2019 Volvo S90 Review – Still An Unconventional, Sumptuous Luxury Sedan

2019 Volvo S90. [Photo: Volvo]


The 2019 Volvo S90 is a sophisticated five-passenger, four-door luxury sedan that first appeared as part of the Volvo stable in 2017 to replace the aging S80. It is a stylish vehicle with a back seat that rivals many limos. Three total power outputs are available, all based on a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine. There’s a 250 horsepower turbocharged T5, or a turbocharged and supercharged T6 that pumps out 316 horsepower. Finally, a turbocharged, supercharged and electrified T8 puts out 400 horsepower. All feature auto stop/start technology and mate to a smooth eight-speed Geartronic automatic transmission. The car features adjustable drive mode settings that gear the motive force to Volvo’s all-wheel system (in T6 and T8 models).

All S90s come with a semi-autonomous driving mode and automated emergency braking. A panoramic sunroof, a navigation system, and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity are standard fare as well. The 2019 Volvo S90 T6 AWD Inscription ranks as a mid-range model.


The 2019 Volvo S90 displays a sleek aerodynamic form from stem to stern. It’s hunkered down in a low, wide stance from both a frontal and rear perspective. Up front, the wide inwardly curved grille with its vertical slats and prominently placed Iron Cross logo is flanked by the iconic “Thor’s Hammer” headlamps, with a body-wide lower and side port air intakes, and diffuser hint at the car’s potency nestled beneath the sculpted hood. The profile generates a coupe-like image, with the “B” and “C” pillars blacked out, enforcing the overall aerodynamic effect, with the windscreen arcing gracefully to the curved roofline, culminating in a short deck with an integrated decklid spoiler. The wide rear end cuts back inwardly sporting a short overhang.

2019 Volvo S90


The 2019 Volvo S90 T6’s cabin serves up anything but Spartan surroundings. Inscription models deliver a suite of the most desirable luxury features available such as Nappa leather upholstery, walnut inlays, and heated/ ventilated front seats with power-adjustable lateral supports. Buyers also get power sunshades, four-zone climate control, LED headlamps with automatic high-beams, and more. An Advanced Package adds many high tech safety and driver assistance features, and the Bowers and Wilkins Premium Sound System turns the cabin into a concert hall.

2019 Volvo S90


The ride and handling characteristics of the 2019 Volvo S90 T6 Inscription test car were mixed. It’s extremely smooth and comfortable on ideally paved surfaces, but firm. It borders on extremely firm on irregular, worn surfaces, despite the Premium Rear Air Suspension option. A contributing factor was the optional 20-inch alloy wheels. Steering provided a direct on-center feel, but seemed to be on the light side. Braking was exemplary with no virtually no fade following spirited scenarios. Keep in mind that this latest iteration Volvo S90 T6 sedan is intentionally more focused on luxury than sportiness.


The S90 T6 Volvo continues to carry the torch for stellar safety features, while advancing its design execution to a much higher degree than before. The level of sumptuous luxurious ambience has also been elevated to rival competitors in its class. All in all, the new Volvo S90 is truly an expression of satisfying contemporary Scandinavian luxury at a reasonable price.

My test S90 T6 AWD came in Inscription trim, wearing a Crystal White metallic exterior finish, with a Tan and Charcoal interior highlighted by Linear Walnut inlay trim accents. The base sticker was set at $54,360. After factoring in the $5,100 Inscription Package, other options and the destination charge, the final count rose to $71,480.

SPECIFICATIONS: 2019 Volvo S90 T6 AWD Inscription

On Sale: Now
Base MSRP: $54,350
Price as Tested:
Engine: 2.0-liter supercharged and turbocharged I-4
Drivetrain (Layout): Front engine, rear-wheel drive
Horsepower: 316 hp @ 5,700 rpm
Torque: 295 lb-ft @ 2,200 rpm
Transmission: 8-speed automatic

Front: Short/Long Arm Double wishbone, coil springs, hydraulic shock absorbers, stabilizer bar and Air Suspension System.

Rear: Integral axle with transverse composite leaf spring, hydraulic shock absorbers, stabilizer bar and Air Suspension system.

Brakes: Power-assisted four-wheel vented discs
Tires: Pirelli Cinturato P7 255/35 R20 all-seasons
Fuel capacity: 15.9 gallons
Fuel economy (EPA): 21 City / 31 Highway / 26 Combined mpg


Wheelbase: 120.5 inches
Length: 200.1 inches
Width: 54.3 inches
Height: 74.4 inches (w/o mirrors)
Turning Circle: 37.07 feet
Curb Weight: 4,135 pounds