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Old 07-11-2005, 13:02   #1 (permalink)
rastlouis@rogers.com
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240D wagon versus Camry wagon - pros and cons?

Hi all,
I am a prospective owner of a late model 240D wagon. I have also been
looking for a good mid-90's Camry wagon (they stopped selling them in
N-A after 1996 so are rather rare). I know what I can expect with the
Camry (relatively trouble-free ownership, comfortable, roomy), as I
have previously owned one. The 240D comes with a big reputation, and I
know it's a very durable and long-lived vehicle. But I gather it will
likely require more fiddling with, troubleshooting little electrical
issues, preventative maintenance, etc. I'm trying to factor what I
would gain/lose with either option, before I make the decision to go
with the 240D. I need a solid, reliable car for year-round
transportation, commuting, the odd hauling or camping, etc. I know my
way around cars and can use tools/manuals -as long as the
maintenance/repair requirements aren't excessive, or get in the way of
driving the vehicle, I actually like it.
Any thoughts would be appreciated. Thanks

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Old 07-11-2005, 13:02   #2 (permalink)
Bev A. Kupf
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Re: 240D wagon versus Camry wagon - pros and cons?

On 11 Jul 2005 10:06:25 -0700,
rastlouis@rogers.com (rastlouis@rogers.com) wrote:
> Hi all,
> I am a prospective owner of a late model 240D wagon.


If by 240D you mean Diesel, I would avoid that model like the plague.
The Volkswagen D24 inline-6 that it has doesn't have a good reputation
for reliability or ease of repair.

On the other hand, if you mean 240 DL, that's a very good car with
a well-tested drivetrain, that generally appears to be bullet-proof.

Bev
--
Many a smale maketh a grate -- Geoffrey Chaucer
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Old 07-11-2005, 13:02   #3 (permalink)
rastlouis@rogers.com
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Re: 240D wagon versus Camry wagon - pros and cons?

Yes, sorry, I have my Mercedes 240D on the brain. I did mean the Volvo
240 (DL). Indeed, I've also heard bad things about Volvo car diesel
engines, not that they are plentiful in N-A. A dealer I just spoke to
said they have an 86 240 sedan that they use as a loaner. It
apparently has 988,000 kms on the engine! (they have replaced the
timing belt 7 times but apparently not had to do major surgery on the
engine). Now THAT is durable!

Comparing Volvo and Toyota wagons, I would expect the Toyota to have
the upper hand insofar as the electrics/electronics/instrumentation are
concerned. The Volvo seems (from what I read) to require more
involvement by the owner (or the owner's mechanic) in keeping things in
tune, resolving little problems and idiosyncracies that come up.
Toyotas generally will keep going and going with very minimal
maintenance. But it's probably safe to say that Volvos will generally
outlast Toyotas because of the sheer durability of the engineering
design (as long as properly maintained of course, and kept away from
rust deterioration).

Cheers,

Bev A. Kupf wrote:
> On 11 Jul 2005 10:06:25 -0700,
> rastlouis@rogers.com (rastlouis@rogers.com) wrote:
> > Hi all,
> > I am a prospective owner of a late model 240D wagon.

>
> If by 240D you mean Diesel, I would avoid that model like the plague.
> The Volkswagen D24 inline-6 that it has doesn't have a good reputation
> for reliability or ease of repair.
>
> On the other hand, if you mean 240 DL, that's a very good car with
> a well-tested drivetrain, that generally appears to be bullet-proof.
>
> Bev
> --
> Many a smale maketh a grate -- Geoffrey Chaucer


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Old 07-12-2005, 03:02   #4 (permalink)
Randy G.
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Posts: n/a
Re: 240D wagon versus Camry wagon - pros and cons?

Any car of that age has the potential for electrical problems, and I
don't think one has it over another. The fact that the 240's are
everywhere on the road means that spares can probalby be had at a
wrecker a lot easier.

The 240s have a well-earned reputation for being solid, dependable
cars (I am shopping for one right now to serve as a second vehicle
behind my '93 960).

Look at it this way- a toyota wagon and a Volvo 240 are doing 55 mph.
They are about to be involved in a head-on collision with one another.
QUICK! Which one do you want to be in? Which one would you feel better
having your wife drive home from work on a stormy evening? There is
that.
__ __
Randy & \ \/ /alerie's
\__/olvo
'93 960 Estate

rastlouis@rogers.com wrote:
>
>Yes, sorry, I have my Mercedes 240D on the brain. I did mean the Volvo
>240 (DL). Indeed, I've also heard bad things about Volvo car diesel
>engines, not that they are plentiful in N-A. A dealer I just spoke to
>said they have an 86 240 sedan that they use as a loaner. It
>apparently has 988,000 kms on the engine! (they have replaced the
>timing belt 7 times but apparently not had to do major surgery on the
>engine). Now THAT is durable!
>
>Comparing Volvo and Toyota wagons, I would expect the Toyota to have
>the upper hand insofar as the electrics/electronics/instrumentation are
>concerned. The Volvo seems (from what I read) to require more
>involvement by the owner (or the owner's mechanic) in keeping things in
>tune, resolving little problems and idiosyncracies that come up.
>Toyotas generally will keep going and going with very minimal
>maintenance. But it's probably safe to say that Volvos will generally
>outlast Toyotas because of the sheer durability of the engineering
>design (as long as properly maintained of course, and kept away from
>rust deterioration).
>
>Cheers,
>
>Bev A. Kupf wrote:
>> On 11 Jul 2005 10:06:25 -0700,
>> rastlouis@rogers.com (rastlouis@rogers.com) wrote:
>> > Hi all,
>> > I am a prospective owner of a late model 240D wagon.

