SwedeSpeed - Volvo Performance Forum banner

1 - 20 of 20 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
57 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Before summarizing my trip, I would like to thank those who have responded to my questions in the past, as well as those who have answered questions without even knowing it (via archives!), and those that have contributed to the wealth of information that can be found on Swedespeed. For over two years and two Volvo purchases, I have read a lot of material from a lot of people, and have acquired a good deal of information (most of it very useful!). A special thanks to Jonas who convinced me not to worry about the stock tires in the mountains during our trip.<br> <br>Now, to my trip summary. It is rather long, however, I am guessing that there are others out there that are either (1) Considering the purchase of a vehicle through OSD, or (2) have already placed an order and are checking Swedespeed daily for tidbits to keep you going until the time comes to pickup your car. I was both at one point or the other – so this long post is dedicated to those folks.<p>Prior to our OSD trip, we contacted the FDC. Just my opinion, however, I believe that multiple emails to the FDC are a good thing. I sent the FDC an email shortly after receiving our order confirmation, and again one week prior to arrival per their instructions. In our case, these emails were to request a European DVD loaner for the Navigation, as well as to provide the FDC with our flight information for pickup. We also requested the first delivery time of the day, which gave us plenty of time prior to lunch to inspect the car, take a short drive, and if open, go the Volvo museum. We also requested a tour of the safety center, in addition to the factory tour. Unfortunately, on our delivery day, the safety center was closed for tours to the public due to some special S80 activities for some visiting dignitaries. However, I did get the impression that they would have gladly accommodated our request for a visit to the safety center on another day. The person that the FDC told me to contact to request a tour of the safety center is Anne Winstrom at [email protected] <p>Our OSD trip started on Saturday May 20 via flights to Goteborg from Raleigh via DC and Copenhagen. Absolutely no problems with the flights, and as has been discussed in the past, very comfortable planes. We arrived Sunday May 21 in Goteborg – ironically for the second time in two OSD trips, our driver that was meant to pick us up was not at the airport. No problem, though, as there was a very helpful Volvo employee stationed at the temporary Volvo booth at the airport, which was setup for the dealer training for the new S80. She made some calls, and even waited with us until a driver came, even though as we were arriving she was on her way out the door to enjoy her Sunday. Nonetheless, it is a good idea to have the phone number issued by the FDC in their letter which everyone gets after placing an order, as it was only by chance that there was someone there for us to speak to. There are two numbers there: One for the FDC, and the other to arrange for pickup - that number is +46-31-59-28-49, and while I can not be certain, I suspect it is the number to use if your driver does not show up to retrieve you.<br>We contacted the Radisson SAS ahead of time to request an early check-in, which they accommodated. We proceeded to take a brief nap before walking around Goteborg Sunday evening. It is pretty quiet on Sunday, and restaurant choices can be limited. There have been some very good recommendations in prior posts on places to eat. We second a previous recommendation that suggested La Cucina Italiana. Perhaps the best Italian food we have had outside of Italy. It is a bit of a walk, and a very small place – be sure to call ahead if you want to eat there.<p>On May 22 (Monday), we were picked up at 8AM. Within one hour we were introduced to our shiny new S60R, shown below on her maiden voyage to the coast prior to lunch. We drove up to this road, and onto the dock, where you can see the sign depicting the consequences of continued travel. <p><IMG SRC="http://i58.photobucket.com/albums/g262/ncearthquake/coast.jpg" BORDER="0"><p>When we picked up our XC90 two years ago, we rushed ourselves a bit looking over the car, not wanting to impose on the FDC folks. This time, I was much slower. The car was in the delivery area for over an hour – there was plenty of room for multiple cars, and of course if they had an unusual amount of cars, we may have had to move more quickly, but with 12 deliveries (less than the normal amount), we were not at all rushed – perhaps another advantage of getting