I've owned quite a few used cars. I was always attached to unique or freaky cars--old Volkswagens, Cadillacs, 1980s Audis, and more recently Saabs. I always wanted a Volvo wagon because I thought they looked cool and I'd heard excellent things about reliability of the 2.4L 5 cylinder engine. I was a little hesitant about the electrical system as it seems all European vehicles have electrical issues, some more so than others. With that being said, this is by far one of the finest vehicles I have ever owned (and I only paid $2500)! I bought it from the second owner with nearly 190K miles on it. The former owner provided me with all the maintenance records from the time it was new. In the last couple of years, he himself had addressed many of the preventative maintenance issues including timing belt, brakes, shocks, and radiator. The only issues were the lock on the tailgate doesn't work with the central locking system and there is a bulb burned out behind the odometer.
Since I've owned it, I've just kept the oil changed, tires rotated, and replaced the plugs and air filter when necessary. I've had a few issues with the check engine light coming on now and then, but I've just cleaned the MAF and throttle body thoroughly and that seems to have fixed it now for other a year! The wagon is very utilitarian. I can carry all kinds of things in the back, bikes, dressers, tables, almost anything within reason. The heating and cooling are much better than expected, and the acceleration for being a non-turbo isn't half bad. It's not a hotrod, but it has the power to go up and down over the Sierra Nevada mountains, which I often do. The seats are some of the most comfortable I've ever experienced. It is almost nice returning to my Volvo after having a rental car. As far as gas mileage is concerned I average about 20.8 around town, and on long trips I can usually manage over 30. That's not half bad for a car this size and weight. Although it rattles, and it isn't the smoothest ride, it handles well, always starts up, and just keeps on going at 195K miles now. A great bang for your buck, and since it's old I really don't care what happens to it.
After my wife got a new car, after much deliberation, I decided to sell my 5-series BMW and take her hand-me-down 2000 Volvo wagon.
At the time, the decision was driven a practical one - less expensive to own and maintain, more room for a family of 4 and performance in the snow.
2 years later, I couldn't be happier with the decision.
It has been reliable and everything I need in a vehicle with the exception of looking cool.
Fortunately, I'm way past worrying about looking cool.
Reliable, sufficient space for a family of 4, impressive acceleration and fuel economy for a wagon, performance in winter and comfortable interior.
2000 V70 Wagon.
The Volvo safety features are its trademark.
I never felt uneasy about my family being on the road with any Volvo we've owned.
Our non-turbo is no hot-rod, so that reduces some of the parental "worry factor".
Besides regular maintenance,
most repairs are what one might expect - tie rod ends, brakes, the odd sensor.
There's been a surprise or two, but few.
Our mechanic says, "These things go forever".
It runs like a top.
No leaks, no oil burning.
Just a solid car, with nice appointments.
The build quality is great. 12 salty Michigan winters and no rust, at all.
It's no four-wheel drive, but it gets through Michigan winters, just fine.
Inherent safety features.
Interior layout is good, without too many frills.
Bought this car used with 113k miles in 2006. Soon after purchasing the check engine light came up, we had it fixed ($700) and ran without problems for about 3 years. In the meantime, we went places, off-road, from TN to FL, etc. Very reliable car, seats are the best in the industry. Cargo space adequate. Even today (10/16/2010) it provides a very smooth ride. The service light is back on, but the codes returned are safe to ignore (fuel condenser system, est. repair cost 2k). Great, dependable car, electrical system, specially the A/C, warning lights could have been designed better.
The ride and the mileage. Dependability of the car, you turn ignition it runs 150% of the time, never left us stranded on the road. Well built car.
Electrical system, put a more powerful air conditioning system. Not every place on earth has cool climate like Sweden. Cup holders are a joke. Rear door could be built a little sturdier.
Owned 7 years starting at 90000 miles used and ending at 140000 when struck in rear. Never broke down. Only significant repairs: brakes, timing belt, tires. Nothing but normal wear. Great handling, performance. Good to better economy. Safety: rear-end crash proved car's value. Sadly, declared total by ins. co. Paint still great. Glass great. Interior somewhat dirty from heavy child use. Total net expenses less than $10000 for 50000 miles (20cents/mi): best I've had in many years. Have already purchased another V70 (2003) to replace it. Could not imagine what other car even to consider.
Safety, looks, performance, economy, reliability, cargo room, solid feel of ride, tight turning radius. Bulbs cheap and easy to replace. Seat comfort.
Radio/cassette had small issues. Cup holders terrible. Rear hatch clips broke several times. Seat belt retractor weak, buckle caught in door many times. Move emergency flasher button away from shifter.