By on April 7, 2011

TTAC’s resident Volvo freak ALex Dykes points us to some first images of Volvo’s updated V70, which boasts a new interior and an updated exterior. There will be new engines for Europe, as well as a few new features like rear-seat entertainment and the City Safety system, but it’s a mild change. Is it enough to get the V70 off of Volvo’s North American kill list? Hit the jump for more pictures, and a graph of Volvo’s March US sales for a look at the challenge Volvo is facing in this country.

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18 Comments on “Volvo Updates Interiors: Will It Move The Needle?...”


  • avatar
    mpresley

    A year or so ago we looked at and drove the C30.  I thought it was an attractive hatch, with pricing less so.  The interior was rather plain, and basic option packages drove the already high price to really uncompetitive levels.  I’d have bought an updated version of the erstwhile 240D (as long as the exterior and interior were about the same), but that, alas, was another era.

    • 0 avatar
      lzaffuto

      This is Volvo’s biggest issue, I feel. Their cars compete well in ride and features with Mazda, Subaru, Hyundai, and Volkswagen… but they try to sell them at BMW, Audi, Infiniti, and Lexus prices. It seems like they artificially inflate their prices thinking that will turn public perception of them into a luxury brand when all it really does is hurt their sales volume. They are supposed to be semi-upscale, but not pretentious.

  • avatar
    PartsUnknown

    Looks like the inside of a cheap French whorehouse.

  • avatar
    tallnikita

    1. Volvo is now “Made in China”, so who gives a damn what they would like to sell to the US.
    2. V70 is no more here, so who gives a damn what they are changing to it.
    3. 1 and 2 above are For Shame, because V70 didn’t cost much and could tow real stuff, like boats, which made it a really attractive alternative to the SUVs.
    So, I will/have to stick with the car I bought as my boat tow vehicle – a 240DL.

  • avatar
    Flybrian

    Is there really a pent up demand for cars like the old breadbox Volvos of yore, or is it more of a hipster fashion statement that won’t translate into sales because a reborn 240 will cost more than the $1900 or free that most people seem to currently attain them for fifth-hand?

    I do appreciate contemporary (2000ish) Volvos’ styling, realtive performance, and feature content. And dealing with used examples frequently, they seem to hold up rather well. But what gives with the box love?

    Not being snide, just asking an honest question of the classic Volvo faithful. I don’t see the appeal of those oldies beyond their much-claimed ‘robustness.’

    Of course, this is from a person who would get a payday advance to secure a decent Toronado Trofeo, so I guess we can meet on that common ground of “WTF…you LIKE those??”

    • 0 avatar

      To own and drive one of the old bricks is to love them. They’re not as safe as the new models; not as efficient; not as powerful; not even as functional – but we love them.
       
      Are they hipster fare? I dunno. Since I don’t have an iPhone, I don’t think I’m really qualified to speak to that angle, but as a proper gearhead, I think the old bricks represent motoring freedom in a way long ago lost to the mindless, consumer hordes.
       
      A thousand dollar Volvo in running condition will likely cost its owner less than the purchase price in annual taxes, insurance, and maintenance, after which point, if said owner gets bored with driving an effectively invisible (to both thieves and police) vehicle, said owner can likely sell the car on Craigslist inside of 24hrs, often for what he paid for it a year prior.
       
      There is something deeply rewarding about sitting in that most comfy of driver seats at a stop light, checking the tachometer to make sure your 25+ year old brick is still running (because it idles so smooth and silent), and then remembering how you probably spend less on tags and insurance per year than the choads surrounding you, with their warranties, gaudy chrome wheels, and “important” phone conversations, spend on Starbucks in a month.
       
      If you think “Volvo. For life.” Has anything to do with safety, you’ve never owned one. :)

    • 0 avatar
      tallnikita

      If you have an aversion to CUV/SUVs, which in part is due to their crappy weight and mileage, and you want to tow 1500 lbs boat on a trailer, V70 is one of rare CAR offerings that could do it.  I didn’t want an SUV and I bought 240 to just tow stuff.  After driving it for 3 years I really like it, kind of fell into it.  The seating position, the simplicity, high upright dashboard, little tray on the front panel for the phone, those small windows by C-pillar that let you see stuff, you just don’t have these features in cars nowadays.

