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Overall I am pleased with my XC90, but some features are not well designed.

1 - Backup sensors. C'mon on Volvo, they should work perfectly regardless of the fact it is raining. About half the time when it is raining the sensors come on at "full force". Dealership has said this is normal (Man, I hate that reply with passion...it is basically saying Volvo f-ed up the design). It has never happened on my other car, or any other car I've had/driven with backup sensors.

2 - Panel vibration from the Dynaudio System - Holy Crap, short of pulling all the panels off and putting in some insulation, the system vibrates the door panels like crazy. Try listening to Pink Floyd's Another Brick in the Wall (with the helicopter in the beginning) at anything above 50% volume and you get vibration hell. Again dealership says this is normal. No vibration at all in my E63 when I crank the tunes.

3 - Headlights. Yes the are HID's. Yes they are actively bending. And yes, the light output sucks...just like it did on my S60R. I find this unbelievable for a car designed in Sweden. In fairness, I drove a newer designed XC70 with HID's and the headlights were much better.

4 - BLISS....same problem as with the sensors. It doesn't like rain. C'mon!!!
 

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Overall I am pleased with my XC90, but some features are not well designed.

1 - Backup sensors. C'mon on Volvo, they should work perfectly regardless of the fact it is raining. About half the time when it is raining the sensors come on at "full force". Dealership has said this is normal (Man, I hate that reply with passion...it is basically saying Volvo f-ed up the design). It has never happened on my other car, or any other car I've had/driven with backup sensors.

2 - Panel vibration from the Dynaudio System - Holy Crap, short of pulling all the panels off and putting in some insulation, the system vibrates the door panels like crazy. Try listening to Pink Floyd's Another Brick in the Wall (with the helicopter in the beginning) at anything above 50% volume and you get vibration hell. Again dealership says this is normal. No vibration at all in my E63 when I crank the tunes.

3 - Headlights. Yes the are HID's. Yes they are actively bending. And yes, the light output sucks...just like it did on my S60R. I find this unbelievable for a car designed in Sweden. In fairness, I drove a newer designed XC70 with HID's and the headlights were much better.

4 - BLISS....same problem as with the sensors. It doesn't like rain. C'mon!!!
1. Never had that problem with our 2006 model. could it just too sensitive?
3. HIDS on my xc70 (2009) ABL sucks!!! yes, it is better than the our 06 xc90, but the lexus rx330 (2013) is MUCH better. heck, even the 08 mb c300 is better.

4. Glad i don't have bliss.
 

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1. 2006 V8 here. No problems with backup sensors. I've had them go berzerk when snow covers the sensors, but only had one or two issues with rain making them go crazy.
2. Premium sound, not Dynaudio, but I can crank my speakers up well past 50% with nothing really vibrating except all the usual spots (dash clip, things in cup holders, etc)
3. Light output is not bad. It's not amazing, but it's much better than most other cars I drive. Sometimes when I get in a car with conventional non-HID headlights, I have to double check and flip them off and back on just to convince myself that they are actually on.
4. No BLISS here :)
 

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the backup sensors in our buick rendezvous were better. as the vehicle got closer to the obstacle the frequency of beeps would increase. with the xc is is all or nothing.

regular stereo is about as barely adequate as one could get in a 45k car. good think it is on radio disney most of the time and no matter how good the system is the sound would still be crappy.

i am in bliss without bliss. bliss, bluetooth, cupholders and vanity mirrors are the four most important safety features introduced in the last 30 years. they let the driver drink a meal while putting on makeup, while gossiping on the phone and changing lanes without taking her eyes off the mirror, or turning her head to see what's next to her. all at terminal velocity. :D
 

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I too hate the headlights in this vehicle. We only have the halogen but they are sub-sub-par.

I have the same issue with the sound system rattling the panels and the sound system just being lackluster altogether. I've checked mine several times to make sure there's nothing wrong with it and as far as I know, there isn't but stereo separation is horrible, radio reception is worse and the few times we do get good reception the panels all make noise.

To Volvo's defense, the XC90 was released in 2003 and at that time this interior would have trumped anything from germany. Mercedes was in the midst of their really cheap interiors phase and the X5 was painfully industrial and utilitarian. Range Rover was really the only company that had bothered paying any attention to interior quality and then we got the Touareg which had an interior on par with Audi.

The problem is that it's not 2003 any more and while the XC90 is a vestige of the last decade, it's competition has all been redesigned, in some cases twice. So for 2003 I can forgive the interior. For 2012, it doesn't cut the mustard. Overall though it's pretty tight if you can keep the stereo volume down which isn't hard considering how terrible the stereo is!

