Premium midsize car; Built in Sweden
  • 4-door wagon
  • transverse front-engine/front-wheel drive
Good condition price range: $16,500 – $25,000*


2008 Volvo V70 Front


2008 Volvo V70 Rear


2008 Volvo V70 Interior


2008 Volvo V70 Profile

Pros:
  • Passenger and cargo room
  • Quietness
  • Ride/handling
Cons:
  • Fuel economy
  • Rear-seat foot space

This midsize wagon is best appreciated as the value-seeker’s luxury car. Well equipped for its new-car price, the V70 approximates the performance of similarly-sized wagons from rival European manufacturers for thousands less-all while maintaining Volvo’s unique style and character. For shoppers looking for room, comfort, utility, and a dose of coddling, the V70 is a must-see.

Overview

When Volvo redesigned its premium midsize V70 wagon for 2008, it gained freshened styling and more standard power. The third-generation V70 was essentially a wagon version of Volvo’s flagship S80 sedan, competing against such vehicles as the Audi A6, BMW 5-Series, Saab 9-3, and Volkswagen Passat-plus the forthcoming Toyota Venza. Note that Volvo also sold an all-wheel-drive SUV-flavored version of the V70 called the XC70; that model was similarly redesigned for 2008 (see separate report).

Offered in a single 3.2 trim level, the V70 had front-wheel drive and a 235-horsepower 3.2-liter six-cylinder engine, which replaced five-cylinder engines of 168 and 208 hp. The high-performance R model was discontinued. So was the available manual transmission. All V70s now had a six-speed automatic transmission. Standard safety features included antilock brakes, traction control, an antiskid system, curtain side airbags, and front side airbags. Also available were dual integrated rear child-safety seats. Volvo’s Blind Spot Information System was optional, along with adaptive cruise control that included collision warning. A navigation system and dual-screen DVD entertainment also were extra-cost options. Leather upholstery with heated front seats, a navigation system, and dual-screen DVD entertainment were available.

Yearly Updates

2009 V70
No major changes were evident on the 2009 V70 wagon. Front foglamps now were standard, as was Bluetooth hands-free phone connectivity. A new Technology Package included active bi-xenon headlamps with washers.
2010 V70
The 2010 Volvo V70 lineup gained a new sport-themed model, the sporty R-Design. It featured a load-leveling sport suspension, 18-inch wheels, leather upholstery, sunroof, and specific interior trim.

Engines

transverse front-engine/front-wheel drive

Each front-wheel-drive V70 wagon holds a 3.2-liter inline six-cylinder engine rated at 235 horsepower mated to a six-speed automatic transmission.

dohc I6
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 3.2/195
Engine HP 235
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 236
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
6-speed automatic

16/25

21.6

Road Test

Volvo’s V70 is short on power compared to other midsize premium cars, but it moves along nicely just the same. There’s more than adequate power from a stop and enough reserve energy for fuss-free passing and merging. The smooth transmission is quick to respond to throttle inputs.

Fuel economy could be better, especially for urban use. A test V70 averaged 21.6 mpg in an even mix of city and highway driving. Volvo recommends premium-grade gasoline.

Ride comfort is satisfying: a commendable balance of road feel and bump isolation. The V70 doesn’t smother potholes and street imperfections completely, but it does eliminate the harshness.

Handling qualifies as almost sporty. Volvo’s V70 benefits from direct, responsive steering and well-controlled lean in corners. Reassuring, powerful-feeling brakes complete the picture.

Wind and road noise are kept well in check. The engine sounds refined, with its noise only really noticeable under hard throttle.

Gauges are large, clearly marked, and easy to read. The V70’s control layout is simple and generally intuitive. Several testers found the digital bar graph a poor substitute for a conventional fuel gauge.

Assembly quality is first-rate. Cabin materials are padded and/or nicely grained where it matters most. Standard vinyl/cloth seating surfaces feel durable and expensive, but in the grey color of our test car, the upholstery appeared solemnly bland. Leather trim would add a welcome luxury ambiance to the interior.

