S40 and V50 delivered refinement, performance
History/Description: Volvo’s compact sedan and wagon, the S40 and V50 respectively, shared mechanicals and offered shoppers the choice between a traditional compact four-door and a small station wagon with extra room and versatility. An eye for Scandinavian style and safety were built right in.
Available from 2005 until 2011 inclusive, look for the pair with naturally-aspirated or turbocharged power, front or all-wheel drive and automatic or manual transmissions, depending on the model selected. With as much as 227 horsepower on tap and features like power seats, a trip computer, a sunroof, automatic climate control, iPod connectivity and premium audio, drivers could benefit from a safe, sporty and sophisticated motoring experience.
What Owners Like: Owners tend to rate refinement, engine performance (with T5 powerplant), ride and handling, interior styling and a feeling of safety and confidence the most highly on their S40 and V50. All-wheel-drive traction during winter months is also highly rated.
What Owners Dislike: Limited cabin storage, fuel mileage and blind spots are among the most common owner-stated complaints. Some owners also dislike the S40 and V50’s desire for premium gasoline, and stiff (sporty) ride too.
Common Issues: When test driving a used S40 or V50, check for proper operation of the external temperature readout, climate control system and all door-mounted controls, including the power locks, mirrors and windows. Some owners have reported door-mounted controls going dead at random, which could be pricey to repair. Ensure the remote keyless entry system works as expected as well, and check for any “Check Engine” lights or warning messages.
Check the audio system for proper operation, too, as some owners have reported issues with the factory radio head unit going ‘dead’.
Note that a humming sound or vibration, particularly from the rear of the vehicle at low to moderate speeds, could be a symptom of a problem with the AWD system, if so equipped. Note any harsh shifting or slipping from models equipped with the automatic transmission, too.
Unless you’re familiar with the maintenance history of the model you’re considering, a full fluid change and tune-up is a good idea ahead of your purchase, just to be safe. A Volvo-trained mechanic can help assess the needs and condition of the car you’re considering, too.
Auto journalist & Consumer Ratings
2011 Volvo V50 Specifications
Similar to 2011 Volvo V50