1998 Volvo S70 T5 2.3 liter from North America


Good performer; reliability should have been better


ABS module.

Wiring issues with battery terminals.

MAF & O2 sensors.

Various front end / suspension and steering parts.

Sunroof rusted prematurely.

Rust spots on the fenders near the bumpers.

Radio/CD unit.

Parking brake cables.

Door latches and locks.

Fan motor.

Engine radiator.

Windows electrical switches / unit.

Ignition locks.

Antennae mast.

Exhaust collars and support brackets.

Brake required frequent maintenance.

A/C evaporator unit leaked.

General Comments:

Quick and agile. Good powertrain. Easy to live with around town. Parts are expensive. Poor service from the dealers and manufacturer. Technical documentation/information isn't shared by the manufacturer.

Someone must know the make to save on maintenance. A good car if well maintained.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 26th September, 2016

1998 Volvo S70 2.4 from North America


Horrible engineering and major problems with the timing belt tensioner


Major issues with the timing belt tensioner, causing total engine failure.

Followed all maintenance and had timing belt replaced at 60k.

Tensioner fell apart, resulting in valve damage and loss of compression. Volvo quoted over 4000 to fix. Engine gone at only 95k miles!!!

Volvo knew about the problem with a technical service bulletin, and never fixed this issue with mechanical pulley tensioners.

Same interior complaints with door liners and seats.

Same complaints about bulbs and lighting and brakes.

General Comments:

The car is engineered horribly. Followed every maintenance guideline, and it did not even go until 100k miles.

Volvo dealer replaced my timing belt and did not replace the tensioner, and said that is normal. However every other dealer disagrees. I am disgusted that the tensioner fails and causes the total loss of the engine.

Horrible engineering or great way to make money.

Change your timing belt and tensioner, or you will be out a minimum of 4k.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 17th December, 2010

14th Sep 2011, 09:30

You must have got a lemon. I drive a 98 S70 T5 SE, 312,000, daily, never a murmur. Best car I have ever purchased. I've driven Honda, Saab, Audi (the worst), Ford, Chevy, and Mitsubishi.

29th Nov 2011, 17:36

The dealer should absolutely have replaced the tensioner. This engine design is going to self-destruct if the timing belt or any component holding the timing belt fails, including the tensioner. Volvo knows this, and every dealer knows this.

1st Dec 2011, 11:44

Looks like your main fault is with the dealer, rather than the car...

7th Jan 2012, 03:06

I own a 1998.. It has 130k on it and it runs fine. It might be particular models.

2nd May 2013, 17:05

I agree with other posters, this would be a service and/or warranty issue, not an engineering issue. Volvo service guidelines are spelled out very clearly in the owner's manual re "the timing belt and pulley to be changed at 100,000..." and are followed by all accredited dealerships.

I suspect there is more to this story than meets the eye, otherwise the customer would have had reasonable recourse.

I've owned a 240 series and 850 Turbo. Both excellent vehicles with design features far and above most other cars. If maintained (simple) they will go forever. My mortgage is in its final year well before the amortization period due to these great cars. Thanks Volvo!

Please disregard overly negative posts without substantive disclosure of all the facts.

1998 Volvo S70 GLT 2.4L turbo from North America


I would definitely recommend buying this car


Besides regular maintenance, I have not had any major issues with this car.

General Comments:

Back in early 2006, I was in the market for a new car. I had just discovered that I was pregnant, and came to the conclusion that my two-door Chevrolet Cavalier just was not going to cut it anymore. I realized that not only would that car be very inconvenient for transporting a baby around, but it did not seem like the safest car either. After reading the history of Volvo, and studying their safety statistics, I was convinced that a Volvo was absolutely the safest car option for my family. Luckily, I have never had to see firsthand how this car does in accidents, but I am confident that it will do a great job at keeping my family safe.

In the almost five years that I have owned my Volvo, it has been extremely reliable for me. Never once has it broken down, or left me stranded, and aside from regular maintenance, I have hardly had to put any money into it.

The best part about my car though, is that is not just the engine that is super durable. Normally, living in Phoenix, Arizona, you would think that the ability to survive extreme weather was not all that important. Recently, we saw one of the worst storms in Arizona history. We saw hail the size of golf balls, and there were even six reported tornadoes. I have lived in Arizona my whole life, and I have never seen a storm like this before. And the storm did a lot of damage. Almost every person I know had some sort of damage to their vehicles. My Volvo, on the other hand, did not show a single sign of damage. There were no dents, and my windows and moon roof were completely unharmed. After that very unexpected storm, I was happier than I have ever been to be driving a car that I know I can depend on.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 20th October, 2010