2021 Volvo XC90

MSRP $48,350

Ranked #14 in Suv

2021 Volvo XC90 Price, Review, Ratings and Pictures

Updated on: August 5, 2021

Nathan Dyer's image
Nathan Dyer 

Senior Editor


The Volvo XC90 is the flagship offering by the Swedish automaker and was also the first-ever SUV from Volvo. On its debut itself, it received several awards for its build quality, performance, practicality, and of course safety. As it was already perfect, the XC90 remained in its first generation for a long haul of 12 years. To make it more competitive and modern, Volvo revealed the second generation in 2015. The XC90 is now a technologically advanced luxury SUV that stands out in the class with its lightweight and rigid SPA platform.

See detailed review »

Pros

Luxurious cabin with quality materials throughout

Practical cabin with lots of space

A plethora of standard safety features

Really good driving dynamics

Cons

Not a good off-roader

Confusing infotainment system

Ride quality, especially with large wheels isn’t the best

Base engine's capability

What's New?

Added LED adaptive headlamps and LED fog lights as standard equipment 

Type-C ports will replace Type-A ports in the second row

Added blind-spot monitoring, auto-dimming side mirrors, and rear cross-traffic alert as standard 

Momentum trim gets parking sensors and a wireless charging pad

R-Design trim gets standard cornering fog lights and heated seats

Lounge package adds massaging front seats, leather-trimmed grab handles, Nubuck suede headliner, and leather-trimmed sun visors


Features

vehicle bio

base price

$48350

bodystyle

4dr SUV

passenger capacity

7

top speed

112 mph

drivetrain

front wheel drive

engine type

displacement

120 cu.in.

horsepower

250 hp @ 5500 rpm

torque

258 lb-ft @ 1500 rpm

transmission

8 speed automatic

chassis

brake rotors (f/r)

13.2/12.1 in.

dimensions

wheelbase

117.5 in.

length

194.9 in.

width

79.1 in.

height

69.9 in.

curb weight

4394 lbs.

ground clearance

9.4 in.

capacity

passenger volume

131 cu ft.

cargo volume

85.7 cu ft.

towing capacity

4000 lbs.

payload capacity

1210 lbs.

performance

zero to 60 mph

7.5 sec.

standing 1/4-mile

15.7 sec.

braking (70-0 mph)

188 ft.

warranty

basic warranty

4 yr./ 50000 mi.

drivetrain warranty

4 yr./ 50000 mi.

corrosion warranty

12 yr./ unlimited mi.

roadside assistance

Yes


Pictures & Videos


Trims

T5 Momentum$48,350 onwards

Colors and Styles

2021 Volvo XC90 in Denim Blue Metallic color
Denim Blue Metallic

Vehicle images are guides only and may not reflect the model's exact specifications/features– exact specifications/features should be confirmed with the seller.

Ratings

Pricing and Features

8.5

Engine and Performance

8.1

Fuel Economy

7.1

Interior

8.0

Exterior

8.0

Safety

9.8

Competition

7.0

7.8

OVERALL RATING

Expert Review, Pricing Analysis and Buying Guide

7.8

Overall Rating


The 2021 Volvo XC90 has an attractive starting price of $49,000, with 5 trim levels, two engine options, and an AWD system. It boasts an enticing appearance inside-out and a suite of luxury and convenience features allowing the 2021 XC90 to give fierce competition to the Mercedes-Benz GLE350, Audi Q7, and the BMW X5

2021 Volvo XC90 SUV Front Angle View
2021 Volvo XC90 SUV Rear Angle View

8.1/10
Engine and Performance

7.1/10
Fuel Economy

8.0/10
Interior

8.0/10
Exterior

9.8/10
Safety

7.0/10
Competition


2021 Volvo XC90 Features

The 2021 Volvo XC90 is offered in 5 trim levels with two engine options. The base price climbs up from $49,000 for the T5 Momentum and goes up to $63,250 for the T6 Inscription. Even from the base variant, the SUV gets some interesting standard features such as the adaptive LED headlamps, leather upholstery with aluminum inlays. 

