What's the used Volvo XC70 estate like?
Believe it or not, there are some people who need an off-road-worthy vehicle with a sizeable boot but don’t want a big SUV. They require a car with four-wheel drive that can deal with poor weather conditions or a muddy, potholed track. A normal estate wouldn’t be suitable, then, but the Volvo XC70 certainly would.
The XC70 is based on the regular Volvo V70 estate but has a raised ride height, extensive black plastic body cladding, chunky tyres and an optional four wheel drive system. It also has a hill-descent control system – just as Land Rovers do – to allow you to drive down steep gradients in a slow, controlled manner.
All the off-road additions don’t make the XC70 that nice to drive on the road; the ride is a little unsettled, the body rolls a lot through the corners, the steering is a trifle vague and the car has a tendency to run wide when pushed in corners.
Early versions come with either a 235bhp 3.2-litre six-cylinder petrol engine or a 2.4-litre five-cylinder diesel unit with 183bhp. New engines were added during the life of the XC70 to improve efficiency, including a 2.0-litre diesel.
The 2.4-litre was updated in 2009 to deliver more power and torque, while at the same time reducing fuel consumption and emissions. When combined with four-wheel drive, this model makes for an excellent tow car.
The XC70's boot is just as practical as the V70's. Optional aluminium rails were offered to help you divide up the luggage space and prevent items from rolling around. However, leg room in the rear seats isn’t great and the XC70 can’t match the likes of the Audi A6 Allroad for interior comfort.
However, the XC70 is a very safe car, and from 2010, it was fitted with the a low-speed automatic braking system called City Safe, which was first fitted to the Volvo XC60 SUV.