Swedish automobile manufacturer Volvo is one of the few remaining world car builders that has eschewed aerodynamic form for the body structure of its sedans and station wagons.Adhering to a squared-off shape that provides maximum interior width and height for passenger comfort, Volvo's products evoke an image of solid construction and quality of assembly.The company's vehicles lie toward the upper end of the price scale, without apologies. Corporate management takes the position that the good things in life are not free.In return, Volvo offers a liberal dash of engineering technology, luxury appointments and safety, all as standard equipment.The product line encompasses a 240, 740 and 940 series, plus a specialty Coupe. The 740 line is midstream in its pricing and has available the same basic four-cylinder engine found in the 940.Safety is a Volvo trademark, and the company emphasizes this more than raw speed. However, in turbocharged form, the 2.3-liter, four-cylinder engine has sufficient horsepower that dropping the hammer on full-throttle acceleration gets things going in a hurry.For a more normal driving mode, the 740 provides relaxed motoring. It also includes some power accessories that add to the convenience purchasers of fairly expensive motor cars expect.The 740 Turbo sedan that Terry Lee, vice president and general manager of the Tom Wood Group that represents Volvo in Indianapolis, was quite representative of this series. Options, while few, did include an anti-lock brake system.The 162-horsepower, turbocharged engine is the better package for a 740. The 2.3's 114 horsepower in non-turbocharged form is a little low to move a car of this size around.With a turbo, the boost (intake manifold pressure) comes up and the sedan responds to a driver's wishes, whether sustained interstate speed or quick maneuvering in traffic.It's not designed for road racing, but in a world beset by front-wheel drive the rear-drive 740 with its constant-track live rear axle lets a driver engage in some fancy footwork through fast corners.It's also an automobile to which a driver can adapt easily. The automatic transmission, levers and controls were standard fare, and in a few minutes of driving and everything falls to hand.Newcomers to the sedan will like the way the doors swing out 70 degrees to make it easier to get in. But if you're a 6-footer, you may have to duck to miss the top of the door sill.The jury may be out on Volvo and firm seating. But considerable time spent in the car didn't produce any fatigue, and there was lots of room.For the price, I felt the 740 should have had power seats. But overall, there really weren't any convenience items missing, and the car gave the impression it could go on and on forever. 1991 Volve 740 TurboBase price: $25,985.As tested: $28,658.Type: Front-engine, rear-drive, five-passenger luxury sedan.Engine: 2.3-liter, eight-valve, fuel-injected, fou r-cylinder, 162-horsepower.Mileage: 19 mpg city, 22 mpg highway.Acceleration: 0-60 mph in 8.3 seconds.Length: 188.4 inches.Wheelbase: 109.1 inches.Curb weight: 3,073 pounds.Options: ABS system, leather seating, beige metallic paint.Area dealer: Tom Wood.
Closest Dealers Listing this Car
Featured Services for the Volvo 740
- Sell your current car quickly and easily on Cars.com.