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Volvo S80 (2006-2016) Buying Guide

Volvo S80 (2006-2016)
Volvo S80 (2006-2016)Volvo S80 (2006-2016)Volvo S80 (2006-2016)Volvo S80 (2006-2016)Volvo S80 (2006-2016)Volvo S80 (2006-2016)Volvo S80 (2006-2016)Volvo S80 (2006-2016)Pictures shown may not represent exact model specified

by Richard Dredge

When it comes to buying used cars, the largest models sometimes offer the biggest bargains. Take Volvo's S80; the Swedish company's stylish and discreet flagship saloon makes a spectacular used buy as it's overshadowed by more talented, higher-profile rivals. But the S80 is still a good car; it's one of the comfiest in its segment and as it's spectacularly safe with its ultra-strong bodyshell that's crammed with high-tech kit. Constant revisions mean it's worth going for the newest S80 you can afford; Volvo regularly cut fuel consumption and CO2 emissions while adding equipment and improving cabin quality. The S80 may not offer the driving excellence of its rivals, and to a degree it doesn't offer the feel-good factor, but you'll feel good knowing that you've saved thousands of pounds when buying.

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We LikeWe Don't Like
Excellent value
Spacious cabin
Equipment levels
Safety kit
Wide model range
High running costs
Mediocre dynamically
Thirsty petrol engines
Key Dates 
6/06The second-generation S80 arrives with 2.5T, 3.2 or 4.4 V8 petrol engines, or 2.4D and D5 diesels.
7/07S80 D5 buyers get a four-wheel drive option and there are now 2.0-litre petrol and diesel options.
5/09A facelift brings extra brightwork and interior upgrades, useful chassis improvements and a new twin-turbo 205bhp 2.4D engine, an ultra-frugal 1.6 DRIVe option and the 2.5T is upgraded from 200 to 229bhp.
5/10D3 and D4 2.0-litre diesels are added to the range.
11/10T3 and T4 1.6-litre turbocharged petrol units appear.
4/11All diesel-engined S80s are now rated at no more than 120g/km.
5/12The 163bhp D3 is renamed D4, there's now a 115bhp D2, a 136bhp D3 and a 215bhp D5. There's a new Sensus multi-media system.
  • Five-cylinder petrol engines can suffer from misfiring when oil gets into the distributor, via perished seals.
  • Early cars can suffer from worn leather trim after relatively low mileages.
  • Extras worth seeking out include cars with the Winter and Driver Support packs.
  • The automatic gearbox turns the S80 into a long-legged relaxed cruiser, but it increases fuel consumption and CO2 emissions - and road tax bills.
  • Bluetooth connection issues are common on older cars, but a software update usually fixes things.
  • The D5 can suffer contamination of its oil with diesel, during the regeneration cycle of the DPF; the oil needs changing as a result.
  • The front tyres, which are the ones that have to transmit the power, tend to wear out quickly.
  • It's not unusual for lots of warning lights on the dash to illuminate, but the faults are often electrical rather than there being any 'real' fault.
  • On cars with tyre pressure monitoring, replacement sensors are best sourced from Volvo, as aftermarket ones often cause problems.

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