Volvo S80 Review
The 2014 Volvo S80 ranks 12 out of 14 Luxury Large Cars. This ranking is based on our analysis of published reviews and test drives of the Volvo S80, as well as reliability and safety data.
Automotive journalists say the 2014 Volvo S80 is a practical car with loads of high-tech safety features, though many are disappointed by its dated design and bland driving dynamics.
The base Volvo S80 3.2 comes with a six-cylinder engine that reviewers say feels underpowered compared to other six-cylinder rivals. They recommend choosing the S80 T6 AWD, which comes with a potent turbocharged six-cylinder engine. Both engines are paired with a six-speed automatic transmission that reviewers agree provides smooth, quick shifts. The 2014 S80 3.2 gets an EPA-estimated 20/29 mpg city/highway, which is a bit less than that of cars with comparable power, while the T6 AWD gets 18/25, which is on par with the fuel economy of similarly powered cars in the class. Automotive journalists agree that the 2014 S80 has the smooth ride they expect from cars in this class, but fails to deliver the fun driving experience that many luxury large cars offer due to its lackluster handling and steering.
Test drivers appreciate the attractive interior design and high-quality materials in the S80. They say the front seats are among the most comfortable and supportive available in any car. However, they add that the rear seats, while comfortable, are less spacious than those in class competitors. The Volvo S80’s trunk size is on par for the class. Volvo’s last full redesign of the S80 was in 2007, and reviewers say its interior controls and infotainment system graphics seem a bit outdated. The 2014 Volvo S80 comes with standard features that include leather upholstery, City Safety, which can automatically apply the brakes at low speeds to help prevent a collision, dual-zone automatic climate control, an eight-speaker stereo, satellite radio, HD Radio, Bluetooth phone and audio streaming, a USB/iPod port and Volvo’s Sensus infotainment system, which includes a 7-inch color display. Available features include heated and ventilated front seats, heated rear seats, a sunroof, navigation, adaptive cruise control, blind spot monitoring, pedestrian and cyclist detection, forward collision warning, lane departure warning and a road sign-reading system that can alert you when you’re exceeding the speed limit.
- "The 2014 Volvo S80 is a sensible alternative to flashier, more expensive luxury sedans, but its anonymous looks and forgettable driving experience dull its appeal." -- Edmunds
- "On the other hand, the S80 is getting on in years, and its performance and technology are correspondingly behind the curve. This isn't a car that's going to win a comparison test against its rivals." -- AutoTrader
- "The S80 is a very handsome car, but its more aging veteran actor than hot young star. If dynamic styling, a V8 engine or a dash that mimics a Best Buy display case all float your boat, the S80 won't." -- Kelley Blue Book
- "Though the S80 ultimately gives up a little interior bravado and some driving finesse compared to Audi's A6 and BMW's 5-Series, it's such an all-around competent sedan that we couldn't help but wonder if the Teutonic rivals are really worth their hefty premium." -- Left Lane News (2013 T6 AWD)
Other Cars to Consider
Reviewers agree that the Cadillac CTS’ base turbocharged four-cylinder engine delivers strong power. Automotive journalists say the CTS is very rewarding to drive, not only because of its superb engine lineup, but also because of its nimble handling, accurate steering and powerful brakes. Rich interior materials and an elegant interior design impress critics as well.
The Lexus GS comes standard with a V6 engine that reviewers say revs smoothly and has plenty of power. Critics also appreciate the GS’ smooth ride and agile handling, which they say make it enjoyable to drive. The automotive press agrees that the GS’ interior boasts top-notch materials and comfortable, spacious seats.
Details: 2014 Volvo S80
The 2014 Volvo S80 is a five-seat sedan with front-wheel drive. A 3.2-liter, six-cylinder engine and six-speed automatic transmission come standard in 3.2 models, while the S80 T6 AWD has a more powerful, turbocharged, 3.0-liter, six-cylinder engine and all-wheel drive. Both models are offered in three trims: base, Premier Plus and Platinum. The Volvo S80’s last full redesign was for model year 2007, and since it sees no major changes for 2014, this overview uses applicable research and reviews from prior model years.