Advice for a potential 2009 Volvo C70 purchase

Hi all,

I was interested in replacing my current vehicle which has been amazingly reliable and sound with one that I would enjoy driving and owning.

While Ford has earned infinite praise from me for the 06’ Escape (except the poor acceleration and pickup truck like ride) I wanted to get a used 2009 Volvo C70 convertible.

Can anyone familiar with the model honestly advise what the repair problems might be and how prolific they are if at all? I am ok with an increase in yearly maintenance costs, but I don’t want to invest in a car that will break down frequently or require excessively expensive repair bills. I have searched the internet where I could, but there really wasn’t any (that I could find) good information by other owners or mechanics to base my decision on.

Thank you all so much for your thoughts and advice

The part I’d be most concerned about is the complex folding hardtop.

Have a thorough pre-purchase inspection done (it’ll cost something like $100).

How much? The price I’ve seen recommended for a 2009 is somewhere around $18,000.

Remember, eventually all convertible vehicles develop leaks at sometime. So on that note I wouldn’t buy it.

And since it’s a Volvo convertible, you couldn’t give it to me.


Most of the regulars here will not say kind things about VOLVO, ( is it deserved-I do not know). If it were me and I really wanted the car I would pay for a inspection, and decide if later in life I thought I wish I had really bought that C70. Life’s short, enjoy what you can.

As I tell my friends…I owned a Volvo…ONCE!

If you liked the Ford, which has affordable repairs, owning a Volvo may turn out to be a nightmare for you.

These cars are normally bought new by well-off people, and sold when the warranty runs out. Draw your own conclusions.

Abasically unreliable car that is very expensive to repair will quickly sour on you.

Run away from the Volvo . . . right back towards your Ford Escape

Identifix says that ther are minimal problems with the C70 from 2007 through 2010. There are more than usual problems with the radiator if it has the 2.5L engine for the 2006 model year. They estimate about $625 to fix it. Edmunds says you will spend a little less than $14,000 for maintenance and repairs over the next 5 years for a 2010. A 2010 Lexus IS 350C is estimated to cost $8500 for maintenance and repairs over the next 5 years. If you don’t mind paying a little over $1000 extra, go look at some C70s. Maybe you could try an IS 350C and see if you like it.

Stop at the local bookstore, pick up a Consumer Reports Used Car Buyers’ Guide, and you’ll see tons of good comparative information on used cars. That should confirm my recommendation to run from the Volvo and find something more reliable and less costly.

++ to TSM’s post above. And the others as well. All good info. The CR guide will list the Volvo’s by model and year and show a graphic listing the engine cooling system, electrical system, AC, exhaust, leaks, body hardware, … etc) showing what other owner’s of this model/year are having problems with.

It’s hard for me to say whether the Volvo would work well for you or not. After all, I’m perfectly happy with my 20 year old Corolla and 40 year old Ford truck. I wouldn’t be inclined toward this purchase myself. If I were in the market for a new car, it probably wouldn’t be a Volvo. I prefer to fix my own cars, and Volvo isn’t really known for being diy’er friendly. People who buy Volvos use Volvo specialists to fix their Volvos. Volvo owners don’t fix their own cars usually.

But who cares what I think? If that’s the car you like, then buy it. It has a motor and four wheels and will get you where you are going probably. Just make sure you have your ducks in a row by knowing what to expect, so you can make sure you have the resources available to keep it going after the purchase.

An '09 Volvo is 5 years old and that will mean more repairs and Volvo repairs are simply unimaginably expensive. It seems Volvo dealers are just used to $2000-3000 repair jobs and expect the owners to accept them too. My prediction is if you buy the Volvo you’ll soon wish you had your old Ford back.

This sounds about what I feared. I don’t mind reasonable expenses and an occasional pricey expense over the course of 5 years if I love the 1-2 hours I spend in the car each day, but I have a limit to my income and can’t acquire a bottomless pit in my purse.

This car was everything I wanted out of my next vehicle under $20,000. The only hesitation was if this was a car that held up like a 70’s British car, or was well made as all the Japanese imports that I have owned since I started driving.

Thank you all for the words of wisdom, I don’t know anyone that has owned one so I have little go go on other than they look gorgeous and suit my current situation.

Neither. It is in the middle of the typical British sports car and today’s highly reliable cars. Actually, it is much more like today’s reliable cars than the 70s Brit stuff.

Listen…Volvos are well built machine for the most part. I know of several sitting in driveways and garages that look like new. The only problem is that they have this nasty habit of not going from point “A” to point “B” when you need them to. That’s why they are sitting in driveways and garages instead of being on the highway where they need to be.

That is also the reason Volvos are safe

If they’re sitting in the driveway or in the shop, they can’t be endangering anybody else . . .

I have made this statement before. If the budget is 18000.00 and you are concerned about having funds for repair there are a lot of nice new vehicles on the market at or near that price. I just looked out 2013 holdover FIAT 500 automatic and well equipped for 16988.00

Fix It Again Tony.

Stay away from FIAT, SAAB, VOLVO, BMW, MB, AUDI.

These are what we call, “LOOK AT ME!”, vehicles.

And since these vehicles are expensive fix both in replacement parts and the labor/special tools, you have to look long and hard how much you’re willing spend on the vehicle over the time of ownership to maintain that image.


Thank you all. Because of your advice I took a second look at the Volkswagen EOS, only slightly more than the C70, and believe that this would be a much more sound purchase for reliability with the functionality I was looking for.

Certainly I don’t believe that Volvo’s are an overwhelming victory of style of substance, but I will heed the advice since I am not interested, nor can afford, unduly large and regular repairs only a dealer’s mechanic can fix.

You might be interested in this:

I’m usually the odd man out on opinions, but I don’t consider Volvos, SAABs, and VWs to be death personified.

A lot of people put a lot of trouble free miles on them every year. Those are the ones no one hears about. MSN gives the EOS a good rating for multiple years with minimal issues; for what that’s worth.