1967 Volvo 123GT

Rally Aspirations: 1967 Volvo 123GT

Part of me still wants another Amazon. I love everything about them. Well, except for that rear tapered axle! They are simple, rugged, and good looking. A ’69 may be the best year to get with their larger engines, dual circuit brakes, and headrests, but the 123GT is the most collectible variant of the car. It was outfitted with the higher compression B18 from the 1800 and featured lots of rally inspired touches such as driving lamps, dash mounted tach, and a sport steering wheel! This one found here on eBay is tempting, but it is going to need a lot of work before it’s going to see any hard driving. It’s also located in Canada – which isn’t a surprise because there were a lot more of these sold up there. Still, if bidding doesn’t get much higher, this could be a great project. Dang, maybe I should have kept our 122 project after all… Thanks goes to Charles H. for the tip!

1973 Volvo 1800 ES

1973 Volvo 1800ES: Kicked Outside

Much like the displaced Mercedes-Benz 450SL entry from earlier this week, this once-cherished 1973 Volvo 1800ES on eBay found itself outside after the owners couldn’t keep it running. A sad tale, because the seller’s mention of how much the car was loved before it got the boot seems to be validated by the condition of the interior. And, the car comes with service records going back to the original owner! It had been garaged all of its life up until 5 years ago when it got parked outside in eastern Washington State. This Volvo – a model that is steadily increasing in value – should be brought back to life before it’s too late and that surface rust becomes something more terminal. With no reserve and an opening bid of $600, this could be a great project to pick-up if the current owner’s story checks out.


Swedish Stock: Saab Sonett Collection

I noticed a strange uptick in the number of Saab Sonett listings on eBay last night, and sure enough, someone was unloading 3 barn-find-fresh examples. The green one above is a ’73 and looks like the best one in the lot, with a good body and an engine that ran over a decade ago. The bidding opens at $750 with no reserve here on eBay. Also up for grabs is a very rough ’71 with no engine and lots of spiderwebs – but the rear window louvers might be a rare factory option worth adding to an OEM+ example. That car opens at $500 here on eBay and is also said to have a decent body. Finally, there is a ’74 Sonett Azure here on eBay that similarly ran 13 years ago and has untold parts missing. I’m not sure what Azure refers to here – special edition or special color, perhaps? It must be unique since it has a vanity plate that spells AZURIZE! Regardless, it is also available for a $500 opening bid and no reserve. Which one would you choose?

1968 Volvo 122S

1968 Volvo 122S: Bullet Proof Barn Find

After easily reviving our Volvo 122S and a 142, I’ve concluded that if you are going to buy a barn find to actually drive and enjoy, Volvos are the cars to look for. These bullet proof machines just run and if something breaks, it’s probably easy to fix. This ’68 122S that Chevy55 spotted here on craigslist in Washington, DC could be a simple project to fix. Of course to be a good buy the seller will have to come down on their $2,250 asking price, which is way too high for a 122S project. You can find nice drivers for this kind of money that won’t need rust repair. Given how durable these are, I would clean it up, leave it looking a bit rough, and make it a safe driver. Of course, I would want to make sure the engine is free and has good compression before offering the seller any money for it. What do you think? Would you take on this project or just find a clean example that already runs? Special thanks to Chevy55 for this tip!

Saab Sonett

Project With Parts: 1974 Saab Sonnett

This 1974 example of Saab’s front-wheel-drive sports car has certainly seen better days, but the price so far reflects that. Offered here on eBay where bidding is below $300 with no reserve, this project comes with a lot of work done and a huge parts stash. The car is in Houston, Texas at the moment. The seller states they modified the front end to take projector headlights rather than the original pop-up’s, which may not be original but it looks pretty good to me. They also say that extensive rust repair to the frame was completed under the tutelage of the local community college body shop teachers. It also sounds like the engine was rebuilt, and modified to deal with unleaded fuel. Weatherstripping has been replaced as well. I’d like to see someone take this on and show me the final result; I think the modifications to the nose give the car a much less dated look, although I’m sure Saab purists would prefer the original setup. What do you think?

Volvo 122S

Three Volvos for $1,500: The Sensible Buy?

Barn Finds reader Robert R spotted this interesting package deal for 3 Volvos here on craigslist in Kansas. To me, this is what the smart shopper does: they look for someone unloading the last remnants of a collection of cars they no longer want to own. In the process, they might even get the trifecta – a long-term restoration project, a classic that just needs some fine-tuning to use on weekends, and a dependable daily to drive to work the remaining days of the week. This assortment of Swedes – which includes a ’63 P1800, a ’66 122S and an ’85 760 GLE Turbo-Diesel – for only $1,500 seems like a bargain and a half. The caveat being you’ll need to have some space to park them, and also a vehicle for hauling all 3 cars if you can’t get the 760GLE started on the seller’s property. Still, for the Volvo fanatic, it seems like you could part the worst one out and make your money back with ease. Does anyone else think this is a steal?


