Test Volvo S80, Saab 9–5


Can “hot” cars be made in the cold North? It turns out yes.


They say that the clever with honor comes out of those situations in which the wise does not fall. Applied to drivers more than fair. The ability to get around all road conflicts is aerobatics, characteristic only of the truly wise. But are there many among us? We all believe that we are able to drive fast, very fast, we want to prove something to someone and overcome with honor the difficulties that we create for ourselves. This driver's romance is poorly compatible with a shabby foreign car. Something else is needed here.

We decided to take a chance - we bought, one might say, the coveted "toy" for a zealous motorist. So, in the editorial parking lot, the SAAB 9–5 Aero sedan appeared - the top of the company's lineup with a full range of additional equipment. Expensive ($ 53, 000), not too practical, but sophisticated and at the same time defiantly aggressive: no less than 230 liters. with. turbocharged.

Down with the routine - about the breakdowns, the price of spare parts and maintenance, the fitness of the "Swede" to ride on Russian roads, we will tell. And today, only the most delicious - about the car from the perspective of an active driver. And so that the picture was complete, another Swedish car, Volvo S80 T6, will make up the company for our sports SAAB. It is also the most expensive ($ 58, 000) and powerful in the corporate lineup, with a transverse in-line six-cylinder engine (!), Two turbines, a compact gearbox with a length of only 30 cm. below.


A lot of flight associations are associated with SAAB cars. And for good reason! Indeed, magnificent fighters carry the same brand, so the creators of the Saab cars were simply doomed to some analogies. And they parted here in earnest. In terrestrial SAAB 9-5, you suddenly come across something from another, transcendental world. The mere name of the high-speed modification "Aero" speaks for itself. Further - more: the suddenly flashed Fasten belts display with a completely aviation picture recommends you to fasten your seat belt. And so on. Aerobatic flirting is certainly a business card of SAAB, but we, motorists, are also interested in other things.

The driver’s workplace at first sight captivates with its restraint of style, strict interior, emphasized by the high cost of black leather upholstery, but no less by the functionality of the main controls. A chubby, comfortable steering wheel, adjustable both in height and in the longitudinal direction, elastic seats with a full range of electric adjustments, a convenient lever of a four-speed automatic transmission with a large Sport button in the very center. All this sets up a dynamic, sporty mood. And here it’s like a massive front panel covering the driver, shining with an abundance of toggle switches, winking at the display windows, with a combination of instruments very typical for SAABs. Yes, you can’t get away from aviation associations - neither give nor take a cockpit of a fighter. You are not a driver - you are a pilot and do not control, but pilot.

Nevertheless, this arrangement is amateurish and the impression of it is twofold: on the one hand, it’s cool and unusual, on the other … it’s inconvenient to use many things. The active driver in the seat clearly lacks the fixing stiffness of the side supports, the lower cushion is short, and the range of longitudinal movements of the seat could be larger. As, however, and a similar steering column adjustment. The front panel suddenly turns out to be unfriendly - it is quite difficult to find the desired button in this anthill, especially on the go. The only exception is the tumbler switch of the traction control system - it is noticeably larger than others and you can find it on the panel instantly. There are claims to the selector of the "machine." The sector of its movements is close, and the inclusion is fuzzy, which is why you are constantly mistaken when searching for the desired mode. It seems that a passion for style in some cases harmed ergonomics.

But the overclocking capabilities or, if you want, runway takeoff performed by the 230-strong SAAB 9-5 Aero are impressive and more than compensate for everything mentioned above. The acceleration is powerful, smooth, pleasantly pushing you into the back of the seat. "Automatic" slightly smoothes out the sharp nature of the supercharged engine, and from this the process seems to stretch in time, allowing you to enjoy the unbridled temperament of a powerful car. We add here the corresponding sound frame, which, as it were, emphasizes - SAAB is not for peaceful movement in space, this device is with a touch of adrenaline.

At the same time, it is the automatic box that somewhat violates the harmony in the relationship between the driver and the car. In certain situations (especially in sharp, dynamic driving), a noticeable delay in the response of the car to pressing the accelerator occurs, and subsequent awakening is accompanied by an unpleasant jerk. In order not to overload the vestibular apparatus, it is better to switch to the sports mode of the “machine” in advance - it provides the desired performance.

What is impossible to complain about in SAAB is the brakes. The machine responds very sensitively to the slightest touch on the brake pedal, by the way, quite intelligible, with good feedback, which allows you to accurately dose the force required for intensive deceleration in almost the entire speed range.

Good and handling. A special sports suspension kit, low-profile tires with a dimension of 225 / 45R17 say a lot. Add here an instant response to steering actions, accurate reactions. As a result, on even asphalt, SAAB seems to stick to the road, and you enjoy not only intense accelerations in a straight line, but also high-speed cornering. Even with the occurrence of side slides, skillful steering and traction can keep the car on a given trajectory.

And now about the reverse side of the coin: Russian rough roads are contraindicated for hard asphalt pendants. With small potholes, they cope with the sin in half, however, they do it quite noisily. But as soon as the traditional gentle waves appear, the car begins to shake the riders sharply. This is especially noticeable at high speeds, where the pendants openly "hack", allowing the body to swing.


