Volvo 850 RVolvo has a reputation to uphold; sensible, safe and reliable. But back in the nineties there was a revelation in the making. The shrewd Swedes had spotted an opportunity to loosen their shackles, and decided a performance car was the way to go. The 850 was like any other Volvo; dependable, predictable, and honest. But in 1993 a 2.3 litre 5-cylinder turbocharged engine was added to their rather flavourless line-up, and all of a sudden the 850 sprung into life. The top of the range T-5 got to 60mph in 7.3 seconds, and came in both saloon and estate variants. OK, that may not appear to be mind-boggling acceleration today, but you’ve got to remember this was from a car more used to transporting washing machines than hot lapping the Nurburgring.

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