Volvo Gets Sportier and Futuristic

By: Glady Reign

The sporty car segment of the auto industry has more to give. From sleek sedans to retro roadsters, the said segment has a wide variety of options to entice car aficionados. These sporty cars are priced from a minimum of around $16,000 to just over $40,000.

One of the stunning cars on the roads these days is the Pontiac Solstice, a roadster introduced at the 2004 North American International Auto Show. The car uses the GM Kappa platform which it shares with the Opel GT and Saturn Sky. According to some enthusiasts, driving a Pontiac Solstice is like driving a sharpened pencil. This is how thrilling the Solstice could be. As a fact, the car has been a runaway success for Pontiac. In the first 10 days of availability there were already 7,000 recorded orders. In addition, before winter came, 6,000 more orders came in. Last year, the car was also nominated for the North American Car of the Year award and Design of the Year award from the Automobile Journalists Association of Canada (AJAC).

One of Pontiac Solstice's close rivals is the MX-5 Miata from Mazda. The Mazda MX-5 is a roadster famed for its lightweight materials and flexibility. The car was designed with a conventional front-engine, rear-wheel-drive layout and four-wheel independent double wishbone suspension. It comes with an enhanced interior and a brand new elegance.

When it comes to the futuristic interior in a sporty car, the Mitsubishi Eclipse would capture attention. The two-door, four-seat sport compact car was named after an 18th century racehorse which has won a total of 26 races in its entire racing career.

The iconic American sports car called the Corvette is Chevrolet's pride entry. For more than 5 decades, Corvettes have combined powerful engines, simplicity and affordability. The long list of stunning sporty cars also includes the Subaru Impreza and Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution. Both of the cars received a minor facelift but still manage to tickle nostalgia.

Another great brand in the sporty car segment is Ford having the Mustang as its entry. The automaker's ponies are known for their groundbreaking power and performance. The Ford Mustang is equipped with upgraded suspension, bigger stabilizers and a much improved security. The Ford Mustang sold more than 1 million units in its first 18 months in the market.

The long list does not end there because an enticing addition is delivered by Volvo. According to enthusiasts, Volvo XC90 epitomizes a classy family vehicle that is as safe as a tank. It is a luxury vehicle that offers a long list safety and convenience features. Aside from that Volvo, made it a lot sportier and futuristic this time.

The 2007 base model of the vehicle comes with a 3.2 liter, inline, six-cylinder engine that delivers 235 horsepower, considerably more than the previously available 2.5-liter, 211-horsepower, five-cylinder engine. The vehicle also comes with an even bigger 4.4-liter, 311-horsepower V8 that was first introduced in 2005. To boost the performance of the Volvo XC90, the automaker enhanced its and other auto parts.

The Volvo XC90 with the six-cylinder engine costs $36,830. The vehicle with the V8 engine is priced at $47,120 while the Sport version which comes with a stiffer suspension and some special styling cues cost $49,995. Aside from sporty and futuristic design, another selling point of the vehicle is safety. It is one of the 13 vehicles that has been rated a "Top Safety Pick" by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. All versions of the Volvo XC90 have antilock brakes, an electronic rollover prevention system, stability and traction control, and every kind of airbag around, including side-curtain airbags covering all three rows of seats.

The upgraded version of the Volvo XC90 is especially made for the younger market. This is the very reason behind the sizzling new appearance. According to the Power Information Network, a unit of the McGraw-Hill Companies (MHP), the typical buyer of the Volvo XC90 is a relatively youthful 44 years old, 5 years younger than the average for the segment and 61.5 per cent of Volvo XC90 buyers are between the ages of 36 and 55, as opposed to just 52 per cent for the segment.

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