In the two months since the Volvo S60 arrived in our Four Seasons fleet, it's been on the road almost constantly. Trips to Tennessee, Chicago, and various locales in Michigan have pushed the S60's odometer well past the 3000-mile mark. Much of the Volvo's time has been spent on interstates, where it shows itself to its best advantage. "It's a fabulous freeway machine with excellent seats, a surefooted chassis, and a wonderful interior," reported deputy editor Joe DeMatio after a trip to West Branch, Michigan, for Mother's Day weekend.
As with any new car, we're still familiarizing ourselves with several of the S60's idiosyncrasies, from the stereo controls to the navigation system to the car's audible alerts.
About the stereo, DeMatio writes: "When you turn up the volume, whether you have navigation or radio information on the display screen, a large portion of the screen is then overlaid by a box that shows a graphic of the volume. Once you're done adjusting the volume, the graphic stays there on the screen for several seconds. This might sound minor, but it ends up meaning extra time with your eyes off the road. Cool radio function: there's a 'song saver' that records information on a song that's playing that you like."
On the navigation system, senior web editor Phil Floraday tell us: "I didn't love the navigation system's refusal to accept several addresses over the weekend. There's some weird programming that allows the navigation system to find the address you want but not provide directions to it."
About the audible alerts, copy editor Rusty Blackwell says: "Is Volvo the only company that will let you leave your lights on once you've parked the car, without giving you an audible clue when you open the door to exit? I now know that the DRLs include the taillights, so I probably won't bother switching the headlights on manually any more, as much as it's against my instincts." And this: "Another alert I missed was confirmation that the car had locked after I'd touched the dot on one of the door handles. You can hear the locks click, but it's really quiet, and it's almost impossible to see whether the light on the inside lock controls is lit or not. I tweaked some settings later in the weekend so that all the doors unlock when you open one door, and that seemed to also make the car chirp the horn upon locking."
As we spend more time with the S60, we expect to hear less about the vagaries of the car's electronics and more about what it is like to live with on a continual basis. Already, one employee, associate web editor Donny Nordlicht, has declared that he'd be happy to drive it every day: "Whenever I drive the S60, I don't want to give the keys back when I come to work. The entire time behind the wheel of the S60 last night, I found myself wanting to take it on a road trip and just spend more time getting to know my new Swedish friend."
We'll update you next month on how this new friendship is developing.