2021 BMW 330e vs. 2020 Volvo S60

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

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Both the 330e and the S60 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, post-collision automatic braking systems, daytime running lights, lane departure warning systems, rearview cameras, driver alert monitors, available all wheel drive, blind spot warning systems, around view monitors and rear cross-path warning.

Warranty

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There are over 23 percent more BMW dealers than there are Volvo dealers, which makes it easier should you ever need service under the 330e’s warranty.

Reliability

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J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that BMW vehicles are better in initial quality than Volvo vehicles. J.D. Power ranks BMW 20th in initial quality. With 12 more problems per 100 vehicles, Volvo is ranked 28th.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that BMW vehicles are more reliable than Volvo vehicles. J.D. Power ranks BMW 7th in reliability, above the industry average. With 82 more problems per 100 vehicles, Volvo is ranked 29th.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2019 Auto Issue reports that BMW vehicles are more reliable than Volvo vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks BMW 7 places higher in reliability than Volvo.

Engine

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The 330e’s 2.0 turbo 4-cylinder hybrid produces 38 more horsepower (288 vs. 250) and 52 lbs.-ft. more torque (310 vs. 258) than the S60 T5’s standard 2.0 turbo 4-cylinder. The 330e’s 2.0 turbo 4-cylinder hybrid produces 15 lbs.-ft. more torque (310 vs. 295) than the S60 T6’s standard 2.0 turbo/supercharged 4-cylinder.

Fuel Economy and Range

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The 330e’s maximum driving range in pure electric mode is 23 miles, 5% further than the S60 T8’s 22-mile range.

Transmission

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The 330e’s launch control uses engine electronics to hold engine RPM’s precisely in order to provide the most stable and rapid acceleration possible, using all of the available traction. The S60 doesn’t offer launch control.

Brakes and Stopping

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For better stopping power the 330e’s standard brake rotors are larger than those on the S60:

330e

S60

Front Rotors

13 inches

12.7 inches

Rear Rotors

13 inches

11.9 inches

Tires and Wheels

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The 330e’s optional 255/35R19 rear tires provide better handling because they have a lower 35 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the S60’s optional 40 series tires.

Changing a flat tire near traffic can be dangerous and inconvenient. The run-flat tires standard on the 330e can be driven up to 50 miles without any air pressure, allowing you to drive to a service station for a repair. The S60 doesn’t offer run-flat tires.

Suspension and Handling

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The 330e has standard front and rear gas-charged shocks for better control over choppy roads. The S60’s suspension doesn’t offer gas-charged shocks.

The front and rear suspension of the 330e uses coil springs for better ride, handling and control than the S60, which uses transverse leafs springs in the rear. Coil springs compress more progressively and offer more suspension travel for a smoother ride with less bottoming out.

The 330e offers an optional driver-adjustable suspension system. It allows the driver to choose between an extra-supple ride, reducing fatigue on long trips, or a sport setting, which allows maximum control for tricky roads. The S60’s suspension doesn’t offer adjustable shock absorbers.

The 330e’s front to rear weight distribution is more even (49.3% to 50.7%) than the S60’s (55% to 45%). This gives the 330e more stable handling and braking.

Passenger Space

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The 330e has 1.3 inches more front headroom, .4 inches more rear headroom and .1 inches more rear shoulder room than the S60.

Cargo Capacity

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The 330e has a much larger trunk than the S60 (13.2 vs. 11.6 cubic feet).

Servicing Ease

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The engine in the 330e is mounted longitudinally (North-South), instead of sideways, as in the S60. This makes it easier to service and maintain, because the accessory belts are in front.

Ergonomics

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To shield the driver and front passenger’s vision over a larger portion of the windshield and side windows, the 330e has standard extendable sun visors. The S60 doesn’t offer extendable visors.

To quickly and conveniently keep personal devices charged without cables tangling and wearing out, the BMW 330e offers an optional wireless phone charging system (Qi) in the center console. The S60 doesn’t offer wireless personal charging.

The 330e’s optional Parking Assistant Plus can parallel park by itself, starting, stopping and changing direction automatically. The S60’s automatic parking system requires operating the brakes and transmission to safely park.

Economic Advantages

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Insurance will cost less for the 330e owner. The Car Book by Jack Gillis rates the 330e with a number “3” insurance rate while the S60 is rated higher at a number “5” rate.

The 330e will cost the buyer less in the long run because of its superior resale value. The IntelliChoice estimates that the 330e will retain % of its original price after five years, while the S60 only retains -498.28% to 42%.

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the 330e is less expensive to operate than the S60 because typical repairs cost much less on the 330e than the S60, including $588 less for a fuel pump.

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