If you buy a Volvo, there are several traits that you expect from the car. You expect longevity, and you expect safety. Longevity is a tradition, more than a stated design goal of Volvo, but they do like to advertise about how some owners get 300,000+ miles out of their old Volvos. And Volvo definitely advertises its emphasis on safety.
Now, there is news that Volvo is having problems with its electronic throttle bodies in 1999-2001 models. Since the throttle is computer controlled, if the ETM fails, you are not going to drive any further, as there is no mechanical backup. Customers are stalling, and are having to replace the throttle bodies well before 100,000 miles. Gummed up throttle bodies also, according to CARB, are increasing hydrocarbon emissions.
There are reports of some dealers telling people they have to pay for the repair, and accusing customers of using "bad gas", which somehow gums up the throttle body. This is absolutely ridiculous. What is "bad gas" and where do you get it? Are thousands of Volvo owners driving to Mexico to buy unfiltered gas from some 50 gallon drums?
This is entirely the wrong reaction. Instead of fighting it, Volvo should cheerfully replace very bad ETM when the time comes, free of charge. They should issue a service bulletin, requiring dealers to clean and check the suspect ETMs whenever a car comes in for service. Otherwise, they have violated both their commitment to safety and to pollution control, more importantly, they have damaged their image.