2003 Volvo XC70 Momentum 2.4 D5


Generally good car with electronics being a quality issue, seems on a large scale


Electronic issues right from the beginning: warning messages appearing, mostly of the intimidating kind (Anti-skid, Brakes, ABS not working). There was a pattern in it, but this didn’t quite help the mechanics in the shops. Sometimes the car wouldn’t (re)start!

The air con tends to excessively cool down the driver’s cab. I felt the temperature sensor in the dashboard to be too hot (wrong position, a design flaw) - but then again, if it was only this!…

General Comments:

The car handles and behaves well, and is mechanically sound.

Only thing that makes it sort of a lemon is the electronics. Had it many times at the car dealer - it usually wouldn’t take long before I had the same problem again. Becoming ever worse lately. Finally a year ago, they thought that they had found the problem: new software loaded on the ABS/brake-computer. Too bad it worked only for a while before getting back to the old routine. Now it seems clear what the solution could be: All considered it took them over 2 years to figure out that the piece itself might be defective. I find out by myself that this piece is prone to failure (found a DIY-manual published on the website motor-talk.de, German language, which also refers to other people having done it). Warranty?! Rather a design flaw, I’d say!

I refused the offer of having it repaired - simply couldn’t trust them anymore. I’d have a lot to tell, I have written several letters and made even more telephone calls - to both the Italian importer and company HQ in Sweden. I - that is my car - got the best attention from a Volvo dealer in Switzerland. By courtesy of the Swiss importer I have to say (way better than the Italian branch) who substantially contributed to the investigation of the flaw.

I understand that nowadays no car is flawless anymore. So what it all comes down to today is good service marks from the dealers up to the car company itself! Volvo doesn’t really care about that point. OK, there was no warranty on the car any more. But then one buys a car not for that - you want a car that works! OK, they did answer my correspondence, but by always handing it down to the local level (the importer…). Other manufacturers don’t! Or at the same time they brief the local representatives on what to do and at least give technical support.

Anyway - Volvo has lost me as a customer: they’ve become an overrated manufacturer relying on their fame among people. “Heja Volvo”, Come on Volvo! they used to say…

Two things on my behalf:

if somebody wants my log of the car’s problems, there is no problem. Post a reply.

I would be prepared to file a lawsuit against Volvo - anyone with similar problems interested?

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 8th December, 2008