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By Cars.com Staff
July 30, 2008
Vehicle Overview Volvo's small wagon, the V50, comes in 2.4i and T5 trim levels, the latter of which is only available with all-wheel drive. Competitors include the Audi A4 Avant, Subaru Impreza Outback Sport and Volkswagen Jetta SportWagen.
New for 2009 The front-wheel drive T5 has been discontinued.
Exterior The V50's looks are similar to its S40 sibling. A V-shaped hood bulge runs down into a sculpted nose, and there's a broad lower air intake. T5 models come with a standard sporty appearance package called R-Design, which includes a different grille, a sport body kit with body-colored side skirts, and front and rear spoilers.
The V50 comes in at 178 inches long, and its width is 69.7 inches. The V50 is longer and wider than the Impreza Outback Sport, but is smaller than the A4 Avant and Jetta SportWagen.
Standard mirror-integrated turn signals
Standard power moonroof
Standard 17-inch aluminum wheels
Standard fog lights
Aluminum roof rails are standard on T5
Optional bi-xenon headlights with articulating headlamps
Interior The standard upholstery in the five-occupant interior has a slightly coarse woven feel said to be inspired by sportswear. Leather upholstery is available. The T5 comes with unique premium leather seating surfaces with embossed R-Design logos, aluminum sport pedals, a sport shift knob, R-Design inlays, a watch-dial instrument cluster and a sport steering wheel. Aluminum trim is now standard on both the 2.4i and T5, while Nordic Light Oak trim is optional.
The rear seatbacks fold down separately, and the front passenger seat's backrest also folds flat. Passenger volume comes in at 92.7 cubic feet, larger than the A4 and Jetta SportWagen but slightly less space than the Impreza. Cargo space comes in at 27.4 cubic feet, but with the back bench down it increases to 62.6 cubic feet, larger than the A4 and Impreza but smaller than the Jetta.
Standard locks and windows with express down/up
Standard leather gearshift knob, parking brake and steering wheel
Standard eight-speaker sound system with six-disc in-dash CD player
Standard Sirius Satellite Radio
Optional heated front seats (standard on T5)
Optional navigation system
Under the Hood An inline-five-cylinder engine is standard on either model, and high-performance T5 editions employ a turbocharger for more power. The T5 also comes standard with all-wheel drive and a sport suspension.
168-horsepower, 2.4-liter five-cylinder with 170 pounds-feet of torque
227-hp, 2.5-liter turbocharged five-cylinder with 236 pounds-feet of torque
Standard five-speed automatic transmission
Front- or all-wheel drive
Optional keyless drive
Safety Though its sister model, the S40 sedan, earned good crash-test scores from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, the wagon hasn't been tested. Unfortunately, differences in weight and construction mean we can't assume the same crash-test performance in the V50. The V50 does have a long list of standard safety features, including new-for-2009 automatic hazard lights that turn on when the airbags are deployed.
Standard side-impact and side curtain airbags
Standard antilock braking system with electronic brake force distribution
Standard electronic stability system and traction control