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Volvo will introduce a plug-in hybrid S60 in Shanghai, but Americans won’t be able to buy it

Volvo will travel to next week’s Shanghai Motor Show to introduce the 2015 S60L T6 Twin Engine, its latest plug-in hybrid model. Don’t get your wallet out quite yet, the long-wheelbase gas-electric S60 was designed exclusively for the Chinese market and it will not be offered in the United States.

The S60L’s plug-in hybrid drivetrain is made up of a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine tuned to generate 238 horsepower and a compact electric motor that makes 68 horsepower. The four-banger sends power to the front wheels via an automatic transmission while the motor exclusively spins the rear wheels, a setup that provides on-demand all-wheel drive.

The S60L Twin Engine offers four driving modes called Pure, Hybrid, Power and Save, respectively. In Pure mode, the 2.0-liter shuts off and the S60L can drive on electricity alone for up to 32 miles. Electricity is stored in a lithium-ion battery pack that can be juiced up in 3.5 hours when plugged into a 230-volt outlet.

In Hybrid mode, the four-cylinder and the electric motor work together to return the best possible gas mileage. Power mode unleashes the drivetrain’s full output, giving the S60 306 horsepower and 405 foot-pounds of torque. When Power mode is selected, the sedan can reach 62 mph from a stop in just 5.6 seconds, a figure that makes it about half a second slower than the Polestar-tuned S60.

Finally, as its name implies, Save mode turns off the electric motor and saves the electricity stored in the battery pack. In Save mode, the Twin Engine drives like a standard, non-hybrid S60L

Outside, the biggest difference between the Twin Engine and the regular-production S60L is a charging port discreetly integrated into the driver-side fender and a tiny emblem on the trunk lid. The story is the same on the inside, where the differences between the two models are so minute that Volvo hasn’t bothered to publish images of the cockpit.

Built in Chengdu, China, the 2015 Volvo S60L will go on sale next week. The Swedish automaker has not revealed how much of a premium it will carry over the standard long-wheelbase S60.

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Ronan Glon
Ronan Glon is an American automotive and tech journalist based in southern France. As a long-time contributor to Digital…
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