- Helping you drive happy

1993 - 1997 Volvo 850 Pre-Owned

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Khatir Soltani

What's more, it was an entertaining car to drive. The suspension was nimble, perfectly suited for straightening out twists and turns at energetic speeds while treating its occupants to absolute comfort.

The 850 wagon appeared in 1994, and further expanded the cargo capacity and practicality of Volvo's popular new model. (Photo: Volvo Cars of Canada)
True to brand ideals, the new model offered plenty of room for driver and passengers, with a wagon arriving in 1994 to expand cargo capacity yet further. It featured a distinctive taillight treatment encompassing the entire D-pillar, a styling trend that survives, more or less, to this day.

Volvo's wagon was approximately 50 mm (2 inches) longer than its sedan, and could haul up to 3 meters of cargo with one of its 60/40 split-folding rear seatbacks and front passenger seat dropped forward - and Chevy thinks it has something new with its 2004 Malibu. Altogether the wagon offered 1,051 L (37.1 cu ft) behind the rear seats, compared to the sedan's 416 L (14.7 cu ft) trunk, and 1,897 L (67.0 cu ft) with the rear seats folded.

Volvo's new performance imagine came compliments of a smooth, powerful range of inline 5-cylinder engines. (Photo: Volvo Cars of Canada)

The 960 sedan and wagon were subtly updated in 1997 and renamed V70 and V90 respectively; a pattern the 850 sedan would follow the following year when it became the S70. Incidentally the 850 wagon would take on the V70 nomenclature the same year.

Part of its new performance image was directly due to its smooth, powerful range of inline 5-cylinder engines. The base 2.4-L unit produced 168-hp and 162 lb-ft of torque, which was fairly decent for the early '90s, while sipping away at the fuel to the tune of 11.8 and 8.1 L/100 km (20 / 29 mpg) in the city and on highway respectively. Those wanting a little more action could opt for the 222-hp turbocharged and intercooled version with 221 lb-ft of torque the following year, an engine that put Volvo square on the radar screens of performance sedan buyers.

Khatir Soltani
Khatir Soltani
Automotive expert
  • Over 6 years experience as a car reviewer
  • Over 50 test drives in the last year
  • Involved in discussions with virtually every auto manufacturer in Canada