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Audi A6 Wagons

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Comments

  • Ok,Ok... you guys are probably right about the third seat thing. Maybe I am still suffering from my PR. encounter with Saab! No matter where you sit in the rig you can get hurt. I love my new Saab, however I really should not buy into all the sales hype. I passed on the Audi because of the "less than sporty" power plant. But I wish the Saab had a quattro system!
  • Rick,

    Hope you're enjoying your (or your wife's) new Saab. I thought that the third row seat was going to be a critical factor in my decision making process, but it turns out that other features were more important. The Saab was certainly up at the top of my list despite its lack of AWD, but I agree with your assesment that the A6 avant (and the Passat V6) are "less sporty" than the Saab's.

    A curious observation: the Passat's Cargo space is listed as 39 cu.ft. while the A6 Avant is listed around 36. Yet the A6 has the option of a third row seat -- go figure. However, I don't think the third row seat is a major selling point of the A6 over other competitors. But, if Audi/VW did make such an option available in the Passat, that may have siphoned some of the sales away from the Avant.

    George
  • I had a Durango with a third seat b4 the Saab wagon. Used the seat about four times over two years. My wife loved the option, but admits it was rarely used.( we have one child, 4 yrs old ) I'm telling you, for the price, the Saab was near the top on my list also. The AWD was great on the A6. Wanted the A6 wagon, but the dealer said they would not have one until mid March or April. That kinda turned me off to Audi as I needed wheels ASAP. Had to get something, so I drove the Saab again and really liked it. (Wife thinks her Honda Accord is the best thing since sliced bread!) The dashboard lay out is nice and I really like the way they "tilt" the center area toward the driver. I'm a pilot so I guess I felt I needed for a car that is made by the same folks that build the famous Grippen (sp?) fighter jet!! It is a funky and fun car! I'll keep anyone who cares updated on my relationship with this cool wagon!
  • aling1aling1 Posts: 225
    Hi all,

    check out this ESP product video from Continental-Teves, one of the manufacturers of the MB/BMW/Audi ESP stability control system. It features some really awesome test footage (most of BMW 3-series cars) and also shows what the system is composed of and what understeer and oversteer is.

    Conti-Teves ESP Video

    Comments anyone?
    Drew
  • Dear Drew,
    The esp video is quite impressive, thanks for linking it. does tha awd of the audi do this or is it (esp) a separate system that works with awd?
    thanks
  • aling1aling1 Posts: 225
    ESP is a seperate system than the Quattro, so it works on FWD, and RWD vehicles as well. Without ESP, the AWD cars would probably be just as succeptible to understeer and oversteer (though possibly to a lesser extent).

    Drew
  • I just visited the Tornoto Auto Show and was given the same story re: third seats from the Saab reps. They also told me that they didn't make an awd version because most people can't handle or don't need awd, so they don't build one. Well, thanks for being such a "big brother" Saab. I asked the Audi reps about the car's reliability after the three year warranty runs out, and they told me that many people trade their cars in because suddenly they have to pay for all the servicing and it is a big shock to them. So big, in fact, that some people don't buy another one. How are they helping? Audi has decided that to help people, and lesson the shock, they are going to not cover as much in the initial warranty so that people will get used to paying for service and then won't be so shocked when they have to pay for all of it. Wow, aren't they great folks... maybe to lessen the shock of death, they'll take off a limb, or just run over us once in awhile. With friends like these spin doctors...
    That sort of line is enough to make me not consider an Audi...maybe people aren't keeping the cars or trading for another one is because they become too expensive to hold on to??
    So, have any of you out there held on to your Audi A4, A6 past the warranty, and has it been worth it? I was considering a used one. I welcome your feedback.
    Thanks,
    still spinning
  • John,

    If you haven't already done so, you may also check out Audiworld and VWVortex-- the forums are fairly active. However, you may get a skewed view of the reliability since most of the active participants seem to be true Audi enthusiast.

    George
  • aling1aling1 Posts: 225
    The truth is that the Saab 9-5 platform was designed, right from the start, for AWD in mind. In fact, Saab North America has literally be begging their headquarters to develop an AWD version of the vehicle. However, Saab HQ (being short-sighted) refuses to do so claiming that people don't need it and that their FWD with traction control wagon competes with offerings such as the Passat wagon, Audi A4 Avant, MB E320 wagon, Subaru Ouback and Volvo V70/XC AWD just fine. But, notice how all of the preceeding offers have AWD as either standard or an option?

