2006 S80 New Car Test Drive
Last year Volvo updated and upgraded its flagship S80 with more than 700 changes, improving the ride, handling and cabin quietness and generally raising the level of refinement. So overall the 2005 version reflects mostly only adjustments to the options, however there are big changes to the actual model lineup and major component availability.
The non-turbocharged version of the six-cylinder engine has been dropped from the S80 lineup, replaced by the trusty turbocharged five-cylinder. It's this engine that comes with the all-wheel-drive system Volvo has been using so successfully in the midsize S60 sedan. The 2.5T five-cylinder is adequate, but lacks the smooth power of the T6 six-cylinder, which seems a better match for the S80.
The S80 offers luxury, interior comfort and a stylish body. The suspension is highly sophisticated. It offers a smooth ride and feels extremely stable on the highway. And Volvo's safety engineering leads the automotive world. The S80 is not a flashy or showy car. Like any Volvo, it doesn't shout out its quality, it simply and quietly delivers it.
Safety is what Volvo is known for, and the S80 reaches new levels. With side-impact airbags, side curtain airbags, anti-whiplash seats, as well as a sophisticated steel structure that's computer designed around crash-resistance, the S80 achieves the coveted 5-star crash-test rating in both front and side collisions, as well as a 5-star rollover-resistance rating.
With the all-wheel-drive model, Volvo now builds four versions of the S80.
The 2.5T FWD ($35,900) is powered by the 2.5-liter turbocharged five-cylinder engine that produces 208 horsepower and 236 pound-feet of torque, driving the front wheels through a five-speed automatic transmission. Standard features include dual-zone electronic climate controls, a pollen filter, a leather-wrapped and tilt and telescopic steering wheel with cruise and audio controls, power adjustable driver's seat with lumbar support, a CD player, and a retractable grocery bag or gallon milk jug retainer in the trunk. Cloth upholstery is standard on the 2.9 model. Also standard: Stability and Traction Control (STC), front and rear fog lights, 16-inch wheels.
A Premium Package ($2,995) adds leather seating surfaces, power passenger seat, wood inlays, and a power glass moonroof. Cold Weather Package ($625) adds heated front seats, headlight wipers and rain sensor.
The 2.5T AWD ($37,550) is the newest model, with most of the same features and option packages as the FWD but using all-wheel drive. Important stand-alone options include Dynamic Stability and Traction Control ($695) and Bi-Xenon headlamps ($700).
The T6 ($44,525) comes with a twin-turbocharged 2.9-liter in-line six-cylinder making 268 horsepower and 280 pound-feet of torque. It uses a four-speed automatic transmission with a manual shift mode. Standard equipment includes leather upholstery, Dynamic Stability and Traction Control (DSTC), 17-inch wheels, moonroof and fog lights.
The T6 Premier ($48,515) is the deluxe version of the S80, featuring soft leather seats, wood steering wheel, walnut interior trim and a DVD rear entertainment system with two seven-inch monitors mounted in the back of the front-seat headrests. From the outside, Sentinal alloy wheels distinguish the Premier. Options include a refrigerator ($950) located behind the rear-seat armrest that comes with two Swedish crystal glasses and opener, an power rear sunblind, and bi-xenon headlights.
Options include the Four-C active suspension ($1,100), a DVD navigation system and Sirus Satellite Radio ($2,120); reverse warning monitor ($400); run-flat tires; a premium audio system with an in-dash six-CD changer with Surround Sound ($1,200); metallic paint ($450) and White Pearlescent paint ($600). A Sport Package for the 2.5T ($750) includes Sport front seats and 17-inch wheels; 18-inch wheels are available for the T6 models ($995).
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