Go Back   EcoModder Forum > EcoModding > General Efficiency Discussion
Register Now
 Register Now
 


Reply  Post New Thread
 
Submit Tools LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 04-26-2008, 12:13 AM   #1 (permalink)
Depends on the Day
 
RH77's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Kansas City Area
Posts: 1,761

Teggy - '98 Acura Integra LS
Sports Cars
90 day: 32.74 mpg (US)

IMA - '10 Honda Insight EX
Team Honda
90 day: 34.76 mpg (US)

Tessie - '06 Acura TSX Base
90 day: 28.2 mpg (US)
Thanks: 31
Thanked 41 Times in 35 Posts
2008 Volvo S60 2.5T

2008 Volvo S60 2.5T

+ FE for Size and Class
+ Scandinavian Safety
+ Comfort and Amenities

- 8-year-old Design
- Feels Heavy in City Driving (also lower city FE)
- Requires Premium Fuel

Introduction: I’ll cut straight to the punch. 29.0 MPG. A previous review of a Volvo S40 revealed similarly surprisingly good fuel efficiency. This is my second time in the S60, but the first to record the FE.
Note the following FE-saving graces when compared to others in the class (Acura TL, BMW 3-Series, Lexus GS/IS):

5-cylinders, Inline vs. 6 in a V or otherwise
2.5L vs. 3.5L+ Displacement
RPM @ 60 MPH: 1900 (others higher)
Turbocharged and Intercooled vs. Normally Aspirated
Cd: 0.30 (others, brick-like)
Max Torque at 1500 RPM (other higher)

Although it requires premium fuel, don’t expect to have this test use it (I doubt the last renter did so).

The entire Volvo line has been stagnant in sales for a while. With competitors boasting redesigns, more power, and a “younger” appeal, the Volvo sedan has been struggling for sales. If you drive one, that just might change your mind.



Mid-week rentals generally offer little availability in selection. I was hoping to test a newer 4-cylinder vehicle, but I stepped to the lot and saw lines of Vans, Trucks, and SUVs. I spotted a Camry and went for it. Buggah. Someone had just claimed it. Hidden behind a van was the S60. Oh, why not. It turns out that may have been a wise decision.

On the Outside: Classic Volvo. The grille, broad shoulders, and an austere quality gives the appeal of a much more expensive vehicle. Nothing new here. This base model is loaded with amenities like foglamps (front/rear), turn signals in the mirrors, and other goodies, including headlight washers. One of the best features is that 0.30 drag coefficient. I always like amber turn signals in the rear (separate from the brake) – it seems more visible to other drivers.



For our European readers, the S60 may be best known for its police duty. Yeah, the cops have it nice in there.



On the Inside: The S60 wraps you in a blanket of comfort. The 3 available memory settings move the seat and outside mirrors on request. Full leather and heated seats compliment the steering wheel controls for cruise and radio settings. The sound system has a good tone, but the display is difficult to see on sunny days. An auxiliary input is standard.

HVAC controls are standard Volvo: with automatic climate control and dual temperature zones. I really like the upper ventilation selector. It’s a combination of defroster and “face cooler”. In the Summer, it cools this hot spot. You can select any combination of upper, middle, and lower ventilation.



With the thunderstorms and high humidity during the outbound leg of the trip, it was necessary to cycle the A/C to defog the windshield. Also equipped – rain sensing wipers (which, in my opinion, haven’t worked well on any car I’ve tested).



The gauge package includes an Instant FE readout, Average FE, distance to empty, and stability/traction control on/off indicator. It would be convenient to have a boost gauge.



Safety: Who does safety better than Volvo? You name it, it has it. Excellent crash ratings, advanced headrests for whiplash protection, a full-surround of airbags, ABS with brake force distribution, traction and stability control systems. It’s a vault.

Efficiency: What a design! As eluded in the intro, FE was surprisingly high (especially if you don’t have to stop). It’s a heavy car, but it could be heavier with a bigger engine. That’s the beauty of this setup. Torque down low, a tall final gear, a small displacement, turbocharged Inline-5, low rolling resistance tires (the same on my car ), and a slick Cd make it a great highway cruiser. I can only speculate that the 87-octane fuel may put the car in a lower power mode to prevent detonation.



