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New S40/V50



  • Volvomax,

    The turning circle of the 850 is 33 feet. Volvos were always wonderful at turning around in a small amount of space for their size and making tight turns, they've gone backwards in this regard.

    Can't Volvo put in some rear steering or something to improve the turning circle to about 35 feet or so on the s60? I think on the new s80 and v70, s60 replacements reducing the turning circle must be a priority. Now it's a chore to park these cars in tight parking lots.
  • volvomaxvolvomax Posts: 5,274
    The 850 circle was 35 ft w/ the 15" wheels.
    The 960 was 31 ft. Because it was RWD

    The S60 is wider than the 850, and has much wider tires with no corresponding increase in the wheel well size.
    4 wheel steering adds weight and complexity to the car, so I doubt that Volvo is seriously considering it.
  • jchan2jchan2 Posts: 4,956
    I do 90% of my driving in town, so I want something mildly sporty but still not punishing. I wonder how Volvo is doing in this regard.
  • explorerx4explorerx4 Central CTPosts: 9,614
    have had the opportunity to drive an '02 m3 several times, due to a very generous neighbor.
    imho, the harsh ride of the m3 doesn't exist.
    it is definitly 'firm', but nothing out of the ordinary compared to my '02 explorer or '91 mustang gt. too many people take what c&d says as gospel.
  • jchan2jchan2 Posts: 4,956
    my commuter car is a Honda Odyssey...... (but my next car won't replace the Odyssey- it'll replace the 99' Civic I have as my wife's car...)
  • creakid1creakid1 Posts: 2,032
    "FWD cars, like the Acura TSX and the S60 can't turn like a RWD Mercedes.
    You can't turn the front wheels 90 degrees, the front axles won't allow it."

    W/ RWD, turning the front wheel 90 degrees won't even allow the rear wheels to push the car forward. Only FWD can roll the front wheels side way at 90 degrees.

    It's all conspiracy from car companies to make the small cars' turning circle about as large as the bigger cars, so when people stepping up to the next higher model won't get upset when they have to sacrifice the convenience & pay more $.

    Nissan didn't want to disappoint the people used to the old RWD Datsun 210's convenient tiny turning circle. So the FWD replacement - the Sentra - kept the tiny turning circle for several years!

    The V6 Camry had 36.7 ft curb-to-curb turning circle. The RWD V8 '95-98 Lexus LS400 has only 34.8 ft ctc! When measured wall to wall, that LS400 is even smaller than the 4-cyl Camry, as the FWD Camry has a longer front overhang.

    "Yes, but the Accords turning circle is 36.1 feet and the Camry's is 34.8 (with the 4 cyl and auto according to Edmunds). The Camry's is better than my rwd C240 and it is considerably bigger."

    The C-class has a very short front overhang corner so the wtw turning circle should beat any Camry.

    Honda is actually a very pretentious company. They tried to earn business from people who are against Japanese cars by claiming that the company headquarter is in America & called themselves "American Honda". Next, they kept the required "CHECK ENGINE" dash warning light from coming on so the customer satisfaction rate went up, & ended up w/ a big fine from the U.S. government. Since we used to associate Honda w/ the tiny Civic CVCC hatchbacks, Honda purposely kept all the Accord's exterior dimensions AND turning circle bigger than Camry's to sound like a big car, although, in fact, the Accord had rather poor stretch out leg room up to '97. Wasn't that "36.1" vs Camry's "34.8" sound peculiar? As if "36" is whole lot bigger than "34". Come on, only in American do we use "feet", as rest of the world is all metric.
  • creakid1creakid1 Posts: 2,032
    "imho, the harsh ride of the m3 doesn't exist.
    it is definitly 'firm', but nothing out of the ordinary compared to my '02 explorer or '91 mustang gt. too many people take what c&d says as gospel."

    Duh, mentioning the buckboard-riding crude vehicles is out of the question. There are always the Suzuki Samurai & the Jeep Wrangler WW2 military vehicle.

    The BMW 3-series sport suspension's ride comfort is still a dream compare to other sports cars, per C&D, etc. But I'm only willing to tolerate the ride of the non-sport longer-travel suspension found in the base 3-series sedan(not including the recent 330i).
  • creakid1creakid1 Posts: 2,032
    Boy, wasn't I so right. The Dec CAR just complained about the new S40 T5's turbo torque steer & understeer plough, excessive traction control cut in, & somewhat fidgety ride. Saying that all these are the typical problems w/ all the high-power FWD Swedish cars.

