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jc43089

New non BMW ride '05 V70R

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It was time to replace the Maxima as the family hauler, rust has pretty much destroyed it beyond what I feel good about my family traveling in.  It has been in my wife's family since it was 2 years old with 40k on it.  Now its over 240k with pretty minimal non maintenance expenses.

 

I was back in Dubuque, IA for service work at my old plant and on my way to get lunch I spotted a silver v70R.  Test drove it, inspected on the hoist, bought it.  It was a one owner, bought in Chicago new in 05.  165k miles with lots of maintenance records.  The active suspension is cool, the 4 piston Brembo brakes all around are ridiculously powerful, 6 speed manual in a wagon is awesome.  It makes very un-Volvoish noises compared to a standard one such as spooling turbo, psshhh when shifting, and strange sounding inline 5 rumble.  5.6 second 0-60 isn't bad for a 3600 pound wagon.

 

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Terrible phone pic, more to come.

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Post burnout vids

 

It does chirp the front's on a hard shift to second but that's about as dramatic as it gets.

 

My sad excuse for a 2 car garage, it's about 18ft square.  My one car garage at our old house was more useable.

 

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Hefty brakes, the rear has similar 4 piston cailpers just a little smaller but the rotors look like the same size.

 

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New poly engine mount.

 

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Besides putting 22k miles on it so far I have done some work to get this to stage 0.  Replaced the compressor bypass valve with a Forge piston style one.  This is a nightmare to do because of stupid sideways engine...  the turbo is on the back of the engine with very little room, it needs to be loosened up so the compressor housing can be rotated to even get at the bolts holding the CBV in.  I also put in a Snabb turbo intake pipe "while I was in there".  I also replaced several bushings in the rear suspension with poly, these cars destroy tires because of loosey goosey action with old rubber bushings.

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I replaced the mushy rubber front subframe mounts with Kaplhenke solid delrin mounts.  It still doesn't have the BMW feel but the front end is much more solid now.  No increase in NVH, these cars should have come with solid mounts from the factory, the rubber lets the whole front of the car flex.

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Working on this again.  197k on it now without any real problems.  It just has a lot of leaks and the AWD hasn't been functional since we bought it.  A third kid on the way means it is not big enough so i am getting it ready to sell.

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Greasy mess.  The transmission input seal was leaking, and cam seals.  I pulled everything out the top, it wasn't too bad, the toughest part was getting the end of the transmission past the fuses box and ABS pump that is under it.  If you had a lift it would be better to drop the cradle but this way I also didn't lose my A/C charge.  I left the compressor in the engine bay.

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The AWD failure wasn't too bad.  The spline collar that drives the "angle gear" was stripped which is normal for these cars.  Most methods of removal for the collar include grinding holes to grab with a puller.  I thought that would be a bad idea to get grinding dust into the transmission... So I machined a ring to have something to pull on and welded it to the collar.  I didn't take a picture but I made another piece to go inside for the puller to push on.

You can see where the splines once were.  The mating splines looked like new, the collar is the softer material.

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The transmission side.  There is some kind of epoxy on the splines when they assemble it so it took everything the Oreilly's rental 7 ton puller had to get it off, and made a gunshot like bang when it let loose.

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The dual mass flywheel is shot, so I ordered a new one 477$ ouch.  I just ordered about 1500$ of parts to get this thing back to excellent mechanical condition.  

Timing belt, WP, all the engine seals and transmission seals, new spline coupling, a couple engine mounts, and new shifter cables because one of the had an issue last winter that I repaired temporarily with some fuel line and zip ties.

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Probably starting at around 8500.  It's in great shape, 197k right now which I realize is getting high.  But it's well maintained, no rust and will have pretty much all of the big ticket maintenance items done with genuine or OEM parts so that makes the mileage not as big of a deal.  Timing belt, idlers, water pump, all of the engine, transmission, and angle gear seals, new dual mass flywheel and clutch (ouch), engine mounts.  And even new shifter cables because one had a crack in it.  The 4C struts still work well, I think they were replaced in 2013.

Volvo parts are crazy expensive.  I'm over 2k in on this stuff already.  I wish I could afford a better intercooler because that is a weak point but I have to leave something for the next guy to do.  I think the price is reasonable from watching what they go for on Swedespeed classifieds.  It would be twice as much money if it was Sonic blue with the Atacama (orange) interior.  Am I crazy?

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Your price doesn't sound crazy considering the items you mentioned, assuming the interior and exterior are in good shape. V70R prices are pretty ridiculous, especially in comparison to S60Rs which are now dirt cheap. 

I'd love to buy one, but I just can't get past the heavy tax you pay for the wagon. 

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Yes the interior and exterior are in good condition.  Not a 10 but between 8 and 9 for sure, no rust, very clean interior, the seats are in great condition.  Yes the prices are crazy, they only imported about 3500 wagons for the whole 04-07 production so they are pretty rare, and a lot of the ones left have been modified/ruined.  The only thing I see is the Volvo community seems more concerned about higher miles than the BMW crowd.  I think that is due to the arm + left nut cost of fixing anything even at an indy (if you can find one that will touch it)  Brake caliper: 400$ ea, Struts: 400$ ea... Etc

My take after owning it for 2 years and putting 35k miles on it.  It's a great car but the driving experience doesn't come close to something like an e39, it's good after putting in solid front subframe mounts and some poly bushings certain spots in the rear but it is still a FWD based car.  The engine is great, very durable.  almost 200k on this one and it only was losing a half quart every 5k and some of that was leaks which will now be fixed.  Averaged around 25 mpg which for a 4000 pound wagon I thought was pretty good.  It was mostly my wife's car but I had ideas of finding the optional 3rd row seat to install and keeping it longer but that doesn't really help because then there is nowhere to put the stuff that goes along with 3 kids.

TLDR: It's a fantastic car but the high purchase price and crazy parts price both OEM and performance just aren't worth for me personally.  The seats are the best I have ever sat in though.

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