Luxury, style and fantastic comfort for Corolla money!
Hydraulic return hose broke. Fixed with a pair of hose clamps and a piece of tube. Permanently fixed with a new return hose harness (cost 900 NOK). This is a classic fault on XMs.
Control of hydractive valve blocks did not function correctly. New hydraulic oil, filters and renewal of solid state relay fixed this. (tot cost 500 NOK)
This is an Exclusive edition and has all the extras that was available.
It is equipped with DIRAVI steering (as seen in SM and CX) which is drive-by-wire, or literally "drive-by-fluid"! The DIRAVI is a fully hydraulic variable counter force steering which wheel position is ONLY affected by steering wheel input. In tight parking situations it is light and only need little force to be turned. In high speed it makes the steering rock hard. Going back to normal quasi-servo feels close to holding on to a jackhammer!
The engine hasn't got the highest max output (compared to todays engines), but the low end torque is abundant and coupled with the ZF4HP18 automatic transmission rockets you from standstill (OK, only for a while until the veeery long 2nd gear kicks in...) The PRV is a cam-chain driven construction that is known to be very long lived. This PRV is the last incarnation of the PRV range and has many modifications and differences to the Volvo/Renault ones.
Suspension is in a class of its own with Hydractive 2 active suspension. It modifies BOTH damping and spring rate in milliseconds and stiffens up the car before the car has started to dive, squat or lean. It combines very soft damping /spring rate with very hard. A fun thing to do is high speed floating before a bend and turning in high speed... that'll shock the passengers thinking it will not make the bend.hehe
The softness of the suspension might feel weird to those who are accustomed to rock hard german cars, but once accustomed you'll never turn back =)
The interior is in MINT condition. Not bad for 13 yr old full leather seats.
The seats are some of the very very best I've tried.
There is very little rust on the car except for the bent front jacking brackets =( The XM is galvanized.
Petrol consumption: for high way cruising it is around 0.85 liters/10km. City driving: 1,5 liters/10km is no problem...
Cabin: the cabin is very big and gives a feeling of cabin space that only very big cars today do. Even the C6 feels less spacious than the xm. Back seats are heated and back seat passengers have adjustable ventilation in the B-pillars. It is also equipped with an inner rear window to isolate the cabin from draught and noise.
Space: with the back seats down the XM Berline packs just shy of 1,5 cubic meters. I used to have Station wagons, but can't say Im missing it.
Style: The Bertone design has a lot of interesting elements and to me holds up just as well today as it did 20yrs ago when it was designed. How about a car design with 13 windows, super aerodynamics, double curved windows and a disguised big rear hatch?!
Maintenance: It really is no hocus pocus keeping a car like this on the road. Ordinary service is just like on other cars... well actually it is easier since servo steering fluid, brake fluid and suspension fluid are intgrated. Change of suspension spheres(equivalent to dampers and springs) are done in 15minute (all four of them) try doing that on a metal sprung car...
Doing basic hydraulic maintenance and repairs is also easy... it is only DIFFERENT from your average car.
It should of course be said that an advanced and well equipped car like this will have more things that can fail (and given time, they will so do!). So if you want to spend the least amount of time in the garage then go for a late XM (95-2000) without Hydractive suspension.
Bottom line is it drives like on rails and is a fantastic cruising machine!
Drive a car like this for a day and you will never go back..
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 15th October, 2008