The electronic throttle module you refer to is made by Magnetti Marelli (the Italian prince of darkness). The ETM actually has advanced diagnostics to audit performance and it throws a warning light and goes into limp-home mode when it detects a threshold of significant errors. That's when you pony up the big bucks to get the ETM replaced, and they are 100% failure so it's not a matter of if but when it fails.
You are mistaken concerning Volvo replacing ETMs in the US. Volvo conducted a service campaign that involved reflashing the ETM firmware to permit the ETM to accept a higher threshold of errors before it determines that something is wrong and goes into limp-home. What this means is that the car will be running with significant ETM drivability malfunctions, yet it won't trigger a warning light and Volvo can tell customers and the government that everything is OK.
You need to ask yourself if you're good to accept a car company that avoids any responsibility for the mistake in your driveway.
Really? Like Volvo is the ONLY car manufacturer to try and save product recalls... You're really telling me that you won't buy a Volvo because of safety reasons? Probably the safest car builder in the world... OK, let's all go and buy a Ford who cuts costs in EVERY area, or a Toyota who can't appear to build a reliable car anymore either. We could buy a Merc, but will be paying through the nose to keep it maintained, or a GM car (whose gearboxes have ruined the reputation of the S80/XC90 because of their failures).
I would have an S80 and travel in comfort and safety without paying high costs all day long. The ETM's fail - we all know they do, so just change them. It's not a big job and parts are getting cheaper as the car gets older.
By the way, we are talking about cars over 10 years old here!!! If I had bought a 2001 Merc, it would have rusted away by now, whereas the Volvo would be pretty much rust free - so which manufacturer is penny pinching there?