Trim

T5 Momentum

T5 R-Design

T6 Momentum

T6 R-Design

T6 Inscription

MSRP (FWD)

$49,000

$55,600

N/A

N/A

N/A

MSRP (AWD)

$51,500

$58,100

$56,950

$62,650

$63,250

Key Features

19-inch 6-spoke sparkling silver alloy wheels

20-inch 5-spoke Matt black alloy wheels

Adds features to the T5 Momentum

Adds features to the T5 R-Design

21-inch 8-spoke silver diamond cut alloy wheels

 

Chrome surround black grille

Gloss black grille with silk metal frame

316hp 2.0L I-4 Premium

316hp 2.0L I-4 Premium

Matt silver grille with chrome frame

 

Adaptive LED headlamps

Metal mesh aluminum inlays

Distance pacing cruise control

Sensus navigation system with real-time traffic display

Linear walnut inlays

 

Dual-zone front and rear air-conditioning

R-Design leather steering wheel

10-speaker Bowers and Wilkins audio system

360 degree surround view camera

12-inch driver's display

 

Leather upholstery

Nappa leather/nubuck leather textile upholstery

Genuine wood interior accents

Front and rear fog LED fog lamps

Dual-pane panoramic sunroof

 

Cross brushed aluminum inlays

14-way power heated front seats with 4-way lumbar support

Graphical heads up display

Harman Kardon Premium audio system

16-way power heated front seats with 4-way lumbar support

Which trim should you buy?

The T5 R-Design trim of the 2021 Volvo XC90 seems like a fair value if you want a luxurious 3 seater crossover SUV. With that, you have distinctive exterior styling and a premium Nappa leather upholstery for the inside. The comfort levels are impressive with the 14-way power heated seats. The optional packages add greater value to the XC90. It bears an MSRP of $55,600, however, opting for the AWD variant will cost you around $1,500 in excess. 

2021 Volvo XC90 Engine and Performance

8.1/10

The base engine that powers the Volvo XC90 is a turbocharged 2.0L Inline-4 engine. It is a 250hp motor that gets peak power at 5,500 RPM and outputs a torque of 258 lb-ft at just 1,500 RPM. With the top trims, you get a more powerful 4-cylinder engine with a peak power of 316 hp and a torque output of 295 lb-ft. Both the engines are mated to an 8-Speed Geartronic automatic transmission that comes with selectable driving modes and it ensures slick adaptive shifts to give you a seamless driving experience. The XC90 base powers front wheels where the higher trims get power delivered to all the wheels with the full-time AWD.

2021 Volvo XC90 SUV In Acceleration Mode

The 250hp engine is quite capable with its 7.5 seconds 0-60 MPH sprint and a quarter-mile run that takes 15.5 seconds. The 316hp engine is more agile and fun to drive with the robust acceleration that pushes it ahead with a 6.5 seconds 0-60 MPH whereas the quarter-mile run takes close to 15.0 seconds where it tops at 143 MPH.

Models

2021 Volvo XC90 

2021 Mercedes-Benz GLE 350

2021 Audi Q7 

2021 BMW X5 

MSRP

$49,000

$54,750

$54,950

$59,400

Engine

2.0L Turbocharged Inline Four-Cylinder

2.0L Turbocharged Inline Four-Cylinder

2.0L Turbocharged Inline Four-Cylinder

3.0L Turbocharged Inline Six-Cylinder

Drivetrain

FWD

RWD

AWD

AWD

Transmission

8-speed automatic

9-speed automatic

8-speed automatic

8-speed automatic

Power

250 hp @ 5,500 RPM

255 hp @ 5,800 RPM

248 hp @ 5,000 RPM

335 hp @ 5,500 RPM

Torque

258 lb-ft @ 1,500 RPM

273 lb-ft @ 1,800 RPM

273 lb-ft @ 1,600 RPM

330 lb-ft @ 1,500 RPM

0-60 MPH 

7.5 seconds

7.3 seconds

7.7 seconds

6.2 seconds

Quarter-Mile 

15.5 seconds

15.3 seconds

15.4 seconds

14.8 seconds

Top Speed 

133 MPH

133 MPH

130 MPH

143 MPH

The 2021 XC90 is the best-valued SUV you can have in its class. Like its rivals, it has an FWD drivetrain and with a 250 hp engine, it is no slouch against its rivals. Still, it faces tough competition from the Mercedes-Benz GLE 350. The BMW X5 is quite ahead with its standard 6-cylinder motor taking a mere 6.2 seconds to the 60 MPH mark while the quarter-mile can be breached in 14.8 seconds. However, the XC90 easily competes against the Audi Q7. When equipped with the 316 hp motor, it gives a close call to the BMW X5.

