The Volvo XC60 crossover has beaten 38 rival vehicles to take the coveted Overall Winner title at the Towcar Awards 2009.
The five-door crossover's towcar talents were examined at the MIRA vehicle testing facility in Warwickshire, where its exceptional performance left judges in no doubt that it was not just the best vehicle in its class (1900kg+ kerb weight), it was also the best towcar overall.
Better still, two new diesel engines that deliver even more power and even lower emissions have since been introduced to the Volvo XC60 model range. A new 2.4D lower-CO2 emitting DRIVe version cuts CO2 output from 199g/km to 159g/km while boosting power to 175PS. Meanwhile, D5 variants now benefit from a 20PS power increase to 205PS and a reduction in emissions to 183g/km.
David Motton, Contributing Editor at Practical Caravan Magazine and head judge at the Towcar Awards, said: "Many cars made our judges sit up and take notice, but one stood out above all others: the Volvo XC60. Great to look at, great to travel in and tow with, the Volvo just had to win.
"Already a winner at the What Car? Car of the Year Awards 2009, it's a winner as a towcar, too. Stylish, stable and practical - what more do you want?"
The Towcar Awards 2009 is run jointly by Practical Caravan Magazine, What Car? and the Camping & Caravan Club and winners' trophies were presented during a special ceremony at Woburn Abbey.
Testing was divided into categories, with each vehicle being marked on its towing ability, practicality and cost of ownership (purchase price, running costs and resale values). On-the-road assessments included measuring vehicle stability, hill starts (for handbrake strength and traction), acceleration and braking tests.
Judges said the Volvo XC60 D5 SE Geartronic model's all-round talents meant it scored higher during the vehicle trials than any of its rivals, which included the Audi Q5, Jaguar XF, Skoda Superb, Jeep Cherokee and Vauxhall Insignia.
Peter Rask, managing director at Volvo Car UK, said: "This is fantastic news for Volvo and yet another endorsement for the XC60's many talents.
"Volvo has a strong track record in delivering award-winning towing vehicles so it's great to see the latest XC60 model continuing that proud tradition."
The Volvo XC60 is priced from £24,995 for the entry-level 2.4D DRIVe S model and features City Safety as standard. The technology uses radar to monitor traffic up to six metres in front of the vehicle. The system automatically applies the brakes to avoid or reduce the effects of an accident if it detects a collision is imminent and the driver hasn't reacted.Published 18 June 2009