Added: 11th of October 2013
This car provides a sense of quality and comfort as soon as you get in. The handling is superb, probably the best I have ever had, significantly better than my previous model S60 and also better than my A4 which was the best I had up until the current S60. It could do with being a little more powerful (the latest version does provide greater power for the same fuel economy), but it is adequate for normal driving. Fuel economy could be improved. I get an average of 46mpg which isn't bad but is around 10mpg less that the manual equivalent, which shouldn't be the case with a modern automatic. Talking of the Auto gear box, it is smooth and rarely gets it wrong, even when going up very steep hills (not a problem for most people anyway, I suspect). The seats are comfortable and the electronic adjustments smooth and refined. I find it very easy to make adjustments that suit me. It is very easy to go on a long journey in this car and get out the other end as if it were no more than 20 odd miles. The most niggly thing about the car is the fact that the electronic handbrake does not come on automatically when you turn the engine off. Even my wife's Citroen does that (and this is NOT comparable to the Citroen), as did her old Renault Scenic. The multi function screen is not perfect, it could do with the larger and more colourful version that comes with the integrated sat-nav (I didn't get that). However, I like the ease with which my mobile integrates with the audio system and the sound quality of calls is excellent. I also like the iPod facility. The other (probably trivial) element I am not keen on is the fact that I have to put the key in the slot. There is an option to have the key detected remotely, I would take it if you get the chance. Internally the feeling of quality is good. The materials are nice to touch (although there could be a little more leather in the SE version). The (digital) instruments are laid out well as is the centre console which is made of solid metal (I assume aluminium). It could do with an out of sight 12v supply in the space behind the consol for plugging in your mobile or SatNav (you can pay for the inbuilt SatNav of course, if it doesn't take you over your budget). Some of the safety features are good. I like the idea of all the air bags. The brakes are excellent and the (self levelling) lights are very clear. The City feature (automatic braking if it looks like you are going to collide with the car in front) is a superb idea, but I haven't got the nerve (or desire) to try it out to see if it works. But I hope it does if ever I need it. So, in summary, the important elements such as the driving, seats (in fact, overall comfort), smoothness, safety and quality are excellent and I really rate this car very highly.