It is significant that this is a lifestyle estate, not a load lugger - buy a V70 if you want one of those. I did and it was very good at what it did.
However, if you want a car with good (rather than massive) load carrying capacity which offers a satisfying driving experience, then the V50 must be a contender. The diesel engine is responsive, the car wants to go round corners and it is wonderfully comfortable and poised.
The dash is simple, stylish and effective. Fuel consumption is a strong point and the car looks attractively different. The build quality of my car is very good and it is strongly made with excellent levels of safety equipment.
Overall this car provides a very satisfying ownership experience and I look forward to journeys in it.
Owned this car since September 2005.
Good points: - exterior shape - drive which is excellent - interior styling - additional items (6th gear, Cruise Control, Steering wheel controls
Bad Points: - Ignition Key position on dash (very awkward) - very little space in cabin for storage - 1st & 3rd gears very close together - no footrest for driver - handbrake in left-hand drive position
Would I buy again? Probably, because the whole package seemed good and I have got used to the negative points. But if you have the budget, go for the Audi A4
I bought our V50 in September with the winter pack and metallic paint as options.
In the intervening months the V50 has proven itself to be a comfortable car with a secure and well balanced ride aided by positive steering and excellent brakes.
The engine is powerful especially in the mid range, 4th and 5th gear pulling with great ease for overtaking.
Unfortunately in Ireland we lack enough motorway to fully exploit the benefits of 6th gear, which is a pity as the revs drop substantially when its engaged and presumably so would the fuel consumption.
The interior is worth noting for the quality of materials and its cool design - ours has the aluminium trim with black leather seats which are very comfortable too.
The stereo is great especially radio reception and the overall "feel" of the interior makes it a nice place to be at all times. Oh and its exterior shape makes it very easy to wash!!
On the down side storage space up front is very limited with tiny storage bins in the doors. The wing mirrors pick up and hold the dirt unlike any of our previous cars and the engine noise is slighty too harsh under acceleration. A lack of foot rest for the clutch pedal and the rather lazy habit among the European manufacturers of not re-positioning the handbrake for right hand drive cars just about sums up my negative impressions of the V50.
Hopefully it will remain reliable as well!!
I've had my V50 for six months now, and have covered 4300 miles and I love it. It drives beautifully, it's fairly economical, and has a fantastic interior. Also, it's amazingly comfortable.
For the standard specification, it's also good value. The only extras I had fitted were metallic paint and a winter pack; with the onset of winter, the heated seats are worth their weight in gold.
As for minor gripes, there's no left foot rest for motorway driving, the rear view mirror is so large it has been known to obscure forward vision, and the fuel tank could do with an extra 10 litres.
The most annoying thing about this car is some of the reviews it gets. A common complaint is that the rear seats are not as easy to fold down as other models. If you're removing the head rests, lifting the bum pad, and folding down the back rest so frequently that it presents a problem, you have bought the wrong car and should've bought a van. That's your fault, not the car's.
Another common complaint in reviews is that there's not enough space. I'm 6ft 1in high and my wife is 5ft 11in; if I'm driving, she can sit behind me quite comfortably. You wouldn't want to drive across Siberia, but it doesn't warrant some of the complaints I've seen.
If I could turn the clock back, I'd buy this car again without pause for thought.
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