Volvo is introducing an updated S90 saloon and V90 estate and I know what you're thinking. You're thinking that both cars were pretty much visually perfect as they were, so why mess with them? And you'd be right, but thankfully Volvo has concentrated more on what's under the skin, so we're all good, here.
Minor visual changes and a mild-hybrid option
The visual changes are basically limited to some small tweaks to the bumpers and to the rear lights, which now look a little slimmer and more 'jewelled.' They also get sequential, scrolling, indicators. Phew. That's about it.
The bigger news is that Volvo's 48-volt mild-hybrid system is being introduced to the S90 and V90 range. It's already available in the XC90, in the shape of the B5 mild-hybrid diesel version, so it's a welcome addition to the S90 and V90. Volvo claims that the system can offer fuel and emissions savings of as much as 15 per cent in real-world driving. There's a new brake-by-wire system that goes with the mild-hybrid, which maximises energy recovery under braking. The addition of the mild-hybrid allows Volvo to boast that there's now an electrified version of every model in its line-up.
Inside, there's a new optional Bowers & Wilkins stereo system, which gets an upgraded amplifier, automatic vehicle noise cancellation and a new setting that Volvo claims "mimics the sound of your favourite jazz club." That will, if nothing else, bring joy to fans of The Fast Show. Nice.
There's also, designed with the Chinese market in mind, a new high-grade air filter, called the Advanced Air Cleaner, or AAC. This allows drivers to monitor interior air quality via the centre screen. If desired, the Advanced Air Cleaner can clean the cabin air of almost all tiny particles within a few minutes.
Leather-free cabin trim
In the rear, the old 12-volt electric socket has been replaced by new-fangled USB-C sockets, while in terms of trim there's a new exclusive 'tailored wool blend' seat upholstery - introduced on the XC90 last year - and now also available on all Volvo 90 and 60 models, while there is also a leather-free interior option for the top trim levels.
So, that's OK then. Only small, possibly useful, changes to one of our favourite cars. Volvo hasn't thankfully, chucked out the baby with the bath water. We can all relax again.