    As for the 3rd row seats, Saab has had a variety of answers in the past. The one that sticks in my head (it was given by the head designer of the 9-5 wagon) is, "We don't believe in putting people in the crumple zone". Of course, nearly every single luxury mid-size wagon offers this option, so clearly Saab is missing out on this (and AWD). Too bad, because the 9-5 is really a good vehicle.

    I like the A6 Avant, but I wish that Audi would either offer it with the 2.7L Biturbo V6 (like in the Allroad Quattro), or with the 4.2L V8.

    Drew
  • mstsscmstssc Posts: 89
    I have heard that one too. Don't want to put passengers in the crumple zone. I have also heard that they don't want passengers behind the back axle - same thing I think. I can understand this and it is a good idea except every minivan made puts the third row passengers in the crumple zone. Most manufacturers advertise their frontal crash test scores but I have yet to see a rear crash test where there are no bags and where you seat the most valuable cargo. This type of information would be interesting and I am surprised the consumers interested in mini-vans and other family type vehicles (wagons, SUV) are not demanding this.

    However, I still believe that in order to be a true mini-van and SUV alternative (which is where the bigger wagons and awd wagons are headed), it needs to offer the third seat. In my case, with three kids, only wagons with the third seat qualified even though it is only used occasionally. It sure made the decision easier, but left out a number of good cars which we could have seriously considered.

    Steve
  • mstsscmstssc Posts: 89
    Drew - Thanks, I wasn't aware that any manufacturers did this. Trust Mercedes to do these tests - I'm impressed. I've never seen rear facing dummies (not the crash test ones anyway). However, I still think that if other manufacturers did this they would be boasting about it (unless they weren't proud of the results). Maybe I'll check some manufacturers site for more info.

    Steve
  • Steve,

    Volvo has run similar rear impact tests on the V70 and report good results (No pictures like MB though). I posted the response I got from VONA in one of the other posts. I'll try and dig up the letter when I get back to work in the AM.

    I think the reason that agencies such as NHTSA and IIHS don't conduct rear impact crash test is due to the relative infrequency (~10%) overall, and the limited number of vehicles that it would apply to. Thus the time, $$, and effort to design a reliable test is probably not cost-efficient for these non-profit groups.

    George
  • aling1aling1 Posts: 225
    Steve,

    as George said, other manufacturers do in fact do these crash tests, but they don't publicise the results. I'd imagine that safety conscious companies like Audi/Saab/MB/BMW/Volvo would definitely perform their own battery of crash tests on all of their vehicles.

    You're right though, MB does tout this test. The picture that I posted was from their E-class brochure. In fact, all of their brochures show plenty of colourful fairly large print crash test footage. Notice that the dummies in the MB picture were supposed to "simulate" children, since the seat is primarily used by kids.

    I see from your profile that you're shopping for a replacement for your '97 Voyager. Have you bought an A6 Avant yet? Or are you still shopping around.

    George:

    I just priced a VW Passat 4-motion GLX wagon at the VW site and found that those babies are pretty pricey! - CDN$43K+ fully loaded. I didn't realise that they were this expensive. But they're great vehicles though. As you said, if you want the best, you've to pay for it.

    Drew
  • Indeed it is !! Just over $31K here in the states - my wife was a little surprised too. But I you can't get an AWD wagon WITH a 6 cylinder engine for less right now( if you exclude a Passat GLS V6 Wagon). Plus for the price, you do get a lot of luxury features:
    3 memory settings for the driver seat
    Rain sensing variable wipers
    EDL/ASR
    Auto Climate Control

    The missing luxury items:
    the name - VW in the states still conjures up images of the New Beetle
    Side Air Curtain (found on the Audi siblings)
    Xenon lights
    navigation system

    For me, the Extra $4000 it would take to get those things in a Loaded A4 Avant are not worth it.

    George
  • mstsscmstssc Posts: 89
    Drew, George - thanks for the information.

    Drew, the answer to your question is Yes and No. Yes the Voyager has been replaced. No it has not been replaced with a A6. We went with a 99 V70 GLT. We got this one for just over $40k (cdn, incl taxes)with, what I thought, was a very fair trade in for our van, considering the tax benefits and the private selling hassle. I looked at the A6 but couldn't get past the sticker shock. The one I was looking at optioned out was close to $60k (cdn). For this difference in price I could have kept the van. Of course I didn't but I think I will use the difference to finish the restoration of my e-type. We are very happy with the Volvo so far.

