Used 2003 Volvo S40 Base Consumer Reviews | Edmunds
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2003 Volvo S40 - Consumer Reviews

2003 Volvo S40

Average Consumer Rating

58 Total Reviews

Base 1.9L 4-cyl. Turbo 5-speed Automatic - (58 reviews )
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S40 Exceeds Expectations
2 of 2 people found this review helpful
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Eric T.
on

Vehicle

2003 Volvo S40 4dr Sedan (1.9L 4cyl Turbo 5A)


Review

My S40 began life as a RENTAL CAR, and 30k miles later, I purchased it. Why this car? Initially because of its value, reputation, style, & service competency at the dealership. I haven't had a single problem with my car. I commute 50 comfortable miles r/t daily, and get 30+mpg. I've never struggled to merge into fast moving traffic. I keep it clean, change the oil myself, and monitor fluid levels and tire pressure/wear. Volvo has higher value over time, and is safer than most other cars on the road. When I want 'performance' acceleration/handling/braking, I'll put on my helmet and leathers, and head for a track day on my superbike. My car is more than competent at what I expect from a car.


Favorite Features

Smooth comfortable ride; instrumentation(quick and easy to read, easy on the eyes); Volvo's trademark tight turning radius; turbo engine(no performance decrease at higher altitudes, for example- passing on an uphill grade); ease of owner maintenance- fluids, light bulb replacement, fuses, etc.


Suggested Improvements

Console and controls are bland, and could have a bit more style(my'06 S40 shows that Volvo has since addressed this issue). While a heavy car may improve snow traction with all-wheel drive, it certainly hinders traction on a car with front drive on anything but level ground. Better console storage.


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Worst Car I Ever Owned
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By strack
on

Vehicle

2003 Volvo S40 4dr Sedan (1.9L 4cyl Turbo 5A)


Review

This care has had problem ever since day one. The braking system was replaced, the a/c system replaced (and starting to act up again), splash guard fell down and there was no damage (screws just fell out). Fuel economy gets worse and worse. When the car was new, got 29 MPG on highway, now 25 MPG on highway. Maintenance costs are very high from Volvo for routine maint.


Favorite Features

NONE


Suggested Improvements

Quality


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s40 and brake pads
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By leo22
on

Vehicle

2003 Volvo S40 4dr Sedan (1.9L 4cyl Turbo 5A)


Review

my s40 has been through 3 sets of rear brake pads in 50,000 miles, and 1 set of rotors. Who ever heard of rear brake pads only lasting 12 to 15 thousand miles. Volvo claims this is normal wear for our pads and that there is no problems with the braking system. I have also replaced the front pads once they seem to hold better. I have also had other miscelanious problems i.e. bad fuel injectors replaced, gas gauge replaced, and several light bulbs. Overall this car has not been a very pleasant experience and I can't wait to get out of my lease.


Favorite Features

car drives and handles great lots of fun to drive. very fast for a four cylinder turbo.


Suggested Improvements

new braking system with pads that last longer than 12-15 thousand miles.


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Most disappointing car ever
3 of 3 people found this review helpful
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Marco
on

Vehicle

2003 Volvo S40 4dr Sedan (1.9L 4cyl Turbo 5A)


Review

When I was shopping for a car back in 02, I chose the Volvo S40 after looking at the Acura RSX, Saab 93, and Audi A4. Ultimately, I picked the Volvo because it seemed luxurious, the dealer promised that this was a 'performance' car, and I had the Ford Aplan discount, which made it the cheapest of the bunch. Oops. What a disaster of a car. To be fair, I think that Volvo just has no idea how to make a small car. The 'performance' is a joke. The handling is ponderous and, at highway speeds, can be a little scary. When passing at high speeds, the car wobbles -- literally. The braking is AWFUL. The nose dips and the car takes too long to stop. Would not recommend this car.


Favorite Features

Great leather, heated seats. Good cup holders. That's about it.


Suggested Improvements

Handling, braking, power, sound system. This car was poorly designed, planned, and built. For a "safe" car built in a snowy area, I would've thought that this car would handle well in inclement weather. Nope. I was actually scared when driving in snow or heavy rain.


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love my S40
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By lmh
on

Vehicle

2003 Volvo S40 4dr Sedan (1.9L 4cyl Turbo 5A)


Review

I have thoroughly enjoyed my S40. I was hesitant to purchase after reading several reviews of earlier versions of this car. In my opinion, the 2003 S40 is one of the best values on the road. I had previously decided to replace my old Accord with a newer version but was turned off by the pricing on the EX model when I went in to purchase. I found the S40 to be far more luxurious and fun to drive than the Accord for about the same price (actually less for a certified used vehicle). The car is zippy and extremely comfortable, and I love the fact that it is far less common on the roadways than the old standbys Accord and Camry. I would definitely recommend this vehicle to anyone!


Favorite Features

Heated seats are a must!!! Car provides great visibility, esp. when driving at night. Quick pick up, easy steering. Love the solid build and craftsmanship this car offers.


Suggested Improvements

Have had to replace two headlights, though they are very inexpensive and easy to replace yourself.


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