Quiet Motorway Cruisers - Paul Robinson

Just had another day doing a long distance motorway trip and I now have a headache. Changing circumstances mean this is going to happen frequently, so I'd be interested to know what backroomers think are the best mainstream (not luxury) quiet motorway cruisers!
Quiet Motorway Cruisers - flatfour
I don't know how you class a Saab but, they are great motorway cruisers, definately no headache or backache. The basic models ie 9-3 S or new Linear are more reasonable priced without compromise to seat or ride quality, and it still lokks as good as one that is fully loaded. 33mpg average from 9-3, 35mpg on long run at 65-70mph.
Quiet Motorway Cruisers - dom grimes
I have to agree with this. I had a saab 9-5 and as a long distance mile muncher it has no equal - and I've had mercs and beemers. The seats in a saab are the best in any class. I used to do 900-1100 miles a week and they were a pleasure in the saab. only problem was it drank fuel like a sailor on weekend bender. it was a 2.3T and it was quick.
Quiet Motorway Cruisers - Hugo {P}
Recommend a Xantia Turbo Diesel.

I have had plenty of good motorway miles with my 2.0l 16v petrol and the suspension really does pay dividends. If it weren't for the replacement vehicle I would be keeping it for another few years yet

The only reasons I would choose a TD rather than the petrol are the economy and the lower revving of the engine may help alleviate the headache problems.

Quiet Motorway Cruisers - JAJ
In anticipation of being abused by all other backroomers, I'd suggest that you try a new model Vectra. Ignore the 1.8 petrol and 2.0 TD and go for the 2.2TD. Motorway cruising is near silent - I work in Madrid and have to go around the M40 (their M25) each day and this car is nice to sit in - much better in my opinion than the Mondeo and I have driven all engine varieties.

The car sits happily at 140kpmh with just 3000 rpm so it is a peaceful environment.

Quiet Motorway Cruisers - GS
JAJ, I agree with you. I recently had a Vectra 2.2DTi auto for three days and it really surprised me with its quiet motorway cruising and 44mpg at 75mph. The Mondeo TDCi auto I drove last week was not such a quiet cruiser as the Vectra and only averaged 40mpg at simillar speeds, however the Mondeo is more of a "drivers" car once you are away from the motorways and in my opinion has a better seating position than the Vectra.
Quiet Motorway Cruisers - Paul Robinson

I wondered if anyone would dare mention a Vectra!
Quiet Motorway Cruisers - Altea Ego
well i have to say it but......... My 1.9dci Laguna is a supreme motorway cruiser, very quiet. at 70mph the rev counter does not hit 2k revs. Comfortable quiet and refined at motorway speeds.
Quiet Motorway Cruisers - Al can\'t fixit
My experiences:

Peugeot 405. Despite being old & having many, many miles on the clock can still make easy & pleasant work of every motorway trip.
Pug 406 similar ride quality, also Citroen ZX estate.
(I haven't experienced the Xantia/XM/BX but have heard good things).
Mazda 626 - smoothness on wheels

Also the other day I went on a long distance trip in a Ford galaxy TDi. Very relaxing & comfortable, & the 6 speed gearbox gave a 70Mph cruise @ 2000RPM! Quiet or what!
I would imagine the VW Sharan is the same.

Quiet Motorway Cruisers - andymc {P}
Quietest & most refined car I've ever been in is a Rover 75. In fact, one time I was reading in the back seat of my sister-in-law's petrol-engined model, sitting in the car-park when the car started to move. I panicked for a moment because I thought somehow the it had started to roll unchecked - in fact, the engine had been started and reverse engaged without me hearing or feeling a thing. Very nice car to cruise the motorway over the Pennines in as well.
While not as sublime as the 75, my Passat is pretty well insulated against road & engine noise, and it's only a 1.9 TDi. I did a 1000 mile tour during 8 days over the summer & never felt tired or worn out. Wouldn't recommend the yo-yo shock absorbers though ... let's wait until next week to see if there's an improvement.
Quiet Motorway Cruisers - RickyBoy
Octavia vRS ? but then you just knew I was going to say that (yawn...)? Cruised back from Leeds (to MK) last night @ 80-100mph. 150+ miles. 2hrs dead. Filled-up on arrival home in anticipation of today's price hikes (boo, hiss). Cost £17. Nice!

