Volvo Vs Lexus Reliability: Full Brand Comparison

Volvo vs Lexus Reliability

In the premium car arena, Volvo and Lexus represent safety and luxury, respectively.

But which car brand is more reliable?

This article dives into their rivalry, comparing aspects like design, maintenance costs, durability, and performance.

While Volvo shines with its safety and eco-efficiency, Lexus leads in reliability, offering lower maintenance costs and superior luxury.

Learn more about Volvo vs Lexus reliability and why Lexus is the clear winner.

Key Takeaways

  • Lexus is ranked higher in reliability than Volvo, with a better overall reliability rating and lower ownership costs.
  • Lexus vehicles are cheaper to maintain than Volvo, with a lower annual average repair and maintenance cost.
  • Both Volvo and Lexus are highly durable, capable of lasting up to 300,000 miles or 20 years, though specific models may vary.
  • Volvo surpasses Lexus in safety and technology, renowned for its superior safety features and high safety ratings.

Volvo vs. Lexus Reliability: Detailed Comparison

Great; More Tech
Great; more functionality
Repair and Maintenance Cost
Volvos can last as long as 200,000 to 250,000 miles or 20 years of extensive use.
Lexus cars last 200,000 to 300,000 miles or up to 16-20 years.
Gas Mileage
Safety and Technology

Which is Better?

Lexus is better than Volvo when it comes to reliability. Lexus doesn’t only offer better reliability; they are rated as one of the most reliable cars in the world. The top reasons why Lexus wins this battle are:

  • higher reliability rating
  • more loyalty records
  • lower cost of ownership

Reliability Problems with Volvo

There was a time when Volvos were so reliable that they were used as a standard for other car brands.

Things fell off for the Volvo brand; while Lexus rose to be one of the most reliable.

Reliability Ratings

According to Repairpal, Lexus has a reliability rating of 4.0/5.0, ranking 7th out of 32 car brands. On the other hand, Volvo ranks 17th out of 32 car brands, with a reliability rating of 3.5/5.0.

JD Power’s 2022 dependability surveys rate Lexus as the 6th most reliable car with a record of only 159 problems per car, which is higher than the 192PP100 industry average.

Unfortunately, Volvo is two places after the last car, ranking 30th out of 32 cars, with a rating of 256 per 100 cars. This shows that with a Volvo, you have a greater time deal dealing with annoying auto problems.

Lexus beats Volvo in all ramifications, but it is surprising to know that the 2021 Volvo XC90 was considered a better car than the 2021 Lexus RX when it comes to “better value.”


When it comes to Volvo and Lexus designs, it is hard to place one above the other. Both cars have design concepts that are attractive, engaging, and channeled to connect with users.

Volvo adopts a futuristic design strategy that makes its concepts point to what users should expect in the future. Lexus doesn’t care about those.

The Lexus brand focuses more on creating designs that have a distinctive presence. Cars that strike a chord at first impression, bold lines, great scriptural surfaces, intricate detailing that catches the eye, and grilles that speak to your senses. Lexus passes as a performance car, so it is important to sustain a sporty look.

Volvo is not interested in the game of producing sporty cars. These cars are sturdy and strong to handle rough and uneven road conditions.

While Lexus optimizes for grilles, Volvo fits its cars with skid plates to secure your car in the event of crashes. This includes a reinforced car body shell for increased strength.

The truth is, while it is true that Volvo cars are loaded with more tech than Lexus, this does not in any way mean that Lexus has the worst designs. Most Volvo cars tend to have more legroom, but you can rely on Lexus for better hybrid designs.

The issue of legroom is relative because the Lexus RX 350 has more space for passengers than Volvo XC90.

Most times, comparisons of design boil down to users’ preferences. Some users believe Volvo’s designs are plain, while some see Lexus as boring and ugly.

Winner: Both

Repair and Maintenance Cost

It is cheaper to maintain a Lexus car than a Volvo. Take a look at the annual repair costs for each:

  • Volvo: $769/year
  • Lexus: $551/ year

Both Volvo and Lexus cars give a 0.5 chance of visiting the mechanic for minor repairs. But, with Volvo, you have a 9% chance of major repairs, while Lexus has 8%.

There are a few explanations backing why it is costly to repair and maintain a Volvo. Volvo is considered a luxury brand, so its parts are expected to be expensive. Furthermore, you’d have to find a mechanic with the correct software to program the parts.