  • avatar
    slance66

    We had a 2000 XC70, which was a great car when not in the shop, but with some problems related to the AWD system. Those were largely fixed on the later Haldex models.
    When we looked at the new body style however (which was the absolute #1 preference for my wife), we discovered that while the looks were great and seats remained excellent there were drawbacks. The gas mileage got worse with the 3.2, and the new body, while smaller than the old, with less rear leg room, was substantially heavier.  The 3.2, while having more HP, has less torque or made it higher in the rev band, than the old turbo 5.  There were also consistent complaints of rattles in the 2008.  The 07 was a better car.
    We bought a used RX350 instead.  More power, more room and better MPG.  Plus Toyota V6 reliability and repairs should be cheaper, even at Lexus (which treats us much better than Volvo ever did).  I would have loved another XC70 if they had made it 500 pounds lighter, and included a V6 that made decent torque and wasn’t a gas pig.  We really wanted a wagon, not an SUV/Crossover.
    Volvo is killing itself with stupid engineering, with an overemphasis on electronic gadgets, and a poor sense of its place in the automotive world, which is closer to Acura than to BMW or Mercedes.
     

  • avatar
    jjf

    Our family recently bought a 2011 XC70 T6 that we are happy with.  Volvo really slashed prices compared compared with 2010, and the Chinese are pumping in a lot of money.  My research inducated that the workers in Gothenburg are much happier after the sale, which should be reflected in vehicle quality.  Conversely I would avoid 2009-2010 Volvo products like the plague.
     
    The XC70 offers the best value in Volvo’s current line up, since it really isn’t priced much higher than a standard SUV or minivan.  The poor sales suggest most don’t agree, but last year Volvo had considerable incentives.  This year the price was reduced by the incentive amount.
     
    Do they still sell the V70 in Canada?  They don’t sell it in the US now, so 100 or so less than last year isn’t that bad.

  • avatar
    Marko

    In October, my grandmother bought what was probably one of the first 2011 S60′s to reach American shores. Yes, it is the T6 AWD model, with 300 horsepower – I’m not exactly sure that my grandmother fits into Volvo’s target demographic for this car, but she loves it anyway. It replaced a 1996 960.

    I was especially impressed with the steering – Volvos in the past have tended to have numb steering, but there is GREAT road feel through this wheel. Handling is also very good. Of course, the acceleration is very quick – and it only needs regular gas. Front seat comfort is self-explanatory like all Volvo seats – the “best in the business”, so to speak. It’s a shame that the rear seat is so tight.

    The interior? It’s well-designed and high quality –  I don’t see anything that would really need to be changed.

    As for quality – well, my grandmother hasn’t told me that the car has had any problems, but there was one recall. It will be interesting to see how Volvo’s quality will be under Chinese ownership. I hope all the fancy electronics hold up! I wonder where they were sourced from. The rear window glass is already “Made in China”…

    Nevertheless, the S60 is so good that I feel Volvo made a huge mistake in not importing the V60. Would it really hurt XC60 sales that much? Many people would probably prefer the XC60′s more SUV-like styling anyway.

  • avatar
    WaftableTorque

    This interior redesign will save Volvo money. It will come in flat pack boxes and an allen key wrench for self assembly when it’s delivered to the home. MDF and foil laminate construction will go a long ways towards environmental sustainability and lower weight.
     
    Instruction manual will be pictographic only, to facilitate exports to foreign markets. It’s the Scandinavian way.

  • avatar
    baggins

    wow, that chart really makes it clear that they need a North America kill list.  

    I cant imagine buying one of the cars on the lower part of the list – its almost guaranteed that if you need a repair, the part wont be in stock at the dealership.  Its such a hassle to take your car to teh dealer, that having to do it twice for one issue is unbearable.

    Me, I am boring – Honda Accord and Toyota Sienna.  Lots of those running around.

  • avatar
    eldard

    Is there something wrong with that chart or they really did sell just 1 unit of S60 in March 2010?

  • avatar
    JMII

    I fixed the overpriced C30 issue… I bought mine USED. I agree with lzaffuto’s take: Volvo is at the Mazda, Subaru or VW quality level but selling at Audi & BMW price levels – so they are struggling to sell cars. The interior is either overly simplistic and spartan, or Apple-like clean, modern, functional and polished – it just depends on your point of view. Personally I find it a touch boring, but my wife loves its Ikea-ness. I must say the climate and radio controls are near perfect, and the seats are super comfortable, so no real complaints here. The C30′s interior suffers from a bad seat belt anchor position and the pedal positioning is not big-shoe friendly, the wife’s smaller feet have no problems of course. The aluminum touches are nice and the “waterfall” dash is unique and classy. Door inserts are padded, while the leather wheel and shifter feel great. Gauges follow suit with a clean simplistic look that borders on being almost too plain-jane. I would put the design and functionality at a notch above my VW Passat with materials that feel like they are another step higher. For example the hatch lining and spare tire surround (it doubles as a tool tray) is something that raises the bar. I think anyone that sits in a Volvo notices the Scandinavia design that pushes everything to be a notch better then the mainstream competition, especially the seats. However I doubt awesome seats are enough to sell the car alone. We bought the C30 because it ticked all the right boxes: quick but not scary fast, small but not Mini (HA!), upscale but affordable used, and they are actually very reliable …and of course safe. The easy to load hatchback and use-able backseats sealed the deal.


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