When Ford spun off Volvo to shore up its cash reserves, the Swedish luxury carmarker was picked up by China’s Geely, which began a radical 21st century transformation. At the heart of Volvo’s revival is the next Drive-E powertrain, which will be used in the 2016 Volvo XC60 Ocean Race Edition to provide both efficiency and power driver’s want.
Named after the Volvo Ocean Race, an intense nautical challenge dating back 37 years which sends endurance racers on a 38,739 nautical mile journey around the planet’s oceans. The race kicked off on October 4th in Alicante, Spain, and will end on March 15th, 2015 in Newport, Rhode Island; meanwhile, Volvo engineers integrated several design features into the XC60 Oceans Race Edition as a tribute.
The most obvious feature is the “Ocean Blue II” exterior color, which instantly reminds one of the deep blue sea; there’s also some Ocean Race deco and inlays, as well as embossed on the tread plate (rocker panel?), as well as special emblems and start screens reminding drivers they’re operating a special edition vehicle.
For me though the most exciting feature is the four-cylinder Drive-E engine, which puts 240 horsepower and 258 lb-ft of torque on the table in this form. With stop-start and brake regeneration features on board, the Drive-E engine is as much about performance as it is about efficiency, and engineers have managed to squeeze as much as 450 horsepower out of its 2.0 liters of displacement (though a third turbocharger also helped out). The larger XC90 offers up to 400 horsepower from its hybrid Twin-Engine drivetrain, and tuner Polestar has pledged to bring even more power to the rest of Volvo’s lineup.
The Volvo XC60 Ocean Race Edition will start at $42,100 for the front-wheel drive model, and $43,600 for the all-wheel drive version.