1995 Volvo 850 T5 2.3 turbo from South Africa


Epic, power, stability, grace, understated


Gearbox at 125000 km; common on these models. Replaced with 850R LSD and TCU; no problems since.

Window regulator on the right hand driver's door.

Window center control unit.

Full suspension overall from front to rear; replaced all components.

Replaced radiator at 240000km

Replaced the radiator cooling fan 125000km and 250000km.

Common replacement coolant pipes due to the performance power of the engine; replaced every 12 months.

CV repaired or replaced every 24 months due to monster torque this motor produces.

Changed all mechanical parts on the motor to current upgraded parts from the manufacturer.

Replaced the motor with a new motor, not exchange unit, brand new from Sweden at 340000km due to thermostat locking up and blowing head and damaging cylinder 3.

Replaced turbocharger twice; common fault due to under cooling. Remedied with a charge cooler with stand alone coolant pump and separate oil cooler.

Seat worn on right hand side and that's it.

Bumpers have issues, namely fading of grey top, but easily remedied.

ABS sensors replaced every 36 months.

Fuel cell replaced due to road damage.

Seat belts needed to be replaced to due to age and wear.

V70R uprated discs front and rear eat pads, so replacements every 12 months can be costly, but worth it.

General Comments:

I have had the car since new; I will never sell or trade it. I drive my quick brick everyday, and every time I get out of her, I smile and say best car I have ever owned.

I know my list of faults is long, but to say the least, I own a 6,3l A** from you know who, what I can say is my Volvo has never given as much problems as I have with this car, and the best is when you rock up to collect with a 16 year old car at the dealership, people can't believe you are driving it and I start smiling.

In closing, keep to your service schedule, and you will have one of the best cars ever built.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 21st August, 2011

1995 Volvo 850 T 2.3 turbo petrol from Australia and New Zealand


Luxurious, comfortable, amazing performance, fantastic reliability, Volvo for life!


Not one fault whatsoever. Everything is sturdy, working and reliable.

General Comments:

This is the best car I have ever owned. Much more reliable and safer than my Camry, which took around five times to start, and broke down at least two times a month. Now I have a vehicle that will continue to run for years. Buy a Volvo. Never buy a Toyota.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 11th June, 2011

13th Jun 2011, 01:59

You've only had it for just over 4,000 km/2400 miles. Give us an update after you've done at least 15,000 km/9300 miles.

15th Jun 2011, 00:52

OK. I will. But just to let you know that after I owned my previous car for 100 km it broke down on the motorway. This is a big difference having a vehicle that doesn't break down every five minutes.

21st Nov 2011, 22:14

I am the reviewer. The Volvo has now done 126,000 KMs and it's still fantastic. Nothing wrong at all. Thank you Volvo.

1995 Volvo 850 T5 2.3 turbo from Colombia


Very good and fun car


This is my first Volvo 850; we used to have a 940 in the family a while back.

I have had the car for about 10 months, and so far the car has not disappointed me.

I bought it from the dealer, and it was actually in good nick, it had some dings in the body and the leather seats had seen better days, but it was not bad at all. It had 82k miles when I bought it.

The first thing I did to it was a major tune-up, with new spark plugs, wires, distributor cap and rotor and oil, air and fuel filters. The original wires plugs and filters really were in poor conditions, it improved the mileage and idle significantly.

Although the car is very reliable and has never failed to take me back home, there are some issues as you might expect in a car this old.

The first thing to go wrong was the turbo piping; it had a big hole in one of the rubber hoses that caused a boost leak, which prevented it from passing 3500 rpm. Luckily this was an easy fix.

After that the heater radiator failed, it had a major leak (which actually happened very suddenly, in about 1 week) and after I had driven it for about half an hour, all the coolant and water went into the cabin floor and windows. Obviously the car was undriveable like that, and it had to be fixed. I used the opportunity to change the radiator and intercooler, which were not in tip top condition either, and were likely to fail in the future.

I have had a good relationship with the dealer so far; as you can imagine, it is not cheap, but they let me provide the parts and they do the labor. The parts for this car can be obtained very easily and rather cheap with specialist companies in the USA, so it is not very expensive at all.

General Comments:

The car is very comfortable, especially on long trips. The seats are the best I have ever experienced in a car.

The car performs very good, it has more than enough power for everyday use, and at the altitude where I live (8700 ft), the turbo really provides good acceleration for overtaking maneuvers.

Turbo lag is evident, from 2500 rpm it starts pulling really hard until about 5000 rpm, where it loses some punch.

The brakes are also very good, ABS provides short stopping distances and good control over the car in emergency situations; it has saved me a couple of times in really bad weather conditions.

Handling wise, the car drives better than you might expect from a heavy front wheel drive. It is no BMW, but it is rather good.

The overall experience with the car has been very good. It has some weak points, such as the mileage and the fact that is somewhat big (at least for the kind of cars I am used to), but it is very safe, reliable, comfortable and fast.

I would definitely buy another Volvo.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 7th May, 2011