Nice to see the Octavia at P3 in the list of 'cars people would recommend to other people, etc., apparently...
Quiet Motorway Cruisers - M.M

Haven't you got a 406TD at present, that should be absolutely fine.

Sure the job isn't the headache and not the car?


Quiet Motorway Cruisers - Paul Robinson

You may be right about the job being the headache!

My 406TD is nice and quiet at about 60mph, but at usual motorway speed (indicated 75-80mph)it does tend to drone, perhaps it's just the wrong frequency for my sensitive ears.


Quiet Motorway Cruisers - M.M

The TD is high geared and, like my similar Xantia TD, there should be no obvious individual noises apart from a "whoosh" due to your mentioned speeds. These are similar to my own motorway cruising speeds where obviously I compensate of the over reading speedo.

I know we bang on about our old Xantia TDs that are near scrap to many here running newer vehicles....but they cruise as well as anything.

I do wonder if there is something specific causing your droning? Things that could do this are...

Pattern or badly fitted exhaust with an unfortunate resonance period. Wheel bearings. Engine mounts. Driveshafts. Tyre type or even a bulged or out of round one.

Just a thought.

Quiet Motorway Cruisers - Paul Robinson

Thank you for your thoughts I'll get a second opinion, it's due a service soon.

The 406 is a heavy car and with a Cat and air con, I think it has to work quite hard at those speed, so I suspect I'll be told it's me who has the problem, not the car!

Quiet Motorway Cruisers - Flat in Fifth

From personal experience of getting home with a headache after a longish commute, and not wishing to alarm, but it just might be worth getting a health check on more than just the car, and pronto!

The headaches are telling you something is wrong somewhere, that is for sure!


Quiet Motorway Cruisers - Paul Robinson

Thank you for your concern, I know what you mean. I wouldn't want to have my blood pressure taken at the moment! I do have a plan to do something about it soon.


Quiet Motorway Cruisers - matt35 {P}
Also, from personal experience, I spent 4 days in Hospital last week, first time and terrified.
Had a walnut sized tumour removed from my bowel - non malignant, Thank God - by TEMS, kind of micro surgery up your bum without going in through the abdomen (is bum permitted?).
Not motoring related in any way, but I left it longer than I should have - and your comment might just help someone to take action sooner rather than later.
If we took care of our bodies as we take care of our cars?
Quiet Motorway Cruisers - Paul Robinson

Sorry to hear about your health problem, I do hope you make a speedy recovery. It's a good point, so many of us men are guilty of not giving health the priority we should!
Quiet Motorway Cruisers - matt35 {P}
Paul, Thank you for your kind comment - a few of my good mates in the IAM were asking if I had been reamed - some of the older members will understand the expression.
My biopsy showed no sign of the big C and I think I am well on the way to recovery - thanks to the Magic people at Norfolk and Norwich Hospital.
To repeat my point, I left it a bit long to get treatment but was lucky not to have left it too late.
Maybe DD will leave this non-motoring post long enough for others to learn from my mistakes???
Quiet Motorway Cruisers - blank

Don't know if your budget extends this far, but I hired a new Avensis recently. I thought it was a superb car. Comfortable, well equipped, pleasant rather than exciting to drive but quieter than any other car I have experienced, including the Rover 75.
Can't remember in which magazine I read a test recently between Mondeo, Laguna, Vectra(?) and Avensis. Avensis won and the testers agreed with my impression of the Toyota's quietness.

Quiet Motorway Cruisers - pd
When the Avensis was launched Toyota sort-of claimed that the noise level targets were the same as that for the original LS400. From some posts here it sounds like they at least got close.

