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To help members understand the latest automotive technology so they can purchase vehicles that best suit their needs, the Automobile Club of Southern California's Automotive Research Center (ARC) began testing and reviewing vehicles over a decade ago

For the 2024 edition, we include testing and ranking cars and light trucks with the latest technology, including having at least one advanced driver-assistance system (ADAS) feature. In addition to vehicle evaluation, the guide covers a number of pertinent automotive topics in detail—for example, the latest advanced safety features, how to properly maintain your vehicle, and new vehicles coming to market in the next few years.

Car Guide Winner: 1st Place Small

2023 Volvo S60 Recharge Ultimate Black Edition

Vehicle Type: Small Plug-In Hybrid
 overall score
Category Ranking: 1

Vehicle Price

Base Price: $57,950
Price as Tested: $63,690

Fuel Information

Fuel Type: Electricity/premium
Fuel Capacity (gal): 15.9
120V Charge Time: 3.3 miles per hour
240V Charge Time: 8.2 miles per hour
EPA City mpg30
EPA Highway mpg33
EPA Combined mpg: 31
EPA Combined MPGe: 74
EPA-Est. Electric Range (mi): 41

Advanced Safety Features

  • Adaptive Cruise Control [O]
  • Advanced Headlights [S]
  • Automatic Emergency Braking [S]
  • Blind-Spot Warning [S]
  • Forward-Collision Warning [S]
  • Lane-Departure Warning [S]
  • Lane-Keeping Assistance [S]
  • Rear Cross-Traffic Warning [S]
  • Reverse Automatic Emergency Braking [S]
  • [S] Standard, [O] Optional

Overall Observations

The S60 Recharge sedan has a simple, stylish exterior that's typical Volvo. But, in fact, the plug-in hybrid S60 is a muscle car disguised as a mild-mannered Scandinavian luxury sedan. The S60's turbocharged 4-cylinder engine combines with an electric motor to produce 455 hp, which provides quick, responsive acceleration. It's also good for a strong EV-only range of 41 miles and an overall range of 530 miles. The S60's minimalist interior is replete with high-quality materials, including an Orrefors crystal shift knob. Overall fit and finish are excellent, and a comprehensive set of advanced safety features is standard. The S60's sport-tuned suspension delivers a comfortable—albeit firm—ride. Entry and exit from the front seats is easy, but back-seat room is a little tight. Visibility all around is good, although the rearview camera provides an odd, "fish-eye" perspective. All-wheel drive is standard. On the downside, the S60 isn’t as engaging to drive as some competitors; its steering feels light and loose, and there's little feedback from the road. Also, the center console could use some knobs and hard keys instead of inconvenient touch-screen-based controls. Trunk and interior—storage space is limited, and the S60's maximum onboard charger rate is about half that of some competitors

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Pros and Cons


  • PHEV drivetrain provides quick, responsive acceleration
  • The exterior and interior are stylish in an understated way
  • Useful EV-only range; overall range of 500-plus miles
  • High-quality interior fit and finish


  • Unengaging driving experience; loose steering, little feedback
  • Unintuitive, touch-screen-based infotainment/feature controls
  • Limited trunk and interior storage space
  • Slow onboard charging capacity

Vehicle Specifications

Model year tested: 2023
Number of passengers (F/R): 2/3
Curb weight (lbs): 4452.0
Exterior L / W / H (in): 188.1 / 75.4 / 56.6
Wheelbase (in): 113.1
Number of air bags: 8
Warranty (months/miles): 48/50,000
Tire manufacturer and model: Pirelli P Zero
Front and rear tire size: 235/40 R19
Max towing capacity (lbs): 2,000
Headlight type: LED
Transmission type: Hybrid drive
Drivetrain type: All wheel
Engine/motor: 2.0L I4 turbo
Engine horsepower @ RPM: 312 @ 6,000
Electric motor horsepower: 143
Combined system horsepower: 455

Test Data

Test Vehicle Scores

Advanced Safety Features:


Fuel Efficiency:


EPA Emissions Score:





Handling: 6.88
Quality and Drivability: 8.33

Ride Quality:


Interior Size:


Easy of Entry and Exit:




Interior Noise:


Cargo Capacity:

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