there early. Prior to lunch, we were hopnig to go the Volvo museum, however, it is closed on Mondays outside of summer. <p>Speaking of lunch, it was served at 11:30, and compared to 2 years ago, we had much less interaction with the FDC folks. Last time, they joined us for lunch, which was nice – I am guessing that the S80 activities had them fairly busy. Nonetheless, we met several nice folks from around the US picking up their cars for trips around Europe. After lunch, the tour was good, although not as good as our first tour two years ago. This was a matter of timing as we toured the factory while the workers were on lunch break – two years ago, everything was in full swing as we started the tour closer to 2:15 after a brief movie, so we saw a bit more activity. Nonetheless, the tour is well worth the time spent – both the 2007 XC90 and new S80 were in full swing, and you could see both at various levels of completion. While we were at lunch, accessories were installed (IPOD and rubber mats). <p>We stayed one more night at the Radisson-SAS such that we were as well rested as possible heading out for our first long drive. Starting May 23, we drove north to Oslo for one night. In Oslo we had time only for the Viking museum, but it was well worth the visit to see such boats in remarkable condition<p><IMG SRC="http://i58.photobucket.com/albums/g262/ncearthquake/Vikingmuseum.jpg" BORDER="0"><p>This was followed by 3 nights in Flam, a very small but pleasant town at the end of Aurlandsfjor. From there, we took a ferry ride to Naerofjord as well as a short train ride into the mountains to the south. Some photos of the trip to Flam, as well as some photos of the fjord and train ride are below.<p>This one is on the road over the mountains to Flam from Oslo.<p><IMG SRC="http://i58.photobucket.com/albums/g262/ncearthquake/toflam.jpg" BORDER="0"><p>This one is of the car at Aurlandsfjord.<p><IMG SRC="http://i58.photobucket.com/albums/g262/ncearthquake/aurlandsfjord.jpg" BORDER="0"><p>This photo was taken on a stop from the Flam Railway at a large waterfall. Notice the person dancing on the rocks. The train stops, music starts, and dancers appear mytseriously.<p><IMG SRC="http://i58.photobucket.com/albums/g262/ncearthquake/flamrailwaystop.jpg" BORDER="0"><p>This is Aurlandsfjord from the Snowroad observation platform.<p><IMG SRC="http://i58.photobucket.com/albums/g262/ncearthquake/aurlandfjordfromabove.jpg" BORDER="0"><p>This was followed by 3 nights in Balestrand, 1 night in Skjolding, 2 Nights in Geiranger, 1 night in Andalsnses, 2 nights in Lillehammer, and 1 last night back in Goteborg. One thing that we did two years ago, which I am sure others have done as well, is to bring with us a plastic bottle of detailing spray (such as Griots Speed Shine or Meguiars Final Inspection) and fresh cotton towels. At the end of every day, I would go over the car to remove the remains of bugs that met their end on our car, while looking out for bird droppings – both of which are tough on paint. You could of course take this further and bring along interior cleaner, car wash, but in the end it is a vacation, and detailing spray, as long as you use enough of it, lubricates the paint surface and does a great job. We also purchased some window cleaner and paper towels to take care of windows.<p>We setup our itinerary to drive as many exciting mountain roads as possible, and managed to drive on the RV13 (a portion of which is called the Waterfall road), RV55 (highest major road in northern Europe, and also called the Sognefjell road), and the RV63 (known as the golden route which encompasses the Geiranger road, the eagle road, and Trollstigen), and lastly, the Snow Road outside of Flam. These four roads were all fantastic – nothing really quite like them in the US that I have seen. We were spoiled by the end of the trip and didn’t feel as though the very famous Trollstigen was anything special – it is of course very nice, but not that different than the other well known roads. The best fjord views were on the Snow Road near Flam and on the eagle road portion of RV63 just north of Geiranger, which takes the prize as best fjord view, in my opinion. Mountain views were best on the RV55 and its offshoots, although there were great mountain views on all four of these roads.<p>The photo below was taken on the RV13 after leaving Flam.<p><IMG SRC="http://i58.photobucket.com/albums/g262/ncearthquake/rv13nearflam.jpg" BORDER="0"><p>This photo was taken as we approached the southern portion of Songnefjord after leaving Flam.<p><IMG SRC="http://i58.photobucket.com/albums/g262/ncearthquake/rv13overlookingvik.jpg" BORDER="0"><p>This picture shows the initial drive up RV13 to the waterfall road outside of Balestrand.