A superb, beautiful small estate, which I can only highly recommend
Not much really!!!
The air conditioning compressor failed at about 58,000 miles, but this was changed without fuss under warranty.
Managed to burn out a clutch, but that's not the car's fault.
Started taking a few attempts to start, but this was diagnosed as a sticking throttle valve - took about 20 minutes to change.
It's not even blown a bulb in the whole time I've owned it!!!
This is a beautiful, well constructed, well made, comfortable, safe and economical car to own. Simply the best in its class for the money in my opinion.
It's not a full blown estate car, as its size suggests, so don't compare against a Passat, etc. However for me, my wife and our Labrador, it's perfect! We wanted a good looking small estate that was also good to drive, and that's what we got!
Being the SE Sport model (facelifted 2008 MY), it already had the Volvo bodykit & spoilers as well as stunning 18" alloys, and looked great. Ours also has the factory sunroof and xenon headlamps (with cornering facility), which make it look even better.
Simply fantastic value for money too. Of course it's going to cost more than a Focus, Astra, etc, but it costs a lot, lot less than a 3-Series or A4, especially considering ours also has factory navigation (with remote), a SUPERB Dynaudio stereo upgrade, rear parking sensors, driver's and passenger's electric seats, heated seats, sunroof, xenons, Bluetooth etc, etc.
Very comfortable - just travelled 6 hours in it non stop yesterday, and could have just turned it around and driven back. Inside looks great with its floating centre console and aluminium trim. Being the facelift version, the plastics are a higher grade than the pre-2006 models, and it's slightly more practical with bigger door pockets, etc. Handles superb, and the 6-speed manual is great.
Gives me confidence in safety as well for my wife, as I know it's the safest in class. It even has the Volvo SOS system, which will call the emergency services for you if you have a crash and don't respond!!! How dedicated is that?!
Reliability has been fine - it's never left us stranded, and running costs are more than acceptable (roughly 45 MPG with fairly hard driving), and it will do 50 MPG + if driven carefully. My local Volvo dealer is very friendly and helpful. Tyres are a bit pricey though, and it wears through them a bit quick, but again, this is probably driving style!
We will be keeping this car as long as we can, as there is simply nothing we can replace it with to give us the same spec and 'likes' combination without spending £30k! No point in that, as we wouldn't gain anything. Anyway, my other car - a Volvo V70 - is up to 292,000 miles and still going strong, so we are in no rush!!!
If you are considering a small family estate, at least go and try a V50 - you may surprise yourself, and be smug in knowing you've brought a better, more stylish car, which people don't hate you for driving!
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 12th November, 2012