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


Winter Swedish Meet

The Tripple X burger restaurant in Issaquah Washington hosts some kind of car event just about every weekend. The local Volvo club has a meet every February, rain or shine. This time it was a little more rain than shine but Volvo folks (and Volvos) are a hardy so Swedish cars filled the parking lot. As usual Volvo have the largest representation but a few Saabs participated as well.

Volvo Saab Meet, Volvo Duett

This restored Volvo Duett is beautiful. The favorite among tradesmen in Sweden when new and most of them were pretty beat up just after a few years. Even the local fish mongler enjoyed the utility of this car so it earned the nickname “Fish car” in Sweden.

Volvo Saab Meet, Volvo PV

Since we assume you can read, we also assume that you can tell that this is a 1957 Volvo 444 next to a 1953 Volvo 444. Both in excellent condition and driven often.

Volvo Saab Meet, Volvo 122S wagon

Lowered and with some wider rims this 1968 Volvo 122S wagon is sporting some attitude. Last year for the 122 in the US market.

Volvo 1800S

What would a Swedish meet be without the Volvo 1800S?


While infuriating all the English auto manufacturers Sir Roger Moore opted for this Swedish sport car in the TV series “The Saint”  instead of one supported by the infamous Lucas electric system. He probably wanted to have lights working when chasing the bad guys.


Saab Sonett

All wrapped up! This Saab Sonett had been completely wrapped in vinyl media. The owner told me that it was a lot of work but now he has a very unique Saab, not to mention chip resistant.

Saab Sonett Rear panel

Saab V4 red front

This Saab V4 rolled in and drew a big crowd quickly. This car had been treated to a very nice restoration.

Saab V4 red

Saab V4 engine

Half a V8. The V4 from European Ford did offer the Saab decent power and was rather reliable.

Please find below just an boring ordinary Volvo DL

Volvo 242DL with V8

Well, I must say it is very nice but it is still just a boring plain Volvo DL…right??

Volvo 242DL with V8 Corvette engine


With an LS fuel injected Corvette engine and a 5 speed this car is anything BUT boring. The installation looks like the factory did it and that is the golden rule in engine swapping. The builder did everything right, right down to the shifter coming out of the stock location. The owner claims everything is holding up well. Sleeper City! Nice work.

Saab 900

This Saab 900 brings back fond memories for your Humble Editor as my first job in America was to work on these.


Sherpa got new shoes

Sherpa is the name that the original owner gave this 1967 122S Volvo Amazon Wagon.It served as a work horse for many years but they managed to keep it in very good condition until your Humble Editor became the custodian.

By the way, in some contries they are also call the wagons Combi or Estate. This car has been pure joy to own and drive and I love when I have time to continue to improve it. The 165/70 tires were OK to drive on but for looks and handling some more rubber would be great. Also, when these cars were new in Sweden the hottest thing to have was KPZ made 5.5 inch wide rims. It gave the Amazon the “look”

I was planning to have a set made using the original Volvo hub and installing a 5.5 or 6 inch rim. However, luck has it that a 1967 123 GT that I bought came with a set of widened rims. The GT is destined for some R&R in the shop so it will not be needing these rims for a while.

Volvo Amazon wheels wide

I had the rims blasted and powder coated and then opted for a set of 205/65 with a Falken tread pattern.

1967 Volvo Amazon Combi Wagon Estate

1967 Volvo Amazon Combi Wagon Estate front

Now I am thinking I we should lower the car a bit. Stay tuned.

Photogenic Volvo 123GT

Had a chance to clean up the Volvo Amazon 123GT. It cleaned up well.


The interior cleaned up good as well. Need to replace those door panels down the road.

The engine compartment looks presentable after some cleaning. That air cleaner needs to go in favor of the correct elements.

The nose and the front fenders must have been replaced with NOS stuff as they are super solid. The flat lensed e-code Hella lights cranks out good light but look a bit too modern. I would have to replace them with something more rounded…Maybe a set of H4 Cibie for example.

Yup, pretty photogenic…the Volvo 96 dark blue looks almost black.

In good company. Sitting next to a Swedish built 123GT…life is good.

Volvo Amazon 123GT followed me home…HONEST !

Rare 96 dark blue color makes this a desirable 1967 123GT. This is a Canadian Volvo so it shipped new with limited slip rear and 4 way flashers. It did not however come with the Hella lights but I will add them anyway. Because they looks so damn cool. Besides, they were an available accessory when the car was new. Also, I will add the fender mirrors…because they looks so damn cool…get it?

Like this:

Swedish Coolness ! Sex on wheels…Am I making myself clear?

