VOLVO'S extensive XC60 line-up offers a model for all occasions with customers able to choose from petrol, diesel, plug-in hybrids, two-wheel-drive (2WD) or four-wheel-drive (4WD) versions, along with a good selection of trim levels.
But with a heavy emphasis these days on cleaner motoring, we opted for the T8 Twin engine version that combines a powerful 303hp petrol engine with an 87hp electric motor and it didn't disappoint.
With the option to plug-in overnight to boost the battery charge and the ability to drive in EV-only mode proving a bonus in congestion charge areas or on short commutes, this XC60 offers practicality, excellent driving dynamics and good economy if used regularly for short hops.
On the downside, there is the cost. This kind of technology and the high level of craftsmanship within the vehicle doesn't come cheap.
Our car was priced at Â£60,855 with options bumping up the final price-tag to Â£66,005. It's worth noting though that the XC60 line-up does have an entry price of Â£38,915 so there are plenty of cheaper models to select from.
The five-door XC60 looks impressive from any approach and boasts a powerful road presence thanks to with its sleek lines, panoramic sunroof, high gloss black front grille with chrome inserts, chrome window surrounds, twin integrated exhaust pipes, roof rails, tinted windows and 20-inch, eight-spoke alloy wheels.
The XC60 Inscription Pro trim level prioritised comfort, elegance and sophistication over the more sporty-biased R-design version, so it oozed quality throughout with Nappa soft leather perforated and ventilated upholstery, powered seats, drift wood inlays, soft touch surfaces, heated seats and steering wheel, plus a wealth of on-board technology at your fingertips.
The car features Volvo's highly-acclaimed Sensus Connect system, which features an upright touchscreen that is very similar to a tablet with instant responses. Smartphone connection is available via Apple CarPlay or Android Auto which is part of a Bowers and Wilkins premium sound system kit adding Â£2,500 to the cost.
This was one of three additional packs on the car. A Xenium pack costing £800 added a parking camera with 360-degree surround view and Park Assist Pilot with automatic parallel and 90-degree parking. And a Convenience pack, priced at £175, introduced power-folding rear seat headrests, net pockets and puddle lights.
All the controls, dials and readouts are perfectly positioned for ease of use and with ample seat adjustment along with an elevated position, the driver is treated to excellent levels of comfort with perfect all-round visibility.
Out on the open road, the XC60 was a pure delight to drive as it shifted effortlessly through the eight-speed automatic gearbox. There are no steering wheel-mounted paddles, but there are a number of drive modes that alter the manner in which the car behaves and reacts. These are called Constant AWD, Pure, Hybrid, Individual, Power and Off Road.
On country lanes, the road holding is flawless meaning long sweeping bends can be attacked with confidence. On motorways, the XC60 cruises along with barely a sound filtering through into the cabin.
The acceleration is instant with a 0-62mph sprint time of just 5.5 seconds and maximum speed of 140mph. The official economy figures of between 94.2 and 122.8mpg are rather pie in the sky. It could be achieved if the car was regularly plugged in to make full use of the EV-only range of no more than 24 miles.
It is, however, possible to boost the EV limit whilst driving by select ‘B' on the crystal glass gear selector which then uses regenerative braking to increase the battery charge levels. This is handy if the charge is low and you are going to be driving through a congestion charge zone.
Storage levels on the XC60 are impressive with a boot capacity of 483 litres - a limit that increases to 1,410 litres with the 60:40 split-folding rear seats dropped flat.
The tailgate is power-operated which is useful if approaching the car laden down with shopping. And elsewhere there are a number of convenient compartments scattered throughout the car, including a decent-sized glovebox, deep door pockets, storage nets, cup holders and covered trays.
Volvo has an excellent record when it comes to developing cars that are packed with safety systems and the XC60 is no exception with a wealth of built-in features and driver assist aids to help keep occupants, pedestrians and other road users as safe as possible.
Our car had an optional Intellisafe Surround pack costing £500 extra that added Blind Spot Information System with Steer Assist, Cross Traffic Alert with Autobrake and Rear Collision Mitigation.
Other systems fitted as standard include City Safety with Steering Support to detect pedestrians, cyclists and large animals, Oncoming Lane Mitigation, Run-Off Road Protection, LED headlights with active high beam and the all-wheel-drive system to keep you safe and sound during more adverse driving conditions.