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2008-20016 XC70 – Is Buying One a Good Idea?

Volvo helped define the rugged/lifted wagon segment in 1998 when it unleashed the very popular V70 XC. It was an AWD version of the V70 wagon, but with higher ride height.

The name was a hint that they weren’t 100% ready to offer it as its own line (notice the “V70” in the name). It was, after all, 95% a V70, the few changes being a higher ride height and more plastic on the exterior to make it look more rugged. But this is marketing…

That 3-year V70 XC was based on the P80 platform, the same bones that were the foundation of the 850 and V70/S70 until 2001.

Then the V70 XC was underpinned by the P2 platform from 2002-2007.

Throughout these first two generations, the V70 XC and XC70 were powered by the durable Volvo inline-5 cylinder.

Then came the P3 XC70 in 2008. Like all Volvos, we here at MVS wanted to know if it was as good as generations one and two. Is it too complex? Can you fix it yourself (DIY)? Luckily, we have many forum members who one them. Here, Paul talks about the upsides and downsides of maintaining the 3rd generation XC70:

The P3 is a good choice for someone like yourself that Likes to DIY.

I own two 3.2’s and I plan to keep them to 300,000 miles possibly more.

Take a look at my $10000 S80 Challenge, I could have named it the $10000 P3 Challenge.

The items that I fixed on my S80 were essentially the same items that I replaced on my other P3 (2008 Land Rover LR2)

I purchased the 2010 S80 about 2 years ago and I am attempting to keep the cost below $10,000

Purchase Price + Repairs –> Less then $10K

Excluding: Fluids and basic maintenance

Let me start with what I would do different if I were to purchase a P3 today


  1. Get a P3 with a documented history of synthetic oil changes (The O-ring for the Brake Booster shouldn’t leak if Synthetic oil was used since new, I’ve never replaced my O-ring in my 2008 LR2 and I did use synthetic, in fact when my LR2 was new I brought the oil to the dealer, for my “Free Oil Change”)
  2. Use a thermometer to verify that the AC is blowing cold, I didn’t do this and I had to replace the compressor in my first year of ownership.

I would pay 20% above average price for a car that meets item #1

I would pay 10% below average for an item that fails item #2

Here is a list of typical Maintenance and repair items for high mileage 3.2s (also applies to the 3.0T)

T5 vs T6 and how is your 10 year old holding up?

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