Volvo pioneered the crossover estate concept when the XC70 Cross Country was launched in the UK in 1996. The Volvo XC70 is an evolution of the V70 estate and the idea is to take the popular V70 estate car and enable it to go off road by increasing the ground clearance, adding four wheel drive or as Volvo prefer to call it all wheel drive, upgrading the suspension and protecting the body work whilst retaining the comfort and safety of the original estate car.
Externally, the Volvo XC70 is higher than the V70 (by 57mm), longer (by 15mm) and has a different grille, special fog lamps and comprehensive protective cladding. The steel body panels, however, are the same, except for the front wings and the glazing is also shared.
Despite having a 4x4 SUV in the guise of the Volvo XC90, most XC90 owners do not venture very far off road, where according to Volvo the typical XC70 buyer has bought the car for that very reason. They want an estate car that can take the rough with the smooth.
The Volvo XC70 comes in three luxury trim levels: SE, SE Sport and SE Lux. The range starts at £29,675 for the XC70 SE and goes up to £34,625 for the car we tested - the Volvo XC70 SE Lux Premium.How It Drove - Performance
Volvo has dropped the petrol engine from the XC70 range for 2009, so currently the XC70 is only available with a turbocharged 2.4 litre diesel engine.
This is Volvo's second-generation, turbocharged, five-cylinder, common-rail D5 diesel engine, which was first used in the Volvo S80 and it is considered to be one of the cleanest and most advanced diesel engines in the world. The engine exceeds Euro 4 emissions requirements and particulates are only 0.001g/km compared with the Euro 4 standard of 0.025. A particle filter requiring no servicing is fitted as standard.
The D5 engine in the Volvo XC70 produces 185ps and delivers 295 lb/ft of torque between 2000 - 2750 rpm which is enough to propel the XC70 from 0-62 mph in 9.9 seconds and then onto a top speed of 127 mph when coupled to the automatic gearbox.
Off the mark there is some turbo lag, but once on the move it is not too bad and it will press on. Until warmed up, the engine is quite noisy and it does intrude into the cabin but this settles down and it is far better at speed.
There is a choice of transmission a six-speed manual gearbox or a six-speed Geartronic automatic, which has a manual function. Our test car was fitted with the six-speed Geartronic automatic gearbox which was excellent to use. It has a winter setting and can be used as a sequential manual should you wish to have finer control over the car, perhaps downhill or whilst towing.
Average fuel economy on the official combined cycle is 37.7mpg for the manual version and we achieved circa 26-27mpg from the automatic version over our mixed test route.
This is a 12-year+ news article, from our Volvo archive, which dates back to the year 2000.
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