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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
UPDATE: Wound up purchasing the 2018, since it came from a BMW dealer, no Volvo warranty, but will be getting one through AAA.

Love the flip-down hitch, which they did not even add to the value (apparently $1200 just to buy not installed). They gave us almost $19,000 for our Highlander and we got the price down to just over 41k, plus they are fixing some rim rash before we pick it up. Super happy, now fingers crossed.

My wife and I are in the process of purchasing a 2016 XC90 with only 46,600 miles. I am seeing a lot of warnings about pistons and rings needing to be done on these. What percentage of drivers are actually needing this done? Seems like Volvo fixed the issue in late 2016 but this XC was produced in October of 2015. Any help would be great since we can still back out of the deal.
 

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10/15 build date would put this XC90 squarely in the old piston ring category. Engines with serial numbers higher than 1501327 have the updated rings. No one knows how many cars eventually burn oil, but even if it's a tiny percentage of the total, you may be one of the unlucky few that get stuck with bad rings. Others will tell you to avoid '16 altogether and I don't think that's bad advice.
 

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My wife and I are in the process of purchasing a 2016 XC90 with only 46,600 miles. I am seeing a lot of warnings about pistons and rings needing to be done on these. What percentage of drivers are actually needing this done? Seems like Volvo fixed the issue in late 2016 but this XC was produced in October of 2015. Any help would be great since we can still back out of the deal.
I'd steer clear of it unless it's had the rings done already. In that case, only if it's CPO or significant VIP platinum coverage on it. There will be more cars, and I recommend waiting for a 2017 or newer in regards to the piston ring debacle.

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My wife and I are in the process of purchasing a 2016 XC90 with only 46,600 miles. I am seeing a lot of warnings about pistons and rings needing to be done on these. What percentage of drivers are actually needing this done? Seems like Volvo fixed the issue in late 2016 but this XC was produced in October of 2015. Any help would be great since we can still back out of the deal.
Also, be aware all 2016's used 3G for connecting to the Volvo On Call app. 3G is getting phased out fast and it will require and upgrade to fully use VOC. There are a few threads on this. 2017's and newer were upgraded from the factory.

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
That is very true, we just found out about that yesterday when my wife asked about the remote start. Looks like I will need to go back to searching.
Also, be aware all 2016's used 3G for connecting to the Volvo On Call app. 3G is getting phased out fast and it will require and upgrade to fully use VOC. There are a few threads on this. 2017's and newer were upgraded from the factory.

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I'd steer clear of it unless it's had the rings done already. In that case, only if it's CPO or significant VIP platinum coverage on it. There will be more cars, and I recommend waiting for a 2017 or newer in regards to the piston ring debacle.

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Is the MY16 XC90 that you are/were considering a T6 or T8?

If it is a T8 with an Oct. 2015 build month/year on the driver’s side B pillar label, it likely has the same updated engine as mine which is also a T8 with also has the same build month/year.

The TJs for T6s’ rings, pistons, and spark plugs did not apply to my T8 engine type/model - confirmed by my dealer.

If it is a T8, you might want to search this subforum had already documented the info. The point about the MY16 XC90s have 3G is correct. A 4G LTE upgrade is in the works but no official word on timing or cost. Just make a no cost 4G LTE upgrade as condition of your purchase if you are working with a Volvo dealer.

I enjoy my MY16 XC90 T8 as first owner but I have been meticulous with addressing issues and getting upgrades timely as things come up under warranty. At this point, I plan on keeping it for a few more years.

If the subject vehicle is a T6, I defer to those owners with experience.


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If you read quite a few pages of this forum as I did prior to purchasing a MY22, it’s pretty clear that you want to avoid the 2016s at all costs
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
If you read quite a few pages of this forum as I did prior to purchasing a MY22, it’s pretty clear that you want to avoid the 2016s at all costs
Yes I am beginning to really see this. The hard part is, the car is absolutely perfect inside and out. I think we are going to pass on it but it has been a hard decision
 

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Yes I am beginning to really see this. The hard part is, the car is absolutely perfect inside and out. I think we are going to pass on it but it has been a hard decision
The photos make it look like a really nice piece. But don't let that fool you. Even the nappa leather in the 2016 models could have issues with durability. The stitching was updated with the 2017 models to address this. Just one more example.

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The photos make it look like a really nice piece. But don't let that fool you. Even the nappa leather in the 2016 models could have issues with durability. The stitching was updated with the 2017 models to address this. Just one more example.