    Since we felt we needed the 3rd seat, choices were limited to Taurus, Volvo, Audi A6 and MB. The Volvo came out almost by process of elimination. It may not ahve been so easy if the Saab had a third seat.

    George, I didn't realize that Volvo had done these tests and I would be interested in more info. I am surprised that the Volvo dealer didn't bring this up as they knew we had three kids, were replacing a van and wanted the third seat. When I last shopped for vans, the dealers were all too eager to explain how theirs was safer than the other guys. Anyway, maybe I should have asked!!

    Despite the fact that I now own a Volvo, I am still interested in all manufacturers who have the foresight to produce this type of car. These types of cars must be a relatively small market compared to vans and SUVs. You never know when you will be in the market for a new one.

    Steve
  • aling1aling1 Posts: 225
    Steve:

    $40K is indeed a good price for a GLT. Did you buy one with the AWD, or just the FWD with traction control? I'd imagine that AWD would come in useful in Calgary.

    BTW, you may want to take a couple of minutes to update your profile.

    Drew
  • flammflamm Posts: 1
    Our subaru has terminal cancer...looking at station wagons, specifically the Audi Avant (A4 or A6) vs. Saab and VW. We are considering a preowned (yes, used) car. Any suggestions? We don't want to buy a car that will sink us in the hole with repair costs.
  • mstsscmstssc Posts: 89
    Drew, the car is FWD with traction control and winter mode. We also run the winter tires/rims. Winter traction is very good around the city and have not had any problems. I even prefer to drive this car over my Isuzu 4wd in the winter. I

    The AWD would probably be useful here but we did not feel it was worth the extra money for our needs. The car is mostly driven by my wife and if the weather is not nice, she doesn't usually go out anyway (mostly because of others on the road). I have no such hesitation provided I have the clearance above the snow, but I only drive it on the weekends. We do not really get that much snow in the city and it usually does not last very long when we do.

    I'll update my profile - sorry, after I bought the V70 I didn't realize I would be that interested in posting.

    Steve
  • aling1aling1 Posts: 225
    George,

    I remember which topic it was; try the Volvo XC topics. I believe that you (or someone else) said that they couldn't send the crash test results, but read it over the phone instead.

    Steve,

    wouldn't you rather take the E-type out on the weekends vs. the Volvo? ;-) Not in the current weather conditions, of course.
  • mstsscmstssc Posts: 89
    I sure would rather take the e-type - weather permitting. However, civilization has come a long way in 40 years and the Volvo has far more creature comforts. Also, I can't get the kids in the jag (not all at once anyway) - maybe thats a good thing. But at 40 years old, 265 HP, 0-60 in 6 secs, four wheel independent suspension and four wheel discs - not bad for an oldtimer. Too bad I didn't age as gracefully.

    Steve
  • mrjmrj Posts: 21
    Well, here is a wrench in the decision machine..... the new Audi AllRoad with the 2.7T BiTurbo. It's real!

    I hear it will be here this fall. No price yet, but my dealer says they hear the price will stay competitive. I predict this car SLAYS the competition! But can you wait until this fall??http://www.audiworld.com/news/00/allroad/index.html
  • aling1aling1 Posts: 225
    The question is, what is the competition? My guess is that it will be people who are looking at the Subaru Outback, Volvo XC, Lexus RX300, BMW X5 and possibly the MB M-class. Basically, all of your hybrid SUVs, some of which are more wagonish than true SUV (i.e. Outback XC, RX300 and X5).
  • mrjmrj Posts: 21
    I think the Allroad will have better handling characteristics, better power, better ergonomics, and better zoot than any of the hybrids. Probably the only car that is even close is the X5, followed way behind by the Volvo XC. I shudder to think that the RX300 is competition (too bland and wimpy - not a performance car at all). The Suburu is a great car, but different class.
  • bollingerbollinger Posts: 207
    It is obviously a competitor to the RX300, Mercedes ML320/430, X5, and to a lesser extent, the Subaru Forester.

    These cars are all actually wagons, jacked up to look like frame-on SUVs. This is not a bad thing, space frames are more efficient, cheaper and lighter.

    Leave the frame-on construction to the real offroaders, not those of us who only use our AWD on the streets.

