 60 series cars, the XC90 is functional, stylish and, above all, different.in a competitive segment. If the Volvo XC90 is on your list and you're not sure which one to pick, read on for our trim review.

2022 Volvo XC90 Momentum pros and cons

Both the XC90 Momentum and R-Drive, the next trim level, come standard as FWD and with the 250hp T5 inline four-cylinder turbocharged engine. Both are also available as AWD with the T5, and there's a T6 package available for each that swaps the turbo engine for a dual-charge power unit - meaning turbo and supercharged - with 316 hp. All XC90 models come with an eight-speed automatic transmission.

The XC90 competes with the Cadillac XT6 and Lexus GX460 SUVs. Volvo's entry-level T5 engine makes more power than Cadillac's turbo-four, and the dual-charged T6 is rated for more power than the XT6's 310-hp V-6. With the 316-hp T6, the XC90 outperforms even the Lexus' 301-hp 4.6-liter naturally aspirated V-8.

When equipped with the standard T5 turbo four-cylinder and FWD, the XC90 is rated at 21/30 mpg city/highway. Fuel economy for the available T5 AWD is 20/28 mpg city/highway, and with both the T6 and AWD available, the XC90 is rated at 19/27 mpg city/highway (T6 engine not available with FWD). By comparison, the XT6 sees similar numbers when equipped with its turbo-four, while the 2021 GX460 only has one power tier and drivetrain, a V-8 sending power to a 4WD system, and consequently has a rating of 15. /19 mpg. city/highway.

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In T5 configuration, the XC90 has a towing capacity of 4,000 pounds, which is how much the XT6 V-6 can tow. The T6 has a maximum towing limit of 5,000 pounds, but the GX trumps both, providing 6,500 pounds of maximum towing capacity.

Exterior features of the XC90 Momentum include a front grille with black insert and chrome surround and integrated rain-sensing wipers and washers. Tinted rear and rear side windows are standard, as are aluminum roof rails and aluminum trim around the XC90's side windows. A hands-free electric tailgate is also featured on every XC90.

The luxury ute rides on 19-inch wheels and offers illuminated door handles, and a remote-controlled panoramic sunroof with electric sunshade is standard on all XC90s. LED cornering lights with automatic high beams, LED fog lights and electrically folding side mirrors are standard.

Seating for seven is standard, but a six-seat configuration is available. The front row of the XC90 Momentum gets electrically adjustable seats, and the driver's seat also has a memory function. To improve visibility in blind spots, the XC90 is equipped with folding rear headrests in the second row. Drivers also get adjustable power steering, a 12-inch instrument display and a leather-wrapped steering wheel that matches the Momentum's leather upholstery and complements the walnut accents and blonde headliner. The doors feature aluminum sills with the Volvo logo and the cargo area is fitted with a stainless steel skid plate.

Volvo calls its suite of active safety technology IntelliSafe. Under that umbrella is lane-centering, adaptive cruise control, blind-spot monitoring and cross-traffic rear braking, which are new standards across all Volvo vehicle ranges.

Each XC90 is equipped with a 12.3-inch infotainment touchscreen, two USB ports and compatibility with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. In the Momentum version, the XC90 starts with 10 speakers. Four-zone climate control (first and second row outside seats), an electric heater and third-row air vents are standard. As well as a humidity sensor and a feature called Afterrun Parking Clima, which blows outside air to help maintain a comfortable interior temperature for up to 15 minutes when the vehicle is parked. Wireless device charging is standard on all XC90 trim levels.

The starting price for the XC90 is just over $50,000. Buyers can opt for a Clima package that adds a heated steering wheel and heated rear seats, and there's also an Advanced package that adds a 360-degree camera system and head-up display.

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2022 Volvo XC90 R-Design pros and cons

The sporty XC90 R-Design moves up to 20-inch wheels and gets a satin-finished metal grille instead of the chrome found on the Momentum trim. The body-color wing mirrors are swapped for gloss black, and the Momentum's aluminum roof rails and window frames are also replaced with gloss black versions.

The XC90 R-Design is only available in a seven-seat version. Memory function is added to the front row passenger seat, and the XC90 is equipped with brushed aluminum sport pedals at this level. XC90 R-Design buyers have three upholstery options at no additional cost, standard Nappa leather and nubuck in charcoal or perforated Nappa leather available in charcoal or blonde. All XC90 R-Design models have a standard charcoal headliner and the Momentum walnut accents are replaced with metal mesh in the R-Design.

Lighting is added to the front door sills and the rear side windows have retractable louvers. A 14-speaker Harman Kardon premium sound system replaces the Momentum's 10-speaker setup. Pricing for the 2022 XC90 R-Design should start at just over $56,000.

