The Volvo V50 is a sporty and “cool” car with youthful appeal – a five-door model with sporty lines, intelligent solutions and a flexible interior. High performance and consistent driving manners contribute to enjoyable and relaxed driving.
“The Volvo V50 offers the properties of a large car in a compact format. This together with an exciting design and exceptional driving properties makes this an extremely attractive car, not least for young families with an active lifestyle”, says Volvo Cars President and CEO Hans-Olov Olsson.
The Volvo V50 plays an important role in Volvo Cars’ strategy to rejuvenate its brand image by appealing to parents in the 30 to 40 age range.
The aim is to sell 74,000 cars a year, mainly in Europe. Germany is expected to be the largest market with an average of 15,000 Volvo V50s a year.
Like the new S40 model, the Volvo V50 is made at the Volvo Cars factory in Ghent, Belgium, which will have an annual production capacity of 270,000 cars.
A genuine Volvo with a unique profile
The Volvo V50 unites classic Volvo lines with an entirely distinct profile featuring a sporty curved roof line and an abrupt tail section. This creates a modern and fast look that is reinforced by the gently rounded nose, short bonnet and overall cab-forward stance.
The interior has an uncluttered, spacious layout featuring technology-inspired details and materials. The exceptionally slim, free-floating centre console elegantly links together the tunnel console and the instrument panel and enhances the feeling of interior space.
Among the trim alternatives is the sports-inspired Dala textile upholstery with T-Tec highlights and enhanced lighter-coloured seams.
Five-cylinder transverse powertrains
The Volvo V50 has transverse in-line engines in both five-cylinder and four-cylinder guise.
“Fitting a five-cylinder engine into a compact body is an advanced science”, says Peter Ewerstrand, project manager for the V50. “We have succeeded thanks to new methods of shrinking the engine’s outer dimensions.”
The five-cylinder in-line engines have a displacement of 2.4 or 2.5 engines, depending on model. The five cylinders and the large displacement offer not only high torque but also pleasant engine characteristics in the form of low vibration and smooth operation.
Volvo V50 T5 AWD
The top model in the V50 range is the four-wheel drive turbocharged Volvo V50 T5 AWD, which has a five-cylinder 2.5-litre petrol engine that offers excellent performance.
The four-wheel drive system is similar to that found on Volvo’s larger AWD models, with a fast-responding, electrically controlled hydraulic clutch (Haldex) that contributes to consistent and reassuring road manners on all types of road surface.
The six-speed manual gearbox that was originally developed for Volvo’s advanced R-models is also available on the Volvo V50 T5 AWD and adds still further to the sporty appeal.
The Volvo V50 is available with a choice of two diesels, one a 2-litre and the other a 1.6-litre model, both with turbocharging.
The 2-litre engine offers excellent performance (0-100 km/h in 9.6 seconds, top speed 210 km/h). Swift response to the accelerator and well-matched feel to the accelerator pedal give the driver good control and excellent driving pleasure.
The second diesel alternative, the 1.6-litre engine, is a highly fuel-efficient and environmentally optimised engine with good driveability. Average fuel consumption is as low as 5 litres per 100 km (Volvo V50 with manual gearbox).
The diesel engines will be fitted with a particle filter that considerably reduces emissions of unburned soot particles in the exhaust gases, thus reducing the impact on the environment.
Comfortable, stable ride and roadholding
The Volvo V50 offers exceptional torsional rigidity thanks to a highly developed body structure. The body’s torsional rigidity contributes to stable and predictable road manners, further enhanced by the broad track and long wheelbase.
Independent wheel suspension with a multilink rear axle gives a combination of comfort and crisp driving properties.
On most markets, the Volvo V50 is equipped with DSTC (Dynamic Stability and Traction Control), which adjusts the car’s stance if there is any tendency to skid.
Patented frontal structure made from different grades of steel
The Volvo V50 features a patented front section and a comprehensive interior safety system.
“In a compact body, the preconditions for efficient deformation are different compared to those in a large car”, says Ingrid Skogsmo, head of the Volvo Cars Safety Centre. “Since the deformation has to be contained within a smaller space, the material’s properties must be exploited to the maximum to absorb as much of the incoming collision energy as possible.”
The front body structure has been divided into several zones, each with a different task in the event of a collision. The outer zones account for most of the deformation. The closer the impact energy gets to the passenger compartment, the less the material deforms.
In order to give each zone the right properties, the grade of steel used differs. Four different grades of steel are used.
The engines themselves also contribute to the safety structure through their transverse installation and the extremely compact dimensions that provide a carefully calculated safety margin between the engine and passenger compartment.
What is more, the Volvo V50 is equipped with SIPS (Side Impact Protection System), side-impact airbags, inflatable curtains and WHIPS (Whiplash Protection System).
Protection for other road users
The design of the front with its clean, smooth surfaces and rounded corners helps reduce the risk of injury to pedestrians and other road users.
A soft structure in front of the bumper provides energy-absorbing properties, for instance helping to reduce the risk of leg injuries.
The energy-absorbing bonnet and front wings help minimise the risk of head injuries. What is more, the compact format of the petrol engines provides a 70 mm crumple zone between the cylinder head and bonnet panel.
Intelligent Driver Information System
Intelligent Driver Information System – IDIS – helps ensure that the driver is not distracted while driving. While overtaking or during braking, for instance, signals from the car’s integrated GSM phone and certain other information are delayed until the situation is calmer and the driver is better able to receive the information without being distracted.