The Volvo Parts, Accessories &
Performance Specialists Since 1963

Volvo S80 (P2)

1999-2006 - P2 Platform

In the 90s, Volvo was in a transitional period, moving away from both rear-wheel drive and the stout-but-aging 4-cylinder "red block" engine. The new P80-platform 850 and C70 pointed the way forward for Volvo, with their "white block" all-aluminum engines and front- and all-wheel-drive chassis changing Volvo's reputation of staid, traditional engineering to that of an industry innovator in safety, style, and comfort.

Following up on the success of the P80 platform, Volvo doubled down on the high-tech trends of the 90s with their new P2 platform: on these new "networked" cars, the Engine Control Module (ECM) would be just one of several different computer modules in the car, all communicating with each other over a high-speed data network.

On a networked car, advanced safety systems like the S80's DSTC traction and stability control become possible: the DSTC module monitors inputs from wheel speed sensors and chassis accelerometers, and if a loss of grip is sensed, the DSTC module issues commands to the Brake Control Module to individually brake spinning wheels, and to the Engine Control Module to back off the power until grip is restored.

Computers would also be used extensively during the design process, with CAD design improvements in chassis strength and rigidity as well as additional dedicated safety systems like WHIPS whiplash protection and a new IC "inflatable curtain" side airbag bolstering the SIPS side-impact protection system's already impressive levels of protection.

The first of these advanced P2 cars to market would be Volvo's replacement for the S90 sedan: their new luxury flagship, the S80.

In addition to a "3.0L" (rounded-up 2.9L) naturally aspirated six, this new Volvo also came with a new, twin-turbocharged variant of Volvo's "white block" family of 5- and 6-cylinder engines. Volvo already had a reputation of fast "T5" 5-cylinder turbocharged engines, but the new T6 was Volvo's most powerful engine to date, making 268hp and pushing the large, plush S80 to 60 in a little over six seconds.

Less well received was the 4T65 4-speed automatic transmission: the T6's 280lb-ft of torque and rapid boost onset from the parallel turbos was uncomfortably close to the GM-derived transmission's maximum torque rating, and hard shifts and loss of certain gears can be an expensive portent of overheating issues, failed valve bodies/solenoids, and brake band and clutch pack failures.

In 2004, the S80's was given an optional 5-cylinder variant, powered by the same 2.5T light pressure turbo cylinder and AW55 5-speed automatic by then propagating across Volvo's lineup. While not as brisk as the T6, the combination of a lightly-stressed engine and more modern transmission fits well with the S80's relaxing executive car personality, especially when optioned with sure-footed Haldex AWD.

Also available from 2004 was Volvo's Four-C active chassis system. As on the S60R and V70R, 4C-equipped S80s featured a selectable Comfort and Sport mode, with sport mode firming up the shock absorber damping, switching to more responsive throttle maps, and more "relaxed" stability control settings to allow for some slip before the computer intervened. 

1999-2006 S80 T6

  • USA models were equipped with a inline six twin turbocharged "T6" gasoline engine
    • 1999-2000 models were 2.8L (B6284T)
    • 2001-2006 models were 2.9L (B6294T)
  • Bosch ME7 "Motronic" engine management
  • Only available with FWD and an automatic transmission (4T65EV-GT)

2004-2006 S80 2.5T & AWD

  • USA models were equipped with a light pressure turbocharged "2.5T" B5254T2 gasoline inline five
  • Bosch ME7 "Motronic" engine management
  • USA models had an Aisin-Warner 5-speed AW55 automatic, either FWD or with Haldex AWD
  • Good "city car" with good low end (off the line) acceleration

1999-2006 S80 2.9 or Base model (6 cylinder)

  • USA models were equipped with a naturally aspirated 2.9L gasoline inline six
    • 1999 models were badged as "3.0L" (B6304S3)
    • 2001-2006 models were (B6324S or B6324S2)
  • Only available with FWD and an automatic transmission (4T65EV)
  • Bosch ME7 "Motronic" engine management

Model information is based on the USA vehicle market. Other model variations may exist outside the USA.

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