Volvo V70



We have six kids. My current vehicle is a 2005 12-passenger Chevy Express van, which I use to commute 30 minutes each way to and from work. I also use this van for twice-monthly trips to visit their dad who lives two hours away. This big van works great for hauling our big family and our gear, and apart from the terrible gas mileage and the lumber wagon-like handling, it’s been fine. So, we’re keeping it.

I am ready to buy a more fuel-efficient vehicle car for my commute and for my frequent trips with the three kids. This car needs also to be good on ice and snow, and OK for our fifteen year old daughter to drive (i.e. not expensive, and also safe).

I am leaning toward a 1998-2001 Volvo V70 AWD, which I have seen in the $5000 range, at around 100,000 to 130,000 miles. My husband thinks that a car with that many miles will be a constant source of repair bills, and that I’d be better off with a Ford Taurus…

Any advice? Thanks.


Clarification…of our six kids, only three of them make the twice-monthly two hour trips…


Your husband is correct. Volvos are expensive to repair, my step father and mother both have Volvos (an 02 V70 and a 05 C70 Vert.) My stepfather has always had volvos, his last before the current one was a 99 V70 wagon that managed to put 250k on, but normal maintence and repairs are considereably more than the average Taurus,Camary, or Accord. It helps if you have an independent mechanic who specializes in them. Generally speaking, higher end cars command higher end servicing and repair costs.


Good friend of mine over the course of 30 years had Volvos that he frequently pushed to well over 200K. His last was a Volvo AWD. When I asked him 1 1/2 years after his last purchase if he was doing his own oil changes, his reply was that he had so much work done, the changes were often done during one of them. Within the next year after low miles for him 75K, he traded it in for his first Asian brand; a Subaru. It seems the Volvo AWD has been a great a reason to buy a Subaru or a Ford, or most anything else. But if you feel you need an AWD wagon, the proven one is a Subaru.
I’d recommend you lean the other way, away from a Volvo.


The Taurus will get you the newest model year for the lowest price, so take that into consideration.
For a $5000 budget, try not to get hung up on Asian brands either, as they keep their value and will have higher miles, or older model year. Also, total miles on the vehicle isn’t as important as how it was maintained. A vehicle with 20k miles on it and no oil changes will likely not last more than a couple months. A vehicle with 200k and proof of maintenance and repairs could last quite awhile.


I would stay away from Volvos or any other European car. As per your husband and other posters, you need something simple and reliable. For that kind of money I would buy a Mazda Protege, or Hyundai Elantra. Both will use about 1/2 or less the amount of gas and cost very little in maintenance. You can also buy one with much lower mileage than what you are lookig at now!

A good used Taurus with the smallest engine for that model, and low mileage, would also be good. They depreciate fast, but the gas mileage, although great compared with you current vehicle, is not as good as with the compact cars.

Happy shopping!