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Volvo S90 Reliability

Volvo S90 Reliability

The Volvo S90 has developed a reputation as one of the most dependable luxury sedans on the market since its introduction in 2016. This reputation is built on Volvo’s long-standing commitment to safety, quality engineering, and reducing ownership costs through reduced maintenance requirements.

Several key factors contribute to the S90’s impressive reliability record. First, Volvo subjects all new models to rigorous testing, putting prototypes through millions of kilometers of driving on rough roads and in extreme climates to identify potential weaknesses before production. This attention to detail helps ensure the S90 can withstand the demands of real-world driving over many years.

Additionally, the S90’s construction incorporates ultra-high-strength boron steel and other advanced alloys in critical areas. This over-engineered approach results in a dent-resistant passenger cell with excellent structural integrity, reducing the likelihood of costly repairs down the road.

Volvo has also taken steps to minimize routine maintenance costs for S90 owners. The brand was an early pioneer of free scheduled maintenance programs, and the S90 only requires an oil change every 12,000 km rather than the more typical 5,000-8,000 km intervals for most rivals. This simplified maintenance schedule means fewer trips to the dealership and lower operating expenses over the vehicle’s lifespan.

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Reliability Ratings for the Volvo S90

The Volvo S90 has consistently earned above-average reliability ratings from leading automotive experts and industry sources. According to J.D. Power’s 2022 U.S. Vehicle Dependability Study, the S90 earned an impressive predicted reliability score of 81 out of 100 – placing it well above average for the luxury sedan segment.

When pitted against key rivals, the S90 holds its own in reliability comparisons. An in-depth analysis by WhatCar? ranked the S90 5th out of 10 vehicles in the luxury car class, with a stellar reliability rating of 90%. This placed it ahead of premium competitors like the BMW 5 Series (83%) and Mercedes-Benz E-Class (85%).

Looking at real-world owner experiences, an analysis of complaints and issues by Consumer Reports found that the most commonly reported Volvo S90 problems relate to the infotainment system, suspension components, and interior accessories such as the sunroof. However, the leading consumer organization notes that the “S90 has proven very reliable” in their assessment overall.


Why Volvo Has Earned a Reputation for Dependability

To understand why the Volvo S90 scores so highly for reliability, it helps to know more about Volvo’s brand image and engineering philosophy geared towards safety, longevity, and reducing maintenance costs for owners.

Volvo’s Focus on Quality Testing: Before launching new models like the S90, Volvo puts prototypes through extreme reliability testing to reveal weaknesses. This includes driving test cars for millions of kilometres on rough roads and in extreme climates across the world.

Use of High-Strength Steel: The S90 body incorporates boron steel and other ultra-high-strength steel alloys. This allows Volvo to design a strong and dent-resistant passenger cell to protect occupants. It also contributes to good structural integrity over years of driving.

Reduced Scheduled Maintenance: Volvo was one of the first non-luxury brands to offer free scheduled maintenance on new car purchases. For example, the S90 only requires an oil change every 12,000 km rather than 5,000-8,000km for most rivals. This reduces ownership costs.


High-Mileage Volvo S90 Models

Given its reputation for longevity, how do high-mileage Volvo S90 models hold up? Here is what drivers can expect if considering a well-used S90:


What Owners Report

On Volvo owner forums, drivers with over 200,000km on their first-generation S90 report the cars continue running smoothly with regular maintenance. The most common age-related issues involve suspension bushings needing replacement.


Original Powertrains Proven Durable

In particular, the T5 and T6 petrol engines along with the D4 and D5 diesel engines have built a reputation for reliability in various Volvo models over many years and hundreds of thousands of kilometres. These engines continue performing well in high-mileage S90s.


Well-Maintained Examples Should Be Fine

The consensus is that a well-maintained early S90 with complete service records can make a dependable and cost-effective used luxury car purchase with over 200,000km on the odometer. Of course, higher-mileage cars come with more risks of unexpected repair bills.


