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Volvo S90 T8 Recharge: plug-in hybrid from the luxury class

Volvo S90 T8 Recharge cover photo
Picture: TechnikNews
(Post picture: © 2023 TechnikNews)

With the 2024 model of the S90 T8 Recharge, Volvo is bringing another S90 sedan with hybrid drive onto the market. In this test report you will find out how it holds up in everyday life and where there is still room for improvement.

We already had the opportunity last year V90 T8 Recharge to test extensively for you, now it is S90 T8 Recharge it's turn. What is immediately noticeable is that the S90 has a lot in common with the V90. From the drive to the interior elements, many things are identical.

tl;dr: Swedish luxury sedan with small flaws

The S75.000 T90 Recharge is available as a plug-in hybrid in the basic configuration for just under 8 euros. The price of my test car with all additional equipment was around 93.000 euros, although there is still room for improvement. Whether this price is appropriate for the vehicle is in the eye of the beholder. You get a really wonderfully crafted luxury class sedan with lots of space and storage space, which doesn't have to hide when it comes to performance, comfort and infotainment. The range in hybrid mode of around 80 kilometers is sufficient, but could be a little higher. It would also be good if Pilot Assist was improved and a traffic light camera was installed for better visibility. Overall, the S90 T8 Recharge is still a well-done plug-in hybrid. We hope Volvo surprises us with an all-electric S90 in the future.

Design: Typical Volvo

As you are used to from Volvo, with the S90 you get a car with the typical Volvo design. This means hard edges in the design and clear lines. My test car was equipped with the Dark Package, which means that the majority of all trim and design elements on the vehicle are black. At the front you can find the familiar huge radiator grille from the V90 as well as the headlights in the “Thor’s Hammer” design. The shape of the rear lights is also reminiscent of a Polestar. Overall, the car looks very classy and looks very chic with the Bright Dusk Metallic paint and black accents.

Interior: Modern and tidy

The interior of the S90 is very clearly designed, similar to the XC40 or the V90. Just like the minimalist style that the Swedes are used to, there are no unnecessary accents. Everything is well made and looks quite attractive. As with the V90, we again have the stylish Orrefors crystal gear knob. This is available on the S90 together with the Tailored Wool sports seats in light gray, which are subject to an additional charge. These are very comfortable and offer good lateral support. Unfortunately, there is no option to book a massage function for the driver and front passenger. To do this, other seats must then be configured. Otherwise you will find many familiar elements from the V90 such as the steering wheel, cockpit display or trim elements. The sedan also has plenty of space for luggage. With just under 500 liters of space, there is plenty of space for longer business trips or weekend trips with the family.

Infotainment: Good software with customization options

The fact that Volvo is using Android Automotive again for the S90, as well as for the V90, is paying off. The user interface is clear and can be modified to suit your own needs. The connection to the smartphone is stable and there is the option of running Apple CarPlay via the Android system. External route planners and other apps can be installed via the Playstore, which means you are not limited to pre-installed apps. The air conditioning is also controlled via the display and is relatively easy to operate. What we had noted in another model has been added via an update. Software update 2.9 ensures that Applemaps can now also be displayed on the driver display.

Sound system: Something nice for the ears

The sound system in the S90 comes from Bowers & Wilkins. We were already able to enjoy this in the V90 and here too it offers the same fantastic sound experience: pleasantly present highs, a very good midrange with good vocal reproduction and a depth that is well dimensioned for the car. If the basic settings are not consistent enough for you, you can use the audio settings to choose between different audio simulations such as opera or studio. There are also plenty of options to adjust the sound manually. We would like Volvo to also offer the system in future vehicle models.

Driving behavior: Pleasant and sporty

Despite a length of 4,97 meters and a width of 2,01 meters (with mirrors), the S90 is very easy to maneuver and sits smoothly in the curves. Thanks to the air suspension on the rear axle and the Four-C shock absorbers on the front axle, the Volvo glides over the road and absorbs most bumps with ease. Overall, the S90 exudes a nice, quiet driving experience. Perfect for long highway journeys. But if it's a little sportier, he doesn't have to hide. The car is buttery smooth in the corners and thanks to the powerful drive of the 310 hp in-line 4-cylinder on the front axle and the 145 hp electric motor on the rear axle, the Swede marches from 0-100 in under 5 seconds. Thanks to its aerodynamic design, the S90 offers noticeably better handling compared to the V90, which we were also able to test.

Assistance systems: Volvo can do this better

There is a lot to tell when it comes to the S90's assistance systems. It has Pilot Assist or steering assistant, which is more likely to be used on the motorway because it Prohas problems with sharp curves and narrow country roads. If the assistant is only used on the highway, it does its job well and keeps the car in the lane without jerky steering maneuvers. The adaptive cruise control works perfectly. For the price of the car, the assistant could be a little better on country roads. Speed ​​limits are set based on map data and sign recognition. This works pretty well with a few exceptions.

During my testing period, a function was also added that made it possible to use the Steering wheel buttons to switch between Pilot Assist and adaptive cruise control. Another feature that would also bring a massive improvement to the S90 and other Volvo models would be a traffic light camera. Because the unit that sits above the interior mirror often covers the traffic lights.

Charging and range: Good for a plug-in hybrid

If you drive calmly and avoid speeds of over 130 km/h, the S90 drives almost purely electrically in hybrid mode. With the 18,8 kWh battery, the S90 can cover around 80 kilometers in city and cross-country operation, which isn't that bad considering the stated 90 km electric range. The S90 charges with 6,4 kWh via the two-phase charging cable. This means that the car is fully charged after around 3 hours. Without electrical support, the S90 needs almost 8,5 liters per 100 km.

Volvo S90 T8 Recharge loading flap

Picture: TechnikNews

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