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2013 Volvo S80

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2013 Volvo S80 Review

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The 2013 Volvo S80 may not have the cachet of a Lexus GS, Audi A6 or BMW 5 Series, but it merits consideration among these premium brands nonetheless. Volvo's largest sedan isn't known for the most daring styling or thrilling performance. Instead, it brings a pedigree of safety and understated elegance, qualities long associated with the Swedish marque. The S80 offers a choice of normally aspirated or turbocharged 6-cylinder engines, front-drive or all-wheel drive (AWD), and a luxurious, functional interior that's among the most comfortable in its class. And for those who need to tow, the S80 is rated to pull up to 3,300 pounds, more than some small SUVs.

You'll Like This Car If...

If comfort, safety and versatility are more important to you than image and style, check out the 2013 Volvo S80. Opt for the turbocharged, all-wheel-drive T6 version, and you'll also get sparkling performance in what appears to be a mild-mannered sedan.

You May Not Like This Car If...

If a prestigious luxury nameplate, blazing performance or the latest techno wizardry matter more to you, check out the Audi A6, BMW 5 Series or Acura TL.

What's New for 2013

For 2013, the Volvo S80 gets only minor upgrades to its equipment, including rain-sensing wipers and keyless entry and starting. The Premier Plus trim package now includes active dual-xenon headlights, and the Technology Package has Road Sign Information, which detects important approaching signs and displays them on the driver-information monitor.

Driving the S80
Driving Impressions

The S80 offers two distinct experiences depending upon which engine is under the hood. Cars with the base 3.2-liter 6-cylinder emphasize comfort over performance, while those with the more powerful...

... 3.0-liter turbocharged 6-cylinder have a lot more steam without sacrificing civility. The Volvo S80 feels confident and capable enough with either powerplant, but the difference in spirit and response between the two is significant. Those seeking an even more sporting experience in the all-wheel-drive T6 version of the S80 can opt for the Dynamic Package, which lowers the ride height and features firmer springs and anti-roll bars. But be advised – the sharper performance comes at a cost in comfort as the ride is considerably stiffer.

CITY SAFETY
At city-street speeds, if the system senses impending contact with a vehicle or other object, and the driver does not apply the brakes, the car will stop itself. While it's best for drivers to not be distracted in the first place, the City Safety system really can help.

3.0-LITER TURBOCHARGED ENGINE
Combining impressive maximum output with a fat, flat torque curve, the 2013 S80 T6 AWD's turbocharged engine puts out nearly as much power as the V8 offered a couple of years ago.

2013 Volvo S80 Details
2013 Volvo S80 photo Interior

As you'd expect of a Swedish-designed car, the 2013 Volvo S80's 5-passenger cabin is straightforward and functional. To direct ventilation to your head or torso, for instance, press the corresponding area on the human-shaped controls. Audio and navigation functions benefit from a high-resolution 7-inch color display. Leather covers the seats, steering wheel and gearshift knob, and can also be had on the dash and armrests. The front bucket seats are ultra-supportive and feature 8-way power for both driver and passenger. The rear seats fold down to increase cargo space, which is good as trunk space is rather tight.

Exterior
2013 Volvo S80 photo

The 2013 Volvo S80 isn't exactly an exercise in trend-setting design, but it's still a handsome car and one that may stand the test of time better than more edgy rivals. It has a graceful, sweeping roofline, and its strong shoulders, angular hood and twin tailpipes suggest some athleticism. Volvo's signature flowing taillights continue to make a statement of elegance. Base models ride on 17-inch wheels, and turbocharged versions get 18-inch alloy wheels.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

All 2013 Volvo S80 models are equipped with the City Safety automatic braking feature, leather seating, walnut wood inlays, a 7-inch color display, dual-zone climate control, an auto-dimming rear-view mirror, rain-sensing windshield wipers, Bluetooth, and a pollen filter. The standard audio system puts out 160 watts through eight speakers and includes an AM/FM/CD/HD Radio receiver with iPod, USB and auxiliary inputs.

Optional Equipment

Two step-up trims are available on both S80 models: Premier Plus includes front and rear park assist and a built-in Homelink garage door opener, while Platinum adds a 12-speaker, 650-watt premium audio system and voice-controlled navigation system with a rear-view camera. Additional option packages on all S80s are the Climate Package with heated front and rear seats, and the Technology Package that includes adaptive cruise control and lane-departure and collision warning systems. In addition, the T6 AWD model offers a Dynamic package for a more sporting ride, and the Inscription Package adds loads of fine leather and a wood steering wheel.

Under the Hood

Volvo S80 models are powered solely by inline 6-cylinder engines. The base offering is a normally-aspirated 3.2-liter that produces 240 horsepower and is available only with front-wheel-drive. It is adequate to move this mid-size sedan, but hardly inspiring. Drivers who relish more excitement behind the wheel or simply want the security of effortless acceleration will prefer the turbocharged 3.0-liter six that makes a stout 300 horsepower and an even more impressive 325 lb-ft of torque. The turbo engine is paired with all-wheel drive, which offers superior grip on slippery surfaces. Both engines are connected to a 6-speed automatic transmission that can be manually shifted if desired. A Sport mode is added to the transmission this year. Both engines can run on less-expensive regular unleaded gasoline. And here's another surprise: The S80 is rated to tow up to 3,300 pounds.

3.2-liter inline-6
240 horsepower @ 6,400 rpm
236 lb-ft of torque @ 3,200 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 20/29 mpg

3.0-liter turbocharged inline-6
300 horsepower @ 5,600 rpm
325 lb-ft of torque @ 2,100-4,200 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 18/26 mpg

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2013 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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