<p><IMG SRC="http://i58.photobucket.com/albums/g262/ncearthquake/rv13nearbalestrand.jpg" BORDER="0"><p>This picture, a little dark, shows the car on the RV13 heading back towards Balestrand in the evening.<p><IMG SRC="http://i58.photobucket.com/albums/g262/ncearthquake/rv13.jpg" BORDER="0"><p>This photo was taken on the famous RV55 Sognefjell road.<p><IMG SRC="http://i58.photobucket.com/albums/g262/ncearthquake/rv55.jpg" BORDER="0"><p>These next two photos are of Geirangerfjord. On the second photo imagine our surprise as we approach the lookout to see a group of people doing a cooking show in English, overlooking the fjord. Strangest thing we saw on the trip, by far.<p><IMG SRC="http://i58.photobucket.com/albums/g262/ncearthquake/geirangerfjord.jpg" BORDER="0"><p><IMG SRC="http://i58.photobucket.com/albums/g262/ncearthquake/cookingshowandeaglesroad.jpg" BORDER="0"><p>This picture of Geirangerfjord was taken from the Eagles road overlook on the RV63 - probably the single best viewpoint of a fjord that we saw.<p><IMG SRC="http://i58.photobucket.com/albums/g262/ncearthquake/viewfromeaglesroadrv63.jpg" BORDER="0"><p>Some of the more exciting activities included glacier walking at Jostedlasbreen, which after initial anxiety, was great, and riding the 1994 olympic bobsled run outside of Lillehammer. This last one I would not recommend if you are tall. I am 6’2” and my head, fortunately enclosed in a nice helmet, bounced off the side of the safety cage like a pinball. My wife, some 9 inches shorter, and more of a daredevil, thought it was great fun. Nonetheless, 3g’s and 100 km/hour in a bobsled was an interesting experience. Below is a photo of Car and Glacier. Perhaps the title of a new Norwegian car magazine?<p><IMG SRC="http://i58.photobucket.com/albums/g262/ncearthquake/carandglacier.jpg" BORDER="0"><p>Food in Norway is very expensive - on many occasions we went to markets and packed picnic dinners, the best was on a sunny evening on the snow road overlook over Aurlandsfjord. Perhaps the least comfortable – a very scenic, but very cold picnic table on the RV13.<p>We were prepared for a huge number of tolls, however, overall, we paid only 120 Nkr in tolls for the trip (about $20). We went on two scenic ferry rides, as well as a few fjord crossings. The naerofjord and fjaerlandfjord were the best of the scenic ferry rides.<p>Getting back to the topic of the post – Norway is an ideal place for breaking in a new car due to the need for variations in speed (in the mountain regions). Many of these roads are one lane, and unless you are feeling rather lucky, you must slow down around blind corners. Lots of shifting, and variable engine speeds are of course very common in the mountains and around the Fjords in Norway. Some other interesting numbers – gas mileage varied from a low of 21 in mountain driving to a high of 28 on the last tankful of highway driving. Not bad for a new car – useful given the nearly $7.50/gallon prices of gas. No oil consumption, either, at least none that could be discerned by the naked eye on the dipstick. We used both heated seats and AC, sometimes on the same day.<p>Norway loves speed cameras – however, there was advance warning of their location. The national speed limit of 50MPH is fine for some twisty roads, but a little slow for the highways (although in certain stretches the limit does rise to 62).<p>In the two weeks we had the car, we saw one other OSD vehicle near Andalsnes, Norway. We did not see another R until the last day when we saw one just north of the city, and another at the FDC – an electric silver wagon.<p>Turning in the vehicle back at the FDC, which we have done on both occasions was painless, except of course for having to part with your new car! In our case, the car will set sail on June 17 on the Elektra with an expected arrival date in Raleigh of July 17. The FDC estimate two years ago was very precise, so I expect a similar result this time as well. Unfortunately, it will not be in the mid 60’s in the middle of July.<p>That’s all I have – sorry for the long rambling post, I did want to provide plenty of detail for those considering OSD or those waiting for their trip. In my opinion, there is no reason not to go through OSD, with one exception – if you need a car immediately, then it is of course not an option. I hope to hear some more good stories about OSD trips in the future – it seems there are now quite a few in the central NC area, perhaps an OSD get-together is in order – perhaps we could convince Weaver Brothers Volvo to host such an activity!<br>
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
90 Posts
Re: Trip Summary - Norway is an excellent place to break in an S60R (ncearthquake)

