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It's Volvo's crossover saloon. Wait, what?
Brace yourselves: here’s more proof that carmakers believe no car can’t be improved with a dollop of extra ride height and some ‘off-roader’ shtick. Meet the world’s first saloon crossover: the Volvo S60 Cross Country.
No, we can’t see the point either. Not yet.
See, surely crossovers should be the ultimate do-it-all cars - extra ground clearance and all-wheel drive for some off-piste ability, plus a boxy estate bodyshell to fill with luggage, surfboards, muddy dogs and the
usual outdoorsy-type paraphernalia.
Think Audi A6 Allroad, or even Volvo’s own V60 Cross Country. The S60 uses the same plastic arches and 65mm taller stance as the V60, but you get a repmobile-tastic saloon rear end instead. Hmm. No, still don’t get it.
Volvo’s pushing the S60 Cross Country as a US-market sales winner, where the good ol’ ‘sedan’ bodystyle is preferred to mumsier ‘station wagons’. Stateside, where the car will make its debut at the Detroit motor show, the car gets standard-fit all-wheel drive.
Back in Europe, you’ll be able to spec a cheaper, lighter front-drive set-up, and have an even tougher time explaining why you bought a jacked-up, rough-and-tumble saloon car. Both markets will offer a 250bhp turbo petrol version - we can’t fault Volvo’s sense of humour.
You won’t be able to get your hands on an S60 Cross Country until summer, and if it’s not still in the running for 2015’s oddest car by then, you can bet we’re in for a pretty wacky year of motoring.