As a former Volvo Service Manager, I have seen my fair share of S-80's come into the shop. Most with service emissions indicators, blinkers flashing quickly, Airbag service required, and yes, my favorite, the burnt out headlight bulb.
Did Volvo build a high dollar, high quality car..? High dollar, yes. High quality, No..!
As some owners may have noticed, the car is very prone to dings. This is because the body is made of VERY thin metal. You can crease it with your finger. Believe me. I once creased a drivers side front door while trying to remove some road tar. This cannot possibly be safe. If you can crease the metal with your finger, imagine what an accident will do.
As for the Airbag problem, well, I think that the media has covered that one. Should the airbag deploy at 5 m.p.h. ? No. Volvo's response was that the tests were not conducted in accordance with specific Volvo guidelines and that the drivers side seatbelt was not fastened.
Next, service emissions. O2 sensors going bad, evaporator valves malfunctioning and leaks in the gas tank seals. Is this normal? No.
You may ask, what can I look forward to in the future? Well, the list is long. Front brake pads at approximately 15,000 - 20,000 miles, rear pads at approximately 30,000 miles, an unbelievable service ( tune-up ) costing between $380.00 and $440.00 at the same mileage, depending on your dealership. Some do more, some do less.
As for Scheduled Factory Services, they are, in my opinion, a complete fraud. You will pay as much as $179.00 for your 7,500 mile service, which is no more than an oil change, a quick lube and a visual inspection of the car.
At 15,000 miles, prepare to pay as much as $220.00 Again, an oil change, changing the pollen filter, tightening down your suspension, lubricating your steering stops, door hinges, hood, trunk and a visual inspection of your brake pads. If you don't need them, your probably getting close.
Your at 22,500 miles and all is fine. Except, your due for another service. Just another $179.00 for an oil change and lube. And now, you will need front brake pads, which cost from $130.00 - $140.00, depending on your local dealer. P.S. - don't go metal to metal, rotors and pads cost around $440.00 a set.
Now, for the big one. The 30,000 mile service. This is the service that your advisor has been waiting for. It obviously costs the most, so, it pays the most. This service costs approximately $380.00 - $440.00 with parts and labor. Oh yes, don't forget about those rear brake pads, which cost anywhere from $120.00 - $130.00 You get the picture.
Is it fair, well of course not, but who ever said that owning a Volvo was cheap.
As for the bulbs and blinkers, well, bulbs do burn out and Volvo is aware that the sockets for the blinkers are defective, so, enough said.