The Drive:: So, running on 87-octane in a 5-banger, and having a tall gear ratio should make performance akin to a VW bus. Not so. Spool up the turbo at any RPM and off you go. The performance is felt at the redline first to second shift, where boost is at its highest. It’s not as fast as it’s 6-cylinder counterparts, but I considered it plenty fast for its class and price (that’s 0-60 in 6.8 seconds). This is all from the same size engine as the Altima 4-cylinder!

Despite its larger size and luxury looks, this vehicle handles well. It’s a fun car to drive – braking is excellent, and the ride is compliant yet a bit stiff at times. Perhaps it’s turbo-lag, but starting from a stop seems to be hesitant. Steering is firm with rather numb feedback. Otherwise, the cabin promotes comfort and a relaxed driving environment: perfect for hypermiling. No real complaints here.

Side Note: I rented this on a trip to visit family in Ohio a few months ago. For those familiar with past reviews, the rural, winding roads and little makes it a great performance test area (location: confidential). I used to drive the twisties all the time, so the curves are mapped on the grey matter. The S60 performed like a much smaller, high-performance vehicle. The slap-shift auto keeps the gear held for the corner and the turbo waiting for exit. It will bring a smile to your face. OK, back to being responsible…

For the Energy Conscious: It’s a big car. If you insist on luxury, it may have the best FE in its class (The Audi A4 has very similar specs and a higher EPA rating – not yet tested) – but, consider how much luxury you really do need.

Consider the size and your needs in a vehicle. Even as a “Compact” this is a fairly large conveyance. There may be better, more fuel-efficient options that satisfy this requirement. If you must have one, definitely opt for the 2.5T (base) FWD (an AWD version is available). Manual transmissions are only available on the high-performance “T5” model. The Subaru STI-like S60R has been discontinued.

EOC action turns off the headlights, which may require a work-around. Rolling neutral-to-drive engagement requires precise rev-matching, or you’ll get the “thump and jolt”.

Raw Data:
Model: 2008 Volvo S60
Trim: 2.5T
Class Size: Compact Luxury Sedan
Transmission: 5-Speed Automatic with Manu-Matic shifter and lock-up torque converter and “Winter” mode
Engine: 2.5 L, Turbocharged, Intercooled, Inline-5 cylinder, rated at 208 HP @ 5000 and 236 ft-lbs of torque @ 1500
Drivetrain: FWD
RPM @ 60 MPH: 1900
ECU Target Coolant Temp: 190F
Curb Weight: 3523 lbs.
EPA: 18/26
EPA Average Fuel Cost per Year: $2356
EcoModder Tested Mileage: 29.0 MPG
Speed Avg: 53 MPH
Time of Operation: 10.2 hours
Distance Driven: 511 Miles
Ambient Outside Temp: 50-80F
Seating Capacity: 5 (snug) at 2+3 or 4 more comfortably at 2+2
Price as Tested: $31,000 USD (April, 2008)
Cruise Speed: 70 MPH
Test Loop: Kansas City – Wichita – Kansas City
Wind/Weather: Outbound – Thunderstorms, Avg. 20 MPH Headwind; Inbound: Clear, 25 MPH Headwinds gusting to 35

RH77

__________________
“If we knew what we were doing, it wouldn't be called research” ― Albert Einstein

_
_
  Reply With Quote
Alt Today
Popular topics

Other popular topics in this forum...

   
Old 04-26-2008, 04:48 PM   #2 (permalink)
Depends on the Day
 
RH77's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Kansas City Area
Posts: 1,761

Teggy - '98 Acura Integra LS
Sports Cars
90 day: 32.74 mpg (US)

IMA - '10 Honda Insight EX
Team Honda
90 day: 34.76 mpg (US)

Tessie - '06 Acura TSX Base
90 day: 28.2 mpg (US)
Thanks: 31
Thanked 41 Times in 35 Posts
One more thing: there's no button to pop the trunk from the inside, and there's no arrow indicated which side the fuel filler is located. There's a "Valet Lock" button to prevent would-be valet/thieves from pilfering loot in the boot.
__________________
“If we knew what we were doing, it wouldn't be called research” ― Albert Einstein

_
_
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-26-2008, 05:33 PM   #3 (permalink)
Banned
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: california
Posts: 1,329
Thanks: 24
Thanked 160 Times in 106 Posts
The button to pop the trunk is hidden inside the driver's door pocket. Some older models had it in the glove box.