You might end up only relying on your car’s dealer. This software is ridiculously expensive, so this will affect the cost of repairs from independent mechanics. For instance, the software used for ABS and airbag code modules cost up to $8000/per year.

Winner: Lexus


Both cars are extremely durable. Whichever choice you make between Volvo and Lexus, you are sure to enjoy the benefits of durability.

The problem is that both car brands have car models in different production years that have nothing to write home about. For instance, the 2000/2004 Volvo S80 sedan, Volvo V70, and the S60.

The problem of these cars ranges from software glitches to engine problems. It is important that you research and compare your preferred mode/trim level.

This is also the same way we warn you against buying these models:

  • 2007 Lexus ES350
  • 2007 Lexus LS 460
  • 2009 Lexus RX 350
  • 2007 Lexus IS 250

Lexus has rectified the problems in most of these, but you must make you make your choice carefully.

Winner: Both

Engine and Performance

Lexus and Volvo have a lineup of great engines. However, Volvo delivers more engine power and speed.

Lexus and Volvo cars feature the same transmission line, FWD and AWD systems, and eAWD. But it takes a shorter time for a Volvo car to sprint from 0 – 60mph than it will with a Lexus. This doesn’t mean that Lexus makes bad engines with poor performance.

Lexus is in its league and makes superb engines compared to the engines of many car brands, like the V8 engines. You can get smooth handling: impressive steering, and minimal chance of visiting the mechanic for major repairs.

The Volvo Drive or drive E engines are superb. These engines make Volvo fun to drive and give speed lovers an impressive burst of power. However, to ensure drivers’ safety, the Volvo brand announced a limit on how fast their cars will go.

New Volvo cars are limited to 112mph. This decision will reduce the occurrence of accidents and road injuries.

Winner: Volvo

Gas Mileage

Comparisons of gas mileage between Volvo and Lexus cars depend on the model you choose. The Lexus RX 350, Volvo XC60, and XC90, there isn’t much proof to indicate that any of the models is way better than the other.

Lexus utilizes the Eco mode as a fuel-saving technology. There isn’t any fuel-saving technology in most Volvo cars, except for the iSee technology in its trucks.

Nevertheless, while both car brands promise a good dose of fuel efficiency, it is advisable that if you wish to go for Volvo cars, your search should start with their 2022 models or newer. Those have better fuel efficiency.

Winner: Both

Safety and Technology

Volvo outperforms Lexus in all safety dimensions. Lexus has an impressive record of safety and passenger protection, but Volvo’s reputation for safety is unbreakable.

There was a time when the Volvo 240 was a standard the US government set for other cars to follow. The Volvo brand runs an “open-source” system that allows other car brands to learn from them and make the world a safer place.

There are fifteen Volvo cars earning the 2021 IIHS safety rating, while there are six Lexus cars earning the 2021 IIHS safety rating.

Winner: Volvo

Is a Volvo better than a Lexus?

With clear analysis, it is obvious that Lexus is better than Volvo. The cost of maintenance on Lexus is cheaper than what Volvo offers, and you will have fewer reasons to visit the mechanic than with Volvo. Volvos are great cars, but the high cost of ownership puts Lexus above them.

Verdict: Is a Volvo better than a Lexus?

With clear analysis, Lexus is better than Volvo overall. The cost of maintenance on Lexus is cheaper than what Volvo offers, and you will have fewer reasons to visit the mechanic. Volvos are great cars, but the high cost of ownership puts Lexus above them.

Choosing between a Lexus and a Volvo car depends on your needs and preferences, why you need a car, and your budget. Lexus cars are way cheaper and easier to maintain. You don’t need a Volvo if you can’t afford the increased cost of luxury.

Frequently Asked Questions

Who is better, Lexus or Volvo?

Volvo offers greater style and engineering, but Lexus is less expensive to own and repair. Overall, Lexus is more reliable.

Is Lexus a reliable brand?

As the luxury subset of Toyota, Lexus is a highly reliable brand. It’s labeled as one of the most reliable brands according to Consumer Reports surveys.

Who is Volvo’s biggest competitor?

The top three competitors for Volvo include Audi, Toyota, and Lexus.

Are Volvos reliable cars?

Overall, Volvo maintains an average reliability score, meaning you can certainly find reliable models. However, if reliability is your main concern, then Lexus and several other brands are better options.

Is Volvo high maintenance?

Compared to Lexus vehicles, Volvos are more expensive to maintain and tend to require more frequent expensive repairs. However, some other luxury brands are still more costly to maintain.