FOR those looking for a combination of luxury and a bit of ruggedness, the V60 Cross Country presents a pretty unique option.

We know that the V60 is a highly competent premium mid-size estate, but we also know that the manufacturer can make cars to handle a bit of rough, too.

The Cross Country looks more rugged all-round and, compared to the standard car, gets charcoal wheel extensions, a lower front grille and sill mouldings.

It also sits 60mm higher than the standard V60 and gets suspension tweaks for added comfort and all models are all-wheel-drive.

There’s also hill descent control and front parking sensors as standard.

All the extras, then, for tackling unsavoury conditions when needed.

Those soft roader qualities don’t detract from the fact that this remains an excellent executive car .

The D4 diesel we drove is one of the most popular engine choices in the overall V60 range and it’s easy to see why, as it provides plenty of smooth effortless power in every driving mode and gives you the poke when you need it.

In all situations it’s an assured and confident drive, infinitely comfortable and sharp on handling.

On paper it’s good for 48mpg and we managed 40-ish on the cruise. Not bad for a motor with 190hp and a 0-62mph time of 8.2 seconds.

It’s one of two engines available on the Cross Country, the other being the T5 petrol, with 250hp.

Lots of grunt here, but economy predictably suffers, down to 39 to the gallon. That’s not a huge difference, though, given that the diesel carries a £1,000 purchase premium.

Inside it’s a top notch experience, with quality materials throughout and an excellent fit and finish. It’s a very nice place to be.

All V60s get the 9in upright touch screen, as well as Volvo On Call to control car functions from your smartphone, sat nav, safety kit such as pedestrian detection and oncoming lane mitigation, climate control, power tailgate and cruise control.

There’s lots of tech you can spec up via various packs. Adaptive cruise control is excellent – it’s really semi-autonomous motoring – and you can also have a 360-degree parking camera, power folding rear seats and plenty besides.

There’s plenty of practicality too of course, with things like a grocery bag holder and load protection net alongside many storage compartments and power sockets, and it goes without saying that rear accommodation is plentiful and the boot is large

Whether on a bit of rough stuff or the motorway, travelling doesn’t get much better than this.

Prices for the Cross Country start at £39,935.