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Monday, January 12, 2009

2009 Detroit Auto Show: Volvo S60 Concept

s60front.jpg#DAS09 It has been nearly a decade since the launch of the Volvo S60 sedan, and despite the redesign of all its relatives (S80, V70 and XC70), it continues on in its original form. A redesign really is coming, though. We're told the redesigned S60 will debut midway through the 2010 calendar year.

This Volvo S60 Concept, unveiled at the very last press conference of the day at Detroit's Cobo Hall, is a very good look at the 2011 Volvo S60. The sheetmetal is a study in modern Scandinavian design mixed with the current trend toward sedans that resemble coupes. We like it a whole lot. In fact, we'd like this look even on a production sedan that didn't have a pillarless door design. Inside, Volvo is again working with an ultra-thin center stack design, but this is a concept, so it's crystal. The gear selector is a strange piece -- you turn it one way for automatic operation and another for manual operation.

Expect all sorts of safety technology in the final production car, including an all-speed adaptive cruise system that will bring the car to a standstill if it senses you're delinquent behind the wheel. There's also a pedestrian detection feature in the S60 concept -- radar detects a human and an on-board camera confirms and monitors said human's position. -- Erin Riches, Senior Editor

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