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Volvo AWD Turns 20, V90 Cross Country Becomes the Getaway Car

It's one 20th birthday after another at Volvo. After the iconic C70 last year, the Swedish manufacturer announced 20 years have passed since its first all-wheel drive system was installed.
Volvo AWD Turns 20, V90 Cross Country Becomes the Getaway Car 21 photos
Photo: Volvo
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It's a little younger than its premium rivals. For example, the first BMW with AWD was the 325i Allrad that made its debut at the 1985 Frankfurt Motor Show, making this year its 32nd birthday.

The first all-wheel Volvo was the Volvo 850 Estate, revealed in May 1996 with the 2.5L turbocharged I5T engine developing 193 hp and a five-speed manual transmission.

However, that's not going to keep Volvo down. And to celebrate two decades of all-weather grip, the Swedish carmaker is running a winter test drive showcasing its leading mechanical and new electric AWD solutions on the XC90, V90 Cross Country and V40 Cross Country models.

“Electrification will bring ever more flexibility to AWD. You can see the first signs of this in our XC90 T8 Twin Engine, where we have an electric rear-axle drive unit powering the rear wheels. As we move to full battery electric vehicles and other powertrain applications, we will see increased opportunities to control each motor and wheel independently, based on either the surface conditions or the desired driving style,” said Henrik Green, Senior Vice President, Research & Development at Volvo Cars.

AWD accounts for 50% of all new 90 series car sales. Across the entire brand, that figure only drops to 40%. That's why we call Volvo "Europe's Subaru."

We thought the video of the V90 Cross Country parading on a frozen lake was a little boring, particularly after watching the regular V90 being tested by the local police. Fortunately, Volvo also released a video called "The Get Away Car," which features the same car and is better put together.

Volvo's research says six out of ten people want to do more outdoorsy stuff, so their ad is about resetting priorities, taking time off and living in the moment. Check it out!

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About the author: Mihnea Radu
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Mihnea's favorite cars have already been built, the so-called modern classics from the '80s and '90s. He also loves local car culture from all over the world, so don't be surprised to see him getting excited about weird Japanese imports, low-rider VWs out of Germany, replicas from Russia or LS swaps down in Florida.
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