Wonderful summary and beautiful pictures. We did OSD May13 05 and drove to Bergen. No problems with snow or ice. The XC-90 2.5T AWD had to back up on one of those one lane roads with the water 500 feet below you and granite rock 6 inches aside you. It was a trip of a lifetime. <IMG NAME="icon" SRC="http://********************/smile/emthup.gif" BORDER="0">
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,179 Posts
Re: Trip Summary - Norway is an excellent place to break in an S60R (ncearthquake)

Fantastic photos and a great travel guide!<p>Thanks for sharing your...<p>"Journey for Life"<p>William
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,740 Posts
Re: Trip Summary - Norway is an excellent place to break in an S60R (ncearthquake)

Wow! Why did I not go to Norway?<p>I love this shot of the Dancing Elf.<br><TABLE WIDTH="90%" CELLSPACING=0 CELLPADDING=0 ALIGN=CENTER><TR><TD><i>Quote, originally posted by <b>ncearthquake</b> »</i></TD></TR><TR><TD CLASS="quote"><br><IMG SRC="http://i58.photobucket.com/albums/g262/ncearthquake/flamrailwaystop.jpg" BORDER="0"><p><br></TD></TR></TABLE>
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Re: Trip Summary - Norway is an excellent place to break in an S60R (ncearthquake)

Great post on Norway trip. I will closely track in four days when I pick up my XC70 via OSD. Your post could be an OSD promo and thanks to SWEDESPEED as they created a most unique site.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
102 Posts
Re: Trip Summary - Norway is an excellent place to break in an S60R (prtimeswed)

Fantastic summary!<p>I'm still on Volvo #1 and the wife got to pick the itinerary (southern Sweden) but I've reserved OSD #2 for a Norway trip so I've saved your write up.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
39,263 Posts
Re: Trip Summary - Norway is an excellent place to break in an S60R (steverino)

Unreal pictures (the best I have seen, yet!) and great description! <IMG NAME="icon" SRC="http://********************/smile/emthup.gif" BORDER="0"> <p>One of the best advertisements for this program!<p>Yannis
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
57 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Re: Trip Summary - Norway is an excellent place to break in an S60R (GrecianVolvo)

Thanks to all for the comments on the photos and post - I think that most of the credit goes to Norway for being such a beautiful place. We were spoiled after a several days in the mountains, and when we started to make our way back through Lillehammer, we then realized how incredible the scenery truly is. For those of you planning a trip through that area, I am sure you will enjoy it!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18 Posts
Re: Trip Summary - Norway is an excellent place to break in an S60R (ncearthquake)

Hey ncearthquake,<br>Thank you very much for the beautiful pictures and informative narrative of your trip. We are looking forward to our trip very much and hope that we have as great of a time as you have had.<p>We will be going south and then to Denmark, Germany, the Netherlands, and over to the UK. After we get back, I will have to post some pictures and a description from our trek.<p>I agree that a get-together of OSD's in our area would be a lot of fun. Maybe Weaver Brothers could help coordinate that.<p>Once again, thank you!<br>
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
57 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Re: Trip Summary - Norway is an excellent place to break in an S60R (dymondclay)

dymondclay,<p>have a good trip - sounds like a good itinerary. As exciting as driving in Norway on one lane roads was, it may be even more exciting driving in the UK - I a msure one gets used to it quickly, though. Will you be doubling back or taking a ferry from UK back to Sweden, or perhaps dropping off in UK?<p>
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,707 Posts
Nice trip I've been on all those roads as well over the years (I was born and raised in Norway). When we did our OSD (with the twin to your car!) we decided a different route this time (south into Germany), but it is always great to see pictures from back home in Norway.<br>Geiranger is always a great place for pictures. Plus getting there is just incredible.<br>I can honestly say Norway is the most beautiful country in the World.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,740 Posts
Re: (flybynight)