How well does the 2021 Volvo XC90 handle?

The 2021 Volvo XC90 handles surprisingly well for an SUV this big. It deals with the corners well with minimal body roll but the trade-off is a slightly firm suspension which is further aggravated by bigger alloy wheels. The air suspension does smoothen the drive-by quite a bit but remains on the firmer side of the scale. The base engine is fairly punchy but is a bit noisy and feels a bit rough when the revs are high. The gearbox is very smooth but takes a small pause when the gas pedal is floored. 

The overall cabin is very quiet with Volvo’s active noise cancellation doing its job tremendously well. The view out of the windshield is wide and there’s not too much of a blind spot at the rear either. The drive in the city is as serene as on the highway with the suspension doing its job well. The XC90 is a big vehicle and the 360-degree system does help get out of the tighter spots in the city. The seats are supremely comfortable and do help in relieving while stuck in stressful traffic. 

Braking Performance

Safety has always been Volvo’s prime selling point and when it's about braking, it won't take any chances. That's why the 2021 XC90 has 4-wheel ventilated disc brakes with ABS and brake assistance with the XC90 to deliver proper braking. With that, you have 13.2-inch brake rotors at the front and smaller 12.1-inch rotors at the back. The XC90 can stop from a speed of 60 MPH in just 115 feet of distance. For a 4,374 pound SUV, it is really impressive.

Models

2021 Volvo XC90 

2021 Mercedes-Benz GLE 350

2021 Audi Q7 

2021 BMW X5 

Brake Rotors: Front (inches)

13.2

13.0

13.8

N/A

Brakes Rotors: Rear (inches)

12.1

13.0

13.0

N/A

Curb Weight (lbs)

4,374

4,608

4,795

4,828

60-0 MPH (feet)

115

118

121

119

The Volvo XC90 has an advantage over the rivals with its lightweight structure. Also, it is equipped with similar brake rotors. That's how it can stop faster than its rivals. The second spot is bagged by the GLE 350 where the X5 takes the third spot taking 118 and 119ft., respectively. The Audi Q7 is the last one to stop, despite sporting a larger set of brakes that measure 13.8 inches at the front and 13 inches at the rear. 

2021 Volvo XC90 Fuel Economy

7.1/10

Volvo cars have a thing about fuel economy. With the same old idea, the 2021 XC90 has a good enough fuel economy from its 250 hp 4 cylinders. It delivers 21 MPG in the city, 30 MPG on the highway, and a combined 25 MPG. The 18.8-gallon tank provides a maximum range of 564 miles which can take you anywhere.

With an increase in power on the 316hp engine, the fuel economy isn't much affected. The XC90 will provide 19 MPG in the city, 28 MPG on the highway, and a combined 22 MPG. The economy isn't that bad for a bump of 66 hp. Still, you have a highway range of 526.4 miles which is still something. 

Models

2021 Volvo XC90 

2021 Mercedes-Benz GLE 350

2021 Audi Q7 

2021 BMW X5 

MPG (City)

21

19

19

21

MPG (Highway)

30

26

23

26

MPG (Combined)

25

22

21

23

Fuel Tank Capacity 

18.8 gallons

22.5 gallons

22.5 gallons

21.9 gallons

Range (City/Highway/Combined; miles)

395/564/470

428/585/495

428/518/473

460/569/504

When compared with the rivals, the XC90 has the best fuel economy and an extraordinary highway economy from both powertrains. The BMW gets close to the XC90 with its similar city MPG. The Volvo XC90’s smaller tank does eat up in the estimated range and it could do better with a bigger fuel tank.

2021 Volvo XC90 Interior

8.0/10

Volvo has designed the second-generation XC90 with the same practical approach. Among the luxury brands, it is one the most spacious 3 row SUV. Yet again Volvo has made major changes to the cabin with top-notch luxury features and technology. Its main focus was on quality and comfort, and the XC90 does offer that.When the leather upholstery is mixed with chrome, wood, and aluminum inlays, the interior becomes undeniable. The dashboard offers a massive vertical display at the center as well as a driver's display in the cluster. Ergonomics are also fine, with everything falling to hand.

