Many people prefer other European luxury cars over Volvo due to their performance and sporty-looking shapes. People also get scared away from Volvo due to their high maintenance rates and also other common problems.
Volvo also has lost its name in reliability in recent years, an area where they used to shine. They used to make boxy and reliable cars that could last more than a lifetime, but now they are not that reliable, mostly due to more high-tech features..
Volvos have changed
Volvo is a Swedish car manufacturer that used to be famous for its durable and reliable cars. In the 80s, many Americans owned Volvo station wagons because of their safety and durable qualities. They were literally branded as “family cars”. They had their own category, and they were masters of making these durable and long-lasting cars.
This changed in the 21st century when Volvo started following new car trends. They started making sporty-looking cars, which was not their strong suit. People liked Volvo for a reason: their low-maintenance and safe cars. While they are still best in terms of safety, many people prefer other European cars like BMW or Audi.
Volvos were known as safe and reliable cars that used to last a lifetime. The boxy wagons may not have been popular among the younger population, but they were famous among families and old folks. This changed when they started following the new trends and trying to appeal to a younger crowd.
Volvo ranks 23rd out of 40 car brands in terms of reliability. They have branded themselves as a luxury brand, focusing on making sleekly-designed cars that are high maintenance. There are many reports of parts breaking down in modern Volvos and complaints of technological malfunctions.
Volvo cars have become luxury vehicles and like all other luxury vehicles, they also demand high maintenance and extremely expensive parts. These parts are even harder to get than other European car parts. The average annual repair bill costs around $769, which is more or less equal to similar European car manufacturers.
Volvo also demands its customers only get their maintenance done by Volvo dealerships, otherwise, there are chances of warranty cancellation. Car owners have also reported many issues with feeling ripped off by dealerships. Combined, this has given Volvo a very bad reputation for making high-maintenance cars.
All car manufacturers have some issues, but some companies have more problems than others. There’s a scale to measure this by problems per 100 cars, in which Volvo is third-to-last with a 184 problems per 100 score.
The XC90 was ranked as the least reliable car by the Consumers Report. Other models also don’t have a very good reliability score either.
The common issues found in many Volvos are:
- Transmission issues – Volvo doesn’t make their own transmission systems and gets them from another company. This has led to many transmission system failures.
- Electrical faults – there have been some electrical faults reported on many forums like incorrect display of battery percentage and other malfunctions.
- Overheating – the cooling system’s failure has also been reported by many owners.
- Automatic emergency brake system – many owners have reported this and Volvo recalled more than 700,000 cars for a recheck.
- Power steering fluid leakage
Volvo lost its niche
Volvo has their own category of making just safe cars, and they were famous in this category. The cars were solid and lasted many years without any major repairs. The systems were not very complex, and they were easy to repair. In short, they had their own niche of reliable, durable, safe, and not-so-complex cars.
People’s interest in other brands
Volvo is as expensive as many other European luxury car brands. However, Volvo is not so popular among young people. The price of Volvo is a big factor. Brands like BMW or Audi, which are way better in performance than Volvo, come at almost at the same price as Volvos. Therefore, people just buy German cars because they are cooler and sportier.
Volvo has certainly lost many of its customers. They do not produce the most reliable and durable cars anymore. The maintenance bills cost more than many other brands. They have failed to beat other European giants like BMW, Mercedes, and Audi. Volvos cost almost equal to these companies, so people often prefer German cars over Volvo. However, Volvo is still one of the safest car producers with average reliability.
Volvo now produces a small lineup of cars that are performing well in their respective categories, but they are not as famous competitors like BMW or Audi. The cars are still best in safety features, which is a good sign for Volvo cars. They have their own niche when it comes to safety.
Volvo has also announced its electrification project, which is attracting many people. The fully-electric XC40 model was a success. They are also going to launch the C40 electric car next year. They have a vision of going full electric by 2030. This is certainly a good sign for Volvo.
Do people still buy Volvos?
Volvos may have their issues and problems, but they are still well-sold. Especially the launch of the electric XC40 has increased the sales of Volvo. In the year 2020, Volvo sold 661,713 cars globally, which was a bit lower than the previous year 2019, when they sold 705,452 globally. But people are still buying Volvos, even after some of their problems.
Is buying Volvo worth it?
There are many things people like about Volvos, and there are also many factors that people dislike. The safety features and the comfort level of Volvo are a big advantage of Volvo cars. The safety can’t be beat, so if that’s a value for you, a Volvo is definitely worth it.
However, the maintenance cost and other repair costs are the reasons why people avoid getting a Volvo. So, it all comes to the personal liking of the buyers.
What are the most popular car brands in the US?
Popularity depends on reliability and solid products. People don’t want to buy a car and then spend thousands of dollars getting it fixed. However, there are some other reasons such as personal taste and driving experience that buyers care about too.
Some car brands that are most loved by American drivers are: