Are Volvos Reliable?

The famous Swedish car brand, Volvo, has been manufacturing SUVs, station wagons, and Sedans since 1927. The company markets its cars for having excellent safety features and modernized designs, but are Volvos Reliable? 

Volvos are reliable vehicles with an above-average reliability score of 3.5 out of 5. Volvos are exceptionally safe vehicles but require repair/maintenance costs of around $769 per year, way higher than the average of $652 across other branded cars.

In this article, we’ll discuss whether Volvos are reliable, points affecting their reliability, how long Volvos can last, and so much more.

2020 white volvo xc90 in the british country side
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Factors Which Make Volvos Reliable 

The advanced safety features, durable engine, and affordability of a Volvo make it a reliable vehicle choice.

Let’s look into them in detail.

1. Safety 

Regarding safety, Volvos are a leader in the automotive industry. Some of the most notable safety features in Volvos are as follows. 

  • Driver Assistance Systems: The older Volvos have airbags and crumple zones, but the company also incorporated driver assistance systems in newer models. These systems can help avoid and mitigate collisions with other vehicles, cyclists, and pedestrians and support you with parking or maneuvering. 
  • Cross Traffic Alert: The cross-traffic alert covers the back of Volvo drivers when reversing out of a parking space. This alert also displays warnings for approaching vehicles and provides auto brakes for a potential collision. 
  • Blind Spot Information System (BLIS): When you are stuck in heavy traffic, BLIS with tear support can ease the tension by alerting and providing active support, effectively guiding you back on track. 

Other safety features that Volvo promises to introduce into its new cars are: 

  • Highway Pilot: The future Volvo models will be ready for autonomous driving, with support from LiDAR sensors. The brand is also working to incorporate over-the-air software updates to provide fully autonomous highway driving.
  • Driver Monitoring Cameras: To address problems like distraction or intoxication in traffic, Volvo is also bringing new in-car solutions, such as driver monitoring cameras. Together with other sensors, these cameras will effectively allow the vehicle to intervene when a distracted or intoxicated driver is at risk of severe injury or death. 

2. Durable Engine 

Volvos offer reliable gas, diesel, and plug-in hybrid engines that suit different vehicles.

One of the most common engines in Volvos is a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine found in the Volvo XC90, Volvo XC40, and other cars. 

This engine offers both power and reliability.

Another most reliable Volvo engine in 2022 is the twin-charged T6 engine. It offers the best balance of dynamics and is available in all-wheel drive models, with 316 horsepower. 

3. Affordability 

For luxury car models, Volvos are pretty affordable compared to Mercedes-Benz.

Their cheapest model is a 2022 Volvo XC40, which doesn’t lack luxury or style, and has a starting price of $36,195

The T4 Momentum, the base-trim level of this vehicle, is equipped with a 184 hp, turbocharged four-cylinder engine. 

Additionally, Volvo is a fuel-efficient brand with no budget-breaking cost of ownership. Also, you might spend less on the pump if you have a hybrid model. 

4. Warranty Plans 

The latest Volvo models come with some dependable warranty plans, increasing the reliability of the vehicles. 

The brand provides 50,000 miles (four years) of bumper-to-bumper and modest powertrain warranty coverage.

Additionally, for certified pre-owned (CPO) Volvos, the manufacturer offers a five-year warranty coverage without a typical mileage limit.

The Car Wizard on Youtube has a very informative video on what Volvos he recommends to buy and which ones should be avoided at all costs:

The CAR WIZARD shares the top VOLVOS TO Buy & NOT to Buy

Volvo Features Affecting the Vehicle’s Reliability 

Like many other branded cars, Volvos also have frequent issues that significantly affect the vehicle’s reliability. These are as follows.

1. Excessive Oil Consumption 

Many users often complain that their Volvo runs out of oil before the next oil change, which is likely to happen if there’s a damaged head gasket or dirty oil filters.

Sometimes, excessive oil consumption also results in a damaged engine which is quite expensive to replace. This problem is most common in the Volvo S60.

2. Transmission Failure 

Total transmission failure is another problem widespread in Volvos. Many Volvo users complain that the transmission becomes uneven and eventually fails. 

This problem is common in models from the early 2000s, including the classic Station Wagon 2001, Volvo V70, and the 2005 XC90

Repair costs of transmission failure for Volvo V70 can even go as higher as $4,000. 

3. Maintenance Costs 

One of the factors that make Volvos not-so-reliable is its maintenance costs.

While the average repair/maintenance cost for a comparable car in 10 years is $12,000, Volvos typically cost approximately $13,700, or an additional $1,700

These higher maintenance costs make Volvos almost 15% more expensive than other branded cars.

How Long Do Volvos Last? 

Depending on your Volvo’s model and year, it can last over 200,000 miles or up to 20 years with proper care and regular maintenance schedules.

However, you can prolong its lifespan by paying attention to car alerts, buying quality parts, and keeping your car clean. 

Some of the most reliable Volvos are the Volvo S60, Volvo V60, and Volvo V70, while the least reliable Volvos are the Volvo XC60 and Volvo XC90. 

2006 black volvo xc90 driving on a narrow country side dirt road

Final Thoughts On Volvo Reliability

Despite leading the automotive market for over a decade, Volvos are still not the number one choice for many people. 

With a reliability rating of 3.5 out of 5, Volvos are above-average reliable vehicles thanks to their advanced safety features, durable engines, and affordable costs.

On the other hand, Volvos are expensive to maintain, but a well-kept Volvo can smoothly last for an average of 20 years.

While more affordable vehicles are on the market, not many can match Volvos regarding longevity.


Which is the Most Reliable Volvo in 2022?

With a reliability score of 70 out of 100, the 2022 Volvo XC90 is the most reliable Volvo in 2022.

Which are the Least Reliable Volvos of All Time? 

According to Consumer Reports, 2004, 2005, and 2006 Volvo XC 90 are the least reliable Volvos of all time.

Are Volvos More Reliable than BMWs? 

Compared to BMWs, Volvos are more reliable as they offer better comfort, mileage, and lower cost of maintenance.

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