Audi A4 versus Volvo S60 Sedan

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msj16
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Audi A4 versus Volvo S60 Sedan

Post by msj16 » Sat Jul 27, 2013 10:02 pm

Hello,

I am trying to choose between an Audi A4 2013 or 2014 Sedan and Volvo S60 2013 Sedan. Both are all wheel drive which I really like. I currently have a Volvo V70 wagon. I kept it forever (it is a 1998!), but it is finally breaking down. It had little tiny problems over the years which made reliabilty less than desirable (eg. ignition lock had to be changed twice with week's wait each time). I love the seats on the Volvo but I am still concerned about reliability. Both seem to drive great and handle well. I am a "buy and hold" driver - will buy new and keep it forever until it wears out.

Any advice?

Thanks for your help.
msj16

rallycobra
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Re: Audi A4 versus Volvo S60 Sedan

Post by rallycobra » Sun Jul 28, 2013 7:32 am

If I were concerned about reliability I wouldn't purchase the Audi from personal experience with both brands. My XC70 was the best car I have ever owned. My wife had a A4 on a lease that Audi wasn't able to fix so they gave us a A6 loaner until the lease was up. We would have purchased the car at the end of the lease too. Instead they sent it to auction and somebody got stuck with it!

The Volvo is a safer car also. Check the small overlap crash tests
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glock19
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Re: Audi A4 versus Volvo S60 Sedan

Post by glock19 » Sun Jul 28, 2013 8:18 am

I bought a new Audi A4 in 2005 and just sold it recently. It was one of the best vehicles I ever owned and fun to drive. A pleasure to drive although a little small, especially the back seat. Like you, I am also a buy and hold on cars.

With that being said, when I sold the A4 it was in great shape with 100K miles. The problem is ANY repair on an out of warranty Audi is very expensive. I had an absolutely super independent repair shop that was very reasonable in price, but even with that the parts and labor costs were just terrible. My mechanic has worked on German vehicles for 30 years and he said within the last 10 years all of them have become problems.

With Audi the engine and transmission are fine. It's all the little stuff that will kill you. Everytime I turned around it was $500 for this or that, stuff that I've never replaced on other cars or trucks. And any decent aftermarket service warranty you buy will also be expensive. I would buy another Audi in a heartbeat, but never drive it past the warranty period. I now own a Toyota with a 7yr/100K mile bumper to bumper warranty.................I feel relieved.

boffalora
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Re: Audi A4 versus Volvo S60 Sedan

Post by boffalora » Sun Jul 28, 2013 9:56 am

Agree with Glock. I've been a VW and Audi fan for 30+ years. I love driving those cars for 75,000mi and can't bear to part with them, but experience has proven that letting them go at that mileage is the right thing to do. They require considerable preventive maintenance at that point, and if done by the wrong hands you'll regret keeping them. Suffice to say that as they approach 100,000mi, Audis are a maintenance minefield.

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Aptenodytes
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Re: Audi A4 versus Volvo S60 Sedan

Post by Aptenodytes » Sun Jul 28, 2013 10:09 am

I looked at similar cars a couple years ago, and chose the S60. What I remember was that it came out on top with respect to price and reliability. I also liked the used-car program offered by the dealers which gave pretty good guarantees at a reasonable price. I was looking for a three-year-old model at the time; I think Volvo tried to jazz up the S60 since then and it may be closer to Audi in terms of price now.

I would make the choice primarily in terms of reported reliability through Consumer Reports. Ignore the individual anecdotes from people like me.

Hoi Polloi
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Re: Audi A4 versus Volvo S60 Sedan

Post by Hoi Polloi » Sun Jul 28, 2013 10:56 am

We also keep vehicles a long time. My wife's car is currently a 2002 GM SUV with 130,000 miles on the clock. My experience with long term Audi ownership was also very costly. I purchased an A4 new and kept it maintained per the manufacturer's recommendations and was rewarded with typical repair costs of many hundreds to thousands of dollars in annual repair fees by my independent mechanic once the warranty period was over (suspension parts, electronic modules, leaking engine and transmission seals began to fail around 60-75K miles). Will never own an Audi/VW product out of warranty again. Go with the Volvo (or better yet, something from the US or Japan). GL with your decision.

Hoi

Stonebr
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Re: Audi A4 versus Volvo S60 Sedan

Post by Stonebr » Sun Jul 28, 2013 11:06 am

The S60 has a reputation for being the most reliable of the Volvo product line. I've owned one for 10 years. It's not a Honda, but the issues have been minor.

