Road Test: Volvo S80 [2006-2014]

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When you're done with the regular work-week, take this hunk out on the open road and just drive!


The S80 V8 is available for a little over Rs 54 lakhs (on-road, Mumbai). The 3.2-litre V6 petrol costs Rs 48 lakh. Spares and labour won’t be cheap – this is a premium import, after all, with imported spares as well. We achieved 6.5kpl during our test, which is quite commendable given the engine, the size of the car and the way we drove it. With the V8 growl and 315 bhp on tap, acceleration is addictive!

Overall Evaluation

The first V8 in India nets you a high-speed rocket that can be used everyday, but you’ll reserve it for weekends, when you can take the kids and the wife (or husband) out for breakfast somewhere far away. You’ll buy it for the passion of driving – it’s as close to a muscle car as you can possibly get today in this country. Remove the V8 badge, and this car really defines the word ‘sleeper.’ Do we have customers who will want to spend 54 big ones on a sleeper – especially an exciting Volvo? Volvos are known for their B7R buses and big trucks in India, not cars, not just yet. If Volvo wants to make a statement in India, they should launch the C70 with the V8, that’d make perfect sense as an image builder.

That said, we love the car for what it is. It’s fast, it’s a wolf in sheep’s clothing, and it puts a grin on the driver’s face like no other car can today in this country. It is a car meant for the mature driver who respects the performance this car is capable of delivering. But the question that begs to be asked is, would an enthusiast spend 54 lakhs on a Volvo or 65 lakhs on a Porsche?

The established markets where this car sells are now preparing to scale down from V8s to turbocharged six-cylinder engines for better fuel efficiency, but we’re glad that a manufacturer is giving India the choice that anyone across the globe can make, unlike other manufacturers, and that an enthusiast with enough money can go get himself a muscle car in executive guise.

Useful touches

  • The key doesn’t need to be put in its slot to start the car. You can keep it in your pocket. It won’t eject if the car isn’t in park.
  • Auto-dim rearview mirror.
  • Painful touches

  • If you leave the car in gear without setting the parking brake and shut off the engine, the car will roll off – nothing locks the wheels!
  • Mirrors could’ve been larger.

    Test Data

    Engine Specifications

    4414cc, 8-cylinder, V8, petrol, 315bhp@5950rpm, 44.8kgm@3950rpm. View specifications

    Speedo Error

    Speedo Reading (kph) Actual Speed (kph)
    40  39.6
    60  59.4
    80  79.2
    100  99.2
    120  118.9
    140  139.3

    Max in Gear

    Gear Speed (kph)
    1st  54 (6500rpm)
    2nd  92.2 (6800rpm)
    3rd  148.6 (6800rpm)
    6th -

    Performance Test Data

    Top Speed  206.5kph*
    0-60kph  3.8sec
    0-100kph  7.5sec
    Quarter Mile (402m)  15.1sec
    Braking 80-0kph  33.9m/3.1sec
    30-50kph in 3rd**  2.3sec
    30-50kph in 4th   ----
    50-70kph in 5th  ----

    Fuel Efficiency

      City Highway Overall Worst
    Mileage (kpl)  5.5kpl  9.5kpl 6.5kpl 3.6kpl

    * Achieved. ** In kickdown for automatics.^ During performance tests.

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