Volvo announced Wednesday that it will make a specially-tuned Polestar all-wheel-drive setting available for certain 2019 model year vehicles and beyond.
Buyers of new XC40s, 60-series, and 90-series vehicles will be able to select the Dynamic driving mode or turn off stability control to activate a rear-axle power bias, allowing easier slides. To help you control your slides, this mode also sharpens throttle response, quickens gear shifts, raises shift points, and boosts horsepower output. Though your tires may cry out, your warranty won't, as this is a manufacturer-approved upgrade.
This feature is available effective immediately for both gasoline- and diesel-powered variants of all the above vehicles, though not plug-in hybrids (T6 and T8 variants included), as they have electrically-driven rear axles. It does not replace or add any driving settings, merely refining the Dynamic setting, according to a statement issued by a Volvo spokesperson to The Drive. They also confirmed that this software upgrade can be installed at any time, be it on delivery or when coming in for service, and that a similar system is in development for previous model year Volvos; the availability for such system will be announced at a later date.
"We are always fine-tuning the driving experience of Volvo cars and this upgrade makes the all-wheel-drive both smoother and more dynamic," stated Henrik Green, senior vice president of R&D at Volvo Cars, in the automaker's press release on the feature.
Self-confident drivers who intend to drive with this setting active 24/7 should take heed of the last vehicle to offer a similar feature. The Ford Focus RS's "drift mode" allowed sideways action with ease, but wouldn't save your keister if you hamfisted a drift. Should they ignore this lesson and crash their car anyway, they'll be in good hands—Volvo's reputation for safety isn't underserved.