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Made it home, safe and sound. Drove straight thru [1305.2 miles on the trip odm] with naps here and there, nice weather until St. Louis, than rain, rain, rain and some more rain until about 20 minutes from Manhattan. A detailed post will appear this evening. Mileage, impressions, etc.
Car is a hauler, performed flawlessly.
Yesterday I left So. MD (official time departing from filling station – 4:05pm EDT) I arrived today in Manhattan, KS some 1305 miles later @ 1:20pm). I was somewhat tremulous of the PCV set-up I had devised and knew that a major malfunction would be -just that… Nonetheless I made good time according to the S70’s trip computer -I averaged 70 mph overall and that includes one 30+ minute idle to keep warm for a pre-dawn nap.
It began with rush hour traffic from the south side of DC all the way around the beltway to 270 N. around Rockville. While this did stink I was next to my most desired car in the world while in bumper to bumper traffic – a super rare 993 turbo S on the beltway near Silver Spring MD. I have had this 911 at the top of my dream car list since it came out as Porsche’s last hurrah for the venerable air-cooled autobahn burner [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Porsche_993]. I would have so much rather encountered him on an ‘open’ road but I doubt I coulda goaded him into an exhibition of it’s monstrous power, but I sure woulda tried. Finally north of Rockville it opened up and so the needle climbed higher. With the Valentine 1 on the visor some reassurance was had.
I cruised mostly solo throughout the evening and into the night, then near midnight lights approached me rapidly from the rear. The detector had been silent so I wasn’t terribly concerned on that front; as it past me on the left I realized it was a mid nineties Corolla with the driver giving it just about all it had so then I decided to let the Volvo show its ‘might’; with generous but far from full throttle I coaxed the turbo into doing it’s work and in short order the intakes pressurization was increased noticeably over the atmosphere and the Volvo S70 T-5 eased ahead of him. We cruised at a relaxed 90-ish mph pace for 30 or so miles and he eventually exited so I was back to more subdued velocities. During the trip the car never saw WOT as I was determined to avoid what I felt would have been the most likely scenario for oil spewage. I checked the catch and breather every stop and never found fault or oil.
As the night wore on there weren’t any other high speed travelers to join so I cruised solo mostly. Earlier I had dinked around with the lowbeams at the onset of night, attempting to by a replacement bulb at Wal-Mart in WV to no avail, though I did blow the fuse… the plastic housing for the wires crumbled and I tried hooking them up (by mistake) backwards. The lowbeams are woefully inadequate – I attribute this mainly to dull lenses; the highbeams however shone bright and pierced the darkness in a most illuminating manner. Because of the low beams impotence I attempted to engage the highs as often and for as long as I could without aggravating other drivers. Then early in the morning hours the expanse spread before me…
At 0-dark-thirty somewhere on a surprisingly well lit, wide, long, totally vacant and smooth expanse of 64 West in Kentucky the ‘S’ saw an indicated 130. As the night gave way to the breaking dawn I fought off my sleepiness but eventually had to stop for a third time to nap. After the short break I refueled, grabbed some coffee and McDonalds for breakfast in Indiana and continued on westward toward Kansas. It was predominately uneventful until the rain came and came and came some more. The Yokohamas preformed very well in the wet, I was a bit ahead of the rush hour in St. Louis so I got through there in good time. While the trek across Missouri was utterly damp and boring the speeds were still good and I only saw one accidents aftermath on the eastbound side. Besides the Kentucky venture and Corolla dance there were several (3/4 throttle) blasts from 80-110, this is where that engine just shines… with a chip & exhaust and WOT it would be invigorating, (it took all I had to keep from mashing it…)
The Volvo S70 brakes as is my experience with Volvo were up to overpowering any speed the engine and my right foot might muster, they are in a word – solid. Fortunately their full exploitation was not required. The Valentine registered one confirmed radar trap in the whole journey. The ABS light came on a couple times after some stops but put itself out and for the latter part of the journey remained dark; speaking of sensors, MIL/CEL’s the CEL came back on – I cleared it prior to departure and it displayed the same single fault at trips end.
I must sheepishly admit I didn’t change the oil. I didn’t ‘make’ time for it, additionally I want to see and examine it myself. I think it wasn’t a good idea to drive 1300 miles with Seafoamed carboned gunk… but I did, we will see.
The car shimmies and creaks on rough roads belying it’s 10 years and 160+k miles but on a smooth road it’s like a vault and effortlessly consumes the asphalt in a reassuring manner. Hey we all know this -it’s a Volvo…
Overall I was really impressed with the nonchalant capabilities my new Volvo S70 displayed, it went beyond my expectations and bolstered the stregnths that attract such a following as it has. I am quite pleased. Now to get that t-belt credit from FCP Groton put toward the PCV system (the Volvo system that is) and get that taken care of… and changing the oil post haste.
(I am having trouble copying and pasting the travel data but hopefully can get it added in later) (in a nutshell avg. Speed = 70, avg MPG = 23.8 from the Volvo trip comp.)
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