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Which Years Of Used Volvo V90s Are Most Reliable?

in Reliability
Volvo V90 in a showroom

Source: Flickr

While it was released with little to no fanfare in 2016, the Volvo V90 remains one of the best-looking and sophisticated luxury wagons in the market. The V90 is praised for its stylish wagon design, offering SUV capabilities with quality and comfortable interiors, and it is seen as a charming alternative for those not explicitly seeking an SUV.

Overall, The Volvo V90, especially the Cross Country version, is a well-rounded luxury wagon. It adequately combines style, comfort, and practicality with Volvo’s signature safety and technology features. While it has some limitations in cargo space and infotainment system design, its overall performance, safety ratings, and driving experience make it a popular choice among luxury wagons.

If you’re in the market for a solid luxury wagon, the Volvo V90 is certainly worth checking out. But which is the most reliable Volvo V90 year? Today, we walk you through the V90 lineup and determine the best model year for reliability.

Volvo V90 2017-2019

Launched in 2016, the stylish Volvo V90 station wagon marked a new design direction for Volvo post-Ford ownership. It featured a luxurious interior with limited rear legroom, a spacious trunk, and a range of diesel, gasoline, and plug-in hybrid engines, all paired with an 8-speed automatic transmission. It’s essentially the station wagon version of Volvo’s S90 sedan.

Avoid: 2017 Volvo V90

The 2017 Volvo V90, being a debut model year, may have initial teething problems as manufacturers work out kinks in design and manufacturing.

The 2017 V90 model has been known to have several issues, including electrical glitches, problems with the infotainment system, and lower-than-expected reliability in some components. These problems can result in higher maintenance costs and cause frustration for the owners. Moreover, the first models generally need refinements in the subsequent years, making the later models more reliable and efficient in performance.

Overall, the 2017 V90 isn’t as problematic as most first-production models, but it does have its share of reliability woes that potential buyers should know.


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Avoid: 2018 Volvo V90

Like the 2017 model, the 2018 V90 is not the most problematic luxury wagon available. However, it does have issues that may give buyers second thoughts.

For starters, some 2018 Volvo V90 models have experienced issues with their panoramic sunroofs leaking. This is a relatively major concern since water damage can corrode the wiring harness and short out the electronics. Also, V90 owners have reported issues with the electrical system, specifically affecting the infotainment and display. Problems include freezing or blacking out of the screen, faulty radio, and climate control problems.

Issues with the turbocharged four-cylinder engine have also been noted, including a lack of power or acceleration, which might be due to a faulty turbocharger or a clogged air filter. Oil leaks and burning oil have also been reported, possibly due to a defective oil pan gasket or worn piston rings​. However, there’s no indication that these mechanical issues are widespread.

Despite these problems, it’s important to note that the 2018 Volvo V90 has received high consumer ratings overall. Is it the most reliable Volvo V90 year? Probably not.

Avoid: 2019 Volvo V90

The 2019 Volvo V90 barely makes it as the most reliable V90 year, but it had some reported issues that may become a major concern down the line.

Fuel efficiency (or lack thereof) is a top priority for the 2019 Volvo V90. According to MotorTrend’s tests, the fuel tank of the 2019 model is smaller compared to the earlier V70 model. This means that drivers will have to refuel more frequently, which can be a major inconvenience for drivers who often travel long distances.

The V90 also struggled with the following issues:

  • Electrical problems, particularly with the infotainment system and display screen.
  • Suspension issues, especially with the rear suspension.
  • Transmission problems, including rough shifting or delayed engagement.
  • Engine issues, such as a lack of power or acceleration, oil leaks, or burning oil.

Despite these potential issues, owner reviews are overwhelmingly positive. If you’re interested in a used 2019 V90, be on the lookout for the problems mentioned above.


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Volvo V90 2020-Present

In 2020, Volvo updated its upper-class lineup, including a refresh of the V90. The most notable change was the redesigned taillights featuring a new LED sequential turn-light indicator. The refresh also introduced new wheel designs, body colors, and two USB-C sockets in the rear, replacing the 12V outlets.

Buy: 2020 Volvo V90

The 2020 Volvo V90 is an excellent station wagon with little to no reliability issues. One of its main selling points is aesthetics and overall uniqueness. Many owners and critics have expressed admiration for the car’s appearance, both inside and out. Plus, the V90’s unique and rare design has attracted attention and compliments from others. 

In addition, while the Sensus infotainment system can occasionally be buggy and the 20-inch wheels may affect ride quality, the V90’s overall appeal lies in its well-appointed interior, practical utility with ample cargo space, and smooth driving experience.


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Buy: 2021 Volvo V90

The 2021 model is another solid choice for the most reliable Volvo V90 year, as it offers many of the good stuff that made this wagon quite successful. This elegant wagon combines a stylish, minimalist interior with a comfortable and spacious cabin, making it ideal for daily commutes and longer journeys. 

In the 2021 model, the V90 received a mild refresh, which further enhanced its aesthetic appeal. The V90 is comparable to vehicles like the Audi A6 Allroad so that it can compete with some of the best models in the segment. Conversely, the often cited drawback of the 2021 V90 is its interior space, which pales compared to its class rivals. Interestingly, U.S. News declared the 2021 V90 as the #1 wagon of 2021.

However, since it’s a newer model year, expect to pay premium prices for a used 2021 Volvo V90.

Overall, the Volvo V90 stands out as a paragon of reliability in the premium wagon arena, artfully merging sleek design with a sumptuous interior and cutting-edge safety elements. Even the most problematic years are still worth checking out, especially on a budget.

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