    Also, when the road surface gets ragged, the torque-steer tugging becomes more obvious.

    They also warned you that you better back off the throttle when the front tugs/understeers, or else. Once the traction control kicks in, it won't let go for a long time!

    No, the light pressure turbo doesn't have enough delay to create lag, just soft throttle response. Low end is so rich that the 6-sp isn't even needed. The R model will be the one w/ the hardcore turbo setting.

    The non-turbo model may be much weaker at lower rpm, but is enjoyable to rev, plus w/o any of the vices of the turbo model mentioned above so handles more fluently. The higher-profile tires on smaller diameter wheels are just as wide as the turbo model at 205/55, so the road contact/grip is still there. Along w/ the softer suspension, the ride is better, too. For sure they like the non-turbo more than the FWD T5!
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 17,148
    so one review makes it right?
    well, then how about this one: html

    They seem to love it. Best handling Volvo ever (aside from the R) and handles like a RWD, according to that article.

    And considering the S40 T5 will have about the same rate of acceleration as my current T5 and I have none of the issues to the degree of severity that CAR supposedly states, I find their review less credulous. But, only time will tell. We'll find out the truth for ourselves.

    '13 Stang GT; '86 Benz 300E; '98 Volvo S70; '12 Leaf; '14 Town&Country

  • creakid1creakid1 Posts: 2,032
    "Toss it into a corner, lift off the throttle and the back slides into line."

    Not bad, now the new S40 gives you the choice to do some rear slide.
  • Does anyone know when then new S40 will be available for configuration on the Volvo website? Thanks.
  • jchan2jchan2 Posts: 4,956
    probably when the S40 goes on sale in Feb 2004.

    and is the S40 roomier or less roomy than my 99' Civic????
  • creakid1creakid1 Posts: 2,032
    You got to be kidding. A Civic sedan? Just check out the back seat room of the S60. The new S40 is suppose to be even bigger.

    Remember it's the stretch-out leg room that counts, not the knee room. That's also why I found the Civic sedan roomier than the pre-'98 Accords.
  • jchan2jchan2 Posts: 4,956
    that the S40 was smaller rear seat wise.
  • jchan2jchan2 Posts: 4,956
    just marginally larger.
  • creakid1creakid1 Posts: 2,032
    Volvo should change the name of this superb new vehicle from the old hopeless S40, but there's no other choice staring in the even numbers. They can't call it S20 sedan! That almost sound like a 2-wheel motor bike. From all these new articles, you can tell that, w/o adopting Focus II's steering/suspension, the new S40 can't achieve this level of competence & fun in steering/handling, while the ride is still good.
  • creakid1creakid1 Posts: 2,032
    The T5 has the same springs as the non-turbo. Only the dampers & sway bars are stronger. They said the non-turbo has a less-stiff ride, lighter steering & drifts more easily, but still fun like no other Volvo. At very high speed, the T5's steering is a tad sensitive. Sounds sort of like how C&D complained about the American non-SVT Focus's light power steering that became too darty when upgrading from 15" to 16" low-profile tire.
  • creakid1creakid1 Posts: 2,032
    "Curves and twisties on tracks and steering feedback at the limit are NOT as important as how a car is to LIVE with day in and day out."

    Driving enthusiasts like it. Unskilled drivers need it EVEN more! Some steerings seem firm, but feels totally washed out at the limit, such as the present Jetta. The steering of the '86 760 Turbo I used to own is simply just heavy w/ no feeling, & worse, can't even track straight on the fwy w/o lots of concentration!

    NOT just at the limit, the steering should be able to inform the driver if the tire still has adhesion EVEN WHEN going in a relative straight line, as an Focus engineer pointed out. An example is the Acura TSX's steering. It always feels like there's no tire adhesion, despite feeling firm due to strong self-centering action. Sure, the car goes fast around corners & even able to absorb bumps the same time. But an average driver who drove it on a high-speed fwy curve got scared & complained that his Mercedes C220 didn't have this problem.
  • With this new one coming out, should I even consider getting a 2004 S40? I need a new car by the beginning of January, and the 2005 won't be out yet. There are some great deals out there for the 2004s, given the redesign. But after reading some of the reviews, I'm not sure the 2004 S40 will even be worth my while.

    Bottom line: Is the 2004 S40 a good car or not? Other options I'm considering are the new 2004 Mitsu Galant and possibly a Subaru Impreza, which a friend just told me was a great car; the Subaru is pretty ugly IMO, so I don't know if I can get past that!

This discussion has been closed.