2022 Volvo V90 Cross Country B6 Review

It is an understatement to say the North American premium SUV market is crowded. By contrast, the dwindling station wagon segment leaves us with just a handful of choices, and most of them are of European descent. 

Despite my love for long-roofs, it seems like the current buying trend will continue for a while. On the other hand, the few of premium station wagons left in the market are excellent. The Volvo V90 is one of them. 

Most of you probably didn’t notice, but Volvo quietly pulled the V90 from Canada in 2020. Thankfully, it is brought back exclusively as a Cross Country (CC) model for the year 2022. The refreshed V90 CC offers more ground clearance and a new standard 48V mild-hybrid system. 

Thanks to Volvo Canada, I had the chance to test drive the 2022 V90 Cross Country B6 for one week. Below is my unbiased review.

Maybe I am biased, but the V90 CC is handsome from just about every angle. Even with the raised 20.4cm ground clearance compared to the standard V90’s 15.3cm, the V90 CC looks planted and proportional. 

At the front, we have the familiar Thor’s hammer headlights and vertical bar center grille. The signature Iron Mark pays tribute to the classic Volvo design. 

From the side, sweeping character lines and the long roof gives the V90 that unique station wagon profile that I love. The short front overhang and the raised rear bumper allows better approach and the departure angles for off-road driving. Black cladding is added to accommodate larger wheel well gaps and to provide a stronger off-road vibe. Our tester is equipped with the optional 20” alloy wheels, but the standard 19” wheels will provide a smoother ride. 

The rear profile of the V90 looks extra wide thanks to the slim signature rear lights and the long lower metallic trim. The exhaust ports are hidden under the bumper for a cleaner look, similar to that of a pure electric vehicle. 

The interior of the new V60 looks familiar, and it is a good thing. Volvo designers have delivered a standardized interior that is both simplistic and luxury at the same time. Once the winning design is achieved, there is little reason to change it. Moreover, the Scandinavian brand offers quite a few interior options to alter the color and mood of the interior space. Quality materials such as brushed aluminum trims, open pore wood inlays, and Nappa leather surfaces are generously appointed. The only black plastics are found around the portrait style infotainment screen and the center console. 

The front seats are nicely contoured and highly adjustable. Our tester is loaded with options which includes heated and ventilated front seats, massaging front seats, four-zone climate control, heated steering wheel, and heated rear seats. I find most of the options quite reasonably packaged except for the heated steering wheel. It really should be standard for the Canadian market. Just like most premium brands, by the time you finish adding all the desirable options, the final sticker price might surprise you. 

The rear passengers enjoy generous headroom and legroom thanks to the station wagon form factor. The spaciousness of the cabin is further amplified by the massive panoramic sunroof. Other thoughtful features in the rear cabin include privacy screens, dedicated climate control, air vents in the B-pillars, and bag hangers. 

The 2022 V90 CC is equipped with the upgraded Android-based infotainment system. It is noticeably quicker and more straightforward to operate than the old Sensus system. However, it still takes one a little while to figure out where all the options are. Moreover, the seat and cabin climate controls don’t have dedicated physical buttons. To change the settings, you will need to tap the small icons on the touchscreen. This is particularly annoying when you first step into the car and the screen is still loading.

The 9.1” tablet style portrait screen behaves exactly like a smartphone. Swiping left and right reveals additional menus, swiping down brings up infotainment settings, and there is a dedicated home button at the bottom of the screen. Saying “Hey Google” activates the virtual assistance of the Android Auto system. I actually had to disable the voice activation of the car because the command triggers both my phone and the car’s virtual assistance at the same time. 

The standard 12.3 digital instrument cluster is gorgeous. The entire screen can be utilized to display customized information. Our tester comes with the Advance Package which adds an excellent head-up display, 360 degree camera, Pilot Assist, and additional driver assist functions. 

The Bowers and Wilken audio system that comes with our tester sounds amazing. The beautifully crafted metallic speaker grilles also gives the interior a classy, elegant vibe. 

Safety and Driver Assistance
Safety is at the heart of the Volvo brand, and the V90 is no exception.

Standard driver-assist and active safety features include:
  • Forward collision warning with pedestrian detection
  • Automatic emergency braking
  • Traffic sign recognition
  • Rear cross-traffic alert
  • Blind-spot monitoring
  • Automatic high-beams
  • Adaptive cruise control
Most of these features are included previously, but the 2022 model is equipped with Volvo’s latest Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) sensor platform 

The 2022 Volvo V90 CC is not yet rated by either the NHTSA or IIHS at the time of writing. 

The 2022 V90 CC is powered by a supercharged/turbocharged 2.0L 4-cylinder engine that produces 295hp of power and 310 lb-ft of torque. The new engine uses an electric supercharger to boost low end power instead of the belt driven design of the previous generation. The B6 powertrain also added a 48V mild hybrid system that includes a 13hp starter generator. This gives the V90 more torque off the line and recoup some of the car’s energy when braking. Compared to the T6 drivetrain that it replaces, the B6 is slightly down in peak power (21hp) but provides more low end torque. It also allows for an increased towing capacity of 2400kg (5,291lb). 

A buttery smooth 8 speed transmission sends the engine power to all four wheels via the standard all-wheel drive system. You would hardly notice the complicated dance between all different powertrain components under the hood. 0-100km/hr happens in 6.4 seconds. Even though that is slower than the Mercedes-Benz E 450 All Terrain (5.2s) we have previously reviewed, you wouldn't find yourself wanting in most driving situations. 

The V90 CC feels light and its feet. Despite the added ground clearance, the car is composed and predictable in corners. Steering is precise and effortless. Volvo has improved the steering feedback to give the driver a better connection to the road. 

In terms of fuel economy, the 2022 V90 B6 is rated at 10.6 L/100k city, 8.1 L/100km highway, and 9.5 L/100k combined. After one week of mostly city drives, we obtained a fuel economy rating of 11.3 L/100km. 

Cargo Space & Storage
Volvo uses two ways of measuring cargo spaces. One limited by the height of the headlining, and one limited by the height of the seatback. For the 2022 V90 CC, there is 714/551L of cargo space behind the second row seatbacks and 1517/714L of cargo space with the 40/60 rear seats folded. While not class leading, the practicality of a station wagon is once again demonstrated. A ski pass-through lets you store longer items without folding the rear seats down. The power tailgate can be foot activated, and there is a 12V charging port in the trunk. Under the trunk floor is a spare tire. The gas spring that holds the trunk floor in place is a nice touch. The same can be said about the pet divider that can be folded and held in place with the short gas springs. 

In-cabin storage options are plentiful, but the center console area could benefit from more storage space. The center console storage bin is on the smaller side so is the storage tray in front of the shift lever. There is an additional storage bin on the left side of the dash, but it is quite small in size. 

The glove compartment is big, so are the door pockets. Rear passengers can store larger objects in the mesh pockets behind the front seatbacks. The folding armrest also features pop-out cup holders and additional storage compartments. 

The 2022 Volvo V90 CC is another example of why premium station wagons deserve more love. Volvo has been consistently delivering stylish wagons with excellent interiors. With the added ground clearance, the V90 CC offers the same practicality and off-road capability a luxury SUV provides. At the same time, it is more fuel efficient and far more satisfying to drive. These are especially true with the new standard mild hybrid add-on. Granted, the fully loaded price tag is a little high, but you won’t find anything at this price range from its competitors. I do wish Volvo would consider a recharge model for the wagon, but given the small market size, it may be a few years before that happens. 

Test Vehicle
2022 V90 Cross Country B6

$65,950 CAD base. $79,565 CAD as tested

Thunder Grey Metallic 


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