1966 Volvo Amazon Wagon: Accident Victim

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Oh, this is a tempting one. Just a short drive away from my home is a 1966 Volvo 122S / Amazon wagon with a light tap in the rear, listed here on eBay in Hope, Rhode Island. This is the kind of vehicle that you could scoop up and drive right now, and address the needed repairs whenever is convenient or money allows. With only two owners from new, this car was clearly cherished before a bumper bash ended the relationship. 

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This car just screams “survivor” to me, like it was used as a sunny day driver before a small hit rendered it totaled. My guess is this car was never insured as a collector vehicle, making any damage at all a death sentence from the insurer’s perspective. The interior remains in nice condition and completely original, right down to the shift knob. These “S” model Amazons were equipped with the hotted-up dual carb engine, generating just under 90 b.h.p. and a nice combination when paired with the manual transmission like this example.

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The seller claims they haven’t uncovered any signs of patchwork, and it certainly shows in the photos of the undercarriage. The floors look solid, as do the bottom of the doors and fenders. In the first photo, it looks at first like the nose was replaced, but I suspect they simply buffed the paint in places to see if the shine would come back. Overall, aside from the damage at the rear, this looks like a very solid Volvo.

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As you can see, the bumper got crunched as did the tailgate. A tail light also went missing, but those should be fairly easy parts to source from the Volvo faithful. The big “if” is whether the floor got pinched in the trunk area, which would be a much bigger problem to solve. I wouldn’t rule this one out yet, because unless cars like these are owned by an enthusiast, an older owner may simply have seen the accident as a sign it’s time to move on rather than rebuild. As an S model Amazon that’s been so lovingly preserved, I hope this one gets saved.

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Comments

  1. George

    The accident buckled the rear fender and the roof on the driver’s side. (eBay images show the damage) http://i.ebayimg.com/images/g/k~oAAOSw8-tWatAJ/s-l1600.jpg

  2. Fred

    I don’t think that small dent in the roof could have been caused by the rear ender.

    • RayT Member

      I think it could be, and was. Such creases away from the point of the actual hit on unit-body cars almost always mean the structure got twisted, and that’s expensive to fix. When, that is, it can be fixed.

      Much as I’d love a wagon like this, I’d stay well clear of it.

      • Stang1968

        I second that opinion. The left side has waves in it now. The whole structure has been twisted.

    • Doctor Solomon

      My 1966 122S wagon was hit in the rear quarter before being put away in 1972; there is a very slight wrinkle on the roof in the exact same place. These cars are durable, but the bodies are not as strong as the 2xx, 7xx and 9xx RWD cars that followed.

      By comparison, my 1990 740 16V wagon was rear ended by a gypsy cab in NYC going ~30 MPH, the only damage to the car was the head unit fell out of the dash. The Town Car had a shattered bumper and broken headlight.

  3. Greg

    The roof damage is from the impact .I am a licenced body man and with the correct bench you can do a nice repair on the unibody . You have to think of these repairs like a house foundation . Once the floor and unibody are square and trued up , everything that fits up to the repaired area will also fit correctly . The car is a definite good candidate for a repair .

  4. Matt Tritt

    Good advice Greg. Looks like the body could be pulled back into shape – if you have the money OR a body shop with the right equipment. This one would be pretty costy to fix, I believe, for Joe Bloe coming in off the street. $1,500. seems a fairer asking price.

  5. Fred

    I stand corrected. Didn’t think a rear impact of that magnitude would crease the roof, I was rear ended last week in my ’11 Honda Pilot, no damage other than scuffs to the rear bumper, here’s the other car.

  6. jim s

    if the body can not be fixed i see a lot of good parts that can be used to help keep other amazon on the road. interesting find.

  7. 64 bonneville

    have used the Chief E Z liner in years past, easy to set a unit body on and get the pulls done. a good quality repair shop, using the proper software on the new models of frame machines could have you in and out in about 4 hours max, for less than a grand. Do your own finish work on the tail light, rear tailgate, and tail light. just don’t get to over eager with the bondo or fiberglass for final touch up and you won’t have to repaint the whole thing to blend it in.

  8. Tirefriar

    Not as easy repair as some might think. The first photo is telling of the damage to the left side. It’s all the way up to the B-pillar and possibly beyond judging by the gaps of the left front door. The right appears to have been mashed as well, loot at the right rear door gap by the dog leg. The right rear door is damaged as well. This is not a straight and easy pull as the impact peas to have shifted the entire rear body forward and to the right. You also have rear body panel, floor and inner structure in addition to the roof.

    What raising the red flags for me here is the way this car is photographed. It seems that the seller avoids putting the clear view of the damage in its entirety in the photos. It’s like you get some damage views but not the complete picture. I think $1500 here is very generous. I don’t see anything here worth over $1k.

  9. Howard A Member

    All I know, is if some inattentive moron stuffed my classic Volvo in the back, there would be more damage than to just the cars. I agree, this is no tap, and any other car would be folded in half. A testament to how strong these cars are. Probably well worth the repair, and I don’t understand why the seller didn’t have it done. Probably another story there too. It would be a shame to drive it like this, as the rest of the car looks pretty good. Well worth the money here.

  10. Paul B

    If it can be fixed, get it for a price that agrees with you, and spend the money to fix it. In cases like this, the car is worth what you think it is and the repairs are part of your investment in the car as a strong survivor. We’re not talking investment here to make a profit. This is a good honest old Volvo that should be saved. And that is the investment, in a piece of great stout machinery from a time when a simple well made car had inherent value.

  11. Joseph G

    That is a movie car!!!! From Stephen King’s “Rose Red”.

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