Volvo XC90 2022 registration pros and cons

The XC90 with Inscription trim is offered in just one powertrain variation: the 316hp T6 T6 inline-twin and inline-four and AWD.

A matte silver grille with a chrome surround distinguishes the Inscription from other XC90 models, and the trim level is the only one to receive body-colored side mirrors with pool lights. Aluminum roof rails and side window trim return, and the front bumper gains chrome accents.

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Like the Momentum, seven seats are standard on the Inscription, but you can opt for six and get more breathing space for your middle row passengers. The front seats are heated and ventilated and add power cushion extensions, an added measure of support for long-legged drivers.

Volvo equips the XC90 Inscription with brown Nappa leather and a blond headliner, but there are at least five other colors and even onecustom wool optionthat buyers can choose from at no additional cost, all with matching headliners. Ash gray accents replace the XC90 R-Design's metal mesh accents. The 2022 XC90 Inscription will retail for over $60,000.

Volvo XC90 2022 Top Up Log Pros and Cons

The payload designation denotes EV or PHEV in Volvo parlance, and in the case of the XC90, it's the latter. The XC90 Recharge is offered with a single powertrain that combines a 400hp turbocharged T8 four-cylinder engine that drives the front wheels with a 65kW electric motor that drives the rear wheels. Volvo's non-traditional AWD hybrid is rated at a combined 55 mpg-e, offering 18 miles of all-electric range and 520 miles of total range, making it the most powerful and fuel-efficient XC90 powertrain in the range.

In T8 configuration, the XC90 Recharge has a towing capacity of 5,000 pounds. Neither the XT6 nor the GX460 have a hybrid variant, but the Lincoln Aviator does: the 494hp Grand Touring. The Aviator Grand Touring can tow up to 5,600 pounds, but it does so with a more powerful turbo V-6 and an electric motor. The EPA rates the Aviator Grand Touring at 56 mpg-e.

Interestingly, the XC90 Recharge Inscription comes in two grades, with the Inscription Expression being standard equipment on this tier. The XC90 Recharge Inscription Expression brings back 19-inch wheels and body-color side mirrors without puddle lights and adds a chrome lower door trim with an embossed Recharge logo that is only available on this trim.

The Inscription Expression has a standard seat of seven and is available with a capacity of six as the Inscription without a top-up. Its front seats are heated but not ventilated, and its cabin is upholstered in standard charcoal leather, but they are also available at no extra cost in brown and blonde.

(Video) 2020 Volvo XC90 review – the best seven-seat SUV? | What Car?

Walnut accents and a memoryless front passenger seat return to the Inscription Expression cabin, as does a 10-speaker audio system. Aluminum door sills with the Recharge logo and a leather-wrapped gearshift are new to the interior at this level, but we say goodbye to the retractable blinds too, at least until the next trim level.

The 2021 XC90 Recharge Inscription Expression retailed for $64,545 (and we expect a similar price for 2022). The non-express registration package added $6,300 to the bottom line, bringing back 20-inch wheels, heated and ventilated front seats, and the 14-speaker Harman Kardon system. It also swaps out the leather-wrapped gearshift for sleek glass.

2022 Volvo XC90 Recharge R-Design pros and cons

The XC90 Recharge R-Design is almost identical to the non-recharge version. Aside from the engine and powertrain bypasses, the only differences are the addition of a leather-wrapped exclusive R-Design shifter and an interior lighting package that provides additional courtesy lights, reading lights and ambient lighting. In addition, the Afterrun Parking Clima function has been removed, as has the door sill lighting. The 2021 XC90 Recharge R-Design is priced at $70,245.

Which version of Volvo XC90 2022 is better?

The XC90 Inscription is by far the best looking model and pampers every passenger. That said, even the entry-level Momentum comes well equipped, including a solid suite of active safety tech that's still not universally standard among competitors. As tempting as the more powerful XC90 T8 plug-in hybrids may seem, they suffer frombad brake feeling,which prevents us from recommending them. We'd more strongly consider a 2022 XC90 Momentum, but the entry is a close second for us.

2022 Volvo XC90 trim levels:

(Video) Volvo XC90 2020 review | The best 7 seater bar none!

  • Boost XC90(choice of MT)
  • XC90 R-Design
  • inscription XC90
  • XC90 Recharge Registration
  • XC90 Refill R-Design


Which version of the XC90 is the best? ›

Which version of the XC90 is the best?

What is the difference between 2020 Volvo XC90 momentum and inscription? ›

What is the difference between 2020 Volvo XC90 momentum and inscription?

What are the different levels of Volvo XC90? ›

What are the different levels of Volvo XC90?

What is the difference between XC90 T5 and T6? ›

What is the difference between XC90 T5 and T6?


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