As far as motorway cruisers are concerned most of the usual suspects have been mentioned. If going used you could also look at various 2-4 year old largish barges such as the Volvo S80, Omega, Rover 75, Lexus GS300, Alfa 166 etc. all of which should be available in decent condition for under £10k.
Quiet Motorway Cruisers - topaktas
My Bentley Turbo R, and a wonderful sound system when I get fed up with the sound of silence.
Quiet Motorway Cruisers - Big Cat
For me it has to be the Rover 75, especially the 2.5 V6 or the 2.0 TD. 1.8 not quite so refined although powerful as a 1.8T.
Quiet Motorway Cruisers - peterb
1.8 Rover is quite noisy.

New Avensis is v. quiet (even the old one was pretty good on this score).
Quiet Motorway Cruisers - Kevin

>My Bentley Turbo R, and a wonderful sound system when I get fed up with the sound of silence.


I suspect that Paul's idea of "mainstream (not luxury)" won't inlude Bentley.

BTW, did you ever get your ECU problem fixed ?

Quiet Motorway Cruisers - Vin {P}
"If going used you could also look at various 2-4 year old largish barges such as ... Omega"

Steady on, old chap. "Barge"? "Lissom young stallion", I think you meant.

A 2.5CDX (loads of toys), 75k miles, 1999 T, would put you out for about £4K absolute max at auction. As a value for money motorway cruiser, I think you'd be hard put to better that.

Quiet Motorway Cruisers - SpamCan61 {P}
Agree 100% ..I've just bought a second Omega for this precise purpose... "motorway cruise all day for under 2K". I bought a 2 litre manual for easier servicing / better economy; it doesn't feel much slower than the V6 SWMBO drives unless you're a 'red line then change up' type.

Plus the electric rear sun blind of course ;-).
Quiet Motorway Cruisers - Glaikit Wee Scunner {P}
I'd recommend a current model 1.9 VW Passat diesel.
30 mph/1000 revs. Pretty quiet and the seats do not cause backache.
Automatic climate control has been a real boon for comfort this summer. Drove back from Verdun to Derbyshire in a oner and no aches or pains. Like you I get headaches , I blame it on these PC monitors and work stress.
Quiet Motorway Cruisers - Harmattan
Slightly tangential but I would second the comments about checking tyres for their noise contribution. Tyre noise aggravated by road surface is probably much more relevant than any other form of noise you are picking up (assuming the car has no obvious faults). I put in 400 miles last week on British and French motorways in a late 80s Mercedes S class. The passenger behind me (I was driving) was deaf in his right ear and I had to raise my voice slightly on British m-ways (M40, M25 and M20) and not at all on the French m-ways and dual carriageways (Calais to St Omer to Boulogne to Calais). One or two bits of the M20 had a quiet surface as good as the French but it was clearly tyre noise that contributed the most to overall sound impact. The tyres on the car were Nokians which are allegedly good for noise, but a back-to-back test with something else fitted to the same car would be fascinating.

I find and autobox and climate control very worthwhile contributors to enjoying a long journey and, dare I say it here, simple cruise control or the hand throttle type on the Merc.
Quiet Motorway Cruisers - No Do$h
coming in at slight tangent.... (not like me)

How is your back feeling? Any headaches I suffer invariably stem from a tired, stiff neck, bought about by poor posture (often due to poor seating at work).

I see my Osteo every 6 weeks or so, just as the headaches start to set in. Sorts out my middle back and lo! Neck loosens and headaches vanish.
Quiet Motorway Cruisers - LongDriver {P}
I agree with the earlier comment up the screen there.

I do 1000+ miles per week in my Galaxy TDI. Very comfortable, great driving position and very quiet. Good torque as well, so as nippy as it needs to be..
Quiet Motorway Cruisers - Martin Wall
Depends on your budget I guess but a big Volvo - S80 or V70 should do the job although I understand the new Avensis is quiet also.

Sounds as though you want something that turns over few revs at high speeds - hence the diesel recommendations I guess.

One of the magazines used to list noise levels at various speeds - maybe Autocar perhaps - I'm not sure if they still do this...

Like the man said though, look after yourself!

Quiet Motorway Cruisers - Kevin

Forgot to mention...


have you been for an eye-test recently?

My father had a similar problem that was cured by a change of specs.



Value my car