Launched in May 1997 to replace the outgoing 850R, the V70R is considered by those who know, to be one of the best fast estates of the 90’s, capable of offering a long service life with high mileages and reliability if well maintained. A sign of good design is a shape that doesn't age over time but always looks fresh. This was the last Volvo designed by Volvo, before Ford bought the company...
There's a very interesting article, examined through it's adverts, which charter Volvo's performance & safety branding and what happened after this model was released. Click here to view.
There were 3 phases of the 1st generation V70R, with the best - as usual, saved for last. The phase 3 was produced for just a short run from September 1999 till March 2000 (UK: V - W reg).
A new 2.4L engine 2435cc / Engine Code B5244RT) was introduced and power increased from (250 bhp - phase 2) to 265 bhp by use of a larger (19T) turbo and all-new variable valve timing. Torque was now up to 400N.m (300 lb·ft) @2500 rpm. The engine was uprated with stronger internal components to cope with this added power and torque. A fly-by wire ME7 engine management system was also introduced along with a 5-Speed Adaptive Automatic gearbox combined with an advanced system 4WD.
Phase 3 V70R's were distinguishable by their twin exhaust silencers with a specially designed rear bumper - twin exhausts helping improve high rev gas-flow (The first time Volvo had fitted a twin-silencer system to any of their cars). Rear brakes were also upgraded to include vented discs. Featured 5-spoke alloy wheels are Volvo's 17” R design - again, unique to this model (Although this car has been further upgraded with Enkei ERST alloys).
Externally, Xenon HID headlights with wash / wipe and a new roof rail design completed the feature changes to previous phase 1 & 2 models.
For improved safety, a WHIPS" (Whiplash protection) system and larger SIPS side-airbags were added to maximize head protection in the event of a side impact.
Nobody expected Volvo to make a very fast 4WD estate, but the perhaps entertaining truth found by those who challenged it was that this model was capable of embarrassing other seemingly fast cars, whether on a typically damp UK country roads, or on Motorways. To this day the Volvo V70R AWD remains a superb & versatile performance car capable of handling anything from the weekly shop, to being used as a car for business, offering tough, reliable spaceous and comfortable practicality with the ability to dispatch 0-60 in just 7.2 seconds and go on to top out at (a restricted) 155mph.
Corrosion resistance is generally excellent with these, but examples that have been on UK & European roads all of their lives will already have been subject to almost 2 decades of annual winter salt, mud & sand as a layer that tends to build up over the years attaching itself to the underside, arches, exhaust, engine bay, etc. This mixture often finds itself mixed with moisture resulting from use in typical weather in the UK. All combined this makes an effective electrolytic substance which is the cause of rust & other problems associated with corrosion.
By contrast, in Japan cars don't corrode in anything like the same way as in UK & Europe. It shocks people when they see how corrosion free a well chosen can from Japan can actually be... Such as this low mileage V70R phase 3, for example.
In Japan salt isn't used on plains areas, only in the higher altitudes (mountains areas, etc). where people rarely go during winter due to difficult driving conditions and so even there, salt is rare. Japan's roads are well drained and protected from debris falling onto them since there are frequent earthquakes and typhoon rains can also occur. This means mud, etc. isn't to be found on roads, unlike the UK and for this reason, this example is completely rust free. For someone wanting the very best example available, it'll be hard to beat this one.
As these V70R's were generally used as reliable workhorses (capable of very high mileages) on a daily basis, the vast majority in Europe & Scandinavia have suffered from rust & abuse. Despite this, they have a cult following, especially in Scandinavia, so it's possible the Swedes & Norgegians know a thing or two about how tough these old Volvos are.
Standard equipment includes: ABS, SRS dash, steering and VIPS side airbags, WHIPS" (Whiplash protection) system, red warning lights on all 4 side doors, factory fitted tinted glass, tilt / slide electric glass sunroof, roof rails, unmarked grey leather & alcantara interior with (almost instant & very warm!) heating for front & rear seats, electric front seats with memory, veneer trim panels, split - foldable rear seats, split climate control air conditioning, cruise control, trip computer, Original 8-speaker sound system (untested) "R" fitted floor mat set, remote controlled door mirrors with retract mode & heated door mirror glass with anti blind spot glass on driver's side, remote central locking, remote fuel & tailgate release, pre-tensioned seat belts, HID headlights with wash/wipe, deep front spoiler with integrated driving lights, high-level rear spoiler, rear wash-wipe, mud flaps for all 4 wheels.
