Getting firsthand information from an actual car owner is one sure way to get an idea of car performance once it leaves the lot. Autobytel features real consumer reviews that give the unbiased experience of a car.
2004 Volvo S60 - R M AWD
Pros: Front seat comfort and support
Cons: head light coverage
Advice: Don't let your friends drive itOnce you step in this S60R, the seats grab you and prepare you for the ride of your life. Put the car in gear, dump the clutch, stand on it, and let the awd grip the road and rocket your forward pass all other luxury cars in this price range. Once you heart slows down and you realize you are traveling well over the speed limit you let off the gas, change the suspension setting from advanced to comfort and cruise down the highway knowing you can easily rocket pass 98% of the cars on the road.
2004 Volvo XC90 - FWD
Advice: shop diff volvo dealerships if poss for best pricePros: optional 3rd row, amt of storage behind 3rd row, MPG, versatility (enter 3rd row from either side, all seats except driver can fold down, all seats move and fold independently from eachother), safety (roll stability control, Dynamic stability traction control, side airbags all 3 rows, boron steel roof), size (both interior and exterior--can fit in garage and I can still exit vehicle), 'grocery bag holder,' 'mini' split tailgate, reverse warning system (option). Cons: hp, amt of 2nd row legroom, odomoter set up (difficult to quickly read odd mph (50, 70, etc.), front power seats don't move w/o key in ignition.
2003 Volvo XC90 - FWD FWD
Pros: I love the total package especially the body style and the 36,000 mile free maint. available on the 2004
Cons: It takes only premium unleaded gas.
Advice: It is a bit pricey, I tried like the dickens to talk the manager down but could only get $700 off MSRPThe very first XC90 that I tested was a 2003 demo and I loved it the minute I sat in it. I had of course heard of the Volvo's record for safety which was a big deciding factor in purchasing any vehicle. I found the interior to be pleasing to the eye and very functional. The performance was great, I don't drive like a bat but felt that the pickup was great. This car drives like a dream. The other vehicle that I was interested in was the Lexus GX470.
2003 Volvo S60 - AWD
Pros: All wheel drive
Cons: would like to have fan controls for driver & passenger
Advice: The color I wanted was difficult to find on the lothas great pick-up and 'zip', the ride is smooth
2003 Volvo V70 - T5 M FWD
Pros: The perfect all-around car for people who live in the Real World
Cons: It's perfect -- but does it have to cost that much? Geez!
Advice: Forget ego cars--does your family deserve anything less?Volvos just keep getting better and better, and this newest V70 may just be the best yet. All-day comfortable seats, great sound system, lots of room for everybody and their gear, good power, better brakes, handling that shames lesser (read: Axis) cars, and a stealth factor that will keep you out of trouble--unless you do something massively stupid, the cops won't even notice you. And if you really do something stupid and have an accident, the car will save your life for you. Everything is laid out perfectly, with all controls (save the sunroof and windows) within a hand's breadth of the wheel, as it should be. Even the nav system is safety-minded, popping up out of the dash in line with the road so you don't have to look down to see where you will be going next. I'd pass on the normally aspirated 2.4 liter engine, as its power is just adequate. The low-pressure turbo is quite impressive, and is almost as fast as the full-on T-5 model in around-town driving. Where the T-5 really shines is on the highway, with passing power and top end to spare. And now, we get the 'R' model, which has 300 HP, all-wheel drive, Brembo brakes, and a semi-active suspension that can be set anywhere from 'parade float' to 'Laguna Seca Raceway'. I had a chance to drive this one, and was completely blown away. You want this car. Me, I plan to buy one ASAP. If you're smart, you will, too.
2002 Volvo S60 - T5 M SR FWD
Pros: The T5 engine
Cons: Back seat too small
Advice: Go for itIncredibly smooth ride and very fast. Almost scary when gas pedal is floored. You'll need to hold on tight. Quality is incredible. Not even a minor problem in 9 months. Back seat is too small for adults but front is really comfortable. Sound system is as good as any I have encountered. Love the looks and it is nice not to have the BMW everyone else has.
2003 Volvo S60 - 2.4T A FWD
Cons: mechanicals and exhaust tone (sounds like a buzz saw at times)
Advice: really look at what you are considering buying. Demand to have one for the weekend!!Have had my car just under 6000 miles and I am very unhappy. It has had numerous transmission issues, mostly just very jerky when it shifts in the low gears. Get it going and its great. A/C motor grunts and clatters when it comes on and steeing never seems to be in line. Meeting with Volvo tomorrow to see what we can do about this. Of course, the dealer says this is all normal!!