 “So Inga…would you like to go for a spin in my 96 blue Volvo 123GT?”

“How was it? Did you enjoy the sound of those SU karburettors?? By the way, do you know I have a chrome exhaust extension? The seats folds down, you know…”

The 96 blue cars came with this beautiful deep red interior.

Everything works on the car including the overdrive. It has a B-20 engine that seems to have a lot of power. The rims are widened stockers and the suspension seem slightly lower and firmer than stock. I also spotted a rear sway bar on the car. Front sway bar is original.

It is an older restoration and the the car has some issues that I will address before I bring it out but all in all a very straight car.

Vintage Ads

“Welcome to wheel city…327, 396, 427 We got your number!”

Chevrolet dealership ad in the late sixties

Look at all those small and big blocks !! Wouldn’t you want to walk down that row and pick out a 427 machine with four speed and just take it for a…ahem…”test drive” ?

Your Humble Editor loves digging through 50’s and 60’s LIFE magazine and finding car ads.

Totally sexist of course. “For men with push” Peddling front wheel drive to the American public.  I guess women had no business driving cars back then, huh?

Cars shouldn’t just be for show room traffic” or “Drive it like you hate it”

These were some of Volvo’s messages in the sixties. The sturdy cars from Sweden held up well as they were built for a country with less that half of the roads paved at the time.


Body by Fisher ad

A demonstration of how much a GM trunk can carry. I am not sure where the fish is going to go. If it is going in the trunk it will be a smelly affair.


Volvo Spring Meet

Puget Sound Chapters of the Volvo Sports America and Volvo Club of America had their annual joint club spring swap meet and car show show at the beautiful Juanita Beach Park. The weather was just perfect.

Your Humble Editor’s 122S wagon being overshadowed by Gary Ramstad’s 1967 Volvo 122S coupe.

 Let’s take a closer look at this beauty:


No matter where you look, the detailing is excellent.





Very nice 1962 Volvo PV 544. Just imported from California.


1965 Volvo PV 544


1964 1800S. This one is using the 140 front and rear suspension and that means 4 wheel discs.

Let’s end this with one of these square boxes. Now a classic in it’s own right. The very popular 245 wagon. This is a GL model and that included among other amenities leather and power windows. The came originally with the turbine wheels but we think these turbo wheels looks great.

Great day, great cars..


San Diego Volvo Club Spring Drive

As your humble Editor is suffering from a serious case of excessive moisture here in the North West it is not without some jealousy I admire these shots from the San Diego Volvo Club’s Spring Drive. It has been raining almost daily in Washington State for ninety days and it’s getting old. Well, enough with the weather report and let’s check out some nice vintage Volvos.

Josh Cantor from the club shared some great photos from the event and I am happy to share them with you.

First order of business: Add some high octane fuel for the high compression Swedish engines.

Someone is aspiring to be an airplane pilot me thinks.


Super nice Volvo 142. You don’t see enough of these anymore.


Volvo 122 with fender skirts. Not my cup of tea but creative.


These sculptures are scattered throughout Borrego.  Apparently a home developer has been putting them up to attract attention to the valley there.


The dragon is the most spectacular of them. Makes for great back drop.


A lonely 940 wagon in the desert. Think about it: These cars are going on twenty years of age already. Amazing.

Photo: Josh Cantor

1967 Volvo 122S Amazon Wagon Combi Estate

Finally got around to spend some time on the Volvo wagon. This time we upgraded to these very rare 123GT reclining seat mechanism. These are actually made by Recaro for Volvo. Now I can…well…recline. Besides, the added chrome makes the car go faster.

Factory tachometer and a hard to find center console is next.

“Buckets and console” plus factory tach. Sounds like an American muscle car, huh?

Volvo Amazon 122S Wagon rear bumperette

I am pleased to find out that these are being reproduced again as they are wagon only and always seems to be beat up or as in my case: missing.


However, I could not bring myself to install them as one corner of the bumper was pretty ugly and I don’t want to spend money on re-chroming.


After some digging around in my friend’s attic I finally found this. This is not 100 % perfect but it will work great.

There! Finally a complete rear bumper and all shiny. Looks great.

See how the work started here

Volvo Amazon V8

Amazon Volvo 123GT V8This is an incredible V8 powered custom Amazon built in 1967. Starting with a new Volvo 123GT the builder created an icon in Swedish car history. We have learned that the car still exists in Germany and some Swedish enthusiasts are trying to bring it back home.

Amazon Volvo 123GT V8An aluminum Olds V8 was used with plenty of go-fast equipment.

See all Vintage Classic Volvos HERE