Front-seat headroom and legroom are ample, even for taller occupants. Thin roof pillars and large glass areas combine for excellent all-around visibility.

Rear seats provide decent space for two adults, but three-across seating is acceptable only for short hops. Under-seat foot space is limited, compromising comfort when the front seats are too far back.

The large, boxy, nicely finished cargo area features flat-folding second-row seats and handy underfloor storage. A storage-lid prop and cargo tie-down points are nice touches. In-cabin storage is limited to an average-size glovebox and center console, as well as a few tiny cubbies.

Ratings

Model Tested: 2009 Volvo V70 3.2

Ratings values are on a 1-10 scale, with 10 being the best. With the exception of Value, these numbers reflect how the vehicle compares against the universe of vehicles, not just against rivals in its class.

Performance

Acceleration - 6
60%
Fuel Economy - 5
50%
Ride Quality - 7
70%
Steering/Handling - 7
70%
Quietness - 7
70%

Accommodations

Controls/Materials - 7
70%
Room/Comfort Front - 8
80%
Room/Comfort Rear - 6
60%
Cargo Room - 8
80%

Other

Value - 8
80%

Total: 69

Specifications

4-door wagon
Wheelbase (in.) Length (in.) Width (in.) Height (in.) Weight (lbs)
110.8 189.9 73.3 60.6
Cargo Volume (cu/ft) Payload Capacity (cu/ft) Fuel Capacity (gal.) Seating Capacity
72.1 18.5 5
Headroom Legroom
Front Rear Front Rear
38.8 38.6 41.9 34.6
Safety Ratings

Model Tested: N/A Not tested. 4-door wagon

NHTSA

(5 is the highest rating)

Front Impact Test

Driver Injury - N/A
N/A0%
Front Passenger Injury - N/A
N/A0%

Side Impact Test

Driver Injury - N/A
N/A0%
Rear Passenger Injury - N/A
N/A0%

HLDI

(A score of 100 is average. Lower is better)

Collision N/A
Injury N/A
Theft N/A

Trouble Spots

Steering problems
Description: The power steering may quit working intermittently requiring a replacement electronic power steering module. (2008-09)
Windows
Description: The auto-up window(s) may go only part way then reverse and go back down due to misalignment of the window of lack of lubrication on the window guides. (2008-09)
Check-engine light
Description: A non-turbo engine may round rough (sometimes accompanied by high oil consumption) and trigger the check engine light because the oil level may be too high–above the full mark when the engine is cold. (2007-09)
Entertainment problems
Description: The infotainment system may quit working as soon as the engine is started but be OK if the key is switched off and back on requiring a software upgrade. (2008-09)
MP3 integration system
Description: A “USB Unreadable” message may be displayed on the infotainment screen on some vehicles and this is not a vehicle problem but a compatibility issue between some iPods and the system. (2009-10)

Recall History

2008 w/rear integrated booster seats
Description: Label may be missing warning information indicating that death or serious injury can occur if manufacturer’s instructions are not followed when using child restraint systems.
2008-09 V70
Description: Engine cooling fan may stop working due to software programming error; could cause reduced air conditioning performance and/or rapid increase in engine coolant temperature, which may result in engine failure.
2010 V70
Description: There may be an intermittent fault in the driver’s airbag clockspring wiring connector for the supplemental restraint system. In the event of a crash, the driver’s frontal airbag may not deploy as intended or at all, and therefore will not be able to properly protect the driver, increasing the risk of injuries. Dealers will install a metal shim in the driver’s air bag clockspring wiring connector. This service will be performed free of charge.

Equipment Lists

Equipment lists are only viewable on larger screen sizes.

Pricing

Used-car pricing varies widely depending on local market conditions. Therefore, we recommend visiting websites that list used cars for sale to get a better idea of what a specific model is selling for in your area.