Volvo is giving its entire lineup two potentially life-saving features that will undoubtedly make vehicles safer for drivers, passengers and pedestrians alike.
The sensible Swedish automaker’s entire range of new XC SUVs, S sedans and V wagons are getting a limited top speed of 112 mph, as well as a “Care Key”… but more on that later.
Volvo acknowledges that the notion of a limited top speed is controversial among those who question the rights of a manufacturer to impose one. We can only assume that those same people take issue with the Bugatti Chiron Super Sport 300+, which has an extraordinarily fast—but significantly limited—273.4-mph top end. And the production version of the 1,600-horsepower, special-edition Chiron only exists because it broke the 300-mph barrier.
Volvos, however, are largely designed to deliver ample performance on a comfortable journey from point A to B. Its flagship sedan, the S90, runs a super- and turbo-charged 2.0-liter flat-four that sends 316-hp to both axles via a smooth eight-speed automatic transmission. And the range-topping, front-wheel-drive XC90 SUV’s turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder produces 215 hp in the same gearbox.
Point being, Volvo doesn’t want you—or your teenager—to line its cars up next to your local gearhead’s hot rod or Italian exotic at a red light. Which brings us back to the Care Key. This is an extra function that allows owners to set additional limitations on speed in case a new driver or family member borrows the car.
A statement from a Volvo press release succinctly explains why speeding can be so dangerous:
“The problem with speeding is that above certain speeds, in-car safety technology and smart infrastructure design are no longer enough to avoid severe injuries and fatalities in the event of an accident.”
If speed is what you crave, buy a Porsche.