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it looks even better in person, leather is like it has never been sat in, crazy. But knowing this XC is essentially a ticking time bomb, we have decided to walk away and only entertain 2017 or better.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
it looks even better in person, leather is like it has never been sat in, crazy. But knowing this XC is essentially a ticking time bomb, we have decided to walk away and only entertain 2017 or better.
@Ultrarunner511 I just noticed in another thread that you had your engine replaced in your 2017 @ 55k, that makes me a bit nervous about even going to 2017 model year.
 

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@Ultrarunner511 I just noticed in another thread that you had your engine replaced in your 2017 @ 55k, that makes me a bit nervous about even going to 2017 model year.
The vast majority of new vehicles coming off of production lines have minimal issues, but every vehicle is subject to a production defect here and there - no matter what manufacturer, model, or model year.

First year production models tend to be bleeding or leading edge, and nowadays all have software updates and sometimes even hardware / component updates. See component examples below.

Components manufacturers have their own occasional production defects (e.g., compressor for air suspension MY2016~2021, HVCH, ERAD).

Anyway, OP is doing the right thing in terms of due diligence and risk assessment. There are diamonds in the rough in terms of used cars. The challenge is finding them in this “high demand” used car market as of used car dealers are selling everything under the sun.

My simple advice is to buy a Volvo from either a Volvo dealer or one that has been exclusively serviced by a qualified Volvo service center (which includes professional Volvo Independents).
 

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@Ultrarunner511 I just noticed in another thread that you had your engine replaced in your 2017 @ 55k, that makes me a bit nervous about even going to 2017 model year.
Eh, I truly believe it was an uncommon incident. At the time, Volvo corporate said there were two others in the US that encountered this problem. And the problem was simply unusual noise that was present very early on (before 30k miles). It didn't affect anything else... just engine noise. It would have been a catastrophic failure eventually.

Sure, we have had quite a lot of issues with our 2017, former 2020, and current 2021. Some issues were dealer related though. But they never failed to start, never failed to get us to where we were going, and are extremely comfortable to drive in.

The 2017 has over 83k miles and is running strong still. The leather looks fantastic and still has a special place for my wife and I since we bought it thru the OSD in 2017.

Volvo's extended warranties (CPO and VIP) are outstanding. I recommend anything you buy have one of these coverages.

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The photos make it look like a really nice piece. But don't let that fool you. Even the nappa leather in the 2016 models could have issues with durability. The stitching was updated with the 2017 models to address this. Just one more example.

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Look at the photos pls. The stitching is not the 2016 one. Seems like the owner took care of this beautiful beast. Let the dealer take care of the piston rings if that haven't been replaced, and upgrade the telematic module if possible. Rest of issues should be not special for 16MY and covered by extended warranty. Test drive it and check it carefully e.g. any noise or rattles. You will enjoy the car.

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I have a 2016 XC90.

I haven’t had the engine problem that’s been reported, but it’s been in the shop a number of times. If it wasn’t for the extended service contract, I would have gotten rid of it long ago.

Just last week it was in to have the VCM - vehicle communications module - replaced. All just so they could communicate with it via VIDA and diagnose the bigger problem. A $2k fix, again, before they could even read the codes related to the other problem. Luckily the extended warranty covered it.

The reported 3G shutdown has left me furious. I understand that it’s not directly Volvo’s fault, but it’s definitely their fault that they didn’t develop a fix sooner … There are articles from as far back as 2019 making note of AT&T shutting down their 3G networks in the years ahead. The lack of attention here was a real failure and left customers without good alternative. And it's only made worse when considering it will likely cost customers hundreds or more to restore functionality that I deliberately looked for when buying a vehicle. Volvo should goodwill it, or make it incredibly cheap. Even Tesla is making the 3G -> 4G upgrade available to early buyers for just $200 (3G Cellular Network Retirement.)

This will be my first and last Volvo. Just disappointed with the whole experience, and with the constant need for service. It’s in the shop every few months. Not for anything big - but it’s been enough that my coworkers have even noticed and started making fun of it.
 

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Look at the photos pls. The stitching is not the 2016 one. Seems like the owner took care of this beautiful beast. Let the dealer take care of the piston rings if that haven't been replaced, and upgrade the telematic module if possible. Rest of issues should be not special for 16MY and covered by extended warranty. Test drive it and check it carefully e.g. any noise or rattles. You will enjoy the car.

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That's not true, at least when compared to our own XC90's. There is additional stitching beyond the 2016's. See my photos.

Also, 2016's were plagued with the leather dash peeling too. I could keep listing things...

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