2015 Volvo XC90 Gets Bowers & Wilkins Audio System

2015 Volvo XC90 intotainment system; music settings submenu 1 photo
Photo: screenshot from YouTube
Bowers & Wilkins teamed up with the Swedish carmaker to create an exquisite audio system which will equip the all-new 2015 Volvo XC90. The renowned British audio equipment company used the most demanding acoustic environments to fine tune the unit's loudspeakers, including the legendary Abbey Road Studios in London.
If you're not familiar to B&W, we remind you that certain models from Jaguar and Maserati are using audio systems with crystalline sound quality made by the U.K.-based company. However, with the 2015 Volvo XC90, Bowers & Wilkins has certainly outdone itself.

The Premium Sound system employs a 12-channel Harman amplifier and hi-fi low-distortion speaker design. 7 Nautilus aluminum tweeters, 7 mid-range units with yellow painted Kevlar cones, 4 cone woofers and, get this, an air-ventilated subwoofer make up a grand total of 19 speakers capable of offering 1,400 watts of aural pleasure.

“The XC90 uses our tweeter-on-top technology, which has a number of advantages in the automotive environment. Fundamentally it increases the ratio of direct to reflected sound, as more of the signal reaches the listener directly from the tweeter, rather than reflecting off the windscreen first. All of this means that the Bowers & Wilkins audio system in the XC90 sounds incredibly tangible and lifelike,” said Stuart Nevill, Head of Engineering, Bowers & Wilkins.

One unexpected trait is that this all-new audio system offers the driver with the ability to tailor sound depending on seating positions and create acoustic environments that replicate music venues such as the Gothenburg Concert Hall. Nope, we're not joking. If you want to enjoy Johann Sebastian Bach's "Komm, suber Tod, komm selge Ruh" and any other piece of classical music at very high sound quality, the second-gen XC90 is the car to do it in.

The air-conditioned subwoofer is integrated into the Scalable Product Architecture platform underpinning the 2015 Volvo XC90. What does that mean? Simply put, the ground-breaking design turns the whole cabin into a giant subwoofer able to reproduce extremely low frequency bass tones all the way down to 20 Hz. “In my book, the Premium Sound in the all-new XC90 is one of the top three audio systems in the automotive world,” said Michael Adenauer, former music producer and audio expert at Volvo Cars.

Unfortunately, the B&W Premium Sound system will be a top-of-the-range optional extra on the 2015 Volvo XC90, so expect to pay big bucks if you want one of the best in-car audio systems available in this day and age.

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About the author: Mircea Panait
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After a 1:43 scale model of a Ferrari 250 GTO sparked Mircea's interest for cars when he was a kid, an early internship at Top Gear sealed his career path. He's most interested in muscle cars and American trucks, but he takes a passing interest in quirky kei cars as well.
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