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Volvo Part 2

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Last week, we started discussing Volvo and their impact on the motor world. This week, we’re going a bit deeper and looking at some of the coolest Volvos to ever hit the streets.

Most people associate the Volvo brand name with boxy station wagons, safety, and longevity. It’s true that Volvos are often the longest-running vehicles on the road - the world record goes to Irv Gordon’s 1966 P1800 with over 3 million miles; that is more than six round-trips to the moon and back. And Volvos are built to withstand terrible punishment. In fact, the three safest vehicles currently on the market are the S90, V90, and XC90, which are also the highest-ever performing vehicles in the incredibly stringent European NCAP regulations.

All of that reliability and safety might lead one to believe that Volvos are just tanks or workhorses, but the reality is that the brand has put out some very cool rides over the decades.

In 1958, legendary race driver Gunnar Andersson took the European Rally Championship in a Volvo PV444, which ultimately led to him becoming the head of the company’s racing livery.

The Volvo P1800 was built in a joint venture with Britain’s Jensen Motors and benefited from the low-slung look and bug-eyed facia inspired by the legendary Jensen interceptor. The P1800 looks more like an Aston-Martin than any of Volvo’s other boxier designs.

And we would be remiss to overlook the legitimate awesomeness of the S60 racers. Volvo experimented with turbodiesel engines long before they were popularized by Audi and was a force to be reckoned with on the track. The popularity and performance of the S60, S80, and S90 models have led to Volvo being one of the main holdouts in the dying luxury sedan market.

Indeed, Volvo is often the black sheep of cool European cars, but there are quite a few reasons not to overlook such an excellent carmaker.

-Trey Fennell



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