19th Aug 2003, 12:29

I have had many of the same problems. There is some undiagnosable (by the Volvo dealership and others) flaw in the electrical system that causes bulbs to burn out about once a month. I can't begin to count the number of bulbs we've had to replace. It adds up. A problem in the electrical system also cut off power to the AC compressor. We replace the brake pads every 5,000 miles or so. We don't drive it a lot. It has only 45,000 miles on it, but requires more (and more frequent) repairs than my former car, a 1989 Honda Civic, did when it had 80,000 miles. We have stopped taking it to the dealer for maintenance because it ends up costing us $800-1,000 even though they are unable to diagnose or fix the chronic electrical system problems. No more Volvos for me. In the future, I will pay less and get more.

14th Jan 2004, 08:33

Program car w/VIP warranty is a good thing. In 2 years repaired/replaced:

AC evaporator $1100.

Weld door hinge $450.

Tracs/ABS module $550.

Thermostat and sending unit $150.

Master switch windows.

12th Feb 2004, 10:59

Don't buy one, ever. My car has been in the shop for 9 weeks now and I don't know when I'm ever going to get it back. It blows oxygen sensors left and right. Dealership does not know how to fix it. It was a certified car and I put 60K miles on it before these problems started. I expected more from a Volvo. It has various electrical ghosts, which I don't mind. Antenna is poorly made. Interior is alright. Handles very well for it's size. Potholes feel like ravines when you hit them. Acceleration is all right (I have a manual transmission). You can definitely get more for your money with another car.

19th Apr 2004, 14:49

1998 Volvo S70 GLT

Front end went bad at 60K

Radiator went bad 90K

Engine Block CRACKED at 93K with no explanation from Volvo

This is an 8K repair, It was a great car... Last Volvo I'll buy.

21st Apr 2004, 15:51

Absolutely agree with initial review. S70 is a great car... when it works. Too many small mechanical and electrical gripes to list. Volvo service and support is terrible in Toronto. On one occasion drove car back from routine maintenance at authorised Volvo service centre only to find they'd neglected to put any engine oil back in the motor! Do your research before you buy!!! Most modern Volvo owners I've talked to can't believe these things have the Volvo brand on them!

27th May 2004, 02:59

Can somebody please tell me where I can buy this shockingly bad car? I've had my S70 for three years now 151,000 miles so far, and nothing ever goes wrong. Bought at 116,000 with full dealer service history (ex fleet vehicle) It just never has trouble, except maybe one headlight bulb two years ago, ok you got me.

11th Jun 2004, 12:29

I am looking at a 1998 s70 non-turbo - 109 kilometers / Canada guys!, The wholesale is $9500, retail $11,000 canadian,... Not sure about the move now. I did notice the two rear light covers inside the trunk were off / forgot to be replaced after bulb problems perhaps?. The steering seems tight. Read another site report on O2 sensors. Doesn't look good... too similar for me to proceed.

I had an 850 for 50,000 and no problems. The end came by fluke. Watch for a plugged PVC valve($5 part) this created back pressure and the oil came out the fill cap unoticed on a 2 hour drive. Off ramp was the first indication (oil light came on) and I proceeded to my mechanic. NO OIL - ring scorch!

$5 or $2000??

20th Jul 2004, 11:51

I have a 1999 and many of these problems still apply in that S70, as well. I am terribly disappointed, especially because I complained about creaking suspension problems and nothing was addressed UNTIL the drive shaft cover needed replacement @ $600. I also, had my power steering lock up on me in the middle of "rush hour" traffic (on my way to a doctor's appointment). My confidence in Volvo's reliability is shattered. How do lemon laws apply to this model? I've checked into it and am considering it. Any thoughts? Or, success?

