By Cars.com EditorsMay 13, 2009
About the video
Cars.com's Dave Thomas takes a look at the 2008 Volvo S80.
(light music) Hi, I'm Dave Thomas. And this is a 2008 Volvo S80. The S80 was redesigned in 2007, but for 2008, it gets a new turbo six cylinder. So now you have the choice of a regular six cylinder, a turbo six, and a V8 engine.
The turbo six we're with today starts at 42,000, and that brings it in a good $10,000 less than the BMW and Mercedes competition. The turbo six cylinder has 281 horsepower compared to the V8, it's 311. We found this turbo to be excellent. Has plenty of pep and lots of passing power. This 80 has an ample trunk as you'd expect in a car this large. It also has a nifty cargo divider that flips up. So if you have only a few bags of groceries, that way they won't scatter all over the trunk while you're driving. Also to lower the rear folding seats, you have to pull a release up here, which is a little different than most cars, which has a release in the back seat area. So you have to actually pull that and then push the seats down from the side. Considering the price, the Volvo S80 has a very luxurious interior. They've really done a great job redesigning it. All the materials are soft to the touch. The dashboard has an elegant shape to it. The gauges are very attractive. The wheels, large and meaty. Take a good grab of it. Big buttons everywhere. The doors are even soft to the touch with this nice leather, including some wood trim. This is the base level. So even the base level interior, it's very nice. The center stack is what they call floating. So there's little paths behind it. It's kind of a design touch. It's actually a very functional, there's a cutout of a person to show where you want your air conditioning to blow. It looks kind of silly at first, but believe it or not, it's intuitive as can be. And I ended up using it all the time and it just works spot on. The back seat's not a bad place to be. If you get the optional climate package, there's heated seats in the rear as well. There's also an audio system for the rear passengers with independent volume control, independent headphones for both, and mode and track selectors. Like any Volvo, the S80 is safe as can be. It just earned the top safety award from the IIHS. It's very hard to do. It's the only luxury car in its class to do so. Not the BMW, not the Mercedes, only the Volvo passed it. So you can kind of believe the Volvo safety standard. They're active head restraints on all four seats, which is unusual. And that's also why it won that award. There's also a button right here that flips the rear seat headrest down. So you can see while you're driving, if you don't have back passengers. And because they flip forward, when a rear passenger does get in, they have to lift it back up so they can sit down. So there's no way you'll be driving or have a passenger that won't have that safety behind them. For the money, the Volvo S80 is an amazing machine. It's got luxury. It obviously a safety and with the turbo six cylinder it has a lot of power. <v Announcer>For additional information on this car or any other, go to cars.com and our blog, Kicking Tires.