Other than that, I don't like the seats though that's been covered here before. They're perfect size for my wife and that's all that matters.

Overall, I can't find a reason to replace the XC90. We only have 90k on it, it's in great condition and Volvo's biggest problem (having the same design for 10 years) is actually is a great thing for us because a new set of headlights and LED tail lights and the truck will hardly be discernible from a 2013.
 

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the backup sensors in our buick rendezvous were better. as the vehicle got closer to the obstacle the frequency of beeps would increase. with the xc is is all or nothing.
My 06 starts off with no beep and the beep gets more frequent as you get closer, then at about 1 foot of separation they become continuous. Either my car is special (it is an ORE) or your sensor, alerting system is malfunctioning. There does seem to be about a 1 second time delay, so if you are backing with any velocity (4 mph) you can go from about 6 feet to smack in less than a second.
 

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I have two of these and third overall

backup sensors work just fine rain snow(not down here) heat

bliss is useless, wide angle mirror EU on both

2003 audio system, even then it was ok and I have premium

seats are good though for a while when I did 8 hour roundtrip weekly for 6 months, I had issues with thigh support, nothing beats a bmw sports seat, well worth the upgrade from comfort seats

The old style HID beats any halogen, still
 

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My 06 starts off with no beep and the beep gets more frequent as you get closer, then at about 1 foot of separation they become continuous. Either my car is special (it is an ORE) or your sensor, alerting system is malfunctioning. There does seem to be about a 1 second time delay, so if you are backing with any velocity (4 mph) you can go from about 6 feet to smack in less than a second.
that's our system too. i dont drive it enough to know all the details. just that by the time it gets to "real close" it is too late. the buicks gave much more, and much better warnings. it also had three (i think) small lights on the cieling that you would see either in the rear view mirror or when turned around. as the beeps got more frequent more lights would light up. bottom line is the backup sensors in our 40k 05 buick (the brand that doesnt care about safety according to the locals here) were better than the sensors in our 45k 06 safety first volvo.
 

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I have to take back my criticism of the radio. I had a Dension Gateway 500 hanging around in my trunk from my A8. My wife took the BMW the other day and started hounding me to add some way for her to listen to her music in the XC90. So I grabbed the Dension and went to town. After about an hour of experimenting I got it to work and finally got some sound that wasn't from the radio and it is worlds better than the AM/FM radio. The problem I have with the premium system is it only sounds good to me when it's in Pro Logic mode but the radio tuner is so bad that it's constantly going in and out of stereo which messes with the Pro-Logic splitting. The end result is just not good.

There's actually bass with the auxiliary input where the radio tuner seems to have none whatsoever. So now that I can hear the premium sound with a source that isn't terrible, it's actually not bad at all. It's actually probably well above par for what most luxury SUVs were coming with back then.

Unfortunately all of this made me remember how terrible the radio's menu system is so I'm adding something to the list of things that annoy me but removing something too. So it's a wash!
 

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Overall I am pleased with my XC90, but some features are not well designed.

2 - Panel vibration from the Dynaudio System - Holy Crap, short of pulling all the panels off and putting in some insulation, the system vibrates the door panels like crazy. Try listening to Pink Floyd's Another Brick in the Wall (with the helicopter in the beginning) at anything above 50% volume and you get vibration hell. Again dealership says this is normal. No vibration at all in my E63 when I crank the tunes.
That Harmon Kardon system is fantastic. Once went to a DMB concert, and sitting in the parking lot after (waiting for traffic), I put windows down and the tunes up and drown out the stereo of the cars around. It was truly world class. At least for a factory system.
 

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Overall I am pleased with my XC90, but some features are not well designed.

Try listening to Pink Floyd's Another Brick in the Wall (with the helicopter in the beginning) at anything above 50% volume and you get vibration hell.
Okay I like Pink as well, but its a little on the dated side eh. I understand it's used as a reference. As long as we're talking about music, i thought some of you East Coast people may not have heard about Nicki Bluhm? Got to talk with her recently in Nashville, a real class act and wow! Grateful Dead-inspired California Soul, with a Nashville connection.

Turn up the bass..............and watch out for that guitar riff at 3.32
http://www.youtube.com/embed/VMatUvRRrno?rel=0

Here is another performer way under the radar most people don't know about. Kimbra, (for you music fans, she sings the female vocals on Gotye's hit "Somebody that I used to know")

TURN IT UP !!
http://www.youtube.com/embed/5XjNlpe7hII?rel=0

Just a couple of somewhat obscure alternatives to the usual "Eat a Peach", Knopfler, Tom Petty, Clapton.........etc

Where else are you going to hear this stuff if you don't read the XC90 forum? :cool:

P
 

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I have to add that when you use a high-quality source for the factory system (I have Premium Sound, not Dynaudio on my 2006) such as a CD or aux in box, the audio system actually sounds very good. Bass response is fantastic for a car that doesn't have a subwoofer!

