One of my all-time favorite classic European GT cars is the Volvo 1800. I owned an 1800S and restored it, drove it on two cross-country trips and two vintage-car rallies, and loved the car the whole time.
A major reason for my buying the Volvo was that Roger Moore drove one in his British-adventure TV show, The Saint. Mine was the same color scheme, and I even had the opportunity to show my car to Moore at his last book tour in New York before he passed.
The Pick of the Day is one of these stylish cars, a 1966 Volvo 1800S, much like The Saint car in that it is finished in White/Ivory with black leather seats and red carpets.
The Atlanta, Georgia, dealer advertising the Volvo on ClassicCars.com, states that it has been in the hands of the current owner since 1983. The coupe recently received new paint in the correct Volvo white color and has just been wet sanded and buffed.
This 1800S is said to have been restored a few years ago but sat for a bit afterwards. The Volvo now has an electric power-steering system, new power front disc brakes and new rear drums. It also has received a new ignition system, fresh professional tune up and a new fuel tank.
Having restored one of these, I know there are a few things to look for. The first is rust. The seller has kindly provided good pictures of both the top and the bottom of this Volvo. What I see is what looks to be a nice rust-free chassis, with the all-important chassis outriggers not rusty or smashed. In addition, the body still has all its seams in place, showing me that whoever painted it likely knew what they were doing, as these seams are often covered incorrectly with body filler.
The Volvo 1800 series cars offer a distinctive European GT car with styling penned by Pelle Petterson while he worked at Frua, combined with spirited period performance by extremely reliable mechanicals. All of these U.S.-delivered 1800S coups featured a 4-speed manual gearbox with overdrive, which makes for relaxed highway driving.
The prices for nice 1800-series Volvos have been on the rise, and this car with an asking price of $28,950 looks to be a potentially strong buy. Change the wheels out for some Minilites and you have the spitting image of Simon Templar’s ride.
To view this listing on ClassicCars.com, see Pick of the Day.