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2022 Volvo XC90 Trim Levels, Configurations & Comparisons.

2022 Volvo XC90 Trim Levels, Configurations & Comparisons: Momentum vs Inscription and Recharge

What 2022 Volvo XC90 Trim Should You Buy? What is the Difference Between Trims?

Volvo vehicles are classy and sophisticated. The company's lineup includes a number of SUVs, the largest of which is the XC90. Because it has three rows of seats, it's an intriguing choice for customers who need large cabins. The XC90 has high-end features on its exterior and interior, and they include advanced technology, sophisticated stylings, and elegant materials.

The XC90 has plenty of space in its cabin. Second-row leg room is 37 inches. In this row, there could either be two or three seating positions, depending on whether a bench or a set of captain's chairs has been installed. The third row has space for two more passengers, and it offers 31.9 inches of leg room.

There are three versions of the XC90 to consider. The first two are the Momentum and Inscription. They both have traditional powertrains. The last one is the Recharge. As its name suggests, it has some electric components to it. It's actually a plug-in hybrid, and since it gets a boost from a pair of electric motors, it's the most powerful out of the three trims.

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Compare the Momentum vs Inscription Trim Levels. What is the difference?

The Momentum may be an entry-level trim, but it's far from basic. It has a lot of elegance to it, along with impressive amenities. The Inscription takes things even further, firmly cementing itself into the luxury market as an attractive option.

It's important to discuss the available powertrains on these trims. With the Momentum, there are some choices. It can come with a turbocharged 2.0-liter engine or a turbocharged and supercharged 2.0-liter engine.

If you're not familiar with this terminology, here's a quick lesson. A turbocharger and a supercharger both allow the engine to "breathe" in more air to create more energy. Turbochargers are becoming fairly common these days, while superchargers are generally reserved for use on high-performance vehicles.

Volvo calls the turbocharged 2.0-liter engine the "T5" powertrain. It's able to generate 250 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque. The company has given the "T6" designation to the supercharged and turbocharged engine, which is able to make 316 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque. It takes a T6 XC90 only 6.1 seconds to go from a standstill to a speed of 60 miles per hour. This is almost a second and a half faster than how long it would take the T5 to hit that same speed.

The T6 is matched with an all-wheel drivetrain. This enhances traction and handling in a variety of situations. On the other hand, the T5 powertrain can be paired with either a front-wheel or all-wheel drivetrain. The price difference between a T5 with front-wheel drive and one with all-wheel drive is $2,500. Some people might not need the extra traction and would prefer to save money instead.

As mentioned earlier, the Momentum is available with all three options, the T5 FWD, T5 AWD, and T6 AWD. The Inscription comes standard with the T6 powertrain with all-wheel drive. There's not even an option to get the T5 on this trim.

Both trims use eight-speed Geartronic automatic transmissions. These Volvos are responsive and are adept at shifting at precisely the right times. The T5 FWD does the best in terms of fuel economy, earning an estimated 30 miles per gallon on the highway. The T5 AWD earns 28 miles per gallon on the highway, with the T6 AWD coming in right under that.

On the Momentum, there are 19-inch wheels, though there's the option to get other types. The front grille has a black insert and a chrome surround. That chrome matches the bright aluminum trim that surrounds the windows as well as the bright roof rails. There are auto-folding and heated side mirrors, and a panoramic moonroof with power sunshade is standard.

The Inscription has many of those same features. However, itt's been enhanced with 20-inch wheels that have a ten-spoke design. Its door handles have puddle lights and some soft illumination to welcome people at night, and the grille has a chrome insert instead of a black one.

Inside their cabins, there is plenty to enjoy. They have front seats that are soft and ergonomically designed to be supportive and comfortable. The driver's seat on both trims is power-adjustable and has two-way power-adjustable lumbar support, and there's a power-adjustable front-passenger seat as well. In the second row, the rear head restraints can be folded down to improve rear visibility. They have a power-folding function for convenience.

The driver's seat on both trims even has a memory function. It's pretty cool how it works, as it can remember multiple positions. Those positions can be linked to specific key fobs. When one person unlocks the car and gets in, the seat will automatically adjust to his/her favored position. When the next person drives the car and uses his/her key fob, then the seat will move to that other preferred position.

With the Inscription, heated and ventilated front seats are standard. There are also power cushion extensions and adjustable side supports on the front seats. Its front-passenger seat has a memory function, too.

Both trims have leather steering wheels. On the Momentum, the seats are wrapped in leatherette. On the Inscription, they're wrapped in Nappa leather, so they seem much more luxurious.

Further, the Inscription is enhanced with ambient illumination, a tailored dashboard, and illuminated front instep plates that are visible when the front doors are open. The Momentum does has shiny aluminum tread plates in the front, but they don't illuminate. The two trims have four-zone automatic climate control, but only the Inscription has sun curtains integrated into the rear doors to provide some extra shade on hot days.

Most of the technology equipment is the same on these two trims. For instance, they both have SiriusXM and smartphone connectivity, and they have nine-inch touchscreens. Voice control, wireless charging, and Bluetooth are all very convenient to have. They even both have navigation, which is a huge advantage. With this model, Volvo uses Sensus technology.

Additionally, there's a 12-inch instrument panel behind the steering wheel. It shows all kinds of things, such as speed, road sign information, directions, and who may be calling. The screen is customizable with four graphic modes to choose from, and its brightness can be adjusted, too.

