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2009 Volvo S80

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2009 Volvo S80 Review

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Despite relatively modest overall production numbers, Volvo has mounted an ambitious program to raise its profile among the world's premium automakers. The S80 typifies the scope of that ongoing effort. The flagship of Volvo's sedan fleet embodies a Swedish approach to style, creature comforts and leading-edge safety features while offering multiple powertrain configurations and solid value pricing. The 2009 lineup includes the front-drive S80 3.2, the turbocharged S80 T6 AWD and the S80 V8 AWD. While the Audi A6, BMW 5 Series, Mercedes-Benz E-Class and Saab 9-5 are the S80's closest rivals, potential buyers also might consider up-line mid-size sedans like the Acura TL, Lincoln MKS and Lexus GS series.

You'll Like This Car If...

Buyers who believe that functional luxury and state-of-the-art safety systems outweigh the inherent status appeal of a traditional prestige nameplate can expect to find their transportation and aspirational needs well met by any member of the S80 lineup.

You May Not Like This Car If...

Those seeking a sedan with overtly sporty handling characteristics would be better served by a BMW 5 Series or Infiniti G35. If maximum trunk space is a priority, you'd be happier with an Audi A6 or Mercedes-Benz E-Class.

What's New for 2009

The exclusive Executive Package is made standard on the V8 and a lesser-contented version is made optional on the T6 AWD. The package includes ventilated front seats with massage, power front passenger seat adjuster accessible from the rear seat and heated front and rear seats. An optional rear refrigerator can also be had, complete with two crystal glasses.

Driving the S80
Driving Impressions

All three S80 variants have a solid and confident handling character, although the emphasis leans more towards ride comfort than sheer agility. The driver-selectable Dynamic Stability and Traction Control (DTSC)...

... permits modestly energetic cornering before making its presence known and the all-wheel-drive package on the T6 AWD and V8 AWD does an impressive job of instantly rebalancing the front-to-rear power equation as traction conditions change. While the S80's naturally-aspirated in-line six-cylinder engine makes the 3.2 fully capable of dealing with daily commutes and cross-country cruises, the engines in both the T6 AWD and V8 AWD make them demonstrably quicker, more responsive and far more engaging.

3.0-liter Turbocharged Engine
Pairing impressive output with a fat, flat torque curve, Volvo's turbocharged six is a brilliant piece of work that literally rivals the V8 for enthusiastic real-world performance and establishes the new T6 AWD as the most desirable member of the S80 line.

Executive Package
Finding amenities that transform a luxury sedan into a mini-limo is uncommon in this price range, as is the optional rear seat refrigerator.

2009 Volvo S80 Details
2009 Volvo S80 photo Interior

The S80's well-appointed cabin reflects a Swedish-modern mentality, with limited flash but lots of function. All versions match leather, wood and brushed aluminum trim with legible analog gauges, well-placed controls and Volvo's elegant slim-line center stack that houses the audio and climate control switchgear. The S80's somewhat firm front seats feature eight-way power assist and "ortho-posture" design to provide long-range comfort, while its 60/40 split-folding rear bench has sufficient head and leg room to take on a pair of average-sized adults or a trio of kids, or it can be dropped to reveal a large pass-through opening that significantly increases the cargo-carrying capability over that of the somewhat modestly-scaled 14.9 cubic-foot trunk.

Exterior

Classically understated but with detail refinements that reflect a new interpretation of traditional Volvo styling cues, the S80 has a lean, well-tailored appearance. Its subtle wedge shape is effectively reinforced by a sweeping roofline and prominent shoulder ridges. At the rear, the S80's short deck is framed by large taillamps and accented with chrome exhaust tips. The standard tire sizes are 225/50R17 on the S80 3.2 and T6 AWD and 245/45R17 on the V8 AWD, with alloy wheels on all models. Both six-cylinder models also can be ordered with the same sizes of run-flat alternatives, and all three S80s offer optional 245/40 tires on 18-inch alloy wheels as an option.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

Highlighting the S80's standard features are numerous power assists, including eight-way adjustment for the front seats, a tilt and telescopic steering column, dual-zone climate control, Bluetooth hands-free phone connectivity, rain sensing wipers, 160-watt/eight-speaker AM/FM/CD audio system with an auxiliary input and MP3 capability, power sunroof, Volvo's anti-whiplash (WHIPS) and side-impact protection (SIPS) systems, Dynamic Traction and Stability Control, anti-lock disc brakes with Electronic Brake Assistance and front, front-side and side-curtain airbags. The T6 and V8 models include all-wheel drive while the top-line S80 also gets the Interior Air Quality System (IAQS) and the Personal Car Communicator (PCC) with keyless starting that notifies you if the vehicle has been tampered with or if an intruder is inside.

Optional Equipment

The S80's options start with three key groups: The Climate Package (heated front and rear seats, heated washer nozzles and high-pressure headlamp washers), the Technology Package (navigation, active bi-xenon headlamps, Dynaudio 650-watt/12-speaker Dolby Surround Sound system with six-disc CD changer, SIRIUS Satellite Radio and rear-seat audio controls sound system and speed sensitive steering), and the Collision Avoidance Package (Adaptive Cruise Control with Distance and Driver Alerts, Lane Departure Warning and Collision Warning with Auto Brake). Single options include HDD-based navigation, dual-screen rear-seat DVD entertainment system, front and rear Park Assist, Blind Spot Information System and a rear seat refrigerator.

