Last post on Jul 01, 2011 at 6:51 AM
You are in the Volvo S40
What is this discussion about?
Volvo S40, Sedan
Apr 13, 2004 (11:45 pm)
Your title should read:
2004 disguised Mitsubishi Carisma or Camry LE
"(I currently drive a Volvo 740 GLE)."
That's 32.2-ft turning circle. No one can satisfy you these days!
One of the closest roomy sedans that still does w/o transversely-mounted engine just like your RWD 740 is the Audi-derived Passat, & hence has a decent turning circle. Per Consumer Reports, it is at least as comfortable as the Camry while superbly more nimble at accident-avoidance speed even more than the Accord. We leased one, & I find it surprisingly agile like a little car in the parking lot.
The old '04 S40 is just a disguised Mitsubishi Carisma. Why not get a disguised Audi A6 -- the Passat. People are getting it at $2k below invoice during March & April(one advertised at $17988 w/ std height-&-lumbar adjustment for BOTH front seats), so you might even be able to afford the 2.8 V6 w/ leather, wood, stability control(only $280 more on the base model), etc. The Audi(not VW) 2.8 engine on the Passat has none of the ignition-coil recall, but even the other engine -- the 1.8 turbo -- should run fine after the recall work's being done, if the late '04's still has the recall.
This plush-riding German(not Mexican or Brazilian)-built '04 VW is definitely CLASSES above the Japanese-derived crude-riding & not-so-reliable Dutch(not Deutsche)-built '04 S40.
#779 of 1807 Re: 2004 S40 or Camry LE [mrshollie #776]
Apr 17, 2004 (12:12 am)
"Any comments about the reputation, SAFETY, maintenance, and reliability of these two cars will help."
The Passat has safety features like side curtain airbags, ABS & traction control all standard. Even the standard stability control on the upper models is only a $280 option on the base model, as the '04.5 new S40 charges $695 for all models!
The April '04 Consumer Reports(page 29-31) rated the Passat's overall safety score even higher than the Volvo S60 due to better "Accident avoidance" performance, let alone the old S40. The Camry has high safety rating only if you get the heavily loaded model, as the standard Camry LE trails behind the Volvo S60.
#780 of 1807 2004.5 Volvo S40 T5 Aluminum Inlays
Apr 22, 2004 (9:37 am)
I've been looking at the Volvo web site's information on the new S40. The specs state that for the S40 T5, the Aluminum Inlays are only available as part of the Sports Package and that the Simulated Wood Inlays are standard. However, the S40 brochure states the Aluminum Trim is standard on the T5. Is there a difference between "Inlays" and "Trim"? I like the aluminum on the center console, but can't tell if that is standard on the T5 or only available with the Sports Package.
#781 of 1807 Re: 2004.5 Volvo S40 T5 Aluminum Inlays [twillia #780]
Apr 23, 2004 (8:59 pm)
The salesman told me that the std T-5 can be equipped either way. Since I will only order one 'cause I want a stick, so I can have it anyway I want, even w/o the sport package. But I'd really prefer something like glossy black, which makes the whole thing classier. So I'll take the wood over the shiny aluminum, which also looks similar to the 2.4i's std silver plastic.
#782 of 1807 Re: Pricing on 2004.5 S40 [sherryberry #769]
Apr 24, 2004 (11:04 pm)
I disagree that a 10% disocunt is unrealistic. You should pay no more than $499 over invoice. Speak to the sales manager or internet manager and tell them you want it for the same price as their "fleet" program. I know from buying several cars that even new models still have some dealer hold-back. For example, you special order your car, it arrives, and you take possession. VOLVO will pay the dealership approx. 3% of invoice. Plus you are saving the dealership money because they do not have to pay the insurance or tax for it to sit on their lot. The more cars they sell, the more cash awards and allotments Volvo will give that dealership. Regardless of what car you chose, a dealership that cares about their customers will do anything to sell a car, even a new model. It takes a little work but you can literally save thousands. I looked into the OSD program and honestly think the "fleet" program is much better.