2021 Volvo XC90 SUV Front Row Seats

The XC90 has a standard seating capacity of 7 people where the top Inscription trim offers 6 people seating with its 2nd row Captain chairs. For the front row, we have 10-way power adjustments as standard for where the R-Design trim offers 14-way power heated bucket seats with 4-way lumbar. We get 16-way power adjustments with the top-end trim. 

With that, you have driver's seat memory settings as well. The second row has a 40-20-40 split-bench seat which is foldable to make way for the cargo. At the back, we get dual bucket seats with fold-to-floor options that are suitable for the children. Other than standard leather upholstery, you have Nappa leather upholstery too.

Behind its third row, what we are left with is a 12.6 cubic feet cargo space. If you fold down the third-row seats, you get 35.6 cubic feet of space. Even the second-row seat can be folded down to get a maximum cargo capacity of 65.5 cubic feet. If we talk about the quality and design of the cabin, the Volvo XC90 will eventually get better.

Models

2021 Volvo XC90 

2021 Mercedes-Benz GLE 350

2021 Audi Q7 

2021 BMW X5 

Seating Capacity

7

7

7

7

Front Row (Headroom/Shoulder Room/Legroom; inches)

38.9/57.7/40.9

40.5/59.3/40.3

39.9/59.5/41.7

40.8/60.0/39.8

Second Row (Headroom/Shoulder Room/Legroom; inches)

38.5/56.5/37.0

39.6/58.3/40.9

38.8/58.5/38.8

38.7/58.1/37.4

Third Row (Headroom/Shoulder Room/Legroom; inches)

36.3/46.9/31.9

N/A

35.9/49.4/29.2

N/A

Cargo Capacity (cubic feet)

12.6

33.3

14.2

33.9

The 7 person seating capacity on the Volvo XC90 is much different from its rivals. Other than the XC90, the Q7 offers standard 7 person seating where the GLE 350 and the X5 offer it as optional. In terms of seating space, the XC90 still stands behind the German rivals. However, when it is about third-row seating, the XC90 is the best. It also boasts of a beautifully crafted interior that has loads of premium material to spoil the occupants, which is also highlighted in the following features:

  • Ambient interior lighting
  • Upgraded leather upholstery
  • Heated and ventilated front seats with thigh cushion extension and side bolster adjustment
  • Driver-seat memory settings
  • Passenger-seat memory settings
  • Rear sunshades

What's there to keep you entertained?

The 2021 Volvo XC90 carries a 9.0-inch Sensus Connect touchscreen infotainment. It is a vertical display that ensures proper visibility, usability, and clarity for the ease of the driver. As it operates multiple functions, it becomes confusing sometimes. The infotainment supports Apple CarPlay and Android Auto device integration.

2021 Volvo XC90 SUV Infotainemnt System

From the R-Design trim onwards, you get the Sensus Satellite navigation pro with a real-time traffic display to let you arrive at your destinations on time. The new addition is a wireless charging dock and 2-Type C ports that will keep your devices from running out of battery. You can even avail an intuitive 12.3-inch all-digital gauge cluster with the XC90. There is a lot in the XC90 to keep the occupants entertained with some of the highlights being:

  • 9-inch touchscreen with navigation
  • Standard 10-speaker Bowers and Wilkins audio system
  • 360-degree camera system
  • Head-up display
  • Optional 14-speaker Harman Kardon audio system
  • Optional 15-speaker Bowers & Wilkins premium audio system

2021 Volvo XC90 Exterior

8.0/10

The 2021 Volvo XC90 is all about its design. With the second generation model, Volvo has revamped its flagship SUV to make it bolder against the German brands. The sharp front fascia of the 2021 Volvo XC90 is a result of its directional adaptive LED headlamps that will find you the road on its own. The black grille is designed trimmed with chrome surround where the Volvo looks like a medallion at the center. A new aerodynamic bumper offers LED fog lamps with huge air ducts.

