What are collectibles?
These cars are of particular interest and therefore worth preserving. Not necessarily old, but still present in defined quantities, either because the manufacturer decided so or because their production was discontinued. Then they use characteristics that make them particularly desirable: an engine, a chassis, a design or a concept. Eventually, they will likely increase their rating. An extra argument to collect them before anyone else!
Why is the Volvo S80 V8 a collector’s item?
A very special car without looking like it, the S80 is the only Volvo sedan to ever get a V8. In this case, an engine with an original design that owes nothing to Ford, the then owner of the Swedish brand. On the contrary, it was designed with Yamaha (who made it) and has only been found in one non-Volvo-badged car: the English supercar Noble M600. The S80 V8 was only produced for a few years and fewer than 10,000 units, making it a machine mostly run by connoisseurs.
Although Volvo has been making large sedans, mostly sold in the US, for decades, Volvo has always missed a V8 in its lineup. He wanted to remedy the situation in the early 2000s when he still belonged to Ford, but borrowing an 8-cylinder from the latter would have been too easy. Unless it’s the opposite… In fact, the Swedish manufacturer wants to mount its future V8 transversely, which entails space problems.
The US V8s are almost all open at 90°: this is not only optimal for the firing order, but also limits the height but increases the width. Problem, it doesn’t fit anywhere, at least not under Volvo’s hood designed as tractions at the base. Such is the case with the XC90 and S80, which use the manufacturer’s P2 platform. So here an engine manufacturer is used that has already proven itself in some Fords: Yamaha.
They are jointly developing a reduced aperture 60° V8 called the B8444S. This engine, manufactured in Japan, is characterized by its slightly offset cylinder banks and its balancer shaft, two features designed to make its operation smoother. In addition, this 4.4 liter engine benefits from 32 valves and variable valve timing.
First launched in 2004 in the XC90, it also appears in the second-generation S80 sedan that appeared in 2006. It puts out an impressive 315 hp and is paired with an Aisin six-speed automatic transmission. And to safely get past all the cavalry on the ground, we planned four-wheel drive with a Haldex clutch. By default, 95% of the torque goes to the front axle, i.e. 5% to the rear axle, a value that increases significantly when required.
Despite its weight of over 1,800 kg, the Volvo S80 V8 is very fast (250 km/h maximum, 6.5 s peak). In addition, it has a wealth of equipment. In the basic Momentum version, dual-zone air conditioning, leather interior, cruise control, parking sensors and 17 alloy wheels are standard … The Summum adds electric seats, xenon headlights and GPS, which completes the Executive with a more advanced sound system with DVD screens in the rear seats and a sunroof, among other amenities. Surprisingly, blind spot monitoring remains optional. With 57,000 euros in the momentum (currently 68,000 euros according to INSEE), 62,300 euros in total (currently 74,300 euros according to INSEE) and 68,650 euros in the executive (currently 81,900 euros), the Swede is very expensive, but cheaper than its German competitors.
It just won’t evolve. Why ? Because the Chinese from Geely, who bought Volvo in 2009, decided to remove this engine in order to streamline the offer. For example, the S80 loses its V8 in its 2010 restyling. Too bad.
How much is it ?
The S80 V8 has lost a lot of value: in good condition it is available from 15,000 euros with around 200,000 km, 17,000 euros with 150,000 km and over 20,000 euros with less than 100,000 km. Expect a small premium on an executive version.
Which version to choose?
You might as well enjoy yourself given the small price difference and just opt for the lavishly appointed Executive.
All as soon as they are in perfect original condition and have very low mileage. Of course with a plus for the executive.
What to monitor
The Volvo S80 is very well finished and shows an enviable reliability. However, there are electronic bugs, as well as problems with Bluetooth, but nothing serious. However, many aftermarket electronic updates are planned, make sure the car has been regularly serviced by the manufacturer. In addition to the engine, the Haldex gearbox and the differential must also be drained before 100,000 km.
There was an intermediate shaft concern with the XC90 V8, an issue improved on the S80. All the better, because the change is expensive! The distribution by chains does not raise any particular concerns and in general the maintenance of this compact V8, which is therefore accessible, remains easy (spark plugs, accessory belts, access to the box oil level).
It’s always a pleasure to settle into a vintage Volvo, outfitted with ultra-comfortable seats and relatively clear ergonomics. What we feel good on board Cockpit pleasantly designed and very well finished!
But we still have the most joy at the start, with this divinely good-sounding V8. It’s soft at first, then kicks in as you crank it up, eventually pleasing the ears with a signature boom as you near the red zone. What an engine! It also offers very powerful acceleration and pickups. However, the sometimes very slow box does not support this perfectly.
There is nothing to complain about on the chassis side: the three-stage controlled damping promotes a very good comfort/body care ratio, annoying percussions occur even in the hardest mode. Adhesion and motor skills reach an excellent level, the precision is more than sufficient and the general balance gives no cause for criticism. Of course, the car remains a bit chunky, but it’s not a sports car and it brakes very well. Consumption remains: 13 l/100 km on average. You need to plan a budget…
The youngtimer alternative
Volvo S90 (1996 – 1998)
In the rare Volvo sedan series there is the S90, the ultimate evolution of the 760 that appeared in 1982. This was already converted into the 960 in 1990, for example with a very advantageous multi-link rear suspension for road use. In 1992 it received a new 6-cylinder, and in 1994 its rear part was redesigned (finally inclined bezel!).
Under the hood of the S90 remains the excellent 2.9 liter in-line 6, which develops 180 hp or 204 hp and is enough to propel it to over 200 km/h. In the passenger compartment, the workmanship is very robust, the presentation is old-fashioned but appealing, the equipment is rich and the spaciousness is important. This very traditional Volvo, both in terms of its angular design and being the last to have rear-wheel drive, disappeared in 1998 and was replaced by the 1st generation S80. From €5,500.
Volvo S80 V8 (2006) specifications
- Engine: V8 4,414cc
- Food: injection
- Suspension: McPherson struts, coil springs, anti-roll bar (AV); Multi-link suspension, coil springs, anti-roll bar (rear).
- Transmission: 6-speed automatic, all-wheel drive
- Power: 315 hp at 5,950 rpm
- Torque: 440 Nm at 3,950 rpm
- Weight: 1,810 kg
- Top speed: 250 km/h (manufacturer information)
- 0 to 100 km/h: 6.5 seconds (manufacturer specification)
To find ads for the Volvo S80 V8, visit La Centrale’s website