HomePick of the DayPick of the Day: 1990 Volvo 740 Wagon, a 383ci V8 sleeper

Pick of the Day: 1990 Volvo 740 Wagon, a 383ci V8 sleeper

Paul Newman would love this custom Volvo Wagon

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Paul Newman is one of my favorite actors and I can consider him an overall good dude. Pardon the lack of articulate praise for Mr. Newman, but I’m recovering from the holiday weekend and the Arizona Cardinals’ abysmal showing against Tampa Bay.

1990 Volvo 740 Wagon
1990 Volvo 740 Wagon

Beyond Butch and Sundance, Slap Shot and Hud, Paul Newman was a gearhead and one of his daily drivers was a sleeper. Maybe a lifetime of being recognized in public led Newman to drive an anonymous Volvo 960 Wagon customized with a 5.0-liter V8? Or he might have enjoyed the unique marriage of an American V8 with a Swedish station wagon known more for safety than ¼ mile dominance?

Regardless of his reasoning for a stout Volvo 740 Wagon I’ve always liked the idea of shoehorning an American V8 in a European station wagon and offering the unexpected to folks at a stop light. Dealing with another abysmal Arizona Cardinals season leaves me in no mood to turn a wrench on a potential custom station wagon project, but I can always let my fingers do the walking and see what’s available for sale.

The Pick of the Day is a 1990 Volvo 740 Wagon with a 383ci V8 stroker engine under the hood. It’s listed for sale on ClassicCars.com by a dealer in O’Fallonn, Illinois. (Click the link to view the listing)

Chevrolet 383ci V8 stroker engine
Chevrolet 383ci V8 stroker engine

“The exterior features nice quality custom paint & rims, setting it apart from your typical 740,” the listing states. “And what a sleeper! That is, until you wing it up and stand on it- signaling it’s packing a bit more motor than it was born with. The interior is for the most part stock appearing, with some mods to the instrument panel to keep a better eye on activity under the hood.”

Chevrolet 383ci V8 stroker engine
Chevrolet 383ci V8 stroker engine

This Volvo 740 Wagon was originally outfitted with a 2.3-liter four-cylinder engine and got upgraded with a Chevrolet 383ci V8 stroker engine paired with a 700R4 four-speed automatic transmission and a 4:11 rear end.

“The interior is for the most part stock appearing, with some mods to the instrument panel to keep a better eye on activity under the hood,” the listing states. “Aftermarket air conditioning was added, and the power steering, power brakes, AM/FM/CD radio, heated leather seating, power windows & locks give this freeway blaster a touch of luxury.”

The Volvo 740 Wagon is available for $22,000 and is an opportunity to have a nice sleeper that Paul Newman would appreciate.

To view this listing on ClassicCars.com, see Pick of the Day.

Hagerty
David P. Castro
David P. Castro
The Santa Rosa, California native is an experienced automotive and motorsports writer with a passion for American muscle cars. He is a credentialed automotive, NASCAR, and IndyCar reporter that graduated from the University of Nevada-Reno. A devoted F1 and NASCAR fan, he currently resides in Phoenix, Arizona with his wife, son, Siberian Husky, Mini Cooper, and 1977 Chevrolet C10.

8 COMMENTS

  1. I saw a show on YouTUBE where part of this process is cutting one section off the coil springs to lower it and maybe change out the shocks – you’d have to look it up, but it’s a DIY project, and it improves the looks and handling – you’re lowering it, yes, but you’re stiffening the ride by shortening the coil also, and lessening coil travel, etc. – it all made sense when I watched it and was still within ‘sleeper’ parameters – it didn’t look too ‘tuner’-y, and the guy kept the stock Volvo paint job, etc. Enjoy!

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