To a degree, yes. The new four-cylinder diesel unit, now available across the Volvo range, does a pretty good job of hauling the heavy V70 from place to place. And we don’t doubt it’d do a good job even when loaded to the gunwales with people and things – surely priority number one for any large Volvo estate.
If anything, given the larger body, the 181-horsepower D4 offers even greater refinement than it does in Volvo’s smaller models.
What you gain in refinement you do lose in performance, but that’s to be expected from such a hefty vehicle. Our V70 was an automatic model (the manual is 1,550 cheaper), and the 8-speed unit seems well-matched to the V70’s bulk – low gears enable brisk acceleration when needed, while higher ones drop the revs to near-inaudible levels, doubless good for high-speed, economical cruising.
Officially it’ll sprint to 60 mph in 8.6 seconds. It seems a little slower on the road, but that could be down to the test car’s relatively low miles. Regardless of its seat-of-the-pants speed, that acceleration figure is a couple of seconds quicker than the model it replaces, yet economy has jumped significantly.
Before, a V70 D4 with an auto ‘box would emit 134 g/km of CO2. Now, that figure is only 117 g/km, or 113 g/km if you opt for the manual. That means band C VED for each variant, for a 30 yearly bill. 65.7 mpg (manual) and 62.8 mpg (auto) combined economy mean fuel bills are unlikely to be high either – after our brief drive, a real-world 50-odd mpg looks achievable.
The V70 is not a car for sporty drivers, but as a large, easy-going wardrobe-hauler there’s little to touch it. The 575-litre boot is enormous, and you’ll fit a van-like 1,600 litres of kit in there if you drop the rear seats and stack it to the roof.
It’s a quality cabin – crisp in design, modern in layout, ruthlessly logical, simple to operate and nicely-built. All the surfaces you touch feel high-quality, and those you stare at, like the fancy TFT dials, certainly look the part.
Priced from: 27,195 (D4 Business Edition)
MPG: 65.7 (manual) – 62.8 (auto)
CO2: 113 g/km – 117 g/km
Regular estate cars like the V70 are almost a niche market these days, and even in Volvo’s range you’re likely to see more XC60s than you are V70s on the road. But as a way of moving people and things in comfort there are few better ways.
With the new D4 engine that talent has expanded further, since you’ll now be paying less to fuel and tax your V70 too. Whether company driver or private buyer, the V70 D4 should be on your shortlist.