Photo by Salt Water New England

Wednesday, January 8, 2020

The Volvo 240

Photo by Salt Water New England

30 comments:

  1. Was always my favourite . Folks with large dogs were fond of this model . Back in it's day it wasn't too difficult to find a parking space that long either .

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  2. Does anyone prefer the Audi wagon to the Volvo these days? Both are a far cry from this era but the Audi feels a bit more classic and elegant looking. Not really a fan of the rest of their brand though.

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  3. Perfect in every respect, including the color! Thank you!

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  4. How I wish Volvo would bring it back again. My wife and I owned three of them...and they were the best cars we ever drove!

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    1. I think the only car company that sometimes reintroduces an old model (slightly updated) is Jeep. More often, though, a name will continue in use even though the vehicle is different.

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  5. I would favour the Benz estate wagons from that period. They are just as solid but much more luxurious.

    David J Cooper

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  6. No question about the Volvo wagon being the best of its day. It was known as the "company car" at Princeton. Today however, we have to find a reliable replacement. Seems like the Subaru might be the successor.

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  7. Oh, I thought you were referring to the boat...

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  8. Ours, bought new, lasted eighteen years. The only problem was that it went through a lot of mufflers and tailpipes. I liked my V40 (bought used) more but it didn't last as long.

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  9. I prefer the Land Cruiser. My grandfather drove that era Volvo (sedan) but it was expensive to maintain and not all that reliable.

    I've been driving my 2002 Lexus version of the Land Cruiser for ten years now (I bought it used in 2009 with about 65k miles for $23k). It has about 124k miles now and the only repair outside of regular maintenance I had to make was a broken power antenna. I think that was $140. It drives today about as new.

    Living in Idaho we don't see many Volvos as there are few dealers. The wagon of choice for most seems to be something from Subaru.

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  10. Second-best. Best was the Saab 900.

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  11. Somehow I’ve got a picture in my mind of Richard chauffeuring Hyacinth around in a Volvo like this one except the color is green. I keep thinking that just one Saturday night the Buckets will show up in that Volvo. I’m sure that’s the reason I keep watching.

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    1. As they decided not to purchase the Rolls Royce they test drove in one episode, the Bouquets went on owning a rather compact Rover model, as I recall it. I think a Volvo would be considered too Un-British for Hyacinth to come into consideration.

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  12. Those were indeed good cars. Trying to find a suitable replacement is tricky. However I’m with Chris. One’s best bet for a sturdy, boxy, hauler that’s actually reliable is the Toyota Land Cruiser or it’s Lexus Cousin (although not a true wagon). They are built to withstand literal war zones and a large pup fits nicely in the boot. They can easily take you up to the ski resort in a blizzard, waddle through a large creek to reach your cabin, or tow your sailboat when it absolute must leave the sea. A TLC is built to last for a 25 year minimum without any major repairs (thus the price tag). If only the US got all of the variants that are offered for example in Australia perhaps more than a few thousand would sell every year.

    JM, Virginia

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    1. Encore... a vote for the Land Cruiser. Once visited the motor pool of a large NGO. This in a Caribbean country not known for the quality of its roads, much less quality in anything else except perhaps art. They had just taken delivery of several vehicles, Land Cruisers and Jeep Cherokees. We asked the mechanic, “which do you prefer?” He motioned to the Jeep and said, “those last three years.” Then he looked at the Land Cruiser and he said, “those last ten years.”

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  13. I remember driving in one with my sailing friends from Cape Cod to NE Harbor for a Sears Cup regatta. One of the crew tried to see how many grapes he could fit in his mouth (it is a long drive). When he started laughing the skipper driving told him to spit them out the window, not in the car. Just then we ere passing through a toll gate with it's coin bin....

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  14. Apart from the odd Volvo and Subaru, what wagons remain offered on the American market anyway?

    European manufacturers offer a vast variety of wagon models on the european market. Seemingly however, their analysis of the US wagon market concludes in an almost exclusive demand for SUVs and sports cars. I can’t see why this is.

