Better brakes hint at a new performance variant

A higher-performance version of the Volvo V60, potentially badged as the V60 R, has been spied undergoing testing in Europe.

With all the work involved in regenerating its line-up, as well as concentrating on "Swedish luxury", the Geely-owned luxury marque has thus far avoided going toe-to-toe with BMW M and Mercedes-AMG, but that might be set to change.

Despite the full body camouflage, we can't see any significant changes to the car's styling, suggesting this is an early prototype model, with the effects of any design changes to the car's bumpers and aero package to be tested on later cars.

Hinting at the car's upgraded performance potential are larger slotted disc brakes hiding behind the 10-spoke alloy wheels.

We're not sure how much power this, potentially, sportier version of the V60 will pack, but it's probably safe to say it will feature an warmed-over hybrid drivetrain given the company's commitment to only release vehicles with electrified drivetrains from 2019 onwards.

At present the 60- and 90-Series models based on Volvo's Scalable Product Architecture all feature 2.0-litre engines aided by forced induction, with top-end versions gaining extra performance via a plug-in hybrid setup.

The most powerful V60 currently is the T8 variant, which has plug-in hybrid drivetrain with a total of 288kW of power and 640Nm of torque at its disposal.

It's not known when this higher-performance version of the V60 will be launched, or how it will be branded. It's possible the company may revive its "R" badge as it has now spun off Polestar as its own separate marque.