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New models - Volvo - S80

Volvo blows its flagship

Upgraded: Turbocharged S80 T6 AWD is 1.3 seconds quicker to 100km/h yet 0.5L/100km more frugal than the naturally-aspirated, larger-capacity S80 3.2 AWD it replaces. MY09 S80s also receive bolder rear 'VOLVO' lettering (above) plus colour, trim, audio, media and switchgear upgrades.

Turbo T6 AWD variant ousts mid-range 3.2 in Volvo’s revised S80 luxury sedan line-up

3 Nov 2008

VOLVO CARS Australia has massaged its two-year-old luxury sedan flagship with a fresh engine variant and a number of detail changes.

First seen in the new V70 T6 AWD launched here in April, the Swedish maker's new turbocharged 3.0-litre in-line six-cylinder petrol powerplant replaces the naturally-aspirated 3.2-litre in-line petrol six in the mid-range S80 variant.

The upgraded 2009 S80 T6 AWD comes priced at $78,950 - $2000 more expensive than the superseded S80 3.2 AWD, which itself came in for a $1000 price rise two weeks ago, when Volvo revealed range-wide updates and price hikes across its 2009 model range.

As we reported, both the entry-level front-drive S80 D5 and AWD 3.2 rose in price by $1000 while the top-shelf S80 V8 AWD increased $3000. So the new S80 T6 AWD stretches its premium over the D5 diesel from $4000 to $6000, and maintains its $20,000 saving over the 4.4-litre flagship. It is also $10,000 more expensive than the identically-engined V70 T6 AWD.

Power and torque figures jump significantly despite a 239cc capacity cut, with the 2953cc engine delivering 210kW of power at 5600rpm and 400Nm of torque between a wide 1500 to 4800rpm, compared to the outgoing 3192cc unit’s 175kW and 320Nm.

Among the longitudinally-mounted T6 engine’s features are a twin-scroll turbocharger, multi-valve cylinder-heads, twin overhead camshafts and a particularly compact design.

As with the previous 3.2, a six-speed Geartronic automatic gearbox transmits torque to all four wheels, via a Haldex all-wheel drive (AWD) system.

18 center imageThe S80 T6 boasts a 0-100km/h sprint-time of 6.9 seconds, an average combined fuel consumption figure of 11.2 litres per 100km and a carbon dioxide emissions output of 267 grams per kilometre – in contrast to the old 3.2’s corresponding figures of 8.2 seconds, 10.7L/100km and 255g/km.

The 400Nm torque top is shared with the front-drive S80 D5, powered by a 136kW 2.4-litre five-cylinder turbo-diesel, while the range-topping S80 V8 retains its Yamaha-developed petrol V8 that produces 232kW and 440Nm.

Compared to the T6, the D5 and V8s figures are 9.0 seconds, 7.3L/100km and 194g/km, and 6.5 seconds, 11.9L/100km and 284g/km respectively.

The other MY09 changes affect the whole S80 range, and include revised colours and trims, improved audio and media/entertainment systems, minor switchgear alterations, Bluetooth connectivity and the option of sun curtains, tyre pressure monitoring and Volvo’s Clean Zone Interior Package (CZIP), which helps rid the cabin of potentially harmful allergy-related particulates.

Trainspotters may notice the new-design alloy wheels and more prominent rear ‘VOLVO’ badging, but otherwise the S80 is essentially the same vehicle that was released in Australia in March 2007.

To recap, it is built on a platform shared with the Ford Mondeo and Land Rover Freelander II, using MacPherson struts at the front and a multi-link independent rear axle. AWD models employ Volvo’s FOUR-C Active Chassis control, which alters the dampers according to a host of road and driving-related variables.

All models include Dynamic Stability and Traction Control (DSTC – Volvo-speak for stability and traction control), along with Volvo’s Side Impact Protection System (SIPS), Whiplash Protection System (WHIPS), dual-stage front airbags, seat-mounted side airbags, inflatable curtain airbags and emergency flashing brake lights.

Buyers can also choose Volvo's Blind Spot Information System (BLIS), which advises the driver if another vehicle is travelling in his/her blind ‘spot’ and works with the also-available Lane Departure Warning (LDW) system, which is equipped with the driver fatigue monitoring system Driver Alert Control (DAC) device.

These are standard in the new $9500 Teknik pack, which has $13,000 worth of extras by Volvo’s reckoning, and also includes radar-controlled Adaptive Cruise Control with the self-explanatory Collision Warning and Auto Brake, and a satellite-navigation system.

There’s also the new $4500 Travel pack, that offers rear-seat entertainment media, with headphone sockets, as well as ventilated-front and heated rear seats. Volvo says these are worth $6300 individually.

2009 Volvo S80 pricing:
S80 D5 FWD $72,950
S80 T6 AWD $78,950
S80 V8 AWD $98,950

Read more:

Volvo presents a fresh face

First drive: Volvo advances uptoen with new V70

The Road to Recovery podcast series

GoAuto can help you buy a new S80

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