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How do we feel about Volvo cars?

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    Changes come butcher bergs's Avatar
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    How do we feel about Volvo cars?


    These cars look like they make a whole lot of sense but I know very little about them from an ownership and shadetree mechanic perspective.

    Where are the weak spots on the S60 and S80?
    Drivetrain issues and which engines do I steer clear of?

    Currently considering an S60 AWD 2.5T for commuting.

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    Back marker... jwm2k3's Avatar
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    Re: How do we feel about Volvo cars?

    Ive always considered Volvo is a car for people who dont like to drive.

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    Re: How do we feel about Volvo cars?

    The 2001 S60 had some transmission issues, and that era S60 was known for ETM (electronic throttle body) issues. But I think that issue is pretty well understood, and most have since been fixed. The S80 T6 is usually considered the out liar when it comes to reliability. IIRC, the transmission was not set up to support the power the twin-turbo I6 put out, and would fail. The non-turbo S80 - meh. I don't see why you'd get it over the S60.

    The inline-5 in the S60 is excellent. AWD on those is fairly sensitive to wheel size differences, causing failure of the bevel gear. Be cautious about buying from someone who didn't know that. IMO, skip the AWD model and go for the T5 trim. FWD and snow tires (not a joke) will be fine. The turbo will be magical. The S60 has an oddly wide turning radius which kinda sucks. But it'll tour on the highway great.

    Good parts aren't cheap, but they usually last. The volvo's seem to resist rot fairly well. Check out FCPEuro.com for parts. Tasca Volvo is a good alternative.

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    Re: How do we feel about Volvo cars?

    can't speak for the new front wheel drive stuff, I had a 740 wagon, and my ex had a 740 sedan, both were high milage cars, all issues were electrical, wire harness had a lot of green showing, insulation brittle as if had been sitting out in sun exposed to UV

    also, any one I knew in the past with anything from a 122, problems, if any were always electrical

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    Re: How do we feel about Volvo cars?

    IMO, there's been a few phases of Volvo.
    There was the RWD boxes, like the classic 240 and 740. I've never thought of these cars as having electrical problems, but I'm not that familiar with them.
    Then the FWD era, starting in 94-95 with the 850 soccer wagon. Those have almost no electrical problems at all.
    Then the Ford-owned era starting in 99, which wasn't that bad but had some speed bumps. I'm not aware of much for electrical wiring problems here either.
    And now the China-era, which is too soon to know much about longevity but I see good things on the horizon for the brand.

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    Senior Member OneCheekRider's Avatar
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    Re: How do we feel about Volvo cars?

    I miss my '87 740 wagon. Thing was bulletproof and had seats for 7.

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    Re: How do we feel about Volvo cars?

    Quote Originally Posted by jwm2k3 View Post
    Ive always considered Volvo is a car for people who dont like to drive.
    It used to be. Those people all now have SUVs.

    PhilB

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    Re: How do we feel about Volvo cars?

    I guess I don't like to drive.

    I have a 2003 S60 T5 MT as my commuter/beater. I've owned for at least 5 or 6 years and sitting at 190k miles now. I really like it. Ridiculously comfortable seats. They do hold up well rust-wise. I have a set of snows mounted on a spare set and yes: it's great in the snow. Tows 2 bikes fine on an open trailer; it's rated for 3k lbs. I'd personally rather have the AWD R, but the T5 gets out of its own way. The torque steer does become noticeable if you get on it tho.

    There are some common issues which aldend123 mentioned. Turning radius is worse the T5 and R models due to wider rim/tire; they have different steering stops. Front upper spring seats & bearing plates can wear out as well as lower trans bushing - all easy to fix. Other than that: my maintenance has been 1 coil, exhaust, brakes twice, and threw some bilsteins in to tighten up the ride. I wish the MT wasn't as notchy, but that's about it.

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    Last edited by keeena; 11-04-16 at 09:40 PM.

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    Re: How do we feel about Volvo cars?

    Never been a HUGE Volvo fan but they've certainly produced a few models that I'd certainly own if the right opportunity presented itself. A good friend had a 850R with a couple tasteful mods that absolutely FLEW, another friend had a blue S60R with peanut butter leather that was simply gorgeous and pretty quick/nimble itself. Saw a new S90 the other day in pearl white and fell in love but that pricetag is a bit much to swallow when outfitted the way I'd want it. The fact that you can't get the R models in a manual transmission anymore also pushed me away however that seems to be the way everyone's going these days. Even the B9 S4 isn't offered in a stick

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    Re: How do we feel about Volvo cars?

    think the inline 5 banger is zero clearance motor, do the cam belt as scheduled or..........bang.

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    Re: How do we feel about Volvo cars?

    Quote Originally Posted by lobsta3 View Post
    think the inline 5 banger is zero clearance motor, do the cam belt as scheduled or..........bang.
    That's true of almost every car, truck, or motorcycle today.

    PhilB

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    Re: How do we feel about Volvo cars?

    I never thought I'd see a thread like this!!! Haha. We get no love in the luxury market. I'm on my 2nd Volvo. I had a 2013 C30 T5 turbo that was awesome. Now I have a 2016 S60 with the 4 cylinder turbo. I'm enjoying it a lot. My next car will be the S90.

