Volvos have a reputation for being pretty tough, and they need to be. Swedish roads in winter are no joke, with fearsome weather and some pretty big animals. The country has an official elk test that all cars have to pass, just to make sure they won’t get flattened if they run into any of the local wildlife. Anything made by Volvo is built to survive in those conditions, so you can imagine what their off road vehicles are like.
In fact they’re pretty much like all Volvo’s other cars – built like tanks. If you want an off road Volvo you have two options – the XC70 and the slightly larger XC90. These are both crossover-style wagons; the XC70 is basically a V70 estate with raised ground clearance and beefed up suspension, and the XC90 is a new body on a more rugged version of the S80 chassis. Both of them come with a range of powerful engines, including some fantastic turbodiesels, so they have plenty of grunt when the ground gets tricky.
Obviously most XC owners aren’t going to take theirs off road in case they scratch it, but there’s nothing to stop you getting around a lot of the bush in yours. All you need to do is get it properly kitted out and you can go pretty much anywhere. We’d suggest you start by making sure you can handle any really tough spots you run into. A couple of sets of sand channels are a must – they’ll get you across a lot of soft patches, and help you escape from any you don’t spot in time. Just in case you end up a bit deeper throw an exhaust jack in too; they work on any ground, and the exhaust gas does all the work for you. Snatch straps are also essential, in case you or anyone else needs pulled out.
There’s plenty of room in the back of either XC, so you can carry all your gear, but it’s a good idea to keep it secure and organised. A cargo barrier is pretty mush essential, because you don’t want to hit a bump and have heavy stuff flying into the back seat. We also have a load of drawer systems and storage boxes to make sure everything stays where you want it to be (and can be found when you need it).
You can even use some of that load space for one of our Bushpower fridge/freezers. Camp cooking doesn’t have to be all tins and ramen noodles; with an on-board fridge you can keep meat and seafood fresh, as well as having a reliable supply of cold stubbies to enjoy at the end of the day.
A Volvo XC is just as happy in the bush as it is in the golf club car park, so if you want to take yours touring you’re in for some fun. Just make sure you have the accessories you need to keep you mobile and comfortable. Tough Toys are here to make sure you get that gear at the best possible price.