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Volvo V70 Wagon Experience



  • blckislandguyblckislandguy Posts: 1,150
    VolvoMax, you 'da man. I used to think I was nuts when once or twice a year the interior climate control fan was still running after I had gone into the house. Now I know why.

    The radiator fan runs much more frequently after stopping. But you're right, the temp needle never budges.

  • blckislandguyblckislandguy Posts: 1,150
    Our XC70 is getting long in the tooth and we are thinking about another one. (The inventory clearing deals in August, 07 as they launch a revision to the V70 should be awesome.)

    When you compare the Saab 9-5 wagon with the Volvo V70 the pricing seems very close. The Volvo needs to be optioned up a little to match the Saab specs but when all is said and done they both have an MSRP of about 37K with leather, roof, etc. HOWEVER, only Volvo offers AWD and it isn't much more money. To get Zenons on a Volvo wagon you have to go for the XC AWD model and then pay $700 extra for them as an option. Zenons are not available on two wheel drive V70s. The Saab 9-5 while not available as an AWD does have a sport package (formely calle the Aero package) for about $1000 which gets you some neat sport seats, a tuned and lowered chassis, etc. Zenons for Saabs are available for roughly $1200 in a package.

    All in all, it seems fairly clear. If you live in the snow belt the XC70 is preferable and if you don't, the Saab 9-5 wagon with the sport package sounds like much more fun than a two wheel drive V70.

    This might change 360 degrees when you come to sedans. I think that a Saab 9-5 with the spors package would be much more fun than the standard Volvo sedan with about 55 more HP (260 vs. 208). I can't understand the atraction of an AWD sedan (if you need AWD, go all the way to a wagon and get some load carrying capability etc.). To my way of thinking the Saab two wheel drive sedan is the way to go, especially if you add the sports package with sport seats, the opional ventilated/cooled seats and zenons.

    I didn't consider the R Series Volvo in the above because the price premium makes it hard to compare with the Saab.

    Volvomax and others, what say you?
  • volvomaxvolvomax Posts: 5,274
    Well, I'm not a big SAAB fan.

    The real difference is going to come at resale time. A Volvo wagon will do alot better than a SAAB one.

    As for sedans, with the lease deals out there the S60R is an unbeatable choice.
  • blckislandguyblckislandguy Posts: 1,150

    Agreed. The Saab resale is notoriously low due in part to the heavy discounting of MSRP. (This makes a fair comparison difficult because no one pays even within 5K of list for a Saab.)

    Interestingly enough, while the Volvo dealer body seems stronger with better facilities etc. there are still at least a couple of Saab dealers in New England that built their business on the old two stroke 96 series so beloved by a generation of college faculty. Stetson in Maine is one. I suspect that these guys would give better customer service on a sick 9-5 than the typically much larger, higher volume Volvo stores would on a V70. When Volvo went up-scale with the 144 Series in the late 60's it pulled away from Saab. Then when Suburu came in 10 years later with AWD, Saab lost what low end busines it still retained. A whole generation of Mainers whose parents drove Saabs now drive Outbacks and their more successful cousins drive Volvos.

    How is the resale on a V70R? Does it tend to be only a small premium above the XC70? In other words, are there deals to be had such as finding a V70R in good shape for the same or not much more than full retail on a XC70?

    As an S60R knowledgeable owner how is the ride? Is it too boy racerish?
  • Sport Wagon Saga

    First of all: a special thanks to all of you who have spent your time posting about various cars, trials and tribulations with dealers, price haggling and results, and the features that stand out in the various models. For the past 3 months, your efforts have been incredibly helpful.

    I went from the BMW 325xi to the Audi A4 Avant. I tried the Subaru Outback and Legacy GT (not enough room to stretch my legs out), and for a time ended up with a VW Passat 3.6 4motion Wagon on order (Sport Pakage). I still think it is a great car, and that the sport suspension and seats are the only way to go. However, after waiting 5 weeks and realizing that the 6 week promise of a car was patently false. (In the beginning preorder, I had even told them that the internet had suggested 10 weeks yet they stuck to their 6 week time frame.) After it became obvious that the car would be late, it is currently on the dock in Germany awaiting transport (at 5.5 weeks), I tried to renegotiate the numbers (I had offered $36, 800—about $800 over invoice) but they said it cost them money to order the car and couldn’t do anything on price—they also said if I backed out there would be “no hard feelings” and a full refund of my $500 deposit. I didn’t back out at that time, but I did continue the search. Initially, I had eliminated Volvo’s: XC 70 no fun to drive (though it did have everything else). While the V70 T5 was a kick to drive, and had a nice feel, I needed a vehicle with all wheel drive. I hope to NEVER put chains on a car again! I eventually returned to Volvo (I already own a ’94 940 wagon with 110,000 miles with NO problems so I’m a bit partial). Took a ride in the V70-R and fell in love—seriously.