One difference is the the Inscription has the better sound system. It uses Harman Kardon speakers and has a 600-watt digital amplifier. There are 14 total speakers, including an air-ventilated subwoofer that really brings out the low notes and rounds out the overall audio quality. The standard audio system on the Momentum is still pretty solid, as it's a 220-watt system with ten speakers.

Fortunately, every 2022 Volvo XC90 is equipped with several pieces of driver-assist technology. This SUV can warn drivers about vehicles in their blind spots and vehciles that may be crossing behind them when they're in reverse. It has adaptive cruise control, emergency braking, and front and rear parking sensors. It can also gently correct steering if needed to keep itself centered in a lane.

In addition, these Volvo trims have adaptive power steering. This isn't a commonly found feature, and it goes to show how much thought Volvo puts into designing its models. This program adjusts steering assistance depending on how fast the SUV is traveling. The amount of steering assistance required, or preferred by a particular person, may depend on whether the Volvo is navigating city streets or on the highway. There are three levels of sensitivity.

Compare the Inscription vs Recharge Trims. What is the difference?

Going from the Inscription to the Recharge is a pretty significant move. This is because the Recharge is a plug-in hybrid. It can drive up to 18 miles while relying on electric power alone. At other times, it uses a hybrid system to be more efficient. Like the Inscription, it comes standard with all-wheel drive.

In fact, it has the same gas-powered engine that the Inscription does, which is the supercharged and turbocharged 2.0-liter. It uses that engine along with a pair of electric motors to generate power. Because it has multiple components working together, it's able to exhibit excellent performance. It comes with 400 horsepower and 472 pound-feet of torque. It only takes 5.3 seconds to go from zero to 60 miles per hour in a Recharge.

There are actually many types of Recharge available. There are two types of Recharge Inscription trims, one of which is called the Inscription Expression. The other one is just called the Inscription.

The Inscription Expression has several upscale features, but not as many as found in the Inscription. For example, the Inscription Express has 19-inch wheels, leather seats, heated front seats, and power lumbar support. It has the same type of technology and safety components found in the non-Recharge trims, and it features aluminum front tread plates.

The Inscription, in comparison, rides on 20-inch wheels and has Nappa leather upholstery. It has puddle lights integrated into its door handles, a gear selector that's been handcrafted out of an actual piece of crystal, and a Harman Kardon premium sound system. Its enhanced front seats come with power cushion extensions, power-adjustable side support, and memory in both positions. Like the regular Inscription trim, it has sun curtains integrated into the back doors.

There is one more level of Volvo XC90 Recharge avaialble, and that's called the R-Design. It has a much sportier and more aggressive aesthetic than the others. This is clear just by looking at this model from the exterior. It has glossy black roof rails and mirror covers, a special grille with a high-gloss black insert, 20-inch black wheels, and more black surrounding the windows.

In its cabin, it has a dark charcoal headliner that contrasts nicely with the metal mesh aluminum decor. Its sport pedals seem seem to be something one would see in a race car, and they have rubber strips to provide more grip.

While the R-Design doesn't have ventilated front seats, Nappa leather upholstery, or the crystal gear selector knob that are all incorporated into the Recharge Inscription, it does have some unique components. The gear selector is wrapped in a tailored leather and has white contrast stitching, and the steering wheel is hand switched with glossy black elements and accent stitching.

The Recharge R-Design's seats have upholstery that uses a variety of materials. They have Nappa leather bolster and inserts along with synthetic material on the side bolsters and Nubuck textile seat panels. Nubuck is a high-tech cloth that's durable and soft. Its a cloth that allows for some air circulation, so people can stay cool and comfortable.

Notably, the Recharge R-Design has some exclusive options. It's available with Park Assist Pilot and four-corner air suspension. The parking assist program can actually take over steering for both parallel and perpendicular parking, and the advanced air suspension system can make thousands of precise adjustments as it drives over varying terrain and adapts to difference scenarios. It can maintain ride height when the back is weight down with cargo, and it can make adjustments to each shock absorber independently. Users can choose from comfort, eco, dynamic, off-road, and individual modes in order to prime the system to meet their expectations. With this type of suspension, the Recharge R-Design can lower itself when passengers are getting in and out of the cabin, only to raise itself when it's time to drive.

Buying Tip: To avoid overpaying on a new car, shop prices online first. Get up front pricing before you walk into a dealership. We recommend the following free services; Car Clearance Deals, NADAguides, CarsDirect & Motortrend.
These free services will offer you the lowest prices and supply you with multiple competing price quotes. You will know the best price before you visit the dealer.

Which Trim to Choose?

There's no doubt that all of these XC90 trims are impressive. This is reflected in their prices. The Momentum starts off with a cost that's already above $50,000, and it only goes up from there. The Recharge Inscription and Recharge R-Design cost more than $70,000.

Since even the lowest version of the Recharge is quite expensive, it may be off the table for many prospective buyers. That leaves the Momentum and the Inscription.

Considering all of the features that have been incorporated into the Momentum and its more reasonable cost, this trim seems like the best choice for most buyers. It has integrated navigation, a panoramic moonroof, comfortable seating, and advanced safety equipment, so it's really not lacking that much. Of course, it's great that customers have the choice of getting the T5 or the T6 engine. The additional benefits associated with the higher level Inscription might not matter enough to customers to justify spending the extra money on that trim.

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2021 Volvo XC90 Trime Levels
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