2008 Volvo V50 vs. Its Competition

2008 Volvo V50 image
Martin Padgett Martin Padgett Editorial Director

The 2008 Volvo V50 occupies a price range between that of economical five-door small hatchback models and wagon versions of smaller sport sedans such as the Audi A4 and BMW 3-Series.

The more affordable Audi A3 is a closer rival to the V50 and includes a more fuel-efficient and surprisingly powerful 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine.

However, the A3 isn’t as roomy inside; it doesn’t have many of the safety features that are optional in the V50.

Another possibility is the Subaru Impreza; in its base 2.5i form, it’s a much more affordable alternative, with standard all-wheel drive and performance from its horizontally opposed four-cylinder engine that’s similar to that from the base five in the Volvo.

But the so-called Impreza Wagon is no longer a wagon—it’s a shorter five-door hatchback.

The 9-3 SportCombi, from Sweden’s other car brand, Saab, is perhaps the V50’s most direct rival, but the 9-3 SportCombi also has a cramped backseat while not offering the ride refinement and poise of the V50.

All-wheel drive isn’t available on the SportCombi either.

2008 Volvo V50 image2008 Volvo V50
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2009 Audi A3 image2009 Audi A3
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2008 Subaru Impreza image2008 Subaru Impreza
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Quick Specs
The 2008 Volvo V50 has the efficiency and compactness of a small car with the available safety features and poise of a larger sport wagon.
The 2009 Audi A3 is more than a spruced-up VW hatchback, thanks to the fabulous interior, S-tronic transmission, and V-6 bark.
The comfortable 2008 Subaru Impreza has broader appeal than the former model, without losing its personality—and it’s the only small sedan model in its price range with standard all-wheel drive.
MSRP From  
Gas Mileage  
18 MPG City / 28 MPG Hwy18 MPG City / 30 MPG Hwy17 MPG City / 27 MPG Hwy
Gas I5Gas I4Gas Flat 4-Cyl
EPA Class  
Small Station WagonSmall Station WgnSub-Compact
Style Name  
4-Door Wagon 2.4L FWD4-Door HB MT 2.0T FrontTrak4-Door Manual i
Front Wheel DriveFront Wheel DriveAll Wheel Drive
Passenger Capacity  
Passenger Doors  
Body Style  
5 Door Wagon4 Door HB4 Door Sedan
Automatic,Manual w/ODManual
Detailed Spec Comparison
 2008 Volvo V50 vs. 2009 Audi A32008 Volvo V50 vs. 2008 Subaru Impreza