The side profile of the XC90 makes you realize that it is a pretty huge SUV. There is a chrome surround on the beltline that gets wider around the fixed third-row windows. From the rear, the XC90 looks like a sporty SUV with those huge dual chrome exhausts. The unique tail lamps have taken shape with the rear fascia of the XC90 and that's what makes them look cool. The 2021 XC90 has 19-inch 6-spoke sparkling silver alloy wheels as standard, that can be upgraded to bigger 20- or 21-inch wheels as well. 

Models

2021 Volvo XC90 

2021 Mercedes-Benz GLE 350

2021 Audi Q7 

2021 BMW X5 

Curb Weight (lbs)

4,374

4,608

4,795

4,828

Length (inches)

194.9

194.3

199.3

194.3

Width (inches)

79.1

76.7

77.6

78.9

Height (inches)

69.9

70.7

68.5

68.7

Ground Clearance (inches)

9.4

7.1

7.0

8.4

Wheelbase (inches)

117.5

117.9

117.9

117.1

As compared to the rivals, the Volvo XC90 seems identical in terms of shape. Still, it's comparatively lighter than them with its SPA platform. When it comes to length, the Q5 is the longest one measuring 194.3 inches, and is similar to the 2021 BMW X5. The height of the XC90 can be considered average against the rivals, but the same cannot be said about its width. Even with lightweight construction, it has a wide wheelbase to balance the weight properly on all four wheels while driving and make it lean around the corners safely. If we talk about the appearance, the XC90 now looks like a perfect contender to compete with the likes of Mercedes and Audi, with some of the highlighting styling features being: 

  • 19- /20- /21-inch wheels
  • Adaptive LED headlights
  • Hands-free liftgate
  • Heated wiper blades
  • Illuminated door sills
  • Black exterior trim (R-Design only)

2021 Volvo XC90 Safety

9.8/10

To make it more agile and safe, the 2021 Volvo XC90 is based on a new SPA platform that makes the structure both lightweight and rigid at the same time. The cabin is protected by a safety cage crafted with high-strength steel to keep the passengers intact. Also, it is a light armored vehicle and that's why it scored a perfect 5 stars on the NHTSA safety test. Moreover, it is the “Top safety pick+” SUV for 2021 MY, awarded by IIHS.

Inside, the cabin is protected with 8 standard advanced airbags with occupant detection. Other than that, the 2021 XC90 is equipped with advanced active safety features such as front and rear parking sensors, 360-degree surround-view camera, driver alert control, rear collision warning, roll stability control and a low tire pressure warning. Some of the standout safety features are as follows:

  • Forward collision mitigation 
  • Adaptive cruise control 
  • Rear cross-traffic alert 
  • Rear automatic braking 
  • City safety alert and braking
  • Rear collision warning

2021 Volvo XC90 Competition

7.0/10

2021 Volvo XC90 vs 2021 Mercedes-Benz GLE 350

The Mercedes-Benz GLE 350 gives the closest competition to the Volvo XC90 with its better performance, next-level luxury experience, and technology.

2021 Mercedes-Benz GLE 350 

In terms of comfort, the XC90 is still behind the GLE 350. If you want a value-for-money SUV with better safety and convenience, the Volvo XC90 is a better pick than the GLE 350 at $49,000.

2021 Volvo XC90 vs 2021 Audi Q7

The 2021 Audi Q7 is a standard 3-row SUV, just like the XC90. When it comes to comfort and practicality, the Volvo XC90 can take down the Q7 for once.

2021 Audi Q7

It is comparatively faster than the Q7 with its base engine. If you want to consider a more reliable package with better safety for your family, then you should go for the XC90 over the Q7.

2021 Volvo XC90 vs 2021 BMW X5

The 2021 BMW X5 is the only SUV in the class that gives Volvo XC90 a tough time with its agility, dynamics, and sporty handling. The XC90 is still far away from all that stuff.

2021 BMW X5

However, the lightweight structure is a step ahead of the and still gets closer to the BMW X6 with the 316 hp motor that makes it a worthy SUV for its price.

2021 Volvo XC90 Final Verdict

With the recent updates, the 2021 Volvo XC90 looks attractive and capable. The two engine options offer decent performance and a great fuel economy. You have the luxury as well as a practical cabin. A long list of convenience and comfort will keep your ride comfortable and enjoyable. At a starting price of $49,000, the XC90 is the best valued 3-row luxury SUV you can have if you are in for a long haul.

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