Barn Find 1972 Volvo 1800 ES

This Volvo came from a barn in South Carolina, but is currently located in Miami, Florida. It’s for sale here on eBay with an opening bid of just under $2,500 and a buy-it-now of $3,695.95. It’s equipped with a manual transmission (but no mention of the available optional overdrive) and air conditioning, and the a/c belt is even in place. The engine will run with a jump start (exactly how much is a battery?) and has the original fuel injection system. Miles are up in the air a little, as there’s one of the official Volvo 100,000 mile badges on the rear but the auction listing shows 98,745. Does that mean it’s 198k? As best as I can tell, a 1972 1800 should have a six-digit odometer, so a closeup of the dash would help. The body shows a lot of surface rust and the seller states that floor repair is needed in two spots. There are also numerous dents throughout and corroded bumpers. All in all, it looks like a restorable car that needs a sympathetic hand. I’m not sure if it wouldn’t make more sense to find a better example, though, to begin with if your budget can handle it. What do you think?

Jeff in the Junkyard

Jeff in the Junkyard: From MA to MD

As we continue our weekly series of junkyard finds (you can find the previous two entries here and here), I’m being a bit lazy this week and combining some remaining finds from the yard that yielded my prized dashboard along with some new discoveries from a yard in Maryland I visited last weekend. Next week’s will be the big unveiling, however, as I uncovered a bonanza in Pennsylvania’s Amish Country last week! For now, though, I’ve left a few more quizzes in store for you to identify some classics sinking back into the earth – and some collector cars that should be rescued instead of recycled. Read more »


1974 Saab Sonett: New Car Smell

For years, I’ve been aware of a Saab Sonett – in a great shade of orange – languishing behind a house in East Providence, RI. I’ve never stopped in to ask about the Swedish coupe as the owner is rarely home and I don’t have much interest in buying it (an orange BMW 2002 would be a different story). That said, when I spot examples like this 1974 Sonett with only 21,000 miles that’s here on eBay with low bidding and no reserve, I realize these are still cheap enough to buy a good one without investing in someone’s forsaken project. I’ve never driven one, but the looks alone are compelling enough to get me into the driver’s seat. Of course, anything with flip-up headlights catches my attention, but that’s just one more of my dangerous and irrational considerations that gets me into cars I have no right owning! With less than 3 hours left to bid – does this Sonnet look like a winner to you?


Farewell To Our Volvo 122 Project

It was hard to do, but last week I said farewell to my 1964 Volvo 122. With two British cars in the garage and one of them in daily service, I have my hands full. And although I like to find cars that have been stored for many years, I don’t have the heart to let mine sit for too long. If I’m not working on or enjoying a car, it has to go! After getting the Volvo running we hadn’t done much with it, so I listed it locally and after entertaining numerous tire kickers, I ended up finding a buyer over in Washington. He had restored a couple of these in the past, so at least that provided some consolation. I would have liked to have gotten the car a little further along before cutting it loose, but at least it was left a little better than when we found it. Let’s just hope the new owner is gracious enough to send in an occasional progress update as this old Amazon returns to the road! Read more »

1972 Volvo 1800 Convertible

Another Volvo 1800 Convertible

When it rains, it pours! About a week ago we featured a 1965 Volvo 1800 that had undergone a convertible conversion. Unfortunately, the seller pulled the listing so we never got to see what it sold for. This one is also in project form, but it is optimistically priced at $15k! The only problem is that this isn’t a conversion done by Volvoville. Apparently the seller has chopped the top off themselves. They mention that only one loses its head every couple years. The seller has the car listed on a UK based site and mentions that they can export it, so I assume they are banking on the hope that a rich European will see it and want one badly. I think they are good looking cars, but personally I would want something with some history like the Volvoville one instead of ruining a perfectly good hardtop. If you don’t care about that sort of thing, you can find the listing here on Car and Classic. Thanks for the tip RickyM!

1973 Volvo P1800 ES

1973 Volvo 1800 ES Hot Rod?

With one of the more unusual descriptions I’ve seen in an eBay auction, this car that can “tempt AC Cobras” is for sale in Succasunna, New Jersey where it “burns rubber.” You can find the auction here on eBay where the opening bid is $2,000 without reserve. Don’t let the neon blue wire sheathing under hood and the floor mats that belong in an early Porsche 928 distract you from what might be a decent affordable classic. The rust is somewhat worrisome, and folks that know more than I do about 1800’s have advised me against a rusty one, but the price is pretty low if it stays near the opening bid. The car does have overdrive and less than 80k original miles if we believe the odometer (6-digit with a zero in the first column). Besides, who wouldn’t want to take the seller’s advice and paint it flat black and polish the chrome?

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