#783 of 1807 Re: Pricing on 2004.5 S40 [sherryberry #769]
Apr 24, 2004 (11:39 pm)
Please read my reply. Never ever buy at MSRP. It's a car, not a house. You will lose money every year as it depreciates. So if you get it for the lowest price to begin with, you won't feel that loss as much. Also, there is so much competition these days, you can buy near dealer invoice.
#784 of 1807 T5 Aluminum trim
Apr 25, 2004 (11:35 am)
Comes from the factory only with the Sport pkg.
It is available separately as a dealer installed item.
Base T5's get the wood trim.
#785 of 1807 Proximity of gas and brake peddles
May 01, 2004 (5:26 pm)
I was at the Volvo dealership this morning looking at the 2004.5 S40 and as I was sitting in the driver's seat I noticed that the gas peddle seemed tucked in the corner and the brake peddle seemed really close to the gas peddle. I haven't test drove the car yet, but has anyone who has driven the automatic had any issues with your foot movement and the peddles?
#787 of 1807 Volvo Drive Event
May 02, 2004 (8:16 am)
Finally, it came to New York. Can't really come to any great conclusions about the car. Can it oversteer? Maybe, I don't know, the 2.4 seemed to understeer a bit. The T5 a bit more neutral. Steering feel is fine, nothing razor sharp, feel is there, effort and feedback are very good. Changes direction well. Can't tell about ride, the t5 seemed to jiggle somewhat on somewhat uneven pavement in the parking lot, but I could'nt really tell to what degree.
The interior is better in light colors that show contrast, like the light gray. I didn't love the volvo t tech but it seemed to be grippy. At this point I'm not used to the lower visibility and lower driving position that the car offers, I'm used to the 700/900, s70 driving position, so I felt like I never sat in a commanding position. It felt similar to driving a Passat in position, but with smaller windows. Seats are firmer than s60 and bigger Volvos, but supportive enough. They just don't have the plushness of the bigger Volvos. Car looks nice enough, I still find it truncated at the back. I like the red car with black base, as opposed to all red. For me, the s60 is still the best looking Volvo sedan and the s80 the most balanced, though aging. I'll say the s40 may look sportier in some ways than s60.
I didn't test acceleration and brakes. The cars run smoothly and have a different exhaust note than s60. There's not enough room to test these things though some drivers tried and got warning by Volvo personnel to slow it down.
I would need a more extensive drive, over bumps, over various types of roads, accelerating and merging, to get more of an idea. Still feels like a Volvo cruiser to me, not as tightly sprung as most German cars, but I'm not sure. I'd be able to tell over crests and bumps and such. I'm a little warmer on the interior but don't like the plastic molding on top of the doors. I don't feel the high arm rest that Creak is talking about and think the doors panels could be more organic. They feel a bit boxy. Center console looks good, though not necessarily revolutionary, even if it is. I'm more interested in the controls and placement on them and their layout. Interior is simple, maybe a bit too simple. I don't feel this car is a BMW 3 series competitor in how it feels. It may handle and perform well, but the overall feel isn't in that league. I'll go along with Acura TSX as competitor, not sure it matches Audi A4 feel either. The BMW competitor is the softer handling s60, that feels like a higher quality car, especially after going to it from sitting in an s40 that was right next to it.
s40 is nice car, but maybe still feels like an entry level Volvo and lower rung than the s60, v70, s80, xc90, which all feel fairly close to each other in quality. I'd have to think about the s40 and test and retest it. But I'd probably end up with the s60, I don't value handling that much over overall feel, here's where the s60 is superior and worth a little more money to me even if the back seat room is poor. The new s40 is a big improvement over the old, in solidity, handling, engine, tightness of chassis, and is an up-to-date car, complete with the silly integrated grill in bumper that would have to be replaced if bumper is damaged. What happened to the European form follows function? There are many concessions to style in most of the new European cars.