2008 Volvo V70 Preview
By Jeff Youngs, December 31, 2007
- All-new design for 2008
- Standard 3.2-liter 6-cylinder powerplant
- 6-speed "Geartronic" automatic transmission
- Five-passenger seating
- 37 cubic feet of cargo space
- New 40/20/40-split rear seat
- Breakthrough safety technology
- Optional power tailgate
Volvo has been manufacturing station wagons since 1953. The first model, the Duett, was built upon a ladder frame chassis-unique for Volvo as their other vehicles utilized a unibody design. In an era before sophisticated turbochargers and fuel injection, the Duett was powered by a carbureted 1.8-liter 4-cylinder engine with pushrod-activated valves.
Volvo introduced its first V70 on a front-wheel-drive platform in 1996. Over the next two generations of development it was offered in many variants including all-wheel drive, and presudo-SUV Cross Country (XC) configurations. All-new for 2008, the third-generation V70 represents the culmination of years of station wagon engineering and design experience. According to Volvo, the 2008 V70 debut marks world breakthroughs in driving dynamics, utility, versatility, and safety.
The new, 2008 Volvo V70 is initially available in one trim level. All are equipped with the identical 3.2-liter 6-cylinder powerplant, automatic transmission, and 5-passenger seating. Standard features include a full complement of convenience accessories including power windows, power door locks, cruise control, dual-zone electronic climate control, and a power 8-way driver seat with 3-position memory. The standard audio package features an 8-speaker, 160-watt stereo with a 6-disc CD changer, auxiliary input, and MP3 capability. Standard dual outboard 2-stage child booster seats with adaptive seat belts offer additional convenience and safety for children.
The Premium package includes an auto-dimming rearview mirror, HomeLink remote door opener, power glass moonroof, leather seating surfaces, leather gearshift knob with wood inlay, power passenger seat, and wood dash inlays. The Convenience package includes front and rear park assist, power tailgate, privacy locking, a humidity sensor for the climate control, and a host of other conveniences. The Climate package includes heated front seats, headlamp washers with heated nozzles, and rain-sensor wipers. Optional entertainment packages include Sirius satellite subscription radio, a dual-screen rear-seat entertainment system, and the Volvo DVD/HDD-based navigation system. Stand-alone options include bi-Xenon headlamps, adaptive cruise control, and a personal car communicator (PCC) with keyless entry, 2-way car communication, and a heartbeat sensor.
The 2008 Volvo V70 is offered with a 6-cylinder engine for the first time (previous generations have used normally aspirated or turbocharged inline 5-cylinder powerplants). Displacing 3.2 liters, the double overhead cam inline-6 engine is rated at 235 hp and 236 lb.-ft. of torque. The new engine utilizes an advanced valve mechanism called Cam Profile Shifting (CPS) plus Variable Intake System (VIS) to deliver additional performance, driving comfort, and fuel economy, says Volvo. The engine is mated to a 6-speed "Geartronic" driver-adaptive automatic transmission, with a manual shift mode, driving the front wheels. According to Volvo, the V70 accelerates to 60 mph in 7.8 seconds with an electronically limited top speed of 130 mph.
Suspension is independent, front and rear. MacPherson struts, with asymmetrically-mounted coil springs and hydraulic shock absorbers, keep the front wheels under control while the rear wheels follow the road through a multi-link suspension with coil springs and hydraulic shock absorbers. Stabilizer bars are standard. Brakes are discs on all four corners, modulated by a standard 4-channel anti-lock braking system (ABS). Ready Alert Brakes (RAB) and Fading Brake Support (FBS) are standard on all models. The front wheels are turned by a standard power-assisted rack-and-pinion steering system. The V70's wheels are 16-inch cast aluminum, with 17-inch wheels optional.
According to Volvo, the V70 was designed to be the safest car in its segment. All five seating positions include 3-point inertia-reel belts with pre-tensioners. In addition to standard driver and front passenger dual-threshold supplemental restraints, all V70 models feature side-impact air bags (SIPSBAGS II), and an inflatable side curtain (IC) that has been extended in length to offer even more protection to smaller occupants. A whiplash protection system (WHIPS) is standard, as are ISO-FIX infant and child-seat attachments. Additional standard safety features include dynamic stability and traction control (DSTC) and a tire-pressure-monitoring system (run-flat tires are optional). The Volvo On-Call roadside assistance program is included for the first four years.
Volvo used the new V70 as a platform to introduce their new "CAD system." CAD represents a new approach to grouping and packaging safety features in a single option package. With the new V70, these innovative safety features include Adaptive Cruise Control, Collision Warning with Brake Support (CWBS), Driver Alert Control, and Lane Departure Warning (LDW).
Adaptive Cruise Control continuously monitors the distance from vehicles in front and automatically adjusts speed to maintain proper distance. The same radar technology is used with Collision Warning to alert the driver of slow-moving or stopped vehicles in its path. If a vehicle is detected, the driver is alerted with an indicator light and audible alert. Brake Support prepares the braking system for the imminent emergency stop. Driver Alert Control and Lane Departure Warning monitor the V70's position within the marked lane. If the system senses a lane deviation without reason (lack of a turn signal blinker, for example), the driver is immediately alerted.
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