In view of the Conditional Movement Control Order limiting gatherings, Volvo Car Malaysia (VCM) today launched the locally-assembled (CKD) version of the Volvo S60 T8 online. This is essentially a follow-up from the earlier launch in October last year of the CBU (imported completely built-up) model which is now in its third generation.
The model is assembled at Volvo’s own plant in Shah Alam, Selangor, the first vehicle assembly plant in Malaysia. Rather surprisingly, even though the car is assembled locally, the price of RM295,888 (without insurance) is not lower than that of the CBU model (which was said to be ‘under-priced). Normally, the CKD model can be cheaper due to the different taxation rate applied which favours locally-assembled vehicles and the car companies pass on the savings to customers.
For exterior colour choices are available (one less than the CBU model) – Fusion Red (Metallic), Onyx Black (Metallic), Pebble Grey (Metallic) and Crystal White (Pearl). This is one less than what was available with the CBU model, the missing colour being Metallic Birch. A 5-year warranty comes with the car while service intervals are set at 20,000 kms.
The 2020 S60 T8 is pretty much the same as the CBU model, specs-wise, and as assured by VCM, the quality is also similarly high. After all, the plant has also been a regional hub for the Swedish carmaker for some time. It has received investments to upgrade its manufacturing capabilities, including laser welding equipment.
The S60 rides on the Scalable Product Architecture (SPA) platform which is used across the current Volvo range. Being modular in concept, SPA allows the engineers to develop a variety of models on the same platform, which saves R&D costs. In the case of the S60 T8, the powertrain is a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) which consists of a 2-litre twin-charged (turbocharger + supercharger) 4-cylinder petrol engine and an electric motor.
The latter is powered by an 11.6 kWh lithium-ion battery pack and total system output is 407 bhp/640 Nm, with maximum torque available from 1,200 rpm. Engine power goes to the front wheels through an 8-speed automatic transmission by Aisin while the rear wheels are powered by the electric drive so the S60 has all-wheel drive.
The output numbers suggest brisk performance and indeed, this Volvo has a claimed 0 – 100 km/h time of 4.4 seconds with a top speed of 250 km/h (probably limited). However, because of the PHEV capability, it also uses less fuel and Volvo claims 50 kms/litre which is really quite amazing when you consider the performance. With a 60-litre fuel tank, that means the S60 should be good for 3,000 kms before going empty!
Like other PHEVs, the S60 T8 can run on just the electric motor alone and in this zero emissions mode, it should be able to travel up to 49 kms. Depending on the charging outlet available, recharging the battery pack to full takes around 3 hours.
For the Malaysian market, VCM includes R-Design styling features and accessories to give a sportier image to the S60. The looks are more aggressive with black-out treatment for various elements and dual tailpipes. Like all the latest Volvos, the distinctive ‘Thor’s Hammer’ graphic in the headlights provides instant identification.
The cabin has the typical Scandinavian ambience that Volvo is noted for although the interior colour theme is not light-coloured but dark. The contoured seats are wrapped in exclusive Charcoal Fine Nappa Leather with Open Grid Textile upholstery. The Digital Instrument Cluster with 12.3-inch TFT Adaptive Digital Display is complemented by a Head-Up Display (HUD) which shows important running information on the windscreen ahead of the steering wheel.
An immersive 14-speaker audio system powered by Harman Kardon is part of the Sensus Connect infotainment system. This system includes Apple CarPlay and Android Auto so smartphones can be easily linked.
An additional feature for the CKD model is the handsfree operation to open the bootlid. This is a nice feature to have and once you have a car with it, you don’t want to not have it in the next car.
Volvo has been a leader in safety and its Intellisafe suite of integrated high-tech systems is adopted in the S60. This includes City Safety with Autobrake technology, which assists the driver in avoiding potential collisions and is the only system in the market to recognise pedestrians, cyclists and large animals. In a world-first for the mid-size sedan segment. City Safety now also engages auto braking to mitigate oncoming collisions.
The Pilot Assist system – which supports the driver with steering, acceleration and braking on well-marked roads up to 130 km/h – has been upgraded with improved cornering performance. There’s also Run-off Road Mitigation, Oncoming Lane Mitigation and other driver assistance systems, now including Park Assist to make positioning the car in a parking bay much easier.