Loss of drive power and other varied malfunctions are among the main complaints to the NHTSA from vehicle owners
The 2022 Volvo S60 was the first of the automaker’s cars to be manufactured in the US, in its plant in Ridgeville, South Carolina. Originally launched in 2018, the new S60 sports sedan is described as “a seamless blend of sportiness and luxury.” But customers are concerned about loss of drive power, as well as dead batteries, accelerator malfunctions, and brake failure that affects their use of the 2022 S60.
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Most Common Problems with the 2022 S60
Complaints to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) about the 2022 Volvo S60 between July 2022 and March 2023 relate to a cross-section of components and systems. While the primary complaint relates to a loss of drive power, the complaint categories highlighted include the Electrical System, the Engine, Engine and Engine Cooling, Forward Collision Avoidance, the Fuel/Propulsion System, Powertrain, Service Brakes, and the Wheels of the car.
The complaint about wheels is brief but startling. “I have had all 3 wheels bend (and) 1 wheel blow apart within 7 months of owning the car.”
There are also two recalls for the 2022 Volvo S60. Unsurprisingly, one of these is due to a loss of drive power. According to NHTSA Campaign Number 22V793000, as many as 15,674 Volvo cars, including the 2022 and 2023 S60, are affected. The problem is that an electronic control module (ECM) software error may prevent the combustion engine from starting, causing a loss of drive power. As drive power is lost, and the high voltage battery depleted, there is a greater risk of a crash.
The other recall affects as many as 19,149 Volvo cars, including 2021-2022 S60 vehicles. The problem here is that there is a seat belt locking retractor malfunction that concerns children. The retractors have been seen to deactivate early, which can prevent the child restraint system from securing properly. If this happens and the cars crash, the risk of children being injured increases.
2022 Volvo S60 Complaint Summary
|Complaint Category||Number of Complaints|
|Engine And Engine Cooling|
|Forward Collision Avoidance: Adaptive Cruise Control|
Loss of Power and Battery Issues
From these complaints, it is clear there is a link between faulty batteries and vehicles shutting off or losing drive power. Whilst the first complaint shown below was listed with the NHTSA before the loss of drive power recall in October 2022, the second was listed nearly three months later, in January 2023. This owner is convinced that his vehicle should have been included in the recall, but it wasn’t.
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S60 Shuts off on Highways and Interstates
The first complaint lodged with the NHTSA about the 2022 S60 was from an owner in Los Angeles who identified his problems as being related to forward collision avoidance and the electrical system. Although he only complained in July 2022, the problem started in February 2022 when the new vehicle started “shutting off while driving on highways and interstates.” This usually happened when other vehicles were approaching from behind at speeds up to 70 mph. A particularly alarming incident was when the S60 shut off within feet of a railroad crossing. The owner also found that on various occasions, he was unable to turn the Volvo S60 off. Sometimes there were warning messages stating that the vehicle was shutting off or powering down, or that parking assist wasn’t available or that the park/brake needed service.
The dealer diagnosed that the mid voltage battery module (MVBM) was faulty and replaced the “dead battery” and the MVBM. But within a month, the new battery had drained and he was unable to drive the vehicle. The dealership replaced the battery a second time. Days later, the S60 began stopping again with the same error message. This time, the dealer maintained that something had spilled on the center console, which is next to the cup holder. “They say it is an external problem and they aren’t responsible for the failure. They state that they can fix but can’t guarantee (the) problem won’t mysteriously arise again. There was never a spill in (the) vehicle.”
In addition to loss of drive power, the complaint states that “the adaptive cruise control shuts off with no visual or auditory warning when sensors can’t read road markings. The vehicle has almost veered completely off the road and in two instances (at) the beginning of bridges.”
Critical Safety Fault in Battery
An owner from Florida experienced a loss of motive power when driving at 40 mph, and filed the problem as an engine and engine cooling problem. The failure mileage was 42,000. According to the complaint, the error message, “Critical Safety Fault Battery – Stop and Service Immediately” was displayed. He managed to drive to work where he arranged for the Volvo to be towed to the dealer.
The dealer diagnosed the vehicle as having the failure listed in the first recall (22V793000) described above. However, the VIN wasn’t included in the recall. The Volvo was repaired and the owner filed a case with the manufacturer.
Motive Problems After or When Reversing
Several complaints state that the 2022 S60 sometimes stops after being reversed. These also appear to be loss of drive power issues that are related to the battery, but going backward rather than forward.
Problem Includes a Battery ECM Warning
An NHTSA complaint from an owner in California is listed as a powertrain and engine problem. It states that the 2022 S60 “came to a sudden abrupt halt and the check engine lamp and other warning lamps illuminated. The ignition was still active (the car was in hybrid mode, operating on battery for motive power only).” He cycled the transmission to Drive but was unable to move forward. So, he tried Reverse and then switched back into Drive. Still no movement! Eventually, “I cycled the ignition off and on, (and) the engine started” and he could drive again. However, the check engine light (CEL) was still on.
He scanned the car and found “permanent” diagnostic trouble codes (DTCs). These were “Lost Communication with Battery Energy Control Module” and “Lost Communication with Starter Generator Control Module.” After using the key to switch the car on and off a few times, the CEL went out and battery power was available again.
“The DTCs are still in (the car’s) memory. This is a serious concern (as) the car suffered complete loss of motive power. Had this occurred while operating the car on the road (it) would have created a very dangerous condition and greatly increased risk of injury or death.” This led him to check for similar reports online, and he “found multiple reports of this exact same problem with other owners of Volvo T8 Extended Range-equipped vehicles.”
The ECM, which is the problem that led to the loss of drive power recall, and battery are implicated in this complaint. But this was not identified as an issue by the dealer. This is probably because the recall was only issued more than a month later, on October 20, 2022.
Dealer Unable to Diagnose the Problem
Another owner from a different city in California describes an intermittent problem that also occurs when the Volvo is placed in Drive after being reversed. However, he has listed it as a fuel/propulsion issue.
After reversing, the vehicle stops and the driver places it in B, which is Drive with extra regenerative braking. Then he presses the accelerator, but the vehicle doesn’t move. As he continues to try and accelerate, “the transmission slams into gear and the vehicle launches with all the vigor of a vehicle that has the accelerator pressed to the floor.”
In mid-September 2022, the dealer confirmed that the correct software revisions were installed, but wasn’t able to diagnose or fix the problem.
A complaint from an owner in California focuses on the brakes. “There have been 3 occasions where the pedal became extremely difficult to press, and the vehicle did not slow down properly. This nearly caused a crash. There were no alarms or alerts.”
He took the Volvo to the dealership for repairs. “They confirmed that there were no diagnostic codes and verified that all the correct software was installed.” But, “They were unable to find and correct the problem.”
What can you do if your S60 is a lemon?
If you think your 2022 Volvo S60 could be a lemon, Lemberg Law is available to assess your problems free of charge. Every year, vehicle manufacturers are forced to replace vehicles, buy them back, or pay cash settlements to owners who have discovered they bought “lemons.” Lemon law makes Volvo pay the legal fees, which is why we don’t charge.
All you have to do is call the Lemberg Law Helpline or fill in a contact form.