2012 Volvo XC70 Review
If you want a station wagon that’s practical, comfortable and safe, the 2012 Volvo XC70 should be on your list to see. If you want something modern and fun to drive, look elsewhere.
The 2012 Volvo XC70 covers the station wagon basics. The XC70 has a roomy and comfortable cabin with more cargo space than some larger SUVs. Available high-tech safety systems like collision alert and Volvo’s City Safety system, which can detect and prevent some slow-speed collisions, give drivers peace of mind. However, if you’re looking for a truly premium European sports wagon, reviewers say the XC70 won’t fit the bill.
The 2012 Volvo XC70 is larger than wagons from Audi and BMW. While that means it has more passenger and cargo space, it also means that its performance is comparatively ponderous. Reviewers report that the XC70 drives better than many compact SUVs, but compared with other wagons, it falls short. While the upper trims perform better, they’re also pricey and get poor gas mileage.
Overall, most test drivers agree with Consumer Guide, who says that the "XC70 has its charms, among them a roomy cabin, refined drivetrain, and impressive build quality. The base 3.2 model is best viewed as a value-seeker's luxury car. … The T6 adds stronger performance, though not enough to justify its higher starting price."
Other Wagons to Consider
If you need all-wheel drive in your luxury wagon like the XC70 has, also consider the Audi A4 Avant. Reviewers say it has a nicer interior and is more fun to drive than the Volvo XC70. While all-wheel drive is optional on both the XC70 and the A4 Avant, Audi’s Quattro all-wheel drive system is considered one of the best in the business.
Buyers who want to stick to a budget but don’t want to compromise on the XC70’s practicality should give the Subaru Outback a look. While it’s not from a premium brand, the Outback has a much lower starting price than the XC70, standard all-wheel drive and plenty of cargo space. It’s also an Insurance Institute for Highway Safety Top Safety Pick.
Details: Volvo XC70
The Volvo XC70 is available in two trims: the base 3.2 and the T6 AWD. Each trim comes in Premier, Premier Plus and Platinum configurations. The XC70 hasn’t changed much since its last redesign in 2008. For 2012, the Premier, Premier Plus and Platinum designations are new, but replace option packages that were available on earlier models. See the full 2012 Volvo XC70 specs.
- “The XC70 survives, combining conventional wagon usefulness with extra ground clearance and brawny styling. Offered in front- or AWD versions, it’s practical, comfortable, and loaded with safety features.” -- Car and Driver
- “We generally prefer wagons to SUVs due to their superior fuel economy and handling, but the (2012) Volvo XC70 doesn't offer any such advantages when lined up against more modern and efficient crossovers.” -- Edmunds
- “If you're craving a versatile wagon with an advanced all-wheel drive system, good ground clearance and a comfortable interior, but can't stomach a $40,000-plus price tag, the Subaru Outback makes a far better choice than the Volvo XC70.” -- Kelley Blue Book