Kris<p>What's the story behind the waterfall dancer? I know Denmark is into Trolls...what's Norway's story?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18 Posts
Re: Trip Summary - Norway is an excellent place to break in an S60R (ncearthquake)

ncearthquake,<br>We're going to drop-off in London. The drop-off there is actually at one of the hotels near Heathrow. We're going to drop-off the car there, stay the night at that hotel and then fly out of Heathrow to head back here.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
12,052 Posts
Re: Trip Summary - Norway is an excellent place to break in an S60R (dymondclay)

nceartquake..........<p>Fantastic pics <IMG NAME="icon" SRC="http://********************/smile/emthup.gif" BORDER="0"> <IMG NAME="icon" SRC="http://********************/smile/emthup.gif" BORDER="0"> And even better description of the experience!!! Thanks for sharing it with us.<br>Stop by sometime if you are in Charlotte!...Skal <IMG NAME="icon" SRC="http://www.vwvortex.com/vwbb/embeer.gif" BORDER="0">
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,707 Posts
Re: (KillerB)

<TABLE WIDTH="90%" CELLSPACING=0 CELLPADDING=0 ALIGN=CENTER><TR><TD><i>Quote, originally posted by <b>KillerB</b> »</i></TD></TR><TR><TD CLASS="quote">Kris<p>What's the story behind the waterfall dancer? I know Denmark is into Trolls...what's Norway's story?</TD></TR></TABLE><p>Just part of mythology and folklore. It is also likely it was a character from Edvard Grieg's Per Gynt (if you like classical music, you should give it a listen).<br>Trolls are actually about the most Norwegian thing there is. Trolls live in the mountains of Norway. Denmark isn't really much of a troll country.<p>I'll make sure to take lots of pictures when I take my next trip home to Noway at the end of July. <IMG NAME="icon" SRC="http://********************/smile/emthup.gif" BORDER="0">
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,254 Posts
Re: (flybynight)

Gorgeous photos...especially nice to see a sonic blue S60R in such stunning landscape. Makes me jealous I didn't do OSD. Definitely next time I will. I already had my route planned out and I will definitely go to Norway when I do it.
 

·
Registered
'15.5 Volvo V60 Cross Country
Joined
·
442 Posts
Re: (soledoc)

Thanks so much for sharing your trip report and fabulous photos...brings back many fine memories of our Norway OSD trip this time last year....<p>Rick
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
49 Posts
Re:

this is most likely who u saw cooking<br><A HREF="http://www.scandcook.com/default.asp?menu=119&page=120" TARGET="_blank">http://www.scandcook.com/defau...e=120</A><p>but tina nordström is where its at <IMG NAME="icon" SRC="http://www.vwvortex.com/vwbb/wink.gif" BORDER="0">
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11,927 Posts
Re: Trip Summary - Norway is an excellent place to break in an S60R (ncearthquake)

Wow! What a simply amazing bunch of pictures and writeups of your trip! My family and I were doing a similar Norwegian fjord drive on OSD about a month earlier... man I envy the warmer weather you clear had on your trip <IMG NAME="icon" SRC="http://www.vwvortex.com/vwbb/smile.gif" BORDER="0"> I have a small writeup and some pics here:<br><A HREF="http://dadolphson.googlepages.com/2006swedenandnorwaytrip2" TARGET="_blank">http://dadolphson.googlepages....trip2</A>
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
57 Posts
Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Re: Trip Summary - Norway is an excellent place to break in an S60R (Warpedcow)

Thanks for the compliment - you had some nice photos yourself, although I see that it was a bit colder as you pointed out! <br>
 
1 - 20 of 20 Posts
Top