    I think the Allroad will be good competition for the X5 and ML430, it outclasses the rest.

    I feel that in several ways, it will be a better car than the X5 (which is excellent), most notably the ride height adjustment. On the roads (where these cars will spend all their time), it will lower at speed (or at any speed by switch) to provide better handling. FANTASTIC!

    Too bad it is ugly. The interior is almost straight A6, but with ugly sliver rimmed gauges which are totally out of place.

    I still expect the X5 to outsell it 5 to 1 at least. Probably 10 to 1. It's just the whole BMW name thing.
  • aling1aling1 Posts: 225
    The M-class has a body-on-frame construction. All of the rest above have unibody or monocoque structures.
  • bollingerbollinger Posts: 207
    Hmm. MotorWeek says the M-class is unibody. Also says the Grand Cherokee is.

    I didn't mention the Grand Cherokee since I was skeptical. Perhaps I wasn't skeptical enough.
  • aling1aling1 Posts: 225
    What? Well, it isn't. The Grand Cherokee is unibody, but not the M-class.
  • I just installed mudflaps on 2000 A6 Avant and needed to trim the inner-most mounting screw on the left rear wheel position to avoid it touching a rubber hose that is behind the wheel well. (I hacksawed off about 1/3 of length.) I got the flaps from Clair - delivered to Connecticut the next day using UPS ground. They are listed as fitting 1998 and >. They fit fine but no mention in the instructions about possible interference with hose.
  • glxwagon4moglxwagon4mo Posts: 121
    For your entertainment pleasure...here are a few commercials from oversees that tout VW/Audi Quattro technology. You'll need Apple Quicktime 4.1 in order to view these clips.

      Audi Wakeboard
      BORA 4Motion Downhill Run
      BORA 4Motion Uphill Run
    Enjoy,

    George
  • bollingerbollinger Posts: 207
    I don't know why it has different names in different countries.

    Also, the 4Motion system in the Jetta/Bora is the automatically engaging part-time system like the TT and A3, not the full-time system of the Passat, A4, A6, and A8. Not that it matters much. They both work well.
  • jordanhjordanh Posts: 4
    A few months ago I was trying to decide among the A6 Avant, A4 Avant, and Saab Wagon. The responses I got were extremely helpful. Thanks to all who responded.

    I have decided to get the A6, but will wait until next year when it comes with a 2.7T and/or a manual transmission.

    I have seen all of the press on the SUV (essentially what I am waiting for) but havent heard if Audi will come out with A6 Avant with the 2.7T, but without the SUV gizmo (which I'm not sure I'm willing to pay for if it is a big jump). So does anyone know:

    1) When the 2001 Avants come out?
    2) When could I order one and hope to get one by?
    3) Will the A6 Avant be released with the 2.7T engine.
    4) Any ideas on what the new models will cost?
    5) Who can I contact to find any/all of this out - my local dealer swears he hasn't been told yet.

    Thanks again,

    Jordan
  • bollingerbollinger Posts: 207
    Audi has started to give order sheets to dealers for 2001 cars. There is no A6 2.7T Avant. Only the Allroad (SUV gizmo). I find this very disappointing. Audi just sees no demand.

    For me, the big problem with the Allroad is it is ugly and also slower due to weight. I actually like the suspension on the Allroad, but that's about it.

    Anyway, to make a long story short. No dealer can order for you one yet, since they have not been sent an order sheet which lets them order an A6 2.7T Avant. Those dealers in the know aren't holding their breath.

    I hope everything turns out for you, even though I fear it won't.
  • glxwagon4moglxwagon4mo Posts: 121
    You would certainly think that Audi would introduce another engine option for the A6 Avant given the increasing interest of wagons in the US and the increase sales for Audi over the recent years. Ala, the fact remains that the SUV craze is still prevalent and therefore the Allroad had to be introduced instead of a 2.7T Avant, 4.2 Avant, or even the S6 Avant.

    I'm always amazed by the variety of engine options available to the Europeans. Take for instance the A6 Avant...in great Britain you can chose from one of 8 different engines ranging from a 1.8T, a 1.9 TDI, all the way to the S6. Maybe some day we'll get a little more variety here !!

    George
  • bollingerbollinger Posts: 207
    In the UK it is very common to order your car. Actually most people have company cars.

    Since you order the car, they can offer wider choice. In the US, where cars are typically bought off the lot, if they create 30 different versions of the A6, dealers won't stock them due to fear of having unpopular models litter the lot.