>>
>> If by 240D you mean Diesel, I would avoid that model like the plague.
>> The Volkswagen D24 inline-6 that it has doesn't have a good reputation
>> for reliability or ease of repair.
>>
>> On the other hand, if you mean 240 DL, that's a very good car with
>> a well-tested drivetrain, that generally appears to be bullet-proof.
>>
>> Bev
>> --
>> Many a smale maketh a grate -- Geoffrey Chaucer


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Old 07-12-2005, 03:02   #5 (permalink)
James Sweet
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Posts: n/a
Re: 240D wagon versus Camry wagon - pros and cons?


<rastlouis@rogers.com> wrote in message
news:1121109707.816062.45630@g44g2000cwa.googlegroups.com...
> Yes, sorry, I have my Mercedes 240D on the brain. I did mean the Volvo
> 240 (DL). Indeed, I've also heard bad things about Volvo car diesel
> engines, not that they are plentiful in N-A. A dealer I just spoke to
> said they have an 86 240 sedan that they use as a loaner. It
> apparently has 988,000 kms on the engine! (they have replaced the
> timing belt 7 times but apparently not had to do major surgery on the
> engine). Now THAT is durable!
>
> Comparing Volvo and Toyota wagons, I would expect the Toyota to have
> the upper hand insofar as the electrics/electronics/instrumentation are
> concerned. The Volvo seems (from what I read) to require more
> involvement by the owner (or the owner's mechanic) in keeping things in
> tune, resolving little problems and idiosyncracies that come up.
> Toyotas generally will keep going and going with very minimal
> maintenance. But it's probably safe to say that Volvos will generally
> outlast Toyotas because of the sheer durability of the engineering
> design (as long as properly maintained of course, and kept away from
> rust deterioration).
>



The Toyota will have a less fiddly electrical system but the Volvo will win
hands down in a crash, is easier to work on, and will keep going and going.
Both are good cars in their own ways. With the Volvo you also have the
support of this excellent group of mostly quite helpful people, I would
guess there's something similar for Toyota but you might wish to take a dip
and check them out.


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Old 07-12-2005, 03:02   #6 (permalink)
Michael Cerkowski
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Re: 240D wagon versus Camry wagon - pros and cons?

We have an '88 240Dl and a '95 Camry sedan. In most areas except
longevity and ruggedness-in-a-crash, the Camry is the better car. The
Volvo is nice, but in terms of economy, reliabilty and overall value,
I would definitely choose the Camry. It easily gets 27-35MPG average,
while the 240 struggles to get 26MPG average, and they are both the
same approximate weight & size (body and engine). Both are automatics.

The Volvo also handles a bit better, at least with proper tires,
and the seats are more comfortable. The electrical system is definitely
worse, as is the fuel system and the A/C. If you want a 'driver's car',
consider the Volvo. if you want a 'consumer's car', the Camry is by far
the better choice. Ours has 145K miles on it (about the same as the
Volvo; neither burns oil), and all we've replaced is the radiator and a
couple of small parts. I've actually lost track of all the work done on
the 240. It's now the "spare" car. It's tough, it's got character, but
it isn't a Commuter's Dream.
--







http://freevision.org/michael/index.html
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Old 07-12-2005, 08:02   #7 (permalink)
rastlouis@rogers.com
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Posts: n/a
Re: 240D wagon versus Camry wagon - pros and cons?

Thanks to all for your thoughts on the Volvo vs. Camry wagon issue.
You all make excellent points for and against. I think that 240
ownership would sit well with me. I have a garage full of tools and a
head full of know-how when it comes to car repairs, so know that I will
learn and understand and maintain the Volvo car very well. As long as I
can get a very good specimen (no rust, well maintained, good records),
I know I'll be allright.

There is a certain appeal to have a "turn the key, drive it and forget
it" kind of car (ie. Camry), but in my experience they are not the most
awe-inspiring vehicles to drive (used to own a 93 Camry wagon)! I've
test driven a couple of very nice mid-90 Camry sedans in recent weeks,
some with very low mileage. One can't fault the finish, the interior
features, the comfort, etc., but I find them very bland (except maybe
the 92-96 models, which are more appealing on the outside). I suppose
it's a price to pay for peace of mind and trouble-free driving. Then
again, buying a 10+ year old Camry (as some of the Camry wagon
specimens I have seen) is fraught with risk too (one needed brake/fuel
lines because the ones on there were quite rusty, front shocks, engine
mount, the antenna wouldn't go up, the rear wiper didn't work, etc.;
however the A/C was nice and cold, the interior was like new).

