Bowers & Wilkins Audio System unveiled for new Volvo S90

For a speaker company, B&W has done a great job of branching out into non-traditional markets. First there was the Zeppelin family of wireless speakers and next came headphones, including models such as the P5 and P3.

And the British speaker manufacturer has also managed to spread its reach into the automotive world, designing systems for Maserati, BMW and Volvo among others.

In fact, we've only just got back from a spin in the flagship B&W Diamond Surround System for the BMW 7 Series, which we found a very capable set-up.

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Its latest in-car ensemble takes the shape of the B&W Audio System for the recently launched Volvo S90 saloon.

The system features tweeter-on-top technology, which you'll already find available in Volvo's XC90 luxury SUV. If you're not familiar with this particular speaker tech, it separates the tweeter from any kind of cabinet or large enclosure. The idea is to deliver a clearer, purer treble.

There's a total of four tweeters in the Volvo system, each of which uses tech from B&W's famous Nautilus speakers, including the spiralling diffusion channels on the rear of each speakers, which are supposed to soak up reflected sound and reduce vibrations.

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And it wouldn't be a B&W system without the company's trademark yellow Kevlar drivers, which feature heavily throughout the system. Needless to say, the speaker configuration has been tuned to match the Volvo's interior.

There are a total of 19 speakers dotted around inside the cabin, driven by a 12-channel, 1400W amp. The set-up includes four, 17cm long-throw woofers in the front and rear doors, and two sets of drive units in the rear roof panel.

If you're thinking of ticking the options box, the B&W Audio System will cost £3000 when the new Volvo S90 goes on sale this summer.

Read all our B&W reviews

Andy Madden

Andy is Deputy Editor of What Hi-Fi? and a consumer electronics journalist with nearly 20 years of experience writing news, reviews and features. Over the years he's also contributed to a number of other outlets, including The Sunday Times, the BBC, Stuff, and BA High Life Magazine. Premium wireless earbuds are his passion but he's also keen on car tech and in-car audio systems and can often be found cruising the countryside testing the latest set-ups. In his spare time Andy is a keen golfer and gamer.