In still air, the Volvo S90 saloon towed very well. It wasn’t as happy when the wind picked up, and the caravan’s Al-Ko ATC sensors showed some movement when slowing down from high speeds.
The brakes were excellent, though, stopping car and caravan in just 10.3m – that’s one of the best stopping distances in this class.
The D4 engine performed strongly, too, pulling the S90 and caravan from 30-60mph in 10.7 seconds. Despite lacking the four-wheel drive of the V90 Cross Country, the S90 had no trouble with the hill-start test, towing serenely up the 1-in-6 slope with just the slightest scrabble from the front tyres when pulling away.
As an everyday drive, the S90 puts comfort above sharp responses and agility. It’s a relaxed and refined car rather than a lively one.
Inside, there’s plenty of space for the driver and passengers, and the design and finish are both appealing.
And for a saloon, there’s plenty of boot space – our practicality testers found room for a full load of caravan holiday luggage.
The official combined economy figure of 64.2mpg is impressive enough for the S90 to have been shortlisted for this year’s ‘Fuel Economy’ award. We achieved 24mpg when towing, not economical enough for the Volvo to win that prize, but not bad for a car of this weight and performance.
The S90 is priced reasonably, and although Momentum is the most affordable version it still comes well equipped. That includes plenty of safety kit, which has contributed to the car’s five-star rating from Euro NCAP’s safety experts.