One thing that, for me, would tilt in favor of Volvo is safety. Now I know that other cars get the same "star" ratings in various tests, but I've noticed over the years that whenever a new crash test comes along, old Volvos already ace it. Meanwhile, everything else from Mercedes to Subaru has to play catch up. Two years later these other cars come out with a new model that passes the tests, but the old ones are dead meat. This happened ten years ago with rear end crash test and just this past year with narrow offset front crash tests. Evidently, Volvo has done some really deep research into what makes a car really safe, rather than what makes a car pass a government test. That's a big difference.
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TomatoTomahto
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Re: Audi A4 versus Volvo S60 Sedan

Post by TomatoTomahto » Sun Jul 28, 2013 2:14 pm

Have owned both Audi (TT) and Volvo (XC60). I know that they're different kinds of cars, but for reliability, driving experience, and manufacturer integrity, the Audi was a nightmare -- the kind of experience that made me say that I'd get my next Audi some time after pigs can fly. It's early days, but the Volvo is wonderful.
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TRC
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Re: Audi A4 versus Volvo S60 Sedan

Post by TRC » Sun Jul 28, 2013 3:14 pm

If you're concerned about reliability and cost of repairs, might want to look at the Acura TL SH AWD.

I have has the 2012 now for almost 2 years without a single issue. Back seats are nice and roomy too.

02sbxstr
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Re: Audi A4 versus Volvo S60 Sedan

Post by 02sbxstr » Sun Jul 28, 2013 4:54 pm

Audi A4 vs Volvo S60? The Volvo is safer comment is far from a foregone conclusion - the A4 is a "Top Safety Pick" while the S60 is a "Top Safety Pick +." S60 does marginally better in Small Overlap than A4 does in Side Impact. For a meaningful evaluation of these results one would have to determine the frequency of these types of collisions. A quick search could not determine these frequencies. I personally would not base a vehicle selection on such a slim differential. The decision comes down to personality: the car person will select the Audi for it's German engineering - utilitarians will likely choose the Volvo for it's frugal reputation. But ... the A4 EPA mileage is 24 city and 32 highway vs S60 21 and 30. We love our A4, but then again, the other cars in the garage are a VW Tiguan and a Porsche Boxster S.

clevername
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Re: Audi A4 versus Volvo S60 Sedan

Post by clevername » Sun Jul 28, 2013 4:59 pm

I leased an A4 for a few years and I currently own a 2007 S60 and the Volvo outperforms the Audi in every way: comfort, speed, control, etc. The Audi brand is sexier I guess, but the S60 is just a superior vehicle for a better value.

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Ged
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Re: Audi A4 versus Volvo S60 Sedan

Post by Ged » Sun Jul 28, 2013 4:59 pm

TRC wrote:If you're concerned about reliability and cost of repairs, might want to look at the Acura TL SH AWD.

I have has the 2012 now for almost 2 years without a single issue. Back seats are nice and roomy too.
Acuras are highly under-appreciated because of some unfortunate styling choices. It's a BMW 535 with Honda reliability and missing the crazy German pricing.

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AAA
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Re: Audi A4 versus Volvo S60 Sedan

Post by AAA » Sun Jul 28, 2013 5:07 pm

Re. the discussion about Volvo - what has been the impact of the sale to a Chinese company, if any, on Volvo quality and especially safety?

cheesepep
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Re: Audi A4 versus Volvo S60 Sedan

Post by cheesepep » Sun Jul 28, 2013 5:19 pm

My friends who have owned Audis before always vow to never buy them again. Repairs are expensive and too many to be done. All of the repairs are minor but expensive.

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TomatoTomahto
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Re: Audi A4 versus Volvo S60 Sedan

Post by TomatoTomahto » Sun Jul 28, 2013 5:49 pm

cheesepep wrote:My friends who have owned Audis before always vow to never buy them again. Repairs are expensive and too many to be done. All of the repairs are minor but expensive.
Not all are minor. And good luck getting Audi to admit to a systemic problem with a transmission. It took us 6 months, and only when I refused to accept it back (and return their loaner) and said that I would sue before allowing it to be driven, did they finally agree it was a problem. The simple question: would you allow someone you love to drive this car? Even their apologists had to acknowledge that they wouldn't. I kept their loaner for a few months, car was finally fixed and I traded it in.
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biturbo
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Re: Audi A4 versus Volvo S60 Sedan

Post by biturbo » Sun Jul 28, 2013 5:54 pm

I love Audi cars (current car is an S4), but would be really hesitant to own one out of warranty. If I were the "buy and hold" type of luxury car enthusiast, I'd probably go with either Acura or Lexus.

