A NEW APPROACH IN AN AGE OLD BUSINESS+44 (0) 1926 691 141
Sold for: £30,600
Fastidious body restoration by Volvo approved body shop Full mechanical rebuild by Volvo main dealer. Great details Superb new interior including seats, carpets and door cards Project commissioned by Volvo Heritage for marketing and promotional purposes This is Volvo 'showing-off'. We doubt you'll find a better one The decidedly avant-garde styling of the P1800 was the work of Pelle Petterson under the tutelage of Pietro Frua, during the period his studio was effectively a subsidiary of Carrozzeria Ghia. Immortalised by the hit TV series “The Saint” starring an emergent Roger Moore, the model sold well, with 39,407 Coupes and 8,077 Estates produced between 1961 and 1973. In December 1957, the first hand-built P1800 prototype was driven to the headquarters of Karmann. Volvo had hoped that Karmann would be able to take on the tooling and building of the P1800 and they were ready to build it which meant that the first cars could hit the market as early as December 1958. But in February, Karmann's most important customer, Volkswagen, petulantly forbade Karmann to take on the job as they feared that the P1800 would compete with the sales of their own cars and threatened to cancel all their contracts if they took it on. This setback almost caused the project to be abandoned and it looked doomed until a press release surfaced with a photo of the car, putting Volvo in a position where they had to acknowledge its existence. These events persuaded the company to renew its efforts with their 'new baby' and it was presented to the public for the first time at the Brussels Motor Show in January 1960. Volvo turned to Jensen Motors, whose production lines were under-utilised, they agreed a contract for 10,000 cars and it wasn't long before the first production P1800 rolled out of Jensen's West Bromwich factory, destined for its excited first owner. It's fairly common now for the larger single-make car dealerships to keep in their showroom, a low mileage, well-restored example of one of the company's products from a few decades ago. In fact, some major car brands are devising inter-dealership competitions inviting their craft technicians and apprentices to fully restore an important model from the seventies and eighties, generating some brand loyalty and also giving all concerned a chance to work with vehicles not dependant of electronics and diagnostics. The P1800 that we are pleased to offer today was one such vehicle selected for the purpose but now surplus to requirements. Our vendor tells the story; “The following information was given to me by the seller of this vehicle at the time of our purchase: The car was originally produced for the UK market in 1968. It was then exported to the Netherlands in 1976 where it remained until 21st November 2012, It remained in Holland for 36 years and was dry stored with a small collection in a basement garage for more than 14 years, after which the owner gave it to his son. His son lives in the UK so shipped it back in 2012. Some refurbishment/recommissioning was done in Holland before shipping (Engine valves hardened for unleaded fuel, suspension, brakes). When I bought the car I reregistered it, MoT'd it etc and a Historic plate was issued to it. Not the original plate. I have the original Dutch registration and the new V5/c, plus the original British number plates but I don't have the original buff log book. We purchased the vehicle in August 2015 to use as a showpiece and to exploit marketing opportunities. The brief was to buy a "Good example". This vehicle fitted the bill, a very solid body with an excellent interior, at this time it was finished in a solid green colour with tan interior. It was good enough to go straight into the showroom, however, under bright lighting, the paintwork was showing its age in places. After some time, we decided we wanted to make a Good example, Very Good. We commissioned our body and workshop to strip it back to metal and colour change to California White. Paintwork: 2 Coats of Etch primer 5 Coats of Two Pack high build primer 3 Coats of Two Pack Volvo California White Body: All panels removed and stripped to bare metal Reseal all joints and seams New sound deadening to doors and inside of vehicle Waxoyl inside panels Under seal underside of the vehicle. All chrome removed and sent for restoration Original glass polished and restored Replace incongruous spoked wheels with Pirelli Cinturato replica hubs Many supporting images are available. Mechanical: Engine removed, stripped and painted. Compression was good therefore re-build was not deemed necessary. The suspension was removed and painted. Interior: A full colour change with new upholstery and carpets finished in Black” This P1800 S is as nice as you will see and is very sensibly guided considering the hundreds of hours recently invested in its well being.