From the archives: Volvo 164

Sometimes we look through an old photo album and find a picture of a person or place and we will be waxing nostalgically about that memory. For us car dudes and car dudettes there are other things that may be hiding in old photo albums: Old CARS!!

Pictures of cars or motorcycles we use to own. Of course we always say:
“I wish I kept that one” but you know you would not own any of the other cars that followed if you did, and what fun would that be?

Volvo 164 front 3

This latest photo album dive started with me finding this car behind a house. This looks to be a 1974 with the Federally MANDATED huge A$$ park benches as a sad excuse for bumpers. Other than that: We dig it. Love the color…or what’s left of it.


Volvo 164

This prompted us to take a look back in my brother’s album from 1981. That does not sound too long ago but these are 33 year old pictures. Ronald Regan became president, Muhammad Ali retires, Lady Diana marries some dude named Charles and the 52 Iran hostages was released.

This is a 1972 model. This is the first year for flush door handles. We would probably not opt for the pop-up sunroof today but at the time it was all the rage. We like those super rare optional Volvo wheels. The we sold black but just like the valve cover on this car they got 
polished. Jan Wilsgaard designed a concept car called P358 and that design would be used for the 164 design.

Did you know that they did not have mobile phones back then??!! How did they survive?
I mean, people were not able to instantly post a picture of their meal on the great big web, how did they manage get thru life?? …and what about the people that did not get the benefit of seeing that meal, how did they cope?? Just saying…those were hard times!


Volvo 164 rear

Swedish Butt: The earlier 164 cars had the smaller 140 style tail lights but the big”164″ on the rear facia made sure everyone knew you were traveling in style and comfort.

Volvo 164 side

A stylish car from every angle. Speaking of waxing…my brother is still talking about that super smooth six cylinder with amazing low end torque. This car was equipped with 4 speed overdrive and you could hit second gear very quickly and enjoy the 6 cylinder power.

Photo: Lars Åström

Rare 1967 Volvo Amazon 123GT on eBay, no reserve!…with parts car!


1967 Volvo Amazon 123GT

Vin # 133351M-251533
1967 volvo 123GT right side
1967 volvo 123GT Left Hella light
1967 volvo 123GT right side Hella light
1967 volvo 123GT left Hella detail
Hella Spot light
1967 volvo 123GT right Hella detail

Hella Fog light


1967 Volvo 123GT front 1967 Volvo 123GT left side 1967 Volvo 123GT LR 1967 Volvo 123GT RF 1967 Volvo 123GT RF2 1967 Volvo 123GT right side 2

1967 Volvo 123GT engine left 1967 Volvo 123GT engine right 1967 Volvo 123GT interior right 1967 Volvo 123GT interior 1967 Volvo 123GT left door panel 1967 Volvo 123GT rear seat 1967 Volvo 123GT rear GT emblemNOS truck 123GT emblem. Note rust in corner. 1967 Volvo 123GT loud horn

GT only Loud Horn
1967 Volvo 123GT left fender mirror 1967 Volvo 123GT right side mirror 1967 Volvo 123GT left side Recaro


1967 Volvo 123GT right side Recaro

Passenger side Recaro Seat adjusters

steering wheel

GT steering wheel is very nice. The center hub has a crack and the GT horn button has a crack. They are now finally being reproduced.

overdrive and floor
Overdrive and floor

new brake hoses and lines

Recent brake pads and Bilstein shocks, new brake hoses and caliper brake line.

Volvo 122S body side 2

Solid parts car

Volvo 122S body

Volvo 122S body side

The parts car have a super straight body and floors are perfect.

NOS and like new trim

NOS and like new trim moldings for the gutters and rear lower window moldings.

NOS lenses

NOS or like front and rear new lenses, rubber gasket and reflectors.

NEW blink rubber housings

New rubber housings for the front blinkers.
NOS trunk mldg

NOS trunk molding

Underhoods light and 4 way flasher

Rare GT only under hood and trunk lights, actually five of them. Also, rare Canadian GT 4-way flasher included and fog light wiring..