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FrugalInvestor
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Re: Audi A4 versus Volvo S60 Sedan

Post by FrugalInvestor » Sun Jul 28, 2013 6:09 pm

I once owned an Audi (A6) and would never own another nor recommend one to others. The car had far too many problems, one of which was serious and persistent - the car would fail to start and have to be towed (on flatbed) to the dealer to be re-started. Obviously this could be very inconvenient!

What permanently soured me on the brand was that neither the dealer nor Audi would ever admit that this was a common problem even though a quick visit to the internet would yield all sorts of discussion about it. The last time I took it for repair the dealer was going to replace the thermostat - for a cold-start problem!!?? I threw up my hands and traded the car in for a Lexus which I had exactly zero problems with in 140,000 miles.
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steve roy
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Re: Audi A4 versus Volvo S60 Sedan

Post by steve roy » Sun Jul 28, 2013 6:15 pm

Go with the S60. My wife has a ten-year-old model that she loves dearly, says it's like driving a bank vault, and she feels SAFE in it. I've had friends with Audis and there have been problems galore.

Stonebr
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Re: Audi A4 versus Volvo S60 Sedan

Post by Stonebr » Sun Jul 28, 2013 6:25 pm

02sbxstr wrote:Audi A4 vs Volvo S60? The Volvo is safer comment is far from a foregone conclusion - the A4 is a "Top Safety Pick" while the S60 is a "Top Safety Pick +." S60 does marginally better in Small Overlap than A4 does in Side Impact. For a meaningful evaluation of these results one would have to determine the frequency of these types of collisions. A quick search could not determine these frequencies. I personally would not base a vehicle selection on such a slim differential. The decision comes down to personality: the car person will select the Audi for it's German engineering - utilitarians will likely choose the Volvo for it's frugal reputation. But ... the A4 EPA mileage is 24 city and 32 highway vs S60 21 and 30. We love our A4, but then again, the other cars in the garage are a VW Tiguan and a Porsche Boxster S.
Audi A4 has a P for "poor" rating in small overlap crash test according to IIHS.ORG. What is your source of information?
"have more than thou showest, | speak less than thou knowest" -- The Fool in King Lear

msj16
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Re: Audi A4 versus Volvo S60 Sedan

Post by msj16 » Sun Jul 28, 2013 6:45 pm

Wow, thank you everyone.

The Volvo S60 appears to be the clear favorite. For me, there is nothing that compares to the great Volvo seats. I appreciate your feedback. If I end up getting an Audi, I will definitely consider trading it in before it gets too old. This has given me enough food for thought that I think I will swing by the Honda dealership tomorrow as well....

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BrandonBogle
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Re: Audi A4 versus Volvo S60 Sedan

Post by BrandonBogle » Sun Jul 28, 2013 6:55 pm

If you like the more sedate drive of the Volvo and love the seats, you could also try the 2013 Nissan Altima SL for a near-luxury feel with less of a premium. Personally, I thought about both but then decided against replacing my current car yet.

ResearchMed
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Re: Audi A4 versus Volvo S60 Sedan

Post by ResearchMed » Sun Jul 28, 2013 6:58 pm

msj16 wrote:Hello,

I am trying to choose between an Audi A4 2013 or 2014 Sedan and Volvo S60 2013 Sedan. Both are all wheel drive which I really like. I currently have a Volvo V70 wagon. I kept it forever (it is a 1998!), but it is finally breaking down. It had little tiny problems over the years which made reliabilty less than desirable (eg. ignition lock had to be changed twice with week's wait each time). I love the seats on the Volvo but I am still concerned about reliability. Both seem to drive great and handle well. I am a "buy and hold" driver - will buy new and keep it forever until it wears out.

Any advice?

Thanks for your help.
msj16
I've had Volvo's for many decades, with a "Volvo for Life" mentality. Former MIL offered one to replace Hippy-mobile when first grandchild was born.
Later, current DH eventually switched from a Camry to a Volvo, after my accident. In both cases, a Volvo did probably save our lives. Police and mechanics seemed to agree. [I was stopped, other driver hit me from behind at about 50mph, no skid marks; she never tried to stop. DH's accident was when, as the 18-yr-old driver admitted to police immediately the accident, he "floored it to cross 2 lands of traffic *from* the left, to turn left, but never actually looked left"; he only looked right to the traffic in the 2 lanes he wanted to turn into.)
So we are sold on Volvos, BUT they tend not to have the softest ride, and DH has back problems that are getting a bit worse. We are considering checking out something else for the next choice.

