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?


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  1. Horse Radish

    This is a twin to a car my brother had and sold about 5 years ago for $3k.
    But his was a CA car but still had rust, so inspect carefully.

    I like them though !
    Very Unique design and sturdy mechanics.

    Nice pick, Jamie

  2. Howard A Member

    What a shame! Almost makes me want to cry, how someone could let a neat (and rare) car like this deteriorate. Being a “unibody”, like HR^ sez, look it over carefully. This car would need everything, Hemmings has several of these, in the 15-25K range, ready to go. The restoration would EASILY surpass that. Sorry, looks like a genuine parts car, if there ever was one.

  3. theotherjerry

    I believe all the 1800 series cars came with overdrive standard. I also believe the speedometer was only 5 digits on 1800 series and only with the 140/160 did it change to 6. I agree, pretty good parts car.

  4. jim s

    some of the other vehicles in photos are interesting. judging by what this seller has listed on ebay they part vehicles out. they may be trying to save the labor cost and sell this parts car whole. interesting find.

  5. Nick G

    I believe these Volvos had Lucas fuel injection. These system were susceptible to corrosion at the injectors which was a tedious fix.

  6. J Jefferson

    My ’72 ES has a Bosch D-Jet injection system, 6 digit odo (about 170k km or 105k miles) and electronic OD. It is also Canadian, so some things may be different. $3,700 seems like an awful lot of money for what you are getting, and ‘runs’ is probably the saving grace here. Then again, Hagerty says the bottom end on these cars is hovering around $8k these days, and they should know more about it than me. If someone offers me $8k for mine, I’d probably jump at it, and offer to drive it from my place to almost anywhere North and East of NYC.

    • Howard A Member

      Hi J, that is one beautiful ES there! Don’t part with it. Seller’s remorse, which I’ve been diagnosed for, is a terrible thing. :)

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