Our 96 Volvo 850 wagon 5 speed (non turbo) with an older version of the same 5 cylinder engine can manage 32mpg highway so the 29 mpg is totaly in line with expectations. The first 6 years of the S60, volvo offered a non turbo and a 5 and 6 speed manual in America on both turbos and non turbos. You could even get a 5 speed wagon. Unfortunately they decided to stop importing these versions a couple of years ago. The manual transmission is being relegated to "sporty" models like the C30 and C70. Oh well. That 5 cylinder engine dates all the way back to 1991 yet its still a pleasure to drive today. It was way ahead of its time. The 3500lb weight of the S60 is very disappointing. A 2001 or 2002 NA 5 speed would make an excellent used buy. Unfortunately new volvos depreciate faster than yesterday's newspaper.
http://sfbay.craigslist.org/eby/car/651799591.html
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-26-2008, 09:20 PM   #4 (permalink)
Depends on the Day
 
RH77's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Kansas City Area
Posts: 1,761

Teggy - '98 Acura Integra LS
Sports Cars
90 day: 32.74 mpg (US)

IMA - '10 Honda Insight EX
Team Honda
90 day: 34.76 mpg (US)

Tessie - '06 Acura TSX Base
90 day: 28.2 mpg (US)
Thanks: 31
Thanked 41 Times in 35 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by tjts1 View Post
The button to pop the trunk is hidden inside the driver's door pocket. Some older models had it in the glove box.

Our 96 Volvo 850 wagon 5 speed (non turbo) with an older version of the same 5 cylinder engine can manage 32mpg highway so the 29 mpg is totaly in line with expectations. The first 6 years of the S60, volvo offered a non turbo and a 5 and 6 speed manual in America on both turbos and non turbos. You could even get a 5 speed wagon. Unfortunately they decided to stop importing these versions a couple of years ago. The manual transmission is being relegated to "sporty" models like the C30 and C70. Oh well. That 5 cylinder engine dates all the way back to 1991 yet its still a pleasure to drive today. It was way ahead of its time. The 3500lb weight of the S60 is very disappointing. A 2001 or 2002 NA 5 speed would make an excellent used buy. Unfortunately new volvos depreciate faster than yesterday's newspaper.
http://sfbay.craigslist.org/eby/car/651799591.html
I have to agree that the 5-Cylinder is a excellent engine (in NA or Turbo form). I drove 3 NA versions of the S40 and was completely amazed at the torque response combined with FE. Rumor has it, they're going to design an S60 to "Rival BMW's 3-Series", which likely means a V-6 and more weight.

On a side note, my "Uncle-in-Law" had a 240-series for over 20-years. Not a single problem in that span. He owned a small-town auto-parts store and really maintained it (and also knew what vehicles broke down around town). They've since sold the store. retired, and moved on. They tried an S60 for a while, but ended up with a BMW since "Volvo isn't the same anymore".

When they were new, I really liked the look of the mid-90's 850. I think the brand is slowly loosing it's roots ever since Ford entered the picture. Not as dramatic as the Saab-GM relationship, though.

One final comment. The car I tested would flat-out corner on a dime. I returned it this morning and took a downhill-into-exit ramp loop at my usual speed (if no one was ahead -- no brakes ). Wow. I kept having to tell myself "Stop! Turbo bad!" But I think that's where most of us came from at this site, and have since rehabilitated.

Thanks for the reply...

RH77
__________________
“If we knew what we were doing, it wouldn't be called research” ― Albert Einstein

_
_
  Reply With Quote
Old 08-23-2009, 03:30 PM   #5 (permalink)
EcoModding Lurker
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Durham, NC
Posts: 11

Betty - '08 Volvo S60 2.5T
90 day: 30.07 mpg (US)
Thanks: 4
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I know I'm late to the game here, but I just wanted to chime in. I've been driving a 2008 S60 since February, and have been getting a hair over 30 MPG overall. I was down around 28-29 at first. But, I brought it up with a little fine tuning to my P&G mechanics, as well as being selective on the route for my daily drive.
  Reply With Quote
Old 08-23-2009, 03:57 PM   #6 (permalink)
In Lean Burn Mode
 
pgfpro's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Pacific NW
Posts: 1,428

MisFit Talon - '91 Eagle Talon TSi
Team Turbocharged!
90 day: 41.03 mpg (US)
Thanks: 1,031
Thanked 484 Times in 316 Posts
Man that's really nice mileage for a roomy turboed car.
__________________
Pressure Gradient Force
The Positive Side of the Number Line

  Reply With Quote
Old 08-27-2009, 02:49 PM   #7 (permalink)
ALS
EcoModding Apprentice
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Pittsburgh
Posts: 111
Thanks: 0
Thanked 20 Times in 15 Posts
Where Volvo screwed up on the car is they should have made the Euro 2.0L Turbo available here in the states. With a .28Cd, 29 MPG on the highway is a joke. The S60 3,500 lb plus weight is also a downer.