I'm commenting here especially on the IGNITION switch problem.
My Volvos (since the 1960's with a single try at a Saab lemon) have been extremely reliable. But the 2nd most recent Volvo (740 Sedan) had trouble with the ignition just not working, so it was replaced. Then same thing happened. Say what!? Long talk with head of service dept. Finally he asked to "see [my] car keys, please". No, not the spare or valet key, MY car key. So I handed him my KEY RING with assorted other keys.

"AHA!" he exclaimed. "THERE!"
Me: "Huh?"
Him: "You've got far too many keys on that. The weight of those keys is probably causing the ignition key to tilt, and slowly wear out the connector."
NO idea if that was accurate, but they replaced the ignition switch a second time at almost no cost. I separated the car key from the "key ring", and the new-again ignition worked until I sold the then 14-year-old 740, to buy the XC90 SUV.

By the way, that XC90 came with a "freebie" Skip Barber-type driving experience that was intended to show the new owner/driver how the then new gyro-type anti-roll suspension and other safety features *REALLY* worked. We paid extra so we could both take the "course", and it was absolutely unbelievable! 8-)
[We've always wanted to do that again and I might get DH a b-day gift to a Skip Barber safety session or something like that. I'll ask for feedback in another thread later.]

RM

hq38sq43
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Re: Audi A4 versus Volvo S60 Sedan

Post by hq38sq43 » Sun Jul 28, 2013 7:01 pm

boffalora wrote:Agree with Glock. I've been a VW and Audi fan for 30+ years. I love driving those cars for 75,000mi and can't bear to part with them, but experience has proven that letting them go at that mileage is the right thing to do. They require considerable preventive maintenance at that point, and if done by the wrong hands you'll regret keeping them. Suffice to say that as they approach 100,000mi, Audis are a maintenance minefield.
Had a similar experience ca. 40 years ago with a 2-year-old Audi I bought and drove happily for two years. Thereafter, it was $100 this, $200 that. Rather than let it bleed me financially to death, sold it to a "shade-tree mechanic" who happily took on the job of keeping it on the road. Wonderful car except for its drain on the wallet. In recent years, my wife and I have enjoyed the economy and reliability of Hondas, 2013 Accord for me, 2003 Civic for her.

Best regards,
Harry at Bradenton

ResearchMed
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Re: Audi A4 versus Volvo S60 Sedan

Post by ResearchMed » Sun Jul 28, 2013 7:09 pm

steve roy wrote:Go with the S60. My wife has a ten-year-old model that she loves dearly, says it's like driving a bank vault, and she feels SAFE in it. I've had friends with Audis and there have been problems galore.
I've always referred to my Volvos to be like driving a safe little tank (in a VERY fond, positive way - that could sound pretty horrible, I guess).
Well, until the Hummers arrived, but those WERE virtually tanks, and not so "little"...

But I really prefer your wife's terminology of driving a little bank vault! :D

Thanks for sharing that!

RM

Rich in Michigan
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Re: Audi A4 versus Volvo S60 Sedan

Post by Rich in Michigan » Sun Jul 28, 2013 7:10 pm

I have owned both Audi and Volvo.

I loved the Audi when it worked but it only was trouble-free sporadically. It had a good warranty, which I needed to use couple of times a year, and that saved me from some very big expenses...like the time the entire transmission crapped out. But my experience was not a good one in terms of reliability.

I loved my Volvo and it was trouble-free. However, Volvo is no longer the same company it once was and the last time I bought a new car I passed on them.

If I had to choose, I would choose Volvo with the caveat that folks who currently own an old one bought it from a different company than currently exists.

Stonebr
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Re: Audi A4 versus Volvo S60 Sedan

Post by Stonebr » Sun Jul 28, 2013 7:24 pm

Rich in Michigan wrote: If I had to choose, I would choose Volvo with the caveat that folks who currently own an old one bought it from a different company than currently exists.
I'm not sure that's true. Ford left Volvo pretty much alone. They supplied deep pocket capital, but the engineering and design transfer was from Volvo to Ford, not the other way around. The jury is out on the Geely takeover, but so far it's been hands off. Again, Volvo as an asset has a wonderful reservoir of engineering know-how that other companies would love to have. If the Chinese owners ever decide to separate the brand name from its Swedish engineers, then all bets are off. But for now, a Volvo is still a Volvo.
"have more than thou showest, | speak less than thou knowest" -- The Fool in King Lear

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