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Volvo

2010 Volvo XC60

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The 2010 Volvo XC60 is the company’s newest SUV model, and it is coming a little bit late to the small SUV game, considering that competitors like the BMW X3 and Infiniti EX35.  Well, they might be late, but the XC60 could be a game changer.  It represents a new design aesthetic from the Swedish car maker, and it just might be their best vehicle yet.

When you go up against BMW and Infiniti models in the car market, you better have some good styling, because those two brands, and other competing in the same segment, are known for making attractive, fun to drive, vehicles.  Well, the XC60 succeeds admirably in that respect, and it is probably the curviest and sleekest Volvo ever produced.  The boxy design of older models hasn’t completely disappeared, you won’t mistake a new XC60 for anything other than a Volvo, but the sharp edges have been sharpened, leading to a much more pleasurable appearance.

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While the XC60 is smaller than it’s XC70 big sister, the car still has sme admirable qualities from the larger SUV, namely ground clearance.  A lot of small SUVs don’t stray too far from their car platform and end up very close to the ground.  This works out on the highways, but if you’re on a pothole-filled rural road or actually might have to take your small SUV off-road, then the extra clearance provided by the XC60 will be most welcome.

The North American market will only get one option for the XC60, the inline-six powered AWD version.  Other markets around the globe will get a larger variety of models, but the XC60 T6 AWD should be more than sufficient for the needs of American drivers.  The engine produces 281 horsepower and 295 lb-ft of torque, more than enough for tackling the urban jungle.  Also, the XC60 gets 15 mpg city / 22 highway, which is about average for the segment.

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What really makes the XC60 shine, as with all Volvos, is the incredible array of safety features.  The Swedish automaker has been producing some of the world’s safest vehicles and most innovative safety systems for years now, and the XC60 is no exception.  It comes with a radar braking procedure that will automatically slow the car down if you approach an object.  The system is called “City Safety” and will most definitely prove useful to those who have to navigate traffic jams and tight streets day after day.

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