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2004 Volvo XC70 Review
Rugged ability without the size of an SUV.
Reviewed by Automotive on
The 2004 Volvo XC70 classifies as a midsize, five-door station wagon that has been in production by the Swedish automaker since 1997. It provides the four-wheel-drive Cross Country version of the V70, which is an executive type station wagon. The 2004 belongs to the second generation of the wagon that launched in 2001 in North American markets. Other markets received this generation by the end of 1999. This new version uses the newly released Volvo P2 chassis, which first appeared in the Volvo S80 sedan in 1997.
Engine: 2.5-liter turbocharged five-cylinder
Transmission: five-speed automatic
Model: Volvo XC70
The 2004 Volvo XC70 now includes bi-xenon headlights in its list of optional features. Apart from this addition and a new steering system, the wagon remains unchanged from previous years.
The Volvo XC70 looks closely related to other midsize Volvo wagons, which seems evident from the exterior design cues taken from them. It has a wheelbase of 108.8 inches and an overall length of 286.3 inches. The rounded front corners look similar to those of the S80 sedan, although the rear uses the same straight lines and body profile as a Volvo wagon. The XC70 accommodates moderate trekking, so it uses integrated fog lights and large bumpers. Ground clearance totals a good 8.2 inches, which gives the XC70 an SUV-like appearance. It features 16-inch alloy wheels. The Climate package that comes standard with the 2004 Volvo XC70 includes rain-sensing wipers.
The 2004 Volvo XC70 seats a maximum of five people with bucket seats in front and a 40/20/40-split bench at the rear. The rear bench also features a removable center section, along with an optional rear-facing auxiliary child seat. The Premium package offers leather upholstered seats as well. Cargo capacity with the rear bench totals 37.5 cubic feet, which increases to 71.5 cubic feet with the rear bench folded. Standard interior features include an in-dash CD player, a wood-trimmed dashboard, and a leather-trimmed steering wheel.
The polished-bezel instrument panel and controls can be difficult to read in dim lights. The radio station presets on the stereo are selected with a rotary dial, which may feel odd for many people. The optional navigation screen on the dash seems difficult to read as well, especially in daylight. The system controls only sit on the steering wheel, making them inaccessible for the passenger. The overall interior design has a plush and modern tone.
Performance & Handling
The Volvo XC70 uses a 2.5-liter, turbocharged five-cylinder that delivers 208 horsepower and 236 lb-ft of torque. The engine mates to Volvo’s Geartronic five-speed automatic transmission, along with a knob called the Auto-stick that allows manually selected gear changes. While the acceleration on the sedan version is not too good, the addition of a turbocharger on the 2.5-liter engine adds the necessary power to make the XC70 livelier. The wagon can go from a standstill to 60 mph in about 8.3 seconds.
The 2004 Volvo XC70 feels most at home on the road, cruising smoothly and effortlessly without ever betraying the power generated by the turbocharged engine. Acceleration seems phenomenal, whether from standstill or while passing and merging. The steering, while a little heavy, does not have a slow response. The 2004 Volvo XC70 feels stable on the highway and tackles most corners well enough.
The suspension seems soft and cushiony, but firm. This allows the XC70 to tackle smooth roads and moderately bumpy surfaces without too much of a hit on comfort. However, taking it off of the road or driving it through rough terrain is a bad idea. All-wheel drive offers superb traction on slippery surfaces. The 2004 Volvo XC70 brakes quite well also. Simply put, the all-wheel-drive Volvo XC70 makes a sensible enough alternative to the bulk of an SUV.
The 2004 Volvo XC70 includes standard safety features, such as side-impact airbags, anti-lock brakes, side-curtain airbags, and a Whiplash Protection System for moving the front seats towards the rear in the event of a collision. The sedan version of the XC70 receives the highest rating of ""good"" from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) for front and rear collisions.
EPA Fuel Economy
- Very comfortable inside
- Solid construction and good brakes
- Volvo safety
- Versatile all-wheel drive
You Won't Like
- High cost
- Lacks real off-road capabilities
Rugged ability without the size of an SUV.
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