1967 Volvo 123GT tool kit

Complete correct factory tool kit.

Volvo 123GT Speedometer

Super nice speedometer housing. If you have been around vintage Volvo chances are that you have never seen one with the grey wrinkle finish intact. This speedo is!

volvo 123GT engine

Code 496860 GT engine

123GT vin number

Vin # 133351M-251533

123GT Volvo for sale

Dent in roof

driver side front

Rust on driver’s floor board and the transverse beam under this area is weak.

driver side rear floorTwo small rust holes in floor behind driver seat.

pass side rear floor

Rust hole in floor behind passenger seat

trunk left
Some filler in the corner
Trunk right side

right side wheel well.

engine compartment right side

Rust under battery area

right rear rockerRockers have rust and filler.



Volvo 123GT back on the road

123GT side

Before: With stock springs the car shows a bit too much air between the fenders and tyres.

1967 volvo 123GT right side wide wheels

After: With the new progressive lower spring the car lost about 2 inch in ride height. I like it.

1967 Volvo 123GT RR w wide wheels

The car definitely looks burlier with the wider wheels. The ride is not much firmer than the stock GT suspension and the Bilsteins do make a difference. The wheels follows the road very well but keeps the car very stable.


I removed the original code 60 GT B18 as I like to save it and also look it over and replaced it with this B20 engine. It offers more bottom end torque than the stock B18. Headers and electronic ignition hidden in the stock distributor doesn’t hurt either.

With the new limited slip rear end it’s a hoot to go around corners.

1967 Volvo 123GT front w Hella

With the big Hella lights upfront the car looks a bit like a rally warrior. It suits the car well. Now let’s go out and see if we can get in trouble.


123GT gets some needed attention

This 1967 Volvo 123GT has been sitting unattended for a while I work on other project. It is a long term project that really needs a complete resto but I have enjoyed doing small upgrades to it when time allows. However, one can only ignore such a fine piece of Swedish GT history for so long.


Here is the car at at stock height.

I noticed that the car was sitting at an slight angle and I suspected a broken spring. I had an extra limited slip rear axle and the current rear axle was making a noise anyway. That turned out to be a the rear axle bearings.

123GT side

Side view.


123gt limted slip

Limited slip axle ready to be installed.

123gt suspension

This was just going to be a quicky but I had to give the items a coat of paint. Note Bilstein shocks and poly bushings for the stabilizer bar.


123gt engine and transmission

The car had an incorrect overdrive unit and I wanted to save the original code 60 GT engine until it can be looked over so this whole package will get installed. This is a great running B20 engine, nice transmission and a working overdrive.

Next: we roll it out and check the new ride height…and new attitude.

Fall is here

Well, at least here on the US west coast.  We do have seasons and a crisp fall day can offer some of the best driving weather. Great colors all around and your carbureted collector car enjoys cold oxygen rich air for excellent combustion pleasures. What’s not to like?

Get out for a fall drive!

1967 Volvo 122S Wagon in the fall


Fall Vintage Volvo Meet

Every fall the Vintage Volvo gang get together for a “end of season” meet at the picturesque park by Lake Washington in Juanita. The weather was perfect and a good mix of vintage Volvos showed up.

Vintage Volvo Meet 2013 1800 white front side

This 1964 P1800 is a stunner. Can you say Simon Templar?
I like everything except the modern wheels.

Vintage Volvo Meet 2013 1800 white rear

Yup, looks good from every angle.


Vintage Volvo Meet 2013 Jensen 1800 white front

These older style Jensen bumper are about as pretty as it gets. They were replaced with more “modern” bumpers in 1966.

Vintage Volvo Meet 2013 1800 white air intake

Here is another item that was later replaced with a cheesy aluminum cover. This cast air intake is a thing of beauty!

