With the launch of its 2015.5 model year in the U.S. market, Volvo Cars of North America announced that its connected car platform, the Sensus Connect, will be fitted as standard on every new model.
The North American subsidiary of the Volvo Car Group says that the Sensus Connect is combined with the Volvo On Call telematics system and the Volvo On Call smartphone app, making the Swedish brand the first manufacturer to offer such a system as standard equipment across its entire model range.
Sensus ConnectDeveloped for in-car connectivity and infotainment, Sensus Connect will be integrated in all new Volvos, with cloud- and app-based services, providing "3G connectivity service powered by AT&T, Wi-Fi hotspot and tethering capabilities, Internet, phone, and text message access (with text-to-speech), in-car infotainment apps, 24/7 call center support with in-car roadside assistance, and more", indicated Volvo.
The Sensus Connect is integrated into the user interface in look, feel and operation, including the digital dash and seven inch center stack display".
With the 3G connectivity, users can access entertainment- and navigation-related apps to check the weather forecast, to stream music, access Internet radio stations, podcasts, find restaurants, gas stations, points of interest, or even to share their location with others.
The system has also been upgraded on vehicles equipped with in-car navigation (standard on premier trim levels and above), with 3D graphics and lifetime map upgrades. It is also available as a standalone option.
With the Volvo On Call button, a 24/7 roadside assistance is available with SOS emergency service access (crash notification is initiated when the airbags or seatbelt pre-tensioners have been deployed), along with stolen vehicle tracking.
A free Volvo On Call Smartphone App (available for iOS, Android, and Windows Phone) is also available with every 2015.5 Volvo model, providing an instant status overview of the car, such as its current location, the status of its windows and door locks, details on recent trips, fuel level and average fuel mileage.
Other functions can also be performed via the Volvo On Call Smartphone App, like the remote engine start to heat or cool the cabin before getting in (based on last used settings), honking the horn and flashing the lights (to find the car in a large parking or to "warn" a too insistent observer that he /she has been spotted), requesting roadside assistance, on-the-go service scheduling or transmitting locations directly to the in-car navigation system.
Volvo MY 2015.5Volvo's U.S. selection for the MY 2015.5 also includes the Drive-E powertrains as well as the introduction of the V60 sportswagon, at prices starting from U.S.$33,750 (MSRP) for the front-wheel drive S60 T5 Drive-E FWD, to $46,650 for the all-wheel drive XC60 T6 R-Design AWD. More details about the U.S. versions, equipment and prices can be found on the Volvo U.S. site.
With these new additions, Volvo improved the graphics including 3D imaging, new routing options and enhanced voice recognition. The navigation has moved to the mid-level premier trim (it was on the high-level platinum trim), and is standard on the S80, the T6 versions of the S60, XC60 V60, and the XC70. The Harmon Kardon premium sound system is standard in platinum trim levels, and available as a standalone option.
2 Trim levelsThe trim level options have been simplified to two levels: premier and platinum. The Keyless drive is now available as a standalone option and is also available in the new convenience package which includes rear park assist camera, Homelink remote garage door opener, digital compass, grocery bag holder and power retractable outside mirrors. The platinum trim level includes the keyless drive, bi-xenon headlamps and the technology package.
With the XC60 T6 Drive-E version, the 2.0-liter engine adds to the turbocharger a supercharger. Unlike the turbo which is dependent on the exhaust pressure to operate its compressor, the mechanically linked supercharger starts to function immediately from the low revs, before the turbo kicks in when exhaust pressure builds up, to provide a more linear output. Maximum output is 302 horsepower (222 kW, 298 bhp) and 295 lb.-ft. (400 Nm, 40.8 kg-m) of torque, plus a declared U.S. mpg fuel economy ratings of 22 city (10.7 litre/100 km, 26.42 UK mpg, 9.35 km/litre), 30 highway (7.84 litre/100 km, 36 UK mpg, 12.75 km/litre) and 25 combined (9.41 litre/100 km, 30 UK mpg, 10.63 km/litre).
The third component of Drive-E is new ECO+ which optimizes shift points, engine control and throttle response. Volvo says that when activated, ECO+ can improve fuel economy by five percent depending on driving style, temperature and climate.
The ECO+ functions include the start/stop, which is modified to allow the engine to shut down at 7 km/h/4 mph as the car coasts to a stop.
ECO-coast function helps conserve kinetic energy by enabling the vehicle to coast. The engine “brake” is disengaged and engine speed drops to idle speed when pressure on the accelerator is released. With the ECO-climate function, the air conditioning compressor is disconnected to reduce auxiliary loads. Pressing the AC button restarts cooling or the driver can deactivate ECO+.