    As far as I can tell, about 1 in 20 A6's in the US is an Avant, and less than 1 in 5 is a 2.7T. so, should Audi ship a car that roughly 1 in 100 A6 buyers will buy? Audi only sells 36,000 A6's in the US per year. So should they create a 2.7T Avant just to ship 360 of them? That's about 3 per dealer per year.

    It's too bad. I definitely would have bought one.
  • amandafamandaf Posts: 2
    I am researching purchasing a new wagon. I am looking at the Volvo V70, Saab 9-5 wagon, and the Audi A6 avant. I plan on owning this car for 5+ years and don't want to buy a soon-to-be obsolete body style.

    I know the V70 is being redeigned for 2001 model. I'm trying to learn if Audi or Saab have any significant changes planned.

    I've never owned any of these makes. Honda Accord and Passat GLX have both been reliable and great. I have got a lot of research to do. I'm psyched to find this message board. It will be most helpful.

    -Amanda
  • jritijriti Posts: 2
    Amanda - I think this body first appeared in the 98 model year. I love my 99 A6 Avant - I started out looking at V70's, and ended up with the Avant after seeing it on the used lot (99, <10k miles) at a Volvo dealer (older couple had traded it in on a convertible).

    The Audi interior and driving feel sold me. The Volvo was Spartan by comparison. The Volvo is quicker, so if that's important, the high pressure turbo Volvo's are your choice. The Audi is better in snow and rain due to Quattro. Even an AWD Volvo doesn't match up with Quattro due to Audi's superior system.

    For more Audi material, see AudiWorld at <A HREF="http://www.audiworld.com">www.audiworld.com
  • bollingerbollinger Posts: 207
    I hope my last conversation about this wasn't on this board...

    But having driven HPT Volvos and talking with friends who own LPT and HPT Volvos, I think the LPT (GLT) is the better idea for most people.

    On the HPT (T-5/2.3), it has some flatness in the low to middle due to turbo lag and the fact that the engine is actually smaller than the LPT (GLT/2.4).

    British car magazine CAR actually rates the LPT higher than the HPT. Consumer Reports says the same thing. Both complain about poor responsiveness in sedate driving on the HPT.

    My friend who has had one for a year says it is too slow normally, and comes on too strong when you punch it. He doesn't like the overall response, but says it is great on freeway onramps.

    I would recommend you stick with the LPT unless you really plan to use the HPT performance liberally. I really think you'd be happier for it.

    Note that the S80 T-6 has twin turbos and seems to act more like the LPTs than the HPT.
  • tom1996tom1996 Posts: 7
    I agree. I have a 1994 Volvo 850 Turbo. That year they had no LPT. When I push the gas pedal for normal acceleration I seem to get less response than with my other, non-turbo car. But when I floor it, it goes like a bat out of help. It is great, however, for merging onto highways or getting out of somebody's way.
  • mstsscmstssc Posts: 89
    I have a V70 GLT LPT. The LPT is quite easy to live with and the lag is not noticable when cruising around at light (residential) speeds or pulling away from lights at normal acceleration. It is only noticeable when you step on it from standing still or low speeds. The nice thing about the LPT is the acceleration is there when you need it.

    Currently, I think the 2001 V70 is only offered as T5 (HPT) but they will be bringing out other models as the year goes on.

    Steve
  • raw47raw47 Posts: 3
    I have been an Audi A6 wagon owner for three
    years. It's been a great car, but recently I've had some expereinces in the rain that were disturbing. Somehow, I feel that the car doesn't hold the road as well, fishtailing slightly on curves in the rain and just last week on felt thatthe car was hydroplaning in a bad rainstorm.
    Thsi was spooky and frightening as I literally for a second felt that the car was off the ground.
    Any similar incidents or comments about this? I feel like my confidence in the A6 is shaken. I'm not a speedster at all.
  • glxwagon4moglxwagon4mo Posts: 121
    Raw,

    Tire,tire,tire, tire... what kind of tires are you running on, how many miles on them, how much tread do you have left on them, what are they inflated to ???

    While the Quattro is a great system, its only as good as the treads the car runs on.

    George
  • bollingerbollinger Posts: 207
    In rain, the tires matter a lot. If you have good tires, they can penetrate the water on the road, and you don't need AWD If you have bad tires, they ride on top of the water, and AWD isn't going to be able to completely overcome this.

