Having got rid of a Lexus to come back to Volvo I can say I am extremely happy with the D5. The cab is roomy and plush offering plenty of luxurious comfort. The engine noise is virtually unnoticable while driving and the car feels planted and solid. The steering does feel heavym but then the car is heavy. The stereo is high quality and every gadget falls readily to hand. The A pillars are not as obtrusive as the Lexus I came from and the fuel economy is very similar. Sales staff are extremely helpful and courteous. Not at all like Lexus!
I have had my S80 for about 10 weeks clocking up 6000 miles across a good mix of motorways, A and B roads. The D5 engine suits the car well, providing effortless performance although fuel economy is slightly disappointing. Keep to a light throttle and 45mpg is possible, but show any enthusiasm and around 35mpg is the order of the day. So far I am averaging 35.8 well below the official combined figure.
The cabin is very comfortable and the front seats in particular are superb although the ride can be unsettled on some of our poorly surfaced roads. The car is at its best as a motorway cruiser when it is exceptionally quiet, feels very stable and the superb seats combine to provide a very relaxing experience.
There is plenty of grip although there is an absence of feel through the steering. Roll is evident but I think the overall compromise between ride and handling works well. The standard spec, on the SE Lux at least, is very good and the active bi-xenon lamps are an outstanding feature.
Overall I have been delighted with the car and I am looking forward to many more enjoyable and comfortable miles.
This is a great car and without a doubt the nicest I have ever had. I have driven them all. It is supremely comfortable and goes very well. I have read the comments on this site about the gearbox not working well with the diesel engine but this is not the case with the V8. The only downside is that it is a bit heavy on fuel. I live in Johannesburg, South Africa which is 6,000 feet above sea level and you need a powerful engine to counter the power loss caused by the altitude. It's also nice to drive something different. I will certainly buy Volvo again.
I drove the new S80 model last year and agree with all Jeremy Newell says about the driveline. In January this year I test drove a revised version of the new S80 and found the whole thing a different machine. The engine and driveline were very smooth and the whole car remarkably quiet with good handling. The body is much stiffer and as a result the car has that 'carved from the solid' feeling. Styling is classy but understated both inside and out. I bought the car and after 700 miles over various roads, economy is close to the claimed combined mpg and still clearly has a lot of loosening up to do. Compared to the 07 demonstrator, this car is not so eager to kick down and uses the torque much better, although as the transmission is adaptive, it depends how you drive it! The ride is firm and possibly more noticeable since the rest of the car is so quiet. However, having driven the same roads in other cars recently by way of comparison, I would not class it as unacceptable, more an indictment of the state of the roads. If the same road is driven at higher speeds, the suspension settles down and the ride is relaxed and controlled. Overall, I'm happy with the car and I'll report back when I have a few miles under the wheels. The dealer said the turbo bearings needed about 2000 miles to bed in, but the handbook makes no mention of running in periods.
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