The Volvo V40 has been present in Volvo's lineup since 1995 as a station wagon companion to the S40 sedan. Recently, the old V40 station wagon and the S40 sedan were replaced by the all-new V40 hatchback. Although the V40 station wagon had a good, long run of 17 years and acquired quite a number of admirers, it still hit a couple of manufacturing and design lows. Here are some of the most commonly observed and reported problems with the Volvo V40 station wagon.
Most of the reported problems on the Volvo V40 had to do with the vehicle's braking system. In particular, many V40s have had issues with the service brakes wherein several owners had difficulties depressing the brake pedal and had to apply extreme pressure or use the emergency hand brake to stop the vehicle. There are also several complaints of the brakes not functioning during the cold weather where the weak brakes required more force exerted on the brake pedal and resulted to longer stopping distances.
In 2004, Volvo issued a hydraulic recall on the service brakes that affected a couple thousand Volvo V40s. The problem had to do with poor welding that can easily cause a vacuum leak.
Apart from braking issues, several complaints regarding the Volvo V40's engines have also been lodged. Many V40 drivers have experienced sudden acceleration when they were driving their V40s at lower speeds. At high speeds, this resulted to periodic jerking of the vehicle. Some V40 station wagons also had problems with engine stalling where the engine dies during idle or at stop lights. Most of these engine problems are coupled with an illuminated check engine light. Most of these engine problems have been diagnosed to result from faulty engine intake valves, leak detection pumps, and crankcase ventilation hoses.
Problems with the steering wheel and the transmission system that presented difficulties in steering control and shifting after 10,000 to 20,000 miles were also present in some V40s.
Externally, a few owners have complained about how the poor quality of the V40's windshield can cause obstruction or distortion of vision. The Volvo V40's audio system and stereo have also been called weak without the premium sound package.