2006 Volvo S40 SE 1.6D turbo diesel
Safety, luxury and quality in one package!
Apart from general wear and tear, the following has been repaired/replaced:
Nov 15 - oil light flickering and the car sounding bad was injection seals needing replacing; evidence of this was volcano like black around injector. No problem with oil light since.
January 16 - Alternator failed. The car flashed up all sorts of messages and the lights dimmed and power steering went; pulled in and tried to restart, it wouldn't restart. The car sprayed water out of the washer constantly after I tried to start it til it drained the rest of the battery!
February 16 - Weird rumbling noise getting progressively worse. Sounded like a wheel bearing. Checked all wheels for play and they were all normal. Had to take the wheels off and spin, and found the rear right wheel bearing had a rough noise; replaced.
Overall, I really like this car. I have owned many Volvos and this is one of my favourites. The interior is a nice place to be; mine has cream leather and a floating centre console; a stark improvement from the boxy old Volvos. The car inside is good for the driver and front passenger, but room in the back is very cramped, especially headroom due to the aggressive roof line. Although its underpinnings are of a Ford Focus, it very much feels like a 'real' Volvo and not just a posh Focus.
Although it is not as reliable as the Skoda Octavia I had before it, it is still fairly reliable, and any things that had to be replaced were down to mileage (275,000 km!) and slight neglect from the previous owner. The Volvo is more reliable than many of its competitors (Mercedes, BMW) and is genuinely a better car.
Being a Volvo, it is very safe, and has ridiculous levels of safety. The car feels reassuringly planted on the road. The seats inside are some of the most comfortable I have ever sat in. I often drive over 2 hours each way and never have a sore back afterwards! (something I had a problem with on the previous Octavia due to very firm seats). Spec level on the car is very good compared to competitors.
The car has a very nice exterior, especially the R design silver mirrors and the sweeping curve toward the back; I often get compliments on its good looks.
The 1.6D engine is reasonably nippy once it hits 2,000 RPM, although if loaded with passengers and the car's heavy weight, the car can feel a bit sluggish; with this weight of car, I would go for the 2.0d. The car is very light on diesel, never getting less than 56 MPG.
Overall, I think this is a very competent car and is a good alternative to the premium Germans.
I will give updates on any more problems/comments about the car.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 23rd June, 2016
14th Oct 2016, 21:23
Turbo failed on it a month ago; apparently on these models when the injector seals go as it did in mine, it puts carbon in the oil, which blocks the oil pickup pipe. When pipe was inspected from the sump, it was indeed blocked. New turbo installed and much better since. An expensive lesson learned!