We took the Volvo XC90 D5 7-seater across country from Surrey to the Cotswolds and back to check out its family friendly credentials. In short, this vehicle is an excellent choice for a family car. A family with lots of baggage.

Swedish company Volvo has always been synonymous with safety, ever since the very first car that left the factory gates, the open top OV4, which incidentally celebrated its 90 year anniversary earlier this year. Undeniably lots has changed in the past 90 years, but safety is still at the very heart of everything they do, and that’s got to be key when you’re choosing your family car.

The XC90 D5 looks and feels luxurious (we’re talking Bowers & Wilkins sound systems, none the less!), but what I love most about it, is that it’s intuitive; the right things in the right places. Fuel consumption and CO2 emissions on this range have been kept minimal. We got to the Cotswolds and back on under half a tank of petrol. The XC90 D5 already complies with future exhaust emission legislation, minimising the guilt of running such a mean machine. The range also includes advanced diesel and petrol engines and all have eight-speed automatic gearboxes. There are different driving modes for different terrains – Off Road was particularly useful driving around The Lakes By Yo in the Cotswolds.

The Volvo XC90 D5 is a huge but attractive beast, and if you’re like me and feel slightly daunted at the prospect of such a large motor having been used to driving smaller vehicles, fear not, this car has some brilliant technology to assist you in all sorts of different situations to ensure you reverse, park and manoeuvre with ease. There’s Pilot Assist, Automatic Parallel, 90 degree parking, AND 360 degree surround camera parking to make even the trickiest situation a cinch.

There are three different specs available, varying slightly in budget, starting from £49, 905. We road tested the PowerPulse Momentum Pro, complete with 9-inch Senus navigation touch screen, 19 inch alloy wheels, and leather charcoal interiors.

Even with all seven seats in place there’s still a decent sized boot for shopping, buggies and other paraphernalia that comes with having children. The only slight downside is that you can’t quite fit three car seats in a row in the first row of passenger seats, but in our review, we had two adults and one baby in a car seat in the back row, and the space was ample.

The huge tinted panoramic sunroof tilts at an angle, so that together with its cover you won’t be feeling hot on those family trips during the summer, but when open, you almost feel as though you’ve got the roof down. The rear doors even have integrated sun curtains which are a lifesaver when the light is streaming into the car seat making your baby’s life a misery on bright days.

The XC90 D5 has all bases covered. With Apple Car Play you can synch your phone wirelessly within seconds, while the digital display allows you to navigate your iPhone or iPad seamlessly.  This came in seriously handy when Maddie was having a meltdown and nothing but Old MacDonald Had A Farm would stop her screaming. On in seconds. Peace restored!

Volvo have definitely succeeded in creating the ultimate family car. The Volvo XC90 D5 is an attractive family vehicle, mindful of its environmental footprint, without compromising on power and driveability. I’d better start saving.

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Ellie & Jamie
IVF/Pregnancy Diary

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