All V8 models have third row seating, and if third row seating is installed you cannot install the factory subwoofer option.

Before I had the aux-in box installed, the thought did cross my mind to install an aftermarket subwoofer - something small and simple, like a Bazooka tube or a small 8" integrated unit.

I do notice that the volume has to be cranked significantly above 50% for the system to shine. Perhaps this is a side-effect of the Alpine amplifier on my car? At lower volumes, it leaves a lot to be desired.
 

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I have little complaint with the premium sound installed on our 2004 or 2008.

P
 

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I have to add that when you use a high-quality source for the factory system (I have Premium Sound, not Dynaudio on my 2006) such as a CD or aux in box, the audio system actually sounds very good. Bass response is fantastic for a car that doesn't have a subwoofer!

All V8 models have third row seating, and if third row seating is installed you cannot install the factory subwoofer option.

Before I had the aux-in box installed, the thought did cross my mind to install an aftermarket subwoofer - something small and simple, like a Bazooka tube or a small 8" integrated unit.

I do notice that the volume has to be cranked significantly above 50% for the system to shine. Perhaps this is a side-effect of the Alpine amplifier on my car? At lower volumes, it leaves a lot to be desired.
You have to turn the volume past the point of hearing all the interior panels rattling. That's why it stinks at low volume! :D
 

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Apart from my cup holder, when a drink is in it, no rattling in my XC90. Just push the drink a little, and it stops. Oh, and there was the seat belt rattling against the door post, but I fixed that in 3 seconds.
 

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Tostik, care to share the 3 second fix for annoying seat belts against door post?
In retrospect, the seat belt jingle was on my wife's pristine 1998 V70XC. I was driving, and I dropped her off to do some business while I went to do my errands. That's when I noticed the rattling. The seat belt was twisted around, and I just untwisted it at the next stop light. For some strange reason, my wife has always done strange things to seat belts when she leaves the car. I know she has gotten seat belts caught in doors a few times too.

Besides the cup holder (with drink in it) squeak, easily fixed, there have been a few other occasional squeaks that quickly went away. But they are so few and far between that it's hard to remember. Haven't had any in a while.
 

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To be fair, ours is quite solid unless the stereo is on. The radio is the main cause of all of our rattles. You can hear the speakers acting on the door panels which is annoying. I'm willing to bet that depending on what kind of music you listen to, you might never hear it at all. I happen to have the musical preferences of a 14 year old girl so I have a lot of beats, bass and whatnot and that exposes shortcomings quickly.
 

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1 - Only twice have I had its park assist view rain as an obstacle in all these years in rainy Vancouver...so I can't really legitimately complain about this.

2 - Agreed. There is a simple fix: sticking on felt padding on certain contact points in the doors (b/w the door trim and the rest of the door's insides) eliminates the problem...there is a thread on here somewhere with the DIY. Since this vibration is due to the woofers in the front doors also acting as subwoofers, I hope adding the accessory subwoofer in the trunk will get rid of the vibration. I'll do it even if it doesn't... :D

3 - No complaints whatsoever about the Xenons (from under the same gray skies as yourself). Mine turn night into day.

4 - Similar to the park assist issue: it happens from time to time, but it's nothing that gets in my way.
 

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To be fair, ours is quite solid unless the stereo is on. The radio is the main cause of all of our rattles. You can hear the speakers acting on the door panels which is annoying. I'm willing to bet that depending on what kind of music you listen to, you might never hear it at all. I happen to have the musical preferences of a 14 year old girl so I have a lot of beats, bass and whatnot and that exposes shortcomings quickly.
I don't listen to my radio/CD player very often, but I recently turned on the CD full blast, playing the music from the movie "Gettysburg", to keep myself from falling asleep. I didn't notice any extra rattles, or noises--except my pants leg did vibrate a lot.
 

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The wet floors prevalent in the early models due to sunroof or front valence draining was pretty unfortunate for Volvo, as I understand there were a lot of complaints about this.

The fact that the upper rearmost tip of the driver side door/window frame, is right in line with a tall person's eyeglasses (and eye) and it is a menace especially in the dark or if you are handling groceries etc. I have learned to step back out of the way after having my glasses caught by the rubber edge and tossed into the parking lot.

P
 
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