1996 Volvo 850 2.5 20 valve from UK and Ireland


In terms of quality it is hard to rival


I have experienced a few problems with the electrics and the interior.

After a year of driving the car, half of the dashboard failed to light up along with the right side of the stereo. this has been quite costly to repair. The heated seated and electric mirrors haven't worked for years and the glove box lock stuck and fails to open even with the key. Has anyone else experienced this?

The drivers door also makes a terrible clunking noise when opened. the lights also stop working and need to be constantly replaced and when I turn the engine off the seat belt lights stay on and drain the battery.

General Comments:

Relatively cheap to run and insure.

Comfortable, safe ride.

Excellent engine quality.

Riddled with small problems that are expensive to keep putting right.

Excellent sound system.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 14th January, 2007

16th Sep 2008, 23:13

1996 850 wagon. Most comfortable long range car I have owned,-safe, good mileage BUT,-Fixing A/C cost is crazy, back tail gate will not stay open, master brake cylinder went bad as did computer for anti lock brakes (sometimes it worked, sometimes it did not!) Windshield wiper blade refuses to touch glass unless I keep bending it, rear glass cost is nuts ($700). Shock absorbers too costly. Front seals on axle wore grove in axle causing axle replacement ($1200) Under powered at higher elevation out West. Dash lights do not always work. Electric window switches need replacing ($200) Driver's door has broken weld,-big noise when opening door,-Body shop will fix for $200.Would not buy another one. Daughter has one also,--her thoughts are the same. Bob C.

1996 Volvo 850 Turbo Wagon 2.3L turbo 5 cylinder from North America




Mass Airflow Meter (Bad when I bought it in 2004; common fault around 135K)

Rear Main Oil Seal Leak (It was bad when I bought the car and is still bad, written up as leaking @ 125K)

ABS/TRACS Controller (easily and cheaply repaired)

Right Front Wheel Bearing.

General Comments:

Excellent vehicle--the fourth Volvo I've owned. Each of the repairs I've made on it are common wear n tear items for all 850s; plenty of data is available on the internet on how to fix those yourself.

Great driving wagon which should last another 155K.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 13th January, 2007

1996 Volvo 850 Turbo 2.3 5 in-line watercooled turbocharged from Hong Kong


Performance sedan with boxy silhouette


Central lock malfunction - lock or unlock the doors suddenly when the vehicle is in motion. But this does not happen when the vehicle is parked.

Background light for the on-board computer is out of order.

Annoying sounds from the console, cause unknown.

General Comments:

Volvo's brand value is low in Hong Kong. It is generally agreed that Volvo cars are "vehicles for aged/retired/outdated persons" due to their boxy design. Even in 2006, some people are still considering Volvo cars will encounter the problem of overheat!?

However, thanks for the existence of such school of thinking as I could buy my first Volvo 850 Turbo at a relatively low price (£821 or US$1474)!

From its outlook, no one in my place would think the car can go fast. People in my age range are addicted on fancy sport cars made in Asia countries. But the fact is that I always smoke away from those so-called sport sedans in the highway.

The engine picks up very well and its ability in sudden speed up most fascinates me. Not many cars can run away from my 850 in rolling start except those heavily modified monsters. I want to add that S70 T5 was used by the Police Force in Hong Kong as their spy cars for catching law breaking drivers on highway. This proves Volvo car is not a crap.

The cabin is roomy and the equipment is more than enough. It comes with TCS, ABS, dual-zone auto climate control, Supreme audio system with 8 speakers, AT with 3 driving modes (though Winter mode is not necessary in Hong Kong), all leather interior, dual powered front seats with 3 position memory for each of them, 4 air bags and SIPS chassis structure...wow, what do you expect? I believe a similar sized car with same equipment package by other car makers will cost much.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 4th August, 2006