The second "Scandinavian" has nothing to do with aviation. Translated from Latin, "Volvo" means "roll." This “Swede” is molded from a completely different test. Before us is a large, practical and probably comfortable car. He does not tear into the sky, but very thoroughly stands on the ground, inspiring respect with his whole appearance. Decorated in bright colors, the interior seems cozy. On this machine I do not want to rush somewhere, to prove something. You simply are in an almost homely, relaxing environment and you are completely different thoughts. The creators of the S80 did not save on the size of the cabin, seats and ranges of their movements. If the driver’s seat pulls back all the way, then you must at least be a basketball player to reach the pedals. The same with the steering wheel: the range of longitudinal adjustment of the steering column is simply amazing. The lever of the “automatic machine” is more convenient here. It is closer to the driver, the gearbox control algorithm is clearly more perfect - which only means the ability to switch to manual gear shift mode. The front panel also gravitates to a multi-button Scandinavian style, but at Volvo it is almost perfectly thought out. And this applies not only to the readability of characters, but also to the shape, size and location of the toggle switches. To use all this "economy" is not difficult.

The driving capabilities of the Volvo S80 T6 are also extraordinary. The main emphasis is on dynamic driving in a straight line. Transversely located in-line "six" biturbo capable of delivering 272 liters. with. Unfortunately, from the very first minutes of communication between the driver and the car, a certain distance arises - and this is not a “machine gun”. You give the car commands as if from a distance, and she diligently and obediently carries them out. Nevertheless, overclocking dynamics is good. In any situation, clicking on the accelerator, you get a quick and unambiguous response from Volvo.

The automatic transmission of the latest generation is practically devoid of delays. And yet in the reactions of the car as a whole there is a certain damping. If SAAB, with a little thought, rushes forward with a bullet, then Volvo does it gently, leaving a subjective feeling of leisureliness. The paradox of the S80 is that even after hearing through the perfect noise insulation the squealing of tires skidding on dry asphalt, you do not lose your state of comfort. This delicacy gives rise to completely different driving behavior. Why fuss in the stream or when overtaking, when you can wait a bit, and then, without straining the cervical vertebrae, calmly rush forward. You must admit that there is rationality in this approach, its own, if you like, philistine logic.

In unison with her and everything else. Do you need reliable handling? You are welcome! The car will correctly execute all the driver’s commands. Yes, in his character there is no groovy Saab temperament. You can approach the turn at a slightly lower speed and the car will do everything herself. And the fact that in the extreme modes of the Volvo glides outward without a turn out of the corner - you don’t have to rush headlong along winding tracks. S80 is still a prestigious sedan, and not a device for highway-ring racing. But on a straight line, even at a speed of 200 km / h, you can, without straining, holding the steering wheel with one hand, conduct a leisurely conversation, without focusing all attention on the intricacies of control. At the same time, Volvo’s usual road pendants feel confident in Russian conditions. They have not only high comfort, but also good energy intensity, which helps to overcome very serious obstacles.

Now the conclusions. We hope you understand why we did not openly contrast Volvo and SAAB with each other. Swedish cars are really very original and painfully different. Both know how to drive fast, but each in its own way. "SAAB 9-5 Aero" is a bunch of energy that you want to control irrationally, enjoying the ride. "Volvo S80 T6" - a comfortable and high-speed car for those who value practicality and solidity more than driver’s ambitions. Returning to the beginning of our report, we can state: SAAB is for smart drivers, but Volvo is more likely for wise ones.

Photo by Alexander POLUNIN


Weather conditions: temperature + 19 ° С,

pressure 743 mm RT. st .; humidity 75%

SAAB 9–5 Aero Volvo S80 T6

Dynamic qualities

(Partial load - 2 people + 25 kg)

Acceleration, with:

0–40 km / h 3.1 2.2

0-60 km / h 4.6 3.7

0–80 km / h 6.7 5.9

0–100 km / h 9.1 8.4

0–120 km / h 12.0 11.7

0-140 km / h 16.1 16.4

0–160 km / h 20.9 22.0

0-400 m 16.8 16.2

0–1000 m 29.7 29.5

Maximum speed, km / h 237.7 231.4

Elasticity, with:

60–100 km / h 5.6 5.2

80–120 km / h 6.3 6.5

Coast, m:

120-50 km / h 1634 1489

50–0 km / h 604 558

Braking from 100 km / h:

stopping distance, m 40.1 41.1

deceleration, m / s2 9.6 9.4


"SAAB 9–5 Aero" "Volvo S80 T6"

Total information

Seats 5 5

Curb weight, kg 1540 1590

Length x Width x Height, mm 4805х2042х1449 4822х1832х1434

Base, mm 2703 2791

Track front / rear, mm 1522 1582/1560

Trunk volume, l 500 440

Maximum speed, km / h 235, 250

Acceleration 0-100 km / h, from 8.2 7.2

Average fuel consumption, l / 100 km 10.8 10.9

Fuel capacity, l 70 80

Fuel AI-95, AI-98 AI-95, AI-98


Transverse front

Construction R4, DOHC, R6, DOHC,

boost boost

Number of valves per cylinder 4 4

Displacement, sms 2290 2783

Diam cylinder x stroke, mm 90.0x90.0 81.0x90.0

Compression ratio 9.3 8.5

Power, kW / l. with. 169/230 200/272

at rpm 5500 5400

Torque, N.m 330 380

at rpm 1900–4000 2000–5000


Front wheel drive

A4 A4 gearbox with mode




independent front, such as McPherson

with stabilizer bar


rear independent semi-independent

multi-link "Delta-link" with

with stabilizer peppers growling

transverse gami spring

sustainability racks



rack and pinion with amplifier

variable productivity

The brakes

hydraulic disk with

Lem and ABS, front ventilated


225 / 45R17 225 / 55R16


Car "SAAB 9-5 Aero" "Volvo S80 T6"

Parameter mm

L1 995–1165 920–1170

L2 615–820 625–875

H1 955 995

H2 940 965

B1 1440 1490

B2 1425 1450

T1 485 485

T2 490 490

L3 1095 1110

H3 520 470

B3 min 1010 1140

B3 max 1490 1230