I've got my eye on what I think is an excellent 240 wagon specimen (90
DL) that has had a lot of parts replaced in the last 18 months (owner
is selling regretfully). It's a few hours away from where I live so I
have to negotiate a long distance deal but it might prove worth it.

I also own a 1982 Mercedes-Benz diesel sedan (240D) with over 200,000
miles and which I use from Spring to Fall (I'm driving it full time now
since selling my 90 Corolla a few weeks ago). So the wagon (VOlvo or
Camry - or maybe Subaru as someone recommended me!) would largely be
used during the colder weather, as well as for general all around
driving in the other seasons, taking the kids and I camping, hauling
stuff, etc. I store the MB in the winter, so the Volvo would be my only
means of transport during the winter, which is why I wanted to get a
sense of how reliable a 15 year old Volvo would be in that case. Sounds
like when properly tuned up, and with good winter tires and
preventative maintenance, should be no problem.

Thanks again.

Michael Cerkowski wrote:
> We have an '88 240Dl and a '95 Camry sedan. In most areas except
> longevity and ruggedness-in-a-crash, the Camry is the better car. The
> Volvo is nice, but in terms of economy, reliabilty and overall value,
> I would definitely choose the Camry. It easily gets 27-35MPG average,
> while the 240 struggles to get 26MPG average, and they are both the
> same approximate weight & size (body and engine). Both are automatics.
>
> The Volvo also handles a bit better, at least with proper tires,
> and the seats are more comfortable. The electrical system is definitely
> worse, as is the fuel system and the A/C. If you want a 'driver's car',
> consider the Volvo. if you want a 'consumer's car', the Camry is by far
> the better choice. Ours has 145K miles on it (about the same as the
> Volvo; neither burns oil), and all we've replaced is the radiator and a
> couple of small parts. I've actually lost track of all the work done on
> the 240. It's now the "spare" car. It's tough, it's got character, but
> it isn't a Commuter's Dream.
> --
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
> http://freevision.org/michael/index.html


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Old 07-12-2005, 16:02   #8 (permalink)
Alex Zepeda
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Posts: n/a
Re: 240D wagon versus Camry wagon - pros and cons?

On Tue, 12 Jul 2005 03:41:17 +0000, James Sweet wrote:

> The Toyota will have a less fiddly electrical system but the Volvo will win
> hands down in a crash, is easier to work on, and will keep going and going.
> Both are good cars in their own ways. With the Volvo you also have the
> support of this excellent group of mostly quite helpful people, I would
> guess there's something similar for Toyota but you might wish to take a dip
> and check them out.


I wouldn't be so quick to praise the Toyota's electrical system. I see
plenty of 2nd gen Camrys that have the typical bulb failure sensor failure
(the brake lights turn out the tail lights). Things break on a Toyota,
just like on a Volvo.

--
alex
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Old 07-12-2005, 16:02   #9 (permalink)
Alex Zepeda
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Re: 240D wagon versus Camry wagon - pros and cons?

On Tue, 12 Jul 2005 05:56:23 -0700, rastlouis wrote:

> Thanks to all for your thoughts on the Volvo vs. Camry wagon issue.
> You all make excellent points for and against. I think that 240
> ownership would sit well with me. I have a garage full of tools and a
> head full of know-how when it comes to car repairs, so know that I will
> learn and understand and maintain the Volvo car very well. As long as I
> can get a very good specimen (no rust, well maintained, good records),
> I know I'll be allright.


If you do your own work, owning a 240 will be extremely cheap, and quite
rewarding. If you don't do your own work, it will be a money pit. If
you're looking for a more cushy interior, the 700 and 900 series Volvos
oblige, altho the 240 will by far have the more durable interior.

--
alex
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Old 07-12-2005, 17:02   #10 (permalink)
John Horner
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Re: 240D wagon versus Camry wagon - pros and cons?

rastlouis@rogers.com wrote:
> Hi all,
> I am a prospective owner of a late model 240D wagon. I have also been
> looking for a good mid-90's Camry wagon (they stopped selling them in
> N-A after 1996 so are rather rare). I know what I can expect with the
> Camry (relatively trouble-free ownership, comfortable, roomy), as I
> have previously owned one. The 240D comes with a big reputation, and I
> know it's a very durable and long-lived vehicle. But I gather it will
> likely require more fiddling with, troubleshooting little electrical
> issues, preventative maintenance, etc. I'm trying to factor what I
> would gain/lose with either option, before I make the decision to go
> with the 240D. I need a solid, reliable car for year-round
> transportation, commuting, the odd hauling or camping, etc. I know my
> way around cars and can use tools/manuals -as long as the
> maintenance/repair requirements aren't excessive, or get in the way of
> driving the vehicle, I actually like it.
> Any thoughts would be appreciated. Thanks
>



The 240 is a very robust and easy to service vehicle. Get the very best
one you can find and enjoy it. One friend of mine has been buying well
cared for used ones with 70-100k miles on them and then running 'em to
200-300k before selling em off. Unfortunately, his strategy is
starting to fail since the 240 went out of production in '93.

John
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