The 2012 Volvo S60 is a well-balanced and stylish luxury sedan. It's a solid alternative to otherwise ubiquitous German luxury sedans. Volvo S60 Sedan offers the following pros: Comprehensive and efficient engines; well-balanced ride and handling; strong brakes, smart all-wheel-drive system; convenient front seats; abundant security features. Volvo S60 Sedan drawbacks are: Cramped backseat; some dated controls.
The 2012 Volvo S60 is a midsize luxury sedan available in two versions -- T5 and T6 -- that correspond to motor type. The T5 comes traditional with 17-inch wheels, heated mirrors, cruise control, dual-zone automatic conditioning, an eight-way performance driver bench with memory functions and adjustable lumbar, power-folding back headrests, a leather-wrapped tilt-and-telescoping helm, T-tec cloth upholstery, Bluetooth and an eight-speaker audio system with a CD player, HD radio, radio, an optional stereo slot and an Ipod/usb stereo interface. The T6 adds a more comprehensive motor and traditional all-wheel drive, plus 18-inch wheels, sport-tuned suspension, various steering tuning (includes selectable settings), leather upholstery and the auto-dimming rearview mirror.
The Luxury suite adds bi-xenon headlights, a sunroof, an eight-way performance passenger bench and, for the T5, the leather upholstery and auto-dimming rearview mirror. The Climate suite adds heated front seatings, heated windshield washers, automatic wipers and headlight washers. The Multimedia suite adds a rearview camera, a navigator with real-time traffic and a 12-speaker luxury surround-sound stereo system. The Technology suite adds adaptive cruise control, driver-attention warning, lane-departure warning and a collision warning system with auto braking and pedestrian detection. Stand-alone features include a blind-spot warning system, front and back parking sensors and keyless ignition/entry.
Available on the T5 is the Dynamic suite, which adds 18-inch wheels and the T6's sport-tuned suspension and selectable steering options. Available on the T6 is an adaptive suspension named Four-c that contains three driver-selectable options, as well as chassis tuning from the T5 Touring and (at no cost) 17-inch wheels. .
The 2012 Audi A4 provides refinement in both look and road manners. So, too, does the Audi A4 Avant wagon, along with a healthy dose of utility. Audi A4 Sedan offers the following pros: Luxury cabin; great fuel efficiency; sporty handling; available wagon body style. Audi A4 Sedan drawbacks are: Unintuitive traditional control layout; wagon has limited trunk capacity.
The 2012 Audi A4 is available in sedan and wagon (avant) body styles. Both come in Luxury, Luxury Plus and Prestige versions. The high-performance S4 model is covered in a separate review.
The Luxury trim comes traditional with 17-inch alloy wheels, a sunroof (panoramic on Avant), automatic headlights, automatic wipers, cruise control, foglamps, automatic conditioning, eight-way performance front seatings, a tilt-and-telescoping leather-wrapped helm, leather upholstery, a dash-mounted Audi Multi Media Interface (MMI) and a 10-speaker audio system with a CD player, optional stereo slot and radio. The Avant also adds split-folding back seatings. An auxillary Comfort suite adds Bluetooth and an Ipod interface, while the Style suite contains bi-xenon headlights, LED running lights, self-leveling headlights and bright metal look trim.
All of the above features are included in the Luxury Plus trim, along with 18-inch wheels, sporty S line bodywork, three-zone automatic conditioning, heated front seatings, driver memory functions, split-folding back seatings, auto-dimming mirrors and an improved trip computer. The MMI Navigation Plus suite adds a navigator with real-time traffic, digital audio cargo, a rearview camera, back parking sensors, voice controls, HD radio, a color trip computer display and MMI controls located on the center control panel.
The Audi A4 Prestige comes traditional with adaptive headlights, a performance liftgate (on Avant models), keyless ignition/entry, a blind-spot warning system, the Navigation suite and a Bang & Olufsen luxury audio system (optional on Luxury Plus). Features original to the Prestige include the S line suite (19-inch wheels, summer tires, faux-suede bench inserts and special look and dashboard trim), the Drive Select suite (which offers adaptive suspension dampers as well as adjustable options for the suspension, steering and transmission), adaptive cruise control, a performance back sunshade and manual back side sunshades.
The Sport suite (also provided on the Luxury Plus) contains a sport-tuned suspension, a three-spoke helm, more aggressively bolstered seatings and automatic transmission shift paddles. Auxillary back side airbags are available on Luxury Plus and Prestige trims only, but any Audi A4 is eligible for wood dashboard trim. .