Currently reading: First ride in 2025 Volvo EX90 as testing wraps up
Flagship electric SUV is said to be the "safest car Volvo has ever made" and a "big step towards zero collisions"

The Volvo EX90 will go into production in the coming months, more than 18 months after it was first revealed, with the Swedish brand promising its new electric flagship SUV will set new standards for safety.

The large SUV, which will sit alongside the combustion-engined XC90, was first shown back in November 2022. Manufacturing will start shortly at Volvo’s factory in Charleston, South Carolina.

Priced from £96,255, it’s available to pre-order now in, with first UK deliveries due before the end of the year. Although she admitted that the EX90 had been delayed by a number of software issues, product manager Hande Ergiturk said the car’s reveal “was deliberately early, because it wasn’t just a car reveal, it was a reveal of our new technology”.

The EX90 is the first car to sit on Volvo’s advanced new SPA2 electric car platform, which it shares with the new Polestar 3 SUV, and is Volvo’s first “software-defined” vehicle, with an advanced operating system that was developed entirely in-house and uses two high-speed computer chips.

Refining that complex system was a major challenge, explained Ergiturk: “It has been a big technology leap, and it wasn’t an easy task. But safety is super-important for us; it was important to make sure that all the systems were refined and top-notch before they were offered to customers.”

One of the two chips is dedicated to running the advanced safety systems, which use a lidar scanner, five radars, eight sensors and 12 ultrasonic sensors.

All that allows the car to scan the road ahead for what’s claimed to be more effective use of the driver assistance systems. Ergiturk called the EX90 “the safest car Volvo has ever made, protecting people both outside and inside the car”, claiming: “It’s a big step towards zero collisions.”

The active safety systems aren’t just used when the car is moving. Interior sensors are used both for the compulsory driver monitoring system and to detect occupants, whether children or animals, to ensure that nobody can get locked inside the car.

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There’s a 14.5in central touchscreen and, unlike in the smaller EX30, a fixed digital driver’s information display. Most of the functions are controlled through the touchscreen.

The EX30 has copped strong criticism for this, but Ergiturk said the EX90’s system had been designed with a “complexity made simple” philosophy.

The EX90 will arrive in the UK with a single trim (fully loaded Ultra) and two fourwheel-drive powertrains. The 402bhp Twin Motor version is priced from £96,255, while the 510bhp Performance starts at £100,555.

Both powertrains feature a 107kWh (total) battery, which uses a 400V electrical architecture for rapid charging at rates of up to 250kW and offers a range of 364 and 360 miles, depending on the version, with a claimed best efficiency of 2.9mpkWh.

How does the new Volvo EX90 feel on the road?

I was given Autocar’s first dynamic taste of the EX90 in a late prototype at Volvo’s Hällered proving ground near Gothenburg, with running on a variety of handling tracks at the extensive venue that simulated country roads, off-road sections and a high-speed motorway.

I was confined to the very comfortable passenger seat while Mattias Davidson, the EX90’s vehicle dynamics lead, drove.

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“We prioritised ride comfort above all else,” he told me, “and we wanted to make it confidenceinspiring to drive.” Most notable initially was how quiet the EX90 was from the inside. The isolation seemed impressive even by upmarket SUV standards. Volvo claims this is the quietest cabin it has offered to date, and certainly it created a premium aura that felt in keeping with the Scandinavian-style interior.

That was reflected in the ride over the rougher sections of test track: our car was fitted with 20in tyres and the optional air suspension system, which uses a dual-chamber system and semi-active shock absorbers to help smooth out bumps and reduce interior jostling.

It also uses torque-vectoring to distribute power to the left and right rear wheels as needed when cornering, and in Davidson’s hands it rode well for a 5m-long machine weighing a hefty 2800kg. It's clear that this car has been set up to offer comfortable and consistent driving rather than any real sporting pretence – something that will be the preserve of the Polestar 3 that uses the same platform – but that should play to the strengths of the car and the brand.

While a ride doesn't give the opportunity to draw any driving impressions, it was enough to get a sense of how spacious the EX90 is. Our text car was in six-seat congifuration, although the seven-seat option is likely to be the most popular. There's plenty of space in there thanks to the large wheelbase and flat EV platform, with what looked like decent room even in the third row. Up front passenger comfort seemed high, while the large panoramic roof afforded a sense of space and the soft-touch materials and open-pore wood all felt upmarket and convincing.

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The EX90 certainly has the feel of a convincing contender in the premium SUV ranks, then, at least for passengers, being spacious, plush, comfy and quiet. Of course, as the smaller EX30 has shown, our view can change when we switch seats – and firm judgements must wait for that to happen in a few months.

James Attwood

James Attwood, digital editor
Title: Acting magazine editor

James is Autocar's acting magazine editor. Having served in that role since June 2023, he is in charge of the day-to-day running of the world's oldest car magazine, and regularly interviews some of the biggest names in the industry to secure news and features, such as his world exclusive look into production of Volkswagen currywurst. Really.

Before first joining Autocar in 2017, James spent more than a decade in motorsport journalist, working on Autosport,, F1 Racing and Motorsport News, covering everything from club rallying to top-level international events. He also spent 18 months running Move Electric, Haymarket's e-mobility title, where he developed knowledge of the e-bike and e-scooter markets. 

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Commenter 16 May 2024
Surprised that it isn't named EX100 if it exceed five metres length. If so, this is only a flagship model to top the smaller XC90, not replacing it
Diggety 16 May 2024

100k for a new car is not justifiable to the vast majority of new car buyers. Several posts saying an xc90 that cost 47k in 2016 would be 100k now are just wrong. Try the BOE calaculator. Companies are trying to saddle the public with the development costs for new electric vehicle tech over impossibly short timescales, in this case to the tune of 40k per vehicle if the good folks of the BOE can create an accurate calculator. It wont wash, as Mercedes decision to stop development of their luxury platform shows. This isnt a Volvo problem, its an Industry problem, but stagnant new E-car sales and plumetting used car values should be a wake up call.

Shrub 15 May 2024
Safest ever? At nearly three tons it will destroy a family travelling in any 'normal' hatchback that it crashes into, and it will one day, when the electronics fail or have been turned off, or the driver becomes too absorbed in the touchscreen to look where they are going.