Volvo S90 2017
If you haven’t noticed, Volvo’s on a bit of tear recently. Since launching the widely-successful, heavily-praised, and self-parking XC90 late last year, the Swedish brand has big plans for the next few years, especially in the luxury-rich U.S. market.
Their next step after launching a flagship SUV is, naturally, a midsize luxury sedan to take on the likes of the BMW 5 Series and all-new Mercedes-Benz E-Class. Those are some well-established benchmarks, and it will be no small task to take them on, but at first glance, the revival of the S90 nameplate looks well suited to do so.
The S90 will be able to accelerate, brake and steer itself when following another vehicle at speeds of up to 80 mph.
Utilizing Volvo’s latest design language, even down to the “Thor’s Hammer” headlights, the S90 is immediately reserved, but things get much more exciting as you get closer. From the front and the side, the S90 is sleek and scientific, but swing around back and things get much more interesting. Utilizing their new C-shaped taillight design, the S90 has a distinctive rear signature, and one that is love-it-or-hate-it to many in the industry. We’re firmly on the “love it” side, if not only for the fact that, for once, a midsize luxury sedan looks truly different.
The interior is a masterclass in reservation, with clean, simple lines throughout and an ergonomic control layout. The XC90’s interior is one of our favorites in the industry, and it seems the S90 is no exception. The massive Sensus touchscreen dominates the center console, and those seats (oh yes, those seats) form comfortable thrones for any length of journey.
But despite it’s immediate and impressive appearance, there’s much more under the surface, too. In fact, Volvo claims that the S90 will be the first car in the U.S. market to pack standard semi-autonomous driving technology features as standard. Take that, Tesla!
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The S90 will use the second generation of “Pilot Assist” Volvo’s intelligent driving technology that was first featured in the S90. The XC90 could accelerate, brake, and steer when following another vehicle at speeds of up to 30-mph and with clearly visible lane markers. The S90, however, will be able to do all of that without following a car, and at speeds up to 80-mph. Not bad for just one year removed from the former. Perhaps this will help Volvo achieve its goal of no fatalities in its cars by 2020.
In all, it seems the Swedish brand is very serious about making a full comeback in the U.S., and with debuts like the S90, we’re inclined to believe them.