    I needed all wheel drove for the snow, an exceptionally comfortable seat to withstand 6.5 hour drives to the SF Bay Area for wind, and an equally long 6.5 hour drive to the snow for skiing. I also wanted a FUN car to drive. Additionally I needed a fair amount of room for surfing and windsurfing gear. Further, about half the time, I needed room for a wife and dog, and sometimes a daughter. You’ll laugh about these volume requirements, but in fact I was scaling down from a Suburban which is usually full of stuff with room for only one passenger—and even then I had to move some stuff around! The Volvo wagon offered adequate size, but it wasn’t until the end of the line (and steep discounts on 2006 Volvo’s), that I went back and test drove, for the first time, the V70—R.

    What an amazing car! Comfortable, FUN, glued to the road, way more to offer the “spirited” driver than ALL the other cars. Even better than the 330xi I tested solely for trying out the sport suspension and seats which I could never find in the 325xi. If you’re in the market for an understated rocket, be sure and give the V70-R some consideration.

    I added roof rails and got an agreed upon price of $41, 580. This is about $7000 under MSRP, and about $4000 above the cost of the VW Passat 3.6 4 Motion Wagon (I should mention that the Passat had 0.0% financing for 36 months which is obviously worth something). Thanx again to ALL who shared their stories and helped me make an informed decision.
  • volvomaxvolvomax Posts: 5,274
    V70R is going to be very hard to find used. very few were built.
    Also, you would need snow tires since the R rides on summer performance tires.

    Saab's last bastion in the US is in the northeast, so dealer service should be good there.

    I drive an S60R, and w/ the adjustable suspension the ride can be whatever you want it to be. Soft to racetrack hard.
  • jim314jim314 Posts: 491
    We own a 2004 base model V70 168 hp 2.4L 5-cyl with 5-spd auto. Can I get a mileage computer installed by the dealer? Alternatively, can I use a scanner in the ODB port to yield mpg or fuel flow per unit time?
  • blckislandguyblckislandguy Posts: 1,150

    "What do Mack Trucks and Saab have in common?"

    Only people in New England still buy them.
  • volvomaxvolvomax Posts: 5,274
  • Hello all - I'm currently driving a 2003 Accord EX (yawn) but really want a wagon. I'm waiting to hear back from a private seller on the particulars of a 2000 XC for sale locally (southern Maine) - current mileage, especially - but I've been poking around in these Volvo forums and I can't help but think I'd be disappointed in the inevitable repair bills, though it does appear that the pre-2001 engine is a positive, and my Accord hasn't been trouble-free either (dead CD changer, emissions issues). Gas mileage will probably take a hit since I'm used to 30+mpg regularly, but I can live with that.

    Curious to see if anyone else has made the Honda-to-Volvo swap or has any horror stories to tell about the pre-2001 XC wagons that I should be aware of. Thanks!
  • pgb3pgb3 Posts: 7
    ">I too own a Honda (2001 Odys - major yawn) and have considering a purchasing a new V70R. We also own a 1998 S70GLT, which has given us many problems (major and minor), the most irritating of which are the constant blub & headlamp replacements. I beleive that Volvo has since changed the electrical wiring system, and the platform. The V70R is fun to drive (test-drive w/manual trans.), and safe to boot. What a great combination. I like the looks of the V70XC, but it's just not as fun. Good luck.
  • We run Michelin Artic Alpins on our '01 XC70 in the winter. One now has a hole in the sidewall such that if you peel back the black rubber you can see the white/gray inner cord. So, we need a new tire.

    Problem is I am told by one dealer that until Volvo in '03 went to the Haldex AWD system that you can't just change one tire but all four because the old style AWD would burn itself up trying t o accomodate tires of different diameters (one new; three old). Compounding this, the Artic Alpin is no longe available. The Tire Rack suggested a Michelin that replaced it but said that while comparable it had a different tread design.

    Can I get away with three somewhat worn Artic Alpins and one different tire?

    Should I put TWO new non-Artic Alpins on the same axle?

    Or do I have to buy four new identical tires?
  • volvomaxvolvomax Posts: 5,274
    How many miles are on the tires?
    If there is going to be a significant tread difference between the new and old ties then replacing all 4 is necessary.
  • Hi there,
    I'm usually on the Suburu boards, but my new Tribeca has just been in a wreck and we just rented a Volvo V70 at ATL airport yesterday. They told us that it was AWD and even the placard said that the V70 which is part of their "Prestige" line at Hertz is AWD. It's important to have an AWD because we need it here in the mountains of NC today.

    Anyway, we're driving it and we can't find anywhere in the car saying that it's an AWD car. It does have an option that will let us drive when it's raining or a "W" feature. But it does not say AWD on the back or inside.
    I'm concerned because it may snow tomorrow and our place is on top of a steep mountain here.

    Please do I make sure this car is in fact AWD? Where does it say this so I can feel a bit more comfortable.

  • jim314jim314 Posts: 491
    I would think that a V70 would have "AWD" on the back hatch if it were truly AWD. The standard V70 is front wheel drive. But if you have an XC70 it comes only with AWD. Look under the car at the back and see if it has drive shafts going to each wheel (and a differential in the center. The rear differential is smaller than the differentials of RWD cars.)