Making the S90 More Reliable

For S90 owners or prospective buyers who want to improve longevity and reduce the chances of unplanned garage visits, here are some tips:


Continue Regular Maintenance: Don’t stretch the 12,000 km oil change intervals. Follow Volvo’s scheduled maintenance outlines in the warranty booklet for best results. This ensures worn parts get replaced on schedule.

Address Small Issues Quickly: If you notice leaks, unusual noises, or faults with features like the air suspension, have them checked out quickly. The longer problems go unchecked, the more likely you’ll face a major repair bill down the road.

Consider an Extended Warranty: Once the 4-year/80,000km factory warranty expires, an extended warranty can provide protection against expensive failures of the engine, transmission and electronics for up to 8 years.

Use Quality Fuel and Oils: Only use premium fuel recommended by Volvo. For the longest engine life, always keep the oil topped up with high-quality synthetic oils that meet strict Volvo specifications.


The Verdict: Should You Buy a Volvo S90?

After our in-depth analysis of the Volvo S90’s reliability ratings, common issues, owner experiences, and Volvo’s engineering approach, we can confidently conclude that the S90 is one of the most dependable luxury sedan options on the market for Canadian buyers.

Volvo’s laser focus on safety, durability testing, and reducing scheduled maintenance costs results in cars built to go the distance. While no vehicle is immune to issues, the S90 ranks highly compared to German rivals like the BMW 5 Series and Mercedes E-Class when it comes to reliability scores and real-world owner satisfaction.

Whether you’re considering a low-mileage new S90 or a well-maintained used example with higher kilometres on the clock, the S90 should prove a wise choice if your top priorities are minimizing unplanned repair costs and ownership headaches. Volvo’s robust engineering, high-strength steel construction, and proven powertrain components give the S90 an edge over many competitors in the reliability department.

For discerning Canadian luxury car buyers who value peace of mind and a hassle-free ownership experience, the stylish and well-equipped Volvo S90 absolutely deserves a spot on your shortlist. Just be sure to keep up with scheduled maintenance using quality parts and fluids as recommended by Volvo. With proper care, an S90 should provide years of refined and dependable service.

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Questions About Volvo S90 Reliability

Yes, Volvo S90s are generally considered reliable cars in Canada. According to Consumer Reports, the S90 has a reliability rating of 90% for used models between 2016-2023. The S90 also has a below-average predicted reliability rating of 2.5 out of 5 from J.D. Power for 2018 models. Overall, the S90 is seen as a dependable and durable luxury sedan in Canada.

The Volvo S90 performs very well in harsh Canadian winters thanks to available all-wheel drive on most trims. The S90 has advanced traction and stability control systems to handle snow and ice. Heated front and rear seats, steering wheel, wiper blades and washer nozzles all come standard to deal with the cold. Winter tires are also recommended for maximum grip.

The Volvo S90 gets decent fuel economy for its class in Canada. Front-wheel drive T5 models with the 4-cylinder engine achieve 10.5L/100km city and 7.4L/100km highway. The T6 AWD with the turbo and supercharged 4-cylinder sees 11.3L/100km city and 8.0L/100km highway. The T8 plug-in hybrid model can drive up to 35km all-electric before the gas engine kicks in.

The Volvo S90 wagon, known as the V90, has exceptional cargo capacity in Canada. With the rear seats up, it has 560 litres of space. Fold the rear seats down and that expands to 1,526 litres to fit virtually anything inside. The large rear hatch opening also makes loading bulky objects easy.

Some impressive safety tech on the Volvo S90 includes automated emergency braking, lane keep assist, road sign information, adaptive cruise control with semi-autonomous driving capability, blind spot monitoring with cross traffic alert, 360° surround view camera system and run-off road protection and mitigation.

Yes, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay smartphone integration comes standard on all Volvo S90 models in Canada. This allows you to safely access apps, music, maps, messages and phone calls through the S90’s 9” touchscreen display. Wireless phone charging is also included across the S90 lineup.

