in 2017, volvo announced that every vehicle rolled out from 2019 on will at least have help from an electric motor, and the 2020 xc90 suv is another step in that plan. the automaker is adding a mild-hybrid powertrain to the lineup for 2020 and updating its plug-in models.
the 2020 xc90 will be the first vehicle to use volvo's kinetic energy recovery braking system. volvo says the brake-by-wire system reduces fuel consumption and emissions by recovering kinetic energy under braking.
the system pairs with both of volvo's regular four-cylinder gas powertrains — the t5 and t6 — and should deliver fuel-economy gains of up to 15 percent, the automaker claims. base model-year 2019 xc90's are epa rated at 21/29/24 mpg city/highway/combined.
xc90 vehicles with this mild-hybrid powertrain will wear a "b" badge. other exterior updates for the 2020 model year include a lightly revised grille, new wheel designs and a few fresh exterior colors. inside, the 2020 xc90 will feature a new seating configuration: in addition to the four-seat excellence variant and traditional seven-seat model, a new six-seat configuration joins the lineup.
the new mild-hybrid versions of the xc90 join the existing plug-in hybrid version, called the t8. it, too, sees an enhancement for 2020 with a new battery, as well as the brake-by-wire energy-recovery system. volvo says the range of the t8 powertrain will also increase by around 15 percent, and the updated powertrain will be available in the xc90 and smaller xc60 t8 versions. currently, model-year 2019 xc90 and xc60 t8s have a 58 mpg-equivalent rating, which factors in 17 miles of electric-only range, according to the epa.
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the 2020 xc90 kicks off a renewed focus on hybrid powertrains. volvo said that plug-in options will now be available on every model it produces and that the new mild-hybrid powertrain will be rolled out across its lineup; the xc60 will be the next in line.
the 2020 xc90 will go into production in sweden in may and is available to order at dealerships.
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