Volvo Takes Aim: The 2013 Volvo S60 Runs with BMW’s 328xi and Audi’s A4 for Thousands Less

When Volvo unveiled its new S60 sport sedan, it teased the public by claiming to introduce the “naughtiest Volvo ever.”

Volvo S60 vs BMW 328

Under the Hood

The secret is that the seductive S60 performs like the proverbial naughty librarian: quiet, smooth in all the right places and equipped with either a 5-cylinder 300 HP turbocharged engine that has more horses than its BMW 328i or Audi A4 rivals. The BMW falls short by 10 HP, and the Audi lags behind by a full 39 fewer ponies. Bottom line: the S60 rivals its Bavarian luxury brethren yet the Swedish rubber hits the road at a much lower price.

In addition, Volvo added some clever transmission tweaks for 2013 to enhance the S60’s performance. It added shiny pistons, a re-engineered crank, a new software package and new overboost for an extra burst of torque when you hit the throttle. The new software enables quicker and more precise shifts and all the improvements add up to a zero to 60 shot of 5.93 seconds.

Comfort and Safety

Birkenstock-like comfort by no means translates into cheap and tacky, but rather transforms into “Scandinavian Chic,” once you enter the privacy of the cabin. Brushed metal and “supremely comfortable seats” which out-perform BMW and Audi as the “segment’s ergonomic benchmark,” communicate a prestige feel. When it comes to the inside cabin feel during the drive, it is quiet as a library except for the tunes you might be rocking on your HiFi sound system.

The infotainment system delivers Bluetooth and USB connectivity, and City Safety is standard. City Safety employs a camera and laser to scan traffic and moving objects in front of the car. This reduces fender benders considerably and pedestrian accidents significantly and tested at 25 percent greater efficacy than BMW and Audi equivalents.

Confident and Smooth Drive

Driving the naughty introvert has its rewards in terms of what one reviewer described as “extremely confident road manners in all driving situations.” This view is attributable perhaps to the S60’s standard computerized torque vectoring that intuitively controls braking on inside wheels and releases power to the outside wheel. Compared to the driving prowess of the Audi A4, one reviewer commented that the Audi was “less predictable and less composed.” Known for its luxury ride, the Volvo handles rough roads smoothly.

Great Value

The Volvo S60 delivers an excellent value, especially in its T5 AWD variant, which will give added traction and control. The Audi A4 Quattro is about $800 dollars higher, and the BMW 328xi costs nearly $5K more than the Volvo. If you compare the German cars to the Volvo, feature for feature, the numbers are even more telling. The Audi costs over $1,000 more and the Bimmer comes in at $4k to $5K higher than the quiet Swedish bombshell.

Ready to see the 2013 Volvo S60 for yourself? Visit Park Place Volvo Dallas, or click here for our current S60 Dallas Inventory.