Yes, Canadians have access to the S90 Recharge T8 plug-in hybrid model. It has an electric range of 35km before the gas engine turns on. There are also electric motors integrated into the all-wheel drive system for added performance. Currently there is no fully electric S90, but that may come in the future.

Upgraded S90 models add features like premium Nappa leather seats, heated rear seats, 4-zone climate control, premium Harman Kardon audio, heated windshield, head-up display, surround view camera, self-parking, adaptive headlights, heated steering wheel and ventilated front seats with massage.

The Volvo S90 costs slightly more to insure than comparable luxury vehicles in Canada. Average annual insurance premiums range between $2,000-$3,500 depending on the specific S90 trim and coverage selected. Location, driving history and age can also impact insurance costs. The advanced safety features provide some savings on insurance though.

Volvo recommends servicing the S90 every 12 months or 10,000-15,000km in Canada. An oil change and inspection service typically ranges $150-$250. More extensive 30,000km and 60,000km maintenance visits cost around $350-$500 on average. These reasonable service costs help make the S90 affordable to own long-term.

In Canada, the average lifespan of a Volvo S90 is 15-20 years or 480,000km before major issues start occurring. With regular maintenance and care, reaching this high mileage mark is very achievable thanks to Volvo’s reputation for safety, reliability and durability. Many S90 models stay on Canadian roads for 200,000-300,000km.

Yes, an integrated Volvo On Call telematics system provides factory-installed remote start capability on S90 models in Canada. Using the Volvo On Call smartphone app, Canadian drivers can conveniently remote start their S90 to warm up or cool down the cabin before entering the vehicle.

Some sporadic issues reported on Canadian-spec Volvo S90 models include faulty infotainment systems, glitchy electronics, deteriorating PCV hoses that lead to oil leaks, turbo failures on some engines, climate control problems and issues with battery sensor calibration affecting hybrid models. Overall though, the S90 has proven very dependable in Canada.

No, the Volvo S90 does not come equipped with a spare tire from the factory in Canada. Instead, Canadian S90 models have a tire repair kit with sealant and an electric air pump to temporarily fix flats and limp to a tire shop. A spare tire was likely omitted to maximize trunk space and reduce weight.

Yes, Volvo has an extensive dealer network spanning Canada with over 85 retailer locations from coast to coast. This ensures most major cities have a Volvo dealership nearby to purchase or service an S90. Rural locations may require farther travel to the nearest dealer, but mobile service can sometimes be arranged.

The Volvo S90 has very spacious rear seats that comfortably accommodate adults in Canada. There is abundant legroom and headroom, even for taller passengers. The rear bench is contoured for support and the outboard positions are heated. Comfortable entry and exit is also facilitated by the long rear doors.

In Canada, the Volvo S90 has a factory tow rating ranging from 1,800-2,000 lbs depending on configuration. This allows the S90 to tow small trailers, watercraft, ATVs or UTVs. An optional tow package with hitch receiver, wiring harness and integrated trailer stability assist is available from Volvo dealers in Canada.

No, Pilot Assist on Canadian S90 models is an advanced adaptive cruise control system with semi-autonomous driving capability, not a fully self-driving system. It provides assisted steering, braking and acceleration but requires the driver to remain attentive and ready to take control when needed.

In Canada, the 2023 Volvo S90 has a starting MSRP around $64,450 CAD for the T5 Momentum trim. The mid-level Inscription model begins around $68,000, while the range-topping S90 T8 Recharge hybrid starts around $88,000 before options, fees and taxes. Leasing deals can reduce monthly payments on the S90 as well.

Yes, the S90 works very well as a luxury family vehicle in Canada thanks to its ample passenger and cargo room, advanced safety systems, comfortable and flexible interior, fuel-efficient engine choices, available all-wheel drive capability, and latest technology and amenities to keep everyone happy. Overall, the S90 delivers compelling value.

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