25th Jul 2004, 23:06

Despite your concerns with the S70, these problems aren't uncommon for any vehicle. I'm the Parts Manager for our local Volvo dealer and see the concerns every day. I myself just purchased a 98 S70 GLT with complete confidence. The electrical problems you speak of concerning the bulbs aren't an electrical problem at all. The original supplier for the bulbs was providing a low quality product, the replacement bulbs are made by Sylvania and have a much lower failure rate. Yes, it is an annoyance. Same story for the front end suspension creaks. The problem is the front sway bar links. This is a normal problem with all car makes and models... yes even you BMW owners will experience a higher failure rate with this part. The oil leaks are simple (and again not uncommon)...there is a tube that connects the turbo to the oil pan which has seals do fail after a certain ammount of time. All seals go bad on all cars.

A lot of your concerns seem to be rooted with your dealer and not your car. Volvo's standards for customer satisfaction are incredibly steep. Any self-respecting dealer will always attempt to give you the highest service possible. If problems persist, contact the location's general manager. And keep in mind, the dealer's service department is there to fix your car, not to bend over backwards for you because your car needs normal maintinence.

I also read the phrase "It's a Volvo, it'll run forever". This is true. But it also requires work on your part. Any car with over 100,000 miles will start to show signs of wear and require replacement parts. This again, is true with ANY car. Try puting 120,000 mils on a buick and see what your repair costs come to. Your Volvo will run for just about forever, as long as you're willing to stick with it. For comparison, I checked with my companie's BMW dealer for repair costs for a 325i AC/Eveaperator core replacement... that would run you a cool 2,500 dollars. Compared to most other high-end cars, Volvo's repair costs are near the bottom. You're Volvo is what it is. And what it is is a car, just like anything else. My 98 S70 has 142,000 miles on it. And based on driving the car day to day and the problems that I see on a daily basis... I have complete confidence in this car.

Bottom line...bulbs, suspension components, minor oil leaks... if you find a car that doesn't have ANY of these problems, you let me know. Untill then, stop complaining about maintaining your vehicle.

3rd Aug 2004, 15:12

I've just found this sight and am happy to add my two cents, especially after reading the last post. I've just traded in my second Volvo for a Japanese car because of all the problems I've had. I had a 1998 S70 with 60K miles that cost me $3,600 in maintenance and repairs in five years of ownership, including the following:

Speaker Buzz--Never Fixed... they said they couldn't duplicate the problem.

Replaced Left Bulb and Socket Assembly (three times)

Replaced Front Brake Pads and Machine Rotors (2x)

Replaced Tail Light and Right Brake Light Bulbs

Replaced Door Lock Assembly (3x)

Replaced tail lamp bulbs and Front Warning Lamps

Repaired Vacuum Leak

Replaced Drive Belt

Replaced Thermostat and Temperature Sensor

Replaced ABS Brake Module

Front Rear Brake Pads and Rotors

Replaced all four tires (2x)

I was run off the Interstate in 2003 and my S70 was totaled. I will say that the car was a tank and probably saved my life. Given that fact and against my better judgment I purchased a 1999 S80 turbo to replace my original Volvo. It only had 35K miles on it so I thought I was safe buying a used car. In less than one year I've had to replace the following parts:

Rear View Mirror

ABS Brake Module

Turbo Tube Seals

Sunroof Glass Support

Both Inner Tie Rod Ends

Battery (Twice--Not sure why it kept going out)

Four New Tires

Various Emergency Messages Came up constantly. I was told that I wasn't putting the gas cap on tight enough and that's why I kept getting messages. That was not true... I know how to screw on a gas cap. That problem was never fixed.

I finally traded the car because it now has a gas leak and I couldn't afford to fix anything else.

I'm very disappointed because I love the look of the Volvo, but the car is a money pit. Don't buy one!

Also, to the parts manager, my husband drives a 1998 Isuzu Rodeo that has never been in the shop for anything except routine maintenance and tires.

Too bad for Volvo because I was their biggest cheerleader after my accident. Unfortunately for Volvo, my desire to have a reliable car finally outweighed my desire to drive the safest car on the road.