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    1. And boring sedans, of course.

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  15. Subaru introduced the Forester Ultimate Customized Kit Special at the Singapore Motor Show. Perhaps they had none left to give.............

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  16. Ironically, Ford Motor Co. sold Volvo to a Chinese holding company years ago, and although Volvo has experienced record sales the past few years, their #1 market is China. They now manufacture in Sweden, Malaysia, and India. Today, if I were in the market, wouldn't hesitate to get a Subaru Outback instead.

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  17. Can your mechanic still get parts? When he/she can't, that's the do-not-ignore-this signal that it's time to start looking for the reliable replacement.

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  18. After wanting a green Volvo 240 wagon for years, my sister opted for a new burgundy 740 wagon. It lasted for years as a coastal family hauler but did so with rather high cost of keep. During that era, I drove a modest Saturn SW2 wagon that lasted, between the original owner, myself, and my youngest son, for nearly 20 years and over 250K miles on both coasts. It also packed more than expected and was highly reliable, if needing more oil changes in its later years. My son even sold it in operating order. We've had Subaru vehicles ever since.

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  19. Cars always inspire some of the longest and most thoughtful threads on SWNE. It's because the cars we want to drive don't exist anymore. Everything now is simply too curvy, shiny, and overall flashy. The cars now also don't seem as sturdy looking as they used to. When thinking about what to replace my old Subaru with, I'm at a loss. The new Subaru Outbacks, even from the past few years, look like they might tip over in a strong wind. I like the looks of the basic Grand Cherokee Laredo without all that gaudy chrome, but it lacks the reliability I require. As of the past day or so, I'm considering the new Mazda CX-5. However, I can't envision ever driving that around Nantucket...or could I? Thoughts?

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    1. Im not sure why you would think the jeep would not be reliable,its probably the most reliable car mentioned in this thread,as well as being the cheapest and easiest to fix.those touting subaru clearly dont know how much it costs to replace a head gasket or band transmission.if you intend to keep the car for a while,i'd ask a mechanic.if your'e only going to keep it for a few years,just buy what you like for looks and features.they'll all go 5 years without too much pain but i would buy an extended warranty on a subaru when the factory coverage ends.

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    2. This is a plug for the Mazda. I've owned several expensive autos made in Stuttgart, one made in Coventry, and three made in Sweden - I currently drive a 2009 Mazda CX-9 purchase new and it is the best car I've owned. Has all the features one could wish for and it has been extremely reliable and inexpensive to maintain. My next car is probably a CX-5 because my third row is rarely used. This week I rode in a CX-5 and it compares favorably with my daughter's Audi Q5 which costs a whole lot more.

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    3. Thanks for your Mazda story!

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  20. Absolutely, had one and I would buy another now if they were still available. GOAT.

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  21. We’ve had Volvo’s in our family for over 50 years - 850s, xc/v70s, s60, xc60s, xc90s, s80s, however nothing will ever compare to the original Swedish brick! Often called a beat up Swedish refrigerator on its side by envious cohorts and roommates, my 240wagon dominated the I-95 college corridor from Boston/Cambridge to Philly and DC, this Swede carried it all through New England! I truly miss this extraordinary work of Swedish art!

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  22. Just had the head gaskets replaced in my wife's 2010 Subaru Legacy, long out of warranty: $350.00. Subaru pickup up $2300 of the actual cost..

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  23. My 1986 blue 245, like the one pictured, was part wet Labrador jail, part fieldstone retrieval vehicle, part bobsled (was never great in icy snowy conditions) and part temporary storage unit. The dashboard was designed by the Soviets but the seats were near perfection. When you started it, the engine would gently rock the car from side to side and the air conditioner would drop a couple of ounces of chilled water on the feet of your front seat passenger during right turns over 30km/h. It was funny for the first 94 times. The car inspired its own lexicon (the back, the way back, granite doors, the only car I could ever draw). No car has ever captured my imagination before or since. Long live the 245!

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