Vintage Volvo Meet 2013 1800S blue

1967 1800S

Vintage Volvo Meet 2013 PV

Funny thing, there were more 444’s and 544’s than any other Volvo at this meet.

Vintage Volvo Meet 2013 PV two

See…they are everywhere!

Vintage Volvo Meet 2013 PV rear

Vintage Volvo Meet 2013 German BMW bike

Even some German iron manage to infiltrate the meeting. This very nice original BMW motorcycle is parked next to a Volvo 1800ES but we can live with it.

Vintage Volvo Meet 2013 German BMW 2002

Another German snuck in! A super straight BMW 2002 did not hurt anyone’s feelings, though. Kind of like the German version of the Volvo 142 model. Great color, stick shift and sunroof. What’s not to like?

We like all vintage and classic cars.

It was a good day for all!


Swedish cars at the GoodGuys Hot Rod show

Most folks do not connect the GoodGuys hot rod show with sixties cars but they did open up for later model cars for good and bad. The bad part is that it can be easily saturated with muscle cars but the good part is that it may bring in some of the muscle cars folks in to older hot rods. We are all gearheads in the first place so all things with a combustion engine is fun. Even less expected at a venue like this would be Swedish cars but here we can show a couple that did not have a problem fitting in.


1969 Saab Sonett side

Dan Morley from Gig Harbor brought this very clean 1969 Saab Sonett. Powered by a pretty snappy German designed V4 combined with front wheel drive and a fiberglass body it was a rather sporty car when it was introduced.

1969 Saab Sonett

Because of the material chosen for the body it was sometimes referred to as the “Swedish Corvette” The small bumpers looks great on this car but the looks were murdered in 1973 when the government demanded huge logs to be installed in each end.


1967 Volvo Wagon 2 door angle

This is a 1967 Volvo 122S wagon that has been customized and converted to a two door.

Alan Susnow built this GM V6 powered Volvo.

1967 Volvo Wagon 2 door

Slanted door posts makes the two door conversion look good. I am not a fan of shaved door handles but this is America, land of choices.

1967 Volvo Wagon 2 door front

Customized from with the classic Volvo “slash”


1967 Volvo Wagon 2 door engine A compressor helps the V6 get more oxygen and a T5 five speed trans offers Alan good ratios and an overdrive fifth gear. The independent rear end was taken from Jaguar.

Alan added A/C to keep this Swedish box cool.

I am sure we will be covering some Swedish cars here again…’til then, get out in the garage and build something!

Cult Car Carport Find: 1982 Volvo 245GLT Turbo

My neighbor a few houses down had a Volvo Turbo wagon sitting under a carport for a while. I walk my dogs by it every day and I give it a glance every time.

My wife know them a bit heard that they were thinking of donating it as their dream of restoring it will never materialize. I had no idea if it even ran.

We popped over there and it turns out to be one owner car. Never smoked in and completely rust free. With 176K on the odometer it has traveled less than the 2004 Volvo V70 we drove up in.

After a battery jump it fired right up and I went for a spin. The turbo is turboing and the overdrive is overdriving. The transmission is smooth and quiet.

It is loaded with the usual GL equipment as in power windows, power mirrors, A/C etc. Heat works great and even the fan is quiet.

1982 Volvo 245 GLT Turbo dirty 3

A fair price was suggested and I drove it home.

It had been sitting under the carport so it had a fair amount of dirt and dust covering the silver metallic paint.  After some serious scrub-a-dub a rather clean and straight 245GLT emerged:

1982 Volvo 245 GLT Turbo clean

Even the plastic head light bezels and grille are in great condition. Turbo emblem in the grille makes sure your neighbor knows you got the Swedish power.


1982 Volvo 245 GLT Turbo clean 2

The wheels can use some paint or powder coating but I love doing that stuff.


1982 Volvo 245 GLT Turbo rear

The interior is super clean and just needs a detail.

It does not move in reverse so something is going on there. I have to take a look when I have time. Right now I am finishing another project so this beauty will have to sit for a while.

More later…