1972 Volvo Wagon P1800ES: Parts or Project?


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According to the Volvo records, production of the 1800ES was just 3,069 units in 1972. The combination of durability and rarity has helped the ES sport wagon to become a rather collectible Swede. This one can be had for $1,150 or less. It is listed here on craigslist in St. Louis, Missouri.

It appears this was number 234 off the assembly-line according to the listing. The owner picked the car up in Delaware, and now a tale that is familiar to BF readers, the plan was “to build a street rod and now have changed gears to another project.” I think we all understand that situation.

This 1800 has not be run since 1987 and the engine is locked up, which is too bad. Bruce, the seller, lists the rust issues: rocker panels, floor boards (no images), front fenders and rear valance. It has the standard 4 speed with overdrive from the factory. All of the glass appears to be in good shape except for the windshield, which has “frosting around the edges” (no image provided).  All the trim is said to be included in the sale.


If you need some parts for your project this might actually make sense to buy as a parts donor. As much as we would love to see it saved, it looks to be very rusty. Well Bruce, hopefully someone is able to make a deal with you, so you can get this Volvo gone. Remember $1150 or less.


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  1. Scot Carr

    ~ ‘looks to be very rusty’
    That is being exceedingly kind.
    I saw the car in person.

    Never seen one quite so far gone, parts only

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    • Scot Carr

      ~ Just received an email from Bruce. He has dropped the asking price significantly. If you need 1800ES parts, strike while the iron [get it?] is hot.

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  2. HoA Howard AMember

    A STREET ROD OUT OF A P1800ES???? Oh, I don’t feel so good. Sadly, I agree with Scot. Parts car. Perhaps the owner is mistaking the mileage as 41K, when it could very well be 410K ( Volvo’s used 6 digit speedo’s for a reason) Too far gone, but could supply many parts for someone with a decent one. Heck, that OD alone is worth some bucks,,,,street rod,,, sheesh.(shakes head)

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  3. jim s

    i too think this is a parts car. make the seller an offer. maybe make a little money parting car out over the winter. interesting find.

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  4. Bocatrip

    Definitely a parts car. 1800ES was never valuable…with rust and a frozen engine? nada… sell for parts…and they do rust extensively…

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  5. Peter

    Parts car–definitely.

    The overdrive alone–if it’s the “Laycock De Normanville” unit, common to TR6’s and GT6’s, is definitely worth money, if it’s decent (disclaimer–check with a specialist first–DON’T take MY word for it).

    But as far as the engine being “locked:”

    I highly doubt it’s that dire.

    People (my 90 year old father, among them) have freed up engines from the TEEN’s, ’20’s, ’30’s, etc…, simply by spraying/drooling their favorite elixer (I like Kroil,, but old-schoolers might us Marvel Mystery Oil, transfluid+keroseen, etc…) into the plug holes, and keep at it, FOR WEEKS, possibly with heat (an incandescent light bulb?) under the engine and, more often then not, they become “unlocked” and run.

    Stuck rings, (causing higher oil consumption) etc…, still need time to work themselves out, but unless this engine was overheated or oil-starved, I wouldn’t give up on the engine itself.

    Though the seller saying it’s “Locked” it IS an excellent negotiating point.

    The rust, however, it enough to make me RUN.


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  6. Peter


    This part of your comment confused me (no offense):

    “1800ES was never valuable…”

    I’m confused because I’ve seen them in the low $30,000. range, in recent years.

    Personally, I favor the wagons slightly over the coupes, but I may be in the minority on that one.


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