Under the Hood

The S80 engine lineup includes three distinct choices for 2009. Anchoring the mix, the front-drive 3.2 model has a naturally-aspirated 3.2-liter in-line six-cylinder that makes 235 horsepower and 236 pound-feet of torque. The S80 T6 AWD uses a 3.0-liter turbocharged variation that develops 281 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque, while the S80 V8 AWD's 4.4-liter packs a 311-horsepower punch and makes 325 pound-feet of torque. All three engines are backed by an electronically controlled six-speed Geartronic automatic transmission with a manual-style Sportshift mode. Although the 3.2 marginally bests the T6 AWD and V8 AWD in formal EPA mileage ratings and offers performance that is more than capable of merely keeping up with traffic, it cannot match the two more powerful models in acceleration.


3.2-liter in-line 6
235 horsepower @ 6200 rpm
236 lb.-ft. of torque @ 3200 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 16/25

3.0-liter in-line 6 Turbocharged
281 horsepower @ 5600 rpm
295 lb.-ft. of torque @ 1500-4800 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 15/23 (AWD)

4.4-liter V8
311 horsepower @ 5950 rpm
325 lb.-ft. of torque @ 3950 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 15/22 (AWD)

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2009 Volvo S80 Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
9.2
Out of 10

Based on 100 Ratings for the 2007 - 2016 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    9.2/10
    Quality
    9.4/10
  • Reliability
    9.5/10
    Performance
    9.3/10
  • Comfort
    9.4/10
    Styling
    9.2/10

My Favorite Volvo Yet!

By on Tuesday, June 7, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 27,500

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "Awesome driving exp & acceleration."

Cons: "Clumsy navigation input."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"We bought this Volvo used from Volvo dealer (S80 T6 AWD w/Inscription Pkg, premium sound/navig, BLIS etc). My wife & I get more positive comments about this car than any car we have owned in 34 years. The amber black paint with the 18" wheels looks sharp. At 300 hp, the acceleration is blistering and with AWD, this car is unstoppable in snow or inclement weather. We both enjoy driving this car and the handling instills confidence. No question the premium sound system will rock your world and could be the best sound system I've ever heard in a car. The only gripe is the clumsy navigation system input via toggle and the ALWAYS annoying moving vehicle input lock-out."

2 people out of 2 found this review helpful

Dependable and well built

By on Saturday, April 30, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 77,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "gets lots of compliments, nice ride, quiet, sporty"

Cons: "premium fuel only"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"We have owned this car for about 5 years now and have put maybe 25,000 miles on it. One if not the best car I have ever owned. Not afraid to drive it anywhere or distance. Safe on wet and snow covered roads. Built like a tank but rides smooth. Excellent leather quality. Stereo is very good with several speakers. Lots of trunk space. Sports package is awesome. You have comfort, sport and advanced mode to choose from. Fit and finish are excellent as well. Just make sure someone in your area knows how to service them. Would buy this car again."

4 people out of 9 found this review helpful

Worst value ever!

By on Tuesday, March 15, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 10,000

10 3.0
overall rating 3 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
3/10
Value
1/10
Reliability
8/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "Comfortable ride"

Cons: "Rapid deprecitation"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 1

"I bought a 2015.5 Platinum fully loaded and paid 50 grand. 10,000 miles into it and the value has dropped to mid 30s. Total waste of money due to the rapid depreciation on this vehicle."

6 people out of 14 found this review helpful

Very nice car. Traditional Volvo Styling

By on Friday, March 4, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 25,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Fit and finish, value performance."

Cons: "old styling."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"The car drives excellent, has good power and is very efficient. The interior is plush and the fit and finish is superb. Love the feel of the car and the smooth, quiet power delivery. Two minor complaints: The navigation system is about 100 feet away from your location. Had the dealer update the software, but no joy, still tells me to turn as I pass the street. Second, I frequently push the rear seat headrest release when I mean to push the seat heater. Its location on the panel should be more remote. Otherwise, fantastic car."

6 people out of 6 found this review helpful

This is a great car! Comfortable and Reliable

By on Monday, February 1, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 95,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Seats, drivability, looks and gas mileage"

Cons: "No Accessible USB plugs on dash"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I bought this car as a demo and have never been more pleased both in quality, dependability and comfort. First Volvo and will not be my last. I do a mix of intown and highway and surpassed the EPA estimates on mileage with average around 28 with as high as 35 on the highway. Not a barn burner on the starting block, but has plenty of power when you need it. The front seats are awesome and comfortable on long rides and the rear seats actually will hold three adults in comfort. Will probably keep as a second car as soon as the new XC 90 is out!"

3 people out of 4 found this review helpful

Comfortable, reliable, nice car

By on Sunday, January 10, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 49,500

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "power, handling, brakes seat comfort"

Cons: "BLIS, occaasional AM static"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"I have an '11 T6 AWD and couldn't be happier. After 4 years and almost 50K miles, no issues, only had maintenance which was part of the warranty when I bought it new. The AWD tracks beautifully all the time, and goes through anything in the winter without hesitation with snows - almost could park it on the side of a building. I average 21 mpg overall, best has been 33; not bad. Solid handling, great ride, strong brakes, awesome seat comfort, and quick enough when you want it: 0-60 in 6.1 seconds according to the specs. I have had over 15 cars of different makes and this one has been the best. I normally switch every 3 years or so, but planning on keeping this one a while longer. Paint & interior are standing up very well, better than others I have owned. Shortcomings: Depreciation is steep on this car, don't know why - probably because it isn't sexy with lots of electronics like BMW and Audi; but that makes it a good buy if looking used, and the police won't pay you much attention(!). I have a lot of chips in the windshield, but probably due to time on the highway and the last few winters here that have been tougher than normal (glass is glass). The Blind Spot system (BLIS) falses a lot and is essentially useless in the rain, so I consider it merely a "suggestion". This is our 3th Volvo; we had good luck with the other ones so decided on this one when it was time. Love the safety on this car, and all Volvos."

4 people out of 5 found this review helpful

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