My 97 960 has a 24 Valve 2.9L six cylinder. I can easily pull 28-29 mpg at 65 mph. It also weighs in at 3500 plus lbs and has a .36 Cd vs the .28 Cd on the S60.

Volvo had a winner on it's hands and blew it with the fuel economy.
The S60 AWD's get 19 mpg combined and lucky to see 25 on the highway.

BTW I've owned Turbo Volvo's since February 1981.

The upside of the S60 is the depreciation is so high on the car that they are a real bargain if your buying used and know where to look. It is a really nice car and I thought about grabbing one used but the fuel mileage was the deal breaker as the say.

This should give you an idea of the kind of deal you can get on one.

blueknobauto-Volvo

Last edited by ALS; 08-27-2009 at 02:59 PM..
  Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to ALS For This Useful Post:
Turk182 (08-27-2009)
Old 08-27-2009, 02:58 PM   #8 (permalink)
EcoModding Lurker
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Durham, NC
Posts: 11

Betty - '08 Volvo S60 2.5T
90 day: 30.07 mpg (US)
Thanks: 4
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by pgfpro View Post
Man that's really nice mileage for a roomy turboed car.
Personally, I think the turbo helps the FE. It allows it to keep the RPM lower, right?
__________________
  Reply With Quote
Old 08-31-2009, 11:31 AM   #9 (permalink)
EcoModding Dilatant
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: NC
Posts: 262

Volvo - '00 Volvo V70 XC AWD SE
90 day: 27.7 mpg (US)
Thanks: 4
Thanked 26 Times in 16 Posts
My 2000 AWD V70 wagon can *easily* get 30 mpg highway and I have gotten as high as 32.8 when I was serious about it (windows up, no A/C, inflated tires, and speed limit). So I do not think the person who said the S60 is lucky to get 25 mpg highway is correct, considering it is both smaller, lighter, and more aero than my wagon.

Last edited by instarx; 08-31-2009 at 11:37 AM..
  Reply With Quote
Old 11-24-2009, 01:36 PM   #10 (permalink)
EcoModding Lurker
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Edmonton, AB, Canada
Posts: 3

Odin - '05 Volvo S60 R
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I had a 2004 S60 2.4i. This is a FWD car with no turbocharger (unlike the one in the review). It was good for 168 hp and a similar number of lb-ft torque. I also had a body kit that "lowered" the car slightly (I have no idea if this changed mileage).

With the 5 speed manual, I drove 300 km highway at 110 km/h and got 5.9 L/100 km. I averaged 8.0 L/100 km in mixed city driving and highway commuting.

Incidentally, this 300 km trip was to another city to trade the car in for a 2005 Volvo S60R - with 300 HP and AWD instead. Also has a 6 speed manual instead of the 5 speed.
I now average 9.5 L/100 km on the same mixed city driving. I think the return 300 km highway drive was at about 7.5-8.0 L/100 km. The 6 speed allows for lower revs than the 5 speed did on the highway.

I imagine the best S60 for mileage (available in North America, anyway) would've been the other one I was considering buying instead of the S60R. 2007 S60 T5 (250 HP but out of a smaller displacement), 6 speed manual, FWD, sleeker lines (no headlight wipers anyway).

At any rate it's a super-comfortable car that's severely underrated.

  Reply With Quote
Reply  Post New Thread


Thread Tools


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Review: 2008 Nissan Altima 2.5 S, CVT RH77 General Efficiency Discussion 10 03-09-2010 03:40 AM
Video: someone DIY tuft testing a Volvo MetroMPG Aerodynamics 4 12-29-2007 03:07 AM



Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2021, vBulletin Solutions Inc.
Content Relevant URLs by vBSEO 3.5.2
All content copyright EcoModder.com