2008 Volvo V50

  • 2008 Volvo V50 2.4i Wagon

    2.4i Wagon

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      2.4L I5
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  • 2008 Volvo V50 T5 AWD Wagon

    T5 AWD Wagon

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      2.5L I5
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  • 2008 Volvo V50 T5 Wagon

    T5 Wagon

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      2.5L I5
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2008 Volvo V50 Review

For families with children or lots of cargo.

Reviewed by Automotive on


The Volvo V50 is a station wagon based on Volvo’s S40 sedan models. It first entered production in 2004 with plans to cease production in 2012. It is known for a number of safety features, though untested unlike the S40 (which rated highly). The V50 has a roomy interior within its class, and exceptional handling for a wagon.

The Range

Body Styles: wagon
Engines: 2.4-liter five-cylinder, 2.5-liter five-cylinder
Transmissions: five-speed automatic with auto-manual, five-speed automatic
Models: Volvo V50 2.4i, Volvo V50 T5, Volvo V50 T5

What's New

The body style of Volvo’s V50 wagon only receives moderate modifications to the exterior styling, including minor changes to the headlights and taillights. The major changes include a more powerful, top-tier, 227-hp engine and the option of either front- or all-wheel drive. Some safety features are added and improved, and cabin space increases.


The V50 is the wagon version of the S40 sedan, resembling this vehicle in most regards in the front. It has a V-shaped bulge in the hood widening toward the windshield, which is nearly as distinctively Volvo as the pronounced diagonal logo across the grille. Volvo smoothed out the door sill and bumper in prior models, attempting a redesign of its general look on most vehicles, and this is true for the V50 as well. The wagon area extends a significant distance behind the rear wheel and ends in an abrupt and flat surface. There is a Dynamic Trim Package for the T5 models, which ads a liftgate spoiler, spoilers for the rear bumper and chin, and side skirts. It is available in a range of colors, adding Gecko Green for 2008, eliminating a shade of blue and silver. The V50 was one of the first vehicles to include integrated turn signals in the side mirrors. It comes with 16-inch wheels standard and available 17-inch wheels, and aluminum roof rails come with the Premium Package.


The Volvo V50 seats a total of five and four adults comfortably. It comes with a somewhat course fabric upholstery, reportedly inspired by sportswear, but leather is optional. There is plenty of storage space within. The center armrest has been redesigned to be more comfortable than on past models. The T5 model switched to a watch-inspired style for the gauges and instrument panel while the other models remained similar to the 2007 lineup. There are a range of trims available, including a new Nordic Light Oak and an aluminum trim. Each rear seat folds down separately for increased and better customized cargo space. The V50 has a number of features, including several stereo options with MP3 compatibility standard, satellite radio, optional power driver’s seat, climate control, optional power sunroof, optional keyless entry and start, GPs navigation optional, and optional upgraded headlights.

Performance & Handling

The 2008 Volvo V50 has a 168-hp, 2.4-liter five-cylinder or a more powerful 227-hp, 2.5-liter five-cylinder. Five-speed automatic transmission comes standard with the base and T5 models. The T5 has all-wheel drive and gets an upgraded suspension with the Dynamic Trim Package upgrade.

Both models show above average acceleration within their class, though pushing the engine tends to get noisy. On smooth roads, the V50 is comfortable, but a tight suspension makes rougher roads a bit unpleasant at times. Both models give the driver an innate sense of control.


The Volvo brand in general is well-known for exceptional safety, and the S40 rated very high on crash tests. But the V50 has not been crash-tested. Safety features include front, side-impact, and side curtain airbags, all-disc anti-lock brakes, electronic stability with traction control, tire pressure monitoring, and a blind spot indicator.

EPA Fuel Economy

Volvo V50 2.4i: 20/28 mpg city/highway
Volvo V50 2.5i:19/27 mpg city/highway

You'll Like

  • Interior amenities
  • Handling for a wagon
  • Roomy interior
  • Number of safety features

You Won't Like

  • Manual transmission discontinued
  • Less reliable than other Volvos
  • No crash tests
  • Backseat cramped for three adults

Sum Up

For families with children or lots of cargo.

If You Like This Vehicle

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