Uprated Performance Spec: This example is fitted with forged 17" BBS RG-R alloy wheels in unmarked condition complete with brand with new 215/45 ZR17 sports tyres all round.
Suspension features high quality uprated Sachs shock absorbers at the front with sports springs all round to give a tight controlled ride, whilst remaining supple for everyday use.
Not wanting to skimp on safety the previous owner also fitted FBR 6-pot calipers with fully floating discs plus braided hoses for even better braking performance. The unique twin exhaust for the phase 3 mode has been uprated and features a high quality full stainless steel cat back system which is sporty yet muted and drone free for every-day use. Note that turbo boost & engine performance remain standard for reliability.
The headlamps have been uprated to projector units which are not only better looking, but give a great spread of light for night driving. Front indicators are also uprated, as is the front grille.
Condition Report: This example finished in beautiful Laser Blue metallic is clearly an example in unique condition throughout. It has been owned & used since new only on Japan's salt-free & pristinely maintained roads. Paintwork is visibly stunning on this example. Highly reflective with a deep glossy shine, its evident this V70R has always been garaged by its previous owner and was cared for throughout it’s time in Japan. The laser blue paint is the most sought after colour of all on these and suits this car very well looking rather purposeful for a modern classic Volvo.
As pictures show this is a car that's got pin straight lines on it's flanks. There are zero pin dents, which is a testimony to the care this car's had.
It's so well preserved throughout, it still looks near new some 17 years after it rolled off the production line.
Whilst detailing this car, we noticed a few small blemishes, as to be expected of a car of this age (which are to be repaired, but are mentioned herewith to give a complete report):
Front & rear bumpers have small blemishes & minor scratch marks and the colour-coded mud flaps have some stone chipping. These are all to be professionally repaired (repainted) as part of full preparation once the car arrives to UK.
Interior as pictures show is in fantastic condition throughout showing minimal wear and a great patina. The heated leather/alcantara diamond stitched seats are in superb condition, there are no cigarette burns or stains either. Steering wheel is unworn, as is the shift lever - similarly near new. Ashtray has had virtually no use and cigar lighter shows no signs of use so we believe this was a non-smoker's car. Floor mats are also in excellent condition, which indicates to us that this car was mainly used in the city and the carpet on the boot floor is still like new, indicating this car wasn't used for load carrying much - if ever.
Test Drive: We test drove this example at length and are pleased to report it is a delight to drive! The charismatic 5-pot 20V engine is smooth and powerful and provides plenty of overtaking punch when summoned. The 5-speed adaptive automatic gearbox shifts smoothly and precisely and is a real pleasure to use. No clonks or rattles at all from the drive train, just smooth refined progress. Interior has factory integrity about it with nothing showing signs of abuse. The whole feeling is of a car that is incredibly solid and sure-footed.
This V70R comes with original manuals and service history (Volvo Japan). It had it's timing belt replaced at 57,905m, well before it was worn out. It's clearly been very well cared for by it’s previous owner. The overall condition of this example is fantastic and we are confident this car will go to someone who truly appreciates the Phase 3 V70R and wants only the very best.
Since selling our last blue example, it took us 4 months of daily searching to find this stunning example in Japan and knowing how rare these are, we know it's unlikely we'll find another for quite a while.
Costing £38,000 when new in 2000 this is a lot of Performance estate car for the money. Note that the upgrades fitted are all expensive. Just the wheels are worth around £2,000. The previous owner spent a lot more than that on the upgrades and naturally we had to also pay strong money to secure this unique example - prices will continue to go up as demand for these modern classic Volvos continues to rise.
Only around 500 Phase-3 models of the V70R were ever made for sale (for worldwide supply incl. the U.S.) and with only around 70 of those sold in the UK, these are rare cars on the road nowadays.
Currently held in Japan this unique Volvo V70R AWD can be reserved with a deposit of £1000 for prompt shipment to the UK.
Price: £13,695. Full UK OTR (on the road) preparation includes UK registration, 12 months MOT, comprehensive warranty, full service (Incl. transmission fluids & EGR check / cleaning) & full detailing service.
If enquiring about import to another country other than the UK ask about our FOB package.
Contact us to secure this example from our stock or source an alternative top condition quality modern classic Performance Import to order.
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