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In-depth reviews

Volvo S90 review - MPG, CO2 and Running Costs

Four-cylinder diesels are efficient everyday, but T8 hybrid needs plugging in to make the most of it

Volvo offers the S90 with a choice of four-cylinder diesel engines and the more modest of the pair, badged D4, is a good performer, even in the latest WLTP testing.

Even though it’s paired with an eight-speed automatic gearbox, it has emissions as low as 121g/km. However, the BMW 520d and Audi A6 2.0 TDI are slightly better in that regard. The more potent and four-wheel-drive D5 isn’t quite so economical, and its extra shove delivers emissions from 142g/km.

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The S90 D4 gets a 55-litre fuel tank, which gives a theoretical range of 610 miles on the official combined fuel economy figure of 50.4mpg. In the real world, you should be able to achieve north of 500 miles between fills, especially if your route includes some empty motorways.

The D5 model has poorer official economy, with a best of 43.5mpg, but it gets a slightly larger fuel tank (60 litres) so its theoretical range remains similar to the D4’s.

In comparison, the T4 and T5 petrols are thirstier, but they have the same quoted economy figures, with a best figure under WLTP testing of 37.7mpg combined. Emissions are 155g/km and 154g/km respectively, although these numbers increases slightly when adding larger wheels.

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The S90 T8 Twin Engine plug-in hybrid is the economy champion on paper, although its compay car costs will be more attractive thanks to a quoted emissions figure of 40g/km. Claimed WLTP economy of up to 166.1mpg is quoted, although how close you come to that figure will be entirely dependent on how often you plug the car in to charge up the battery. Fail to do so, and you can expect fuel economy from the petrol engine to come in at around 40mpg.

Insurance groups

The S90’s insurance groups are broad, with the D4, T4 and T5 engines starting in group 27 and the more potent D5 in Group 33. Go for the T8 Twin Engine jumps to Group 42, reflecting its higher performance as well as its more complex drive system, which is likely to be more costly to repair.

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Even these group ratings look pretty appealing within the executive saloon class. The BMW 520d sits in group 34 in basic SE trim, and that rises to group 36 if you take the popular route of moving up to the M Sport edition. 

The overall view, therefore, is that the S90 is a competitive option on insurance costs.

Depreciation

Volvo has reasonably modest sales targets for the S90, so oversupply is unlikely. We’d expect depreciation to be in the same ballpark as the car’s rivals from BMW and Audi; indeed, the predicted three-year, 36,000-mile retained value for the D4 Inscription we had in on test was a solid 48 per cent - or a good five per cent more than the comparable Mercedes E-Class. In fact no model drops below the 40 per cent mark in terms of depreciation, and even the T8 plug-in has figures of around 43 per cent.

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Which Is Best

Cheapest

  • Name
    2.0 T4 Momentum Plus 4dr Geartronic
  • Gearbox type
    Semi-auto
  • Price
    £36,650

Most Economical

  • Name
    2.0 T8 Recharge PHEV R DESIGN 4dr AWD Auto
  • Gearbox type
    Semi-auto
  • Price
    £54,525

Fastest

  • Name
    2.0 T8 Recharge PHEV R DESIGN 4dr AWD Auto
  • Gearbox type
    Semi-auto
  • Price
    £54,525
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