From £35,525
Sport spec makes for a more involving drive - and sleeker look - but without making the XC90 uncomfortable.

Our Verdict

Volvo XC90 2003-2014

The Volvo XC90 is a big seven seat SUV in desperate need of modernisation, despite still having some strengths

  • First Drive

    Volvo XC90 2.4 D5

    Engine and styling refresh achieves little in updating an ageing SUV that’s practical, but at the same time noisy and crude.
  • First Drive

    Volvo XC90 D5 SE Sport

    Sport spec makes for a more involving drive - and sleeker look - but without making the XC90 uncomfortable.
29 November 2006
Volvo XC90 D5 SE Sport

What’s new?

The SE Sport comes fitted with a set of attractive 19-inch, five-spoke alloys and some mild interior and exterior tweaks. The big changes, however, are stiffer anti-roll bars, firmer shock absorbers and sharper, speed-dependent steering. 

What’s it like?

Impressive. The suspension changes make the XC90 feel stable, almost chuckable when you point it at a bend, and the ride, though firm, is still more than acceptable. Only a sensation of weight transfer as you change direction reminds you that this is a heavy car. The new steering feels much more sharp, and is pleasantly light at parking speeds. Rapid three-point turns confuse it, the assistance switching between super-light and super-heavy as you twirl between the lock-stops. Otherwise, it’s business as usual, which means great interior quality and refinement, and a characterful and acceptably powerful five-pot turbodiesel engine. 

Should I buy one?

The SE sport trim makes the XC90 look that little bit more macho — if a little pimp my ride — and the changes to the suspension and steering make the XC90 a fine drive, as well as a fine SUV.

Matt Rigby

Advertisement
Advertisement

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week

Add your comment

Log in or register to post comments

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week