2019 Volvo S90 vs. 2018 BMW 530e

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/07/12

For enhanced safety, the front and rear seat shoulder belts of the Volvo S90 have pretensioners to tighten the seatbelts and eliminate dangerous slack in the event of a collision and force limiters to limit the pressure the belts will exert on the passengers. The BMW 530e doesn’t offer pretensioners for the rear seat belts.

For enhanced safety, the front seat shoulder belts of the Volvo S90 are height-adjustable to accommodate a wide variety of driver and passenger heights. A better fit can prevent injuries and the increased comfort also encourages passengers to buckle up. The BMW 530e doesn’t offer height-adjustable seat belts.

Both the S90 and 530e have child safety locks to prevent children from opening the rear doors. The S90 has power child safety locks, allowing the driver to activate and deactivate them from the driver's seat and to know when they're engaged. The 530e’s child locks have to be individually engaged at each rear door with a manual switch. The driver can’t know the status of the locks without opening the doors and checking them.

The Volvo S90 offers optional built in child booster seats. They’re more crash worthy than an added child seat because of their direct attachment to the seat. BMW doesn’t offer the convenience and security of a built-in child booster seat in the 530e. Their owners must carry a heavy booster seat in and out of the vehicle; S90 owners can just fold their built-in child seat up or down.

The S90 has a standard Whiplash Protection System (WHIPS), which use a specially designed headrest to protect the driver and front passenger from whiplash. During a rear-end collision, the WHIPS moves the headrests forward to prevent neck and spine injuries. At the same time the pretensioning seatbelts fire, removing slack from the belts. The 530e doesn’t offer a whiplash protection system.

To help make backing safer, the S90’s cross-path warning system uses wide-angle radar in the rear bumper to alert the driver to vehicles approaching from the side, helping the driver avoid collisions. The 530e doesn’t offer a cross-path warning system.

Both the S90 and the 530e have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, post-collision automatic braking systems, daytime running lights, driver alert monitors, available all wheel drive and around view monitors.

For its top level performance in all IIHS frontal, side, rear impact and roof-crush tests, and its standard front crash prevention system, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the S90 the rating of “Top Pick” for 2017, a rating granted to only 149 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The 530e has not been tested, yet.

Reliability

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/07/12

The 530e’s redline is at 7000 RPM, which causes more engine wear, and a greater chance of a catastrophic engine failure. The S90 has a 6000 RPM redline.

Engine

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/07/12

The S90 T6’s standard 2.0 DOHC 4 cyl. produces 68 more horsepower (316 vs. 248) than the 530e’s 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. hybrid. The S90 T8’s standard 2.0 DOHC 4 cyl. hybrid produces 152 more horsepower (400 vs. 248) and 162 lbs.-ft. more torque (472 vs. 310) than the 530e’s 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. hybrid.

As tested in Motor Trend the S90 T6 is faster than the BMW 530e:

 

S90

530e

Zero to 60 MPH

5.6 sec

6 sec

Quarter Mile

14.1 sec

14.4 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

98.9 MPH

95.1 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/07/12

On the EPA test cycle the S90 T8 running on electricity gets better fuel mileage than the 530e xDrive running on electricity (70 city/72 hwy vs. 66 city/68 hwy MPGe).

On the EPA test cycle the S90 T8 running its gasoline engine gets better fuel mileage than the 530e xDrive running its gasoline engine (26 city/33 hwy vs. 27 city/31 hwy).

The S90 T8 Plug-In Hybrid’s standard fuel tank has 1.1 gallons more fuel capacity than the 530e (13.2 vs. 12.1 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups. The S90 T6’s standard fuel tank has 3.8 gallons more fuel capacity than the 530e (15.9 vs. 12.1 gallons).

The S90 has a standard cap-less fueling system. The fuel filler is automatically opened when the fuel nozzle is inserted and automatically closed when it’s removed. This eliminates the need to unscrew and replace the cap and it reduces fuel evaporation, which causes pollution. The 530e doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.

Brakes and Stopping

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The S90 stops much shorter than the 530e:

 

S90

530e

 

60 to 0 MPH

107 feet

124 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels

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For better traction, the S90’s optional tires are larger than the largest tires available on the 530e (255/35R20 vs. 245/45R18).

The S90’s optional tires provide better handling because they have a lower 35 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the 530e’s 45 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the S90 offers optional 20-inch wheels. The 530e’s largest wheels are only 18-inches.

Suspension and Handling

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For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the S90’s wheelbase is 3.4 inches longer than on the 530e (120.5 inches vs. 117.1 inches).

The S90 T6 Inscription handles at .88 G’s, while the 530e pulls only .85 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

For better maneuverability, the S90 18” wheels’ turning circle is .8 feet tighter than the 530e’s (38.7 feet vs. 39.5 feet). The S90 19” wheels’ turning circle is .1 feet tighter than the 530e xDrive’s (40 feet vs. 40.1 feet).

Chassis

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The Volvo S90 may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs up to about 400 pounds less than the BMW 530e.

Passenger Space

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/07/12

The S90 has 3.2 cubic feet more passenger volume than the 530e (102 vs. 98.8).

The S90 has .8 inches more front legroom, .3 inches more rear headroom and 3.9 inches more rear legroom than the 530e.

Cargo Capacity

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/07/12

Pressing a switch automatically lowers the S90’s rear seats, to make changing between passengers and cargo easier. The 530e doesn’t offer automatic folding seats.

Ergonomics

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Heated windshield washer nozzles are standard on the S90 to prevent washer fluid and nozzles from freezing and help continue to keep the windshield clear in sub-freezing temperatures. The 530e doesn’t offer heated windshield washer nozzles.

In poor weather, headlights can lose their effectiveness as grime builds up on their lenses. This can reduce visibility without the driver realizing. The S90 offers available headlight washers to keep headlight output high. The 530e doesn’t offer headlight washers.

The S90 Inscription has standard front air-conditioned seats and offers them optionally in the rear. This keeps the passengers comfortable and takes the sting out of hot seats in summer. The 530e doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats in the rear.

The S90 has a 115-volt a/c outlet on the center console, allowing you to recharge a laptop or run small household appliances without special adapters that can break or get misplaced. The 530e doesn’t offer a house-current electrical outlet.

Recommendations

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/07/12

The S90 was chosen as one of Automobile Magazine’s “All Stars” in 2017. The 530e has never been an “All Star.”

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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