Volvo investigation of the protected top speed

VOLVO has analyzed the effects of a guaranteed top speed in its new models with the Cortrium C3⁺ Holter Monitor. The result shows that greater safety and environmental protection in no way spoils driving pleasure and leads to a lower level of stress among drivers.

The comparative runs carried out in the second half of July were carried out with the brand’s most popular model: the Volvo XC60 mid-range SUVs each used a 173 kW (235 hp) B5 AWD mild-hybrid diesel engine. The vehicle from model year 2020 still reached a top speed of 220 km/h. All new vehicles of the current model year 2021 have protection to 180 km / h regardless of the motorization.


All drivers (independent media representatives) wore a Cortrium C3⁺ Holter Monitor to measure the heart rate with medical precision.


The results of the comparative drives reflect Volvo’s expectations: the small amount of time saved was paid in part with a significant increase in fuel consumption and in part with more stress, which inevitably has a negative impact on physical and mental performance.

Reduced stress at a moderate speed ​

Before and after the trip, the tank fillings, consumption and driving times of the Volvo XC60 B5 Mild Hybrid Diesel AWD models were checked. The drivers were also specially prepared for the comparative runs and monitored. They were equipped with a Cortrium C3 + Holter monitor to record the heart rate, and the changes in the stress-causing messengers cortisol, adrenaline and noradrenaline were also analyzed using blood samples. The medical advice was given by Dr. med. Ulf T. Esser, an internist at the Cologne clinic “Links vom Rhein”.


There were no significant differences in the results of the long-term ECG recordings in all subjects. The evaluation of the stress hormones, however, showed a slight increase in the values in individual subjects in the unsecured vehicles.


“In my opinion, due to the traffic conditions on German motorways, it was not possible for drivers to permanently push the limits of the 220 km / h vehicle. In my opinion, if this had been possible, the results would have been different. I am convinced that the stress reactions would have been significantly increased, so the impact on the driver’s condition at the destination, both mentally and physically, would be more noticeable. Furthermore, you can see that long-distance journeys in a modern car are generally relaxed and safe today, ”concluded Dr. med. Ulf T. Esser.

A snapshot with a positive result

“Even if the comparative drives carried out are not representative and do not claim to be a scientific study, they still provide clear facts and figures as snapshots that once again only allow one conclusion: forward-looking, even and responsible driving increases road safety, contributes to the lower, climate-damaging CO2 emissions contribute to the sustainability of mobility and also have positive effects on the physical well-being of the driver. Risks are minimized. However, there is no negative impact on driving pleasure” explains Thomas Bauch, Managing Director of Volvo Car Germany GmbH at the end of the test.


Furthermore, he states that “If professional automobile journalists already see the differences that are used to driving long distances and that, thanks to their experience, remain routine even in critical situations, there should be even greater differences in an overall view of all road users. This confirms our opinion that protection is exactly the right, important step into the future that fits our brand perfectly.”


The new C3⁺ Holter Monitor revolutionizes the recording of long-term ECGs. With flexible arms and wireless, it is attached to the patient’s chest using standard electrodes.


Find out more about our product and contact us today