Question about 2001 Volvo S60

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2001 volvo s60 t5 - performance reduced warning message, limp mode activated

Reported performance reduced, engine service required and engine service urgent warnings to dealer. during servicing they reported no faults found. 3 days later, performance reduced warning and limp mode again. however, after leaving the car 2 days, the message disappeared and the engine is idling properly.

i have read that this model was recalled due to a faulty electronic thottle module (causing the above) but it could also be dirty plugs or collapsed turbo vacuum pump. needless to say i have limited confidence in my dealer to sort this without a further large bill. any ideas?


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  • archied Oct 07, 2008

    Thanks. I mentioned the software update to the dealer (it was recalled in the US) but the dealer advises my engine number is not on the UK recall list. therefore, it cannot be that! surprising number of posts on this problem, with fixes ranging from cleaning the starter motor lead, to changing all manner of bits and pieces. only consistent bit is the failure of Volvo to live up to a reputation for reliability. Just this weekend, turned the key and wouldn't start. apparently immobiliser kicks in after a few attmepts to start, so had to go back next day and it started.

    There's a lawyer in the US who's started a class action law suit for the performance reduced problem. hope has some joy.


  • Anonymous Dec 13, 2008

    I have a 2004 Volvo s60R and got the warning message for reduced engine performance, it was giving me problems starting when it came on. I brought it to a Volvo dealership and they replaced the impulse sensor. I don't know yet that it has corrected the problem but I seem to have a lot more power and as of today it has not given me any trouble with starting.

  • murr2349 Jan 05, 2009

    I just bought, privately, a 2005 '55' reg S80, with 91,000 miles, which has now started to show 'engine service required' message as soon as I start accelerating at anything more than a 'pensioner' rate. The message stays until the motor is switched offf then shows the normal mileage message until I accelerate hard again. I'm taking it to a friend today to check it on his diagnostic machine, but am looking for the simple cause! Looks like it's an ongoing problem with Volvo across the range!

    Murray, Scotland

  • garment Mar 14, 2009

    Just brought my 2001 Volvo S60 T into the dealer because the car lost nearly all power and the 'performance reduced' warning light appeared on the dashboard. The car had no power in any gear. I have no idea what the problem can be. It is Friday so may have to wait until Monday to get the  dealer's response.  IOf any one has suggestions on what to may be wrong, a history of this problem with other S60 T Volvos, or the name of the lawyer who is putting together the class action suit. Please let me know. Many thanks.

  • Anonymous Apr 16, 2009

    I read the many letters about performance reduced and have exacly the same problem in my t5 from 2001. I want to know if anybody know of the result of the lawsuit, and the garanti extendet to 100.000 miles if it also covering a s60 bought in Israel and made in Belgium. I heard that as Volvo is an international comp. it shoud cower all over the world.



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I had exactly the same problem on my UK 2001 S60.
It was caused by the throttle control housing gaskets not being serviced properly and consequently the entire housing had to be replaced - not a cheap job -and a valuable lesson learned - use a reputable volvo specialist to service your volvo - I didn't and I learnt the hard why! only a volvo specilaist would have known about this I went to several other main street garages & none of them could even diagnose the problem let alone fix it. Although they did do numerous other things first before they gave up - ie replaced titanium spark plugs.
Before it stoppped running altogther and went into "limp home mode" there were tell-tale engine/throttle surges when the car was idle, but in gear.
It is now running "like new" & I will never get another garage to service it, as this could have been avoided - however they can also wear out after about 10years - so my bad services just made it happen sooner!
I hope this helps!

Posted on Apr 06, 2009

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I have a 2000 s60 2.0t and got the software update due to the recall. it apparently was some kind of safety measure when a fault of some kind occurred but it nearly got someone killed while overtaking and thats why the recall happened. sounds like the same issue but i could be wrong.

Posted on Oct 05, 2008


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