Certified Benz & Beemer Compares 2015 BMW X1 VS 2015 Volvo XC60 Near Phoenix, AZ

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2015 BMW X1

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2015 Volvo XC60

Safety Comparison

When descending a steep, off-road slope, the X1 xDrive’s standard Hill Descent Control allows you to creep down safely. The XC60 doesn’t offer Hill Descent Control.

The X1 has standard BMW Assist, which uses a global positioning satellite (GPS) receiver and a cellular system to remotely unlock your doors if you lock your keys in, help track down your vehicle if it’s stolen or send emergency personnel to the scene if any airbags deploy. The XC60 doesn’t offer a GPS response system, only a navigation computer with no live response for emergencies, so if you’re involved in an accident and you’re incapacitated help may not come as quickly.

Both the X1 and the XC60 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding and available all-wheel drive.

Warranty Comparison

The X1’s corrosion warranty is 2 years and unlimited miles longer than the XC60’s (12/unlimited vs. 10/100,000).

BMW pays for scheduled maintenance on the X1 for 1 year and 14,000 miles longer than Volvo pays for maintenance for the XC60 (4/50,000 vs. 3/36,000).

Reliability Comparison

To reliably power the ignition and other systems and to recharge the battery, the X1 has a standard 210-amp alternator. The XC60’s 180-amp alternator isn’t as powerful.

The battery on the X1 is in the trunk, which protects it from hot underhood temperatures that can degrade battery life. By keeping the X1’s battery 20 to 30 degrees cooler, its life is increased by years. The XC60’s battery is in the hot engine compartment.

A reliable vehicle saves its owner time, money and trouble. Nobody wants to be stranded or have to be without their vehicle while it’s being repaired. Consumer Reports predicts that the X1’s reliability will be 27% better than the XC60.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2014 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 8th in initial quality, above the industry average. With 7 more problems per 100 vehicles, Volvo is ranked 13th.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2014 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 11th in reliability. With 22 more problems per 100 vehicles, Volvo is ranked 21st.

Engine Comparison

As tested in Consumer Reports the X1 sDrive/xDrive28i 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. is faster than the XC60 T6 :



Zero to 30 MPH

2.7 sec

2.9 sec

Zero to 60 MPH

6.8 sec

7.4 sec

45 to 65 MPH Passing

4.3 sec

4.7 sec

Quarter Mile

15.3 sec

15.8 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

94.6 MPH

92.4 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range Comparison

On the EPA test cycle the X1 gets better fuel mileage than the XC60:




2.0 turbo 4 cyl./8-spd Auto

23 city/34 hwy

24 city/31 hwy

2.0 turbo 4 cyl. (240 HP)/Auto


22 city/30 hwy

2.0 turbo 4 cyl. (302 HP)/Auto



17 city/24 hwy

3.2 6 cyl./Auto

3.0 turbo 6 cyl./6-spd Auto

18 city/27 hwy

17 city/24 hwy

3.0 turbo 6 cyl. (300 HP)

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

For better stopping power the X1 xDrive35i’s front brake rotors are larger than those on the XC60:

X1 xDrive35i


Front Rotors

13.7 inches

12.9 inches

Rear Rotors

13.2 inches

11.9 inches

The X1’s standard front and rear disc brakes are vented to help dissipate heat for shorter stops with less fading. The rear discs on the XC60 are solid, not vented.

Tires and Wheels Comparison

The X1’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 50 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the XC60’s 60 series tires. The X1’s optional 225/35R19 front and 255/30R19 rear tires have a lower 35 series front and 30 series rear profile than the XC60’s optional 45 series tires.

Changing a flat tire near traffic can be dangerous and inconvenient. The run-flat tires standard on the X1 can be driven up to 50 miles without any air pressure, allowing you to drive to a service station for a repair. The XC60 doesn’t offer run-flat tires.

Suspension and Handling Comparison

The X1 has standard front and rear gas-charged shocks for better control over choppy roads. The XC60’s suspension doesn’t offer gas-charged shocks.

The X1 has vehicle speed sensitive variable-assist power steering, for low-effort parking, better control at highway speeds and during hard cornering, and a better feel of the road. The XC60 doesn’t offer variable-assist power steering.

The X1’s front to rear weight distribution is more even (49.4% to 50.6%) than the XC60’s (58.9% to 41.1%). This gives the X1 more stable handling and braking.

The X1 xDrive28i xDrive handles at .82 G’s, while the XC60 AWD pulls only .81 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.

The X1 xDrive35i xDrive executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 1 seconds quicker than the XC60 T6 AWD (26.7 seconds @ .69 average G’s vs. 27.7 seconds @ .62 average G’s).

For better maneuverability, the X1’s turning circle is 1.3 feet tighter than the XC60’s (37.1 feet vs. 38.4 feet).

Chassis Comparison

The BMW X1 may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 400 to 500 pounds less than the Volvo XC60.

The X1 is 6.3 inches shorter than the XC60, making the X1 easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

Passenger Space Comparison

The X1 has 3.3 inches more front headroom, .2 inches more front legroom and 1.6 inches more rear headroom than the XC60.

For enhanced passenger comfort on long trips the X1’s rear seats recline. The XC60’s rear seats don’t recline.

Ergonomics Comparison

The X1’s front and rear power windows all lower with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside of the car. The XC60’s rear power window switches have to be held the entire time to open them fully.

If the windows are left down on the X1 the driver can raise them all using the key in the outside lock cylinder. On a hot day the driver can lower the windows from outside the vehicle using the key in the outside lock cylinder or the keyless remote. The driver of the XC60 can only operate the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.

Economic Advantages Comparison

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the X1 is less expensive to operate than the XC60 because it costs $333 less to do the manufacturer’s suggested maintenance for 50,000 miles. Typical repairs cost much less on the X1 than the XC60, including $34 less for front brake pads and $283 less for a fuel pump.

Intellichoice estimates that five-year ownership costs (depreciation, financing, insurance, fuel, fees, repairs and maintenance) for the BMW X1 will be $2014 to $3526 less than for the Volvo XC60.

Recommendations Comparison

Consumer Reports® recommends both the BMW X1 and the Volvo XC60, based on reliability, safety and performance.

The BMW X1 outsold the Volvo XC60 by 31% during the 2014 model year.

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