    Audi warns of hydroplaning in the A6 manual. They say most drivers have learned to recognize the "disconnected" feel that signals a FWD car is hydroplaning. They mention that in an AWD car, this effect is small or nonexistent, and you need to be more careful.
  • raw47raw47 Posts: 3
    Thank you very much for this info on my tires, I'm going to have them checked out immediately. It's terrific having the opportunity to benfit from your advice. Much thanks again.
  • I would appreciate pro's/con's from owners of 99 Audi A6 Quattro Wgn and 97 Volvo 850 GLT Wgn. The decision I need to make is whether to purchase the 99 Audi with 17,000 miles on it for $30,000 ("demo" that owner's wife drove, per rep) or the 97 Volvo with 38,000 miles on it for $23,500 (came off lease). Each car would be purchased through reputable Audi/Volvo dealers. The Audi has EVERY available 99 A6 separately priced option as does the Volvo (although the Audi appears to be slightly better equipped). The Volvo's roomier but not AWD. Both have third seats and are clean. Volvo warranty is 3 yrs/36,000 miles. Not sure what Audi's is yet.
  • glxwagon4moglxwagon4mo Posts: 121
    The Audi's B-B warranty is 4 years/50000 mile. However, Audi does also throw in free scheduled maintenance for the first 3 years/36000 miles.

    George
  • mstsscmstssc Posts: 89
    The Volvo looks expensive. I paid about $27k US for a 99 V70 GLT with less than 10k miles. On the other hand, the Audi looks inexpensive compared to new (at least here in Canada, new would be around $40k US). If I was down to these two cars I would go with Audi based on the price (andd longer warranty than 97 Volvo) even though I am quite happy with our Volvo. If you still want a Volvo, I would look for a better deal.

    Steve
  • woodywwwoodyww Posts: 1,815
    I second Steve's response above. In this area (Mass.) a 99 A6 Avant sold by a dealer would be $35K. A 97 Volvo GLT might be around $20K. I don't own either, have just done extensive car shopping/testing trying to sort the whole wagon/SUV dilemma out for myself.

    WoodyWW
  • Dear People with wagons out there,
    We are buying a wagon by the end of Sept. I am looking at Audi, Saab, Volvo and will consider anything else. I know nothing about cars! I have a 6 cyl '92 Toyota Camry, which I will keep and will be saying good-bye to my '91 Honda Civic. As you can see, we keep our cars and intend to do the same with this next one. My only requirements are a power driver seat and enough engine power to deal with Atlanta traffic with some grace. Any suggestions, comments or must-haves are greatfully appreciated. Don't get too technical on me! or if I MUST know something about the engine, please spell it carefully so I won't sound like a nut at the dealership!!! THANKS
  • what5what5 Posts: 15
    What price range are you considering? I see that you put Audi, Sabb, and Volvo, so >35k looks like your price range. Have you looked at the VW passat GLX. They sticker around 30k and are built on the same platform as the Audi A4 avant and A6 avant.
    Hope this helped
  • glxwagon4moglxwagon4mo Posts: 121
    Lynn,

    I'll second Adam's (what5) comments. Based on you're choices, AWD does not seem to be a major factor. All of your choices (I believe) will meet the two requirements that you specified above. However, the A6 Avant (because of the AWD aka Quattro) is heavier and thus seems sluggish compared to the Volvo and Saab. If you were to go with a Passat, you would get the same engine as in the A4 and A6 Avants, but since you can get it in FWD with traction control, the few hundred pounds you save makes for improved acceleration.(BTW a Passat GLX also gets you 3 memory setting for the driver seat and setting linked to the key fob remote).

    As for your other choices you really can't go wrong with any of them. The V70 has apparently had its share of problems, so much that Consumer reports took it off its "recommended" list. The redesigned V70 has certainly gotten great reviews, but because of the former problems, you may want to wait a little on this one.

    If you're willing to spend more $$, then also look at the BMW 528 Touring -- it has the smallest cargo space of the group, but is undeniably the best handling of the pack and remains a "driver's car". Personally, I think the Audi is the most luxurious of the bunch, but need a little more Oomph for my tastes. The Saab, Passat and Volvo have the largest cargo space. The luxury brands have all available options typically associated with luxo cars -- multiple airbags gallor, nav system, etc. If you can do without those things, then consider the Passat and save yourself at least $5K over the others.

    George
This discussion has been closed.