    The new XC90 and S90 are game changers and are converting some lifelong BMW/MB fans to Volvo. I test drove the new XC90 and it's pretty sick. It is the only production car with a turbo charger AND supercharger. Amazing.....The fit and finish and new tablet style touch screen is superb too. The S90 has the same engine.

    Sorry but I don't know anything about the older Volvo's. Lol

    2017 Volvo XC90 - Review and Road Test - YouTube


    2017 Volvo S90 Review--VOLVO CONTINUES TO IMPRESS - YouTube

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    Last edited by South of Heaven; 11-05-16 at 01:55 PM.
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    Re: How do we feel about Volvo cars?

    I had customers shopping the new XC against the RX350, and its an awesome car.

    The upcoming V90 wagon though... that is an epic dad car.

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    Re: How do we feel about Volvo cars?

    Quote Originally Posted by PhilB View Post
    That's true of almost every car, truck, or motorcycle today.

    PhilB
    Right, I think a few VW's still are non-interference? Not a common configuration anymore. Timing belts on the older volvo's aren't known for premature failure. Just stay on top of maintenance intervals and you'll be fine.

    The seats in the S70 (same in V70, 850) are the best seats in a car I've found yet. And it's something I pay close attention to. They aren't very adjustable, but I could sit in them for hours. The early to mid-2000's S/V70 had a slightly different seat but almost as good. It's an easily overlooked thing until you've been in car for a few hours.

    I'm so excited about the new S90/V90, just wish it was RWD. I hate that all the larger touring cars are going to AWD.

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    Last edited by aldend123; 11-07-16 at 11:40 AM.
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    Re: How do we feel about Volvo cars?

    So I took the aforementioned S60 for a ride yesterday. I would call that particular car asthetically rough and mechanically fair but I will say I was surprised by the get up and go of the I5 turbo. The factory suspension is, without a doubt, tuned for the general public's comfort.

    Other than the seller being on the optimistic end of asking price, I may try pulling the trigger on it even though I think the sticking point will be that we'll be too far apart on pricing.


    Curious about the lack of manu-matic in this car though. Does that mean it is to be treated as a traditional automatic?

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    Re: How do we feel about Volvo cars?

    If you like the pull of the 2.5T, you'll like it even more in the T5. Just sayin...

    I'm not sure I understand your question. The older S60's didn't have any of the fancy dual clutch transmission options like newer cars. They had a traditional auto (I believe all turbo trims got a trans cooler integrated in the radiator) or a traditional manual. It should have a Sport mode switch near the shifter that will make it feel much more responsive. It doesn't compare to a manual, but it isn't bad IMO. And the way the lower shifter options work should be sufficient for locking the car in a specific gear if necessary. Winter mode is just a 3rd gear lock IIRC. The car will start from a stop in 3rd gear and stay there.

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    Re: How do we feel about Volvo cars?

    This is a 2004. The others I looked at were automatic with manual mode by flicking the shifter left. This one was straight auto without the manual mode option. No S button, just W.

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    Re: How do we feel about Volvo cars?

    Quote Originally Posted by butcher bergs View Post
    This is a 2004. The others I looked at were automatic with manual mode by flicking the shifter left. This one was straight auto without the manual mode option. No S button, just W.
    I think certain trims didn't come with the S switch, but IIRC, you can just buy the switch from ebay and you magically gain the feature. Don't hold me to that.

    Now that I think about it, I think at some point newer models got the manumatic type option called 'Geartronic', but I think it was just a computer control change. I'm not sure the transmission itself was any different. But I also want to say there were some known problems with Geartronic when it came to the S60R/V70R. I think some of those issues may have been overblown, and more of fear of what is new.

    FYI, Swedespeed is probably the most concentrated source of S60 info. However, in my experience, many of them are like the BMW forum members. 'My dealer told me...', 'Once I use synthetic, do I always have to?', and 'I only let certified technicians check my tire pressure.'.

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    Re: How do we feel about Volvo cars?

    How about a Saab 9-3
    Since gm left Saab out to dry they had be had for a song and a dance. Of all the cars in my career of driving that was my favorite. Just make sure it has the Big T on the trunk lid.

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    Re: How do we feel about Volvo cars?

    Some of you seem to know Volvos so here's a question. Do they come standard with the "Moms Rock" sticker, or do you have to buy it?



    True fact, my brother has owned nothing but Volvos since 1976.

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    Re: How do we feel about Volvo cars?

    Loved my 850R and our V70 was a trusty steed although showed Ford's influence in the "meh" interior and iffy electronics (stereo output issues). Generally all were mechanically solid with basic maintenance type stuff. I wouldn't hesitate to grab a newer Volvo if it was a T5 of some variety. V70R FTW IMO

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    Re: How do we feel about Volvo cars?

    Quote Originally Posted by Garandman
    . Do they come standard with the "Moms Rock" sticker, or do you have to buy it?


    .
    Volvo gets them from the same supplier that Subaru gets these....

    How do we feel about Volvo cars?-_35-jpg

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    Re: How do we feel about Volvo cars?

    And these for BMW's.

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    Re: How do we feel about Volvo cars?

    I have an eye for cars, especially volvos and I don't think I've ever noticed a moms rock sticker, or the vineyard vines one. This must be a boston thing?

    I see the equality sticker all over the place, but mostly on subarus, honda fits, and older kias.

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    Re: How do we feel about Volvo cars?

    I saw it in - wait for it - Cambridge! Where 240DL wagons went to die.

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