    But even if it's just a front wheel drive V70, that should handle winter rain and snow acceptably well. The "W" is winter tranny setting which reduces start-up wheel spin on slick road surfaces (by starting in 2nd gear, I think).
  • Thanks Jim,

    I appreciate your response. I'm just a bit upset that Hertz sold us a weekly rental on a this Volvo (which was an upgraded car!) as an AWD. It even said so on the placard at the counter. This is why we were a bit baffled when we didn't see AWD anywhere on the car.

    We love this V70 and it's a great car. Thanks.
  • volvomaxvolvomax Posts: 5,274
    The V70 AWD is no longer made.
    Only the XC70 and V70R come w/ AWD.
    I doubt that Hertz is renting V70R's!
    Are you sure you don't have an XC70, because Hertz does rent those.
  • fedlawmanfedlawman Posts: 3,118
    Good point.

    The XC70 is easily recognized by it's plastic cladding around the lower body and fenders.

  • jim314jim314 Posts: 491
    What is the exact model designation on the back hatch?
  • volvomaxvolvomax Posts: 5,274

    Also says Cross Country under the back glass.
  • It is not worth it. As tires wear they actually become smaller. If you don't agree you can actually measure them but it is tough to be acurate. Take a piece of chalk and draw a line on the pavement. Roll a new tire 5 or 10 complete revolutions and draw a second line. Do the same with an existing tire same revolutions. you will see a difference and this will cause your AWD to fail.

    doing 2 won't matter any way so if you not going to buy 4 just do the one and replace your transfer box if/when it fails.

    Sorry my wife loves the volvo wagons and we are looking to replace our old 850. She wants AWD and I want FWD specifically for these reasons.

    In an old life I sold tires and went through a couple of week training sessions at the Michelin plant in SC. They will tell you to buy 5 tires when you replace and rotate every 6-8 K including the 5th tire in the rotation pattern. That way this will prevent you having an issue like this. Oh yea it won't cost you any more because by buying 5 instead of 4 tires you get more wear out of them.

    That said I never saw anyone purchase 5 tires under this logic.

    All of this said all is probably a mute point because few people rotate their tires often enough to keep them the same size. My guess is your volvo eats up front tires quickly and rotation is very important on his model as they are so much heavier in front them back.

    Good Luck
  • robr2robr2 BostonPosts: 8,862
    Then it's AWD.
  • jim314jim314 Posts: 491

    What is the exact model designation on the back hatch of the rented Volvo wagon? Does it read "V70R" or just "V70"?

    Were you able to confirm the presence, or absence, of drive axles connected to the rear wheels?

    Whether it is FWD or AWD drive, I hope you'll let us know how the vehicle handled the mountain road. In about 1985 our 1981 Pontiac Phoenix (GM "X-Body) FWD easily climbed an icy hill that a bunch of Mercedes and BMW RWD cars were slewing sideways on. FWD will do a great job of climbing icy hills. Where AWD shines is in aggressive driving on twisty roads.

  • It just says V70...I didn't look at the drive axles yet...sorry it's too cold outside..but I'll look later!
  • robr2robr2 BostonPosts: 8,862
    Hmm - I can't delete this message. I thought it was flagirl posting the lettering - not volvomax.
  • I must be lucky! I have been driving Volvo wagon for a decade now. Started from the 850 series to V70's and never had problem. I do lease my cars, so I change them every 3 years and get the same car over, just a different version. Right now I'm driving the V70-R series. It's nice but have to refuel more often, this car drinks gas... I think my favorite one is the T-5.
  • churechure Posts: 3
    I'm looking at buying a V70 T5 and was looking for feedback as to whether the T5 was recommended over the the standard V70.
    We will adding child #2 soon and don't want to jump into the minivan world or add another SUV. I'm moving from a Jetta GLI and prefer to have a sporty feel to my vehicle and the T5 seems to fit the sporty family car. I'm am looking in the used market, most likely '04 coming off of 3yr leases.
    Again, I'm interested in comments about the T5 and whether I should continue to look for it versus the standard V70.

    Much appreciated.
  • volvomaxvolvomax Posts: 5,274
    The T5 is faster, htats pretty much it.
    Seats are a little nicer and you would have a few more toys on the car.
    T5 wagons are pretty rare.
    The 2.4T or 2.5T's are more common.
    They also have turbo engines, they just aren't as powerful.
  • jim314jim314 Posts: 491
    Are you considering a base 2.4L non-turbo? My wife has a 2004 base V70 168 hp with 5-speed auto tranny and roof rails as the only options. It's got plenty of power, gets better fuel economy and is a lot cheaper.

    On a trip with a Thule roof box we got 29 mpg. I've also got a Volvo trailer hitch on it, but in the one highway trip pulling the trailer the mpg was down significantly to a little over 20 mpg.
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