Recently Discovered 1967 Volvo 1800S!

Ah, Volvo! That bastion of sensible, reliable, safe cars from Sweden. Until recently, you knew a Volvo when you saw one. That wasn’t the case, however, the first time that I saw a 1800S many years ago and was surprised as in, “That’s a Volvo?” Well, I don’t see them for sale often but I did come across this 1967 1800S in Palatka, Florida, listed here on craigslist for $5,000.

The listing and photography on this car are light and considering what it is, you would think the owner would be more forthcoming. After all, this is a special car and for the stated price, there should be more detail. The P1800 was in production between 1961 and 1973. Originally, the P1800 was produced by Jensen in England but starting in 1963, production moved to Sweden and thus the “S” designation. For the longest time, I thought these were two-seaters but later learned they are actually a 2+2. That’s probably a bit of a misnomer as it is more like a 2+1 with a back seat where a small individual could sit sideways but I’m getting off track.

The 1967 1800S came equipped with a 1.8 liter, inline four-cylinder engine good for 115 HP. Later versions, starting in 1969 came equipped with a 2.0-liter engine but Volvo kept the “1800” designation. Curiously, the owner photographed the descriptive vehicle information tag but not the engine – he also states that the engine is not running. This engine, known as a B20, is backed by a four-speed manual transmission – there is no mention if it is the more desirable overdrive equipped version. Other mechanical improvements include a new clutch slave cylinder, brake booster, and master cylinder. This 1800S is one of 4,500 produced for the 1967 model year – not rare but not really common either. There is no mention of the interior and no photograph so it remains to be seen what’s inside.

As for the body, it appears to be straight, the owner claims that it is solid with some surface rust. My concern is that this vehicle has been in an outside environment.  Admittedly it has been covered up and under a pole barn (a Pole Barn Find?) but sitting on uncovered ground so there could be underside rust issues. I have always liked these cars. As I previously mentioned, I was really caught off guard the first time that I saw one and discovered it was a Volvo, same brand as my neighbor’s ’67 122S wagon – not much of a discernible, corporate similarity.

I’ll admit, I’m a fan and don’t see them for sale often. This one is intriguing but I don’t know that I am interested enough to investigate further. It would be great to hear some opinions on the beautiful Volvo 1800S model and thoughts on this particular example.


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  1. bobhess bobhess Member

    If you’ve got rust that bad on top you’ve got rust that bad underneath…. Like you folks keep saying, you can’t sell something without telling possible buyers what you have.

    Like 3

    If its been in Fla. all its life then it should be fine. Cars there rust from the top down there. Interior is prolly toast.

    Like 1
    • Mike Siebel

      I’ve had several Volvos and in Florida they actually rust from the inside out! Anywhere along the coast you’ll find high humidity and what we call salt-air. The salt and humidity find their way into the hidden recesses of the car and result in bubbles that start inside and cause the paint to blister when it reaches the surface.

      Like 1
  3. Fred Alexander

    I sold cars for the Datsun Volvo Mercedes dealership in Saskatoon SK back then and drove one of these as my demo for a month – – -top salesman got it as a demo for a month – – we had about 5 or 6 so one was our demo for a while.
    Great car to drive . great handling and lotsa go back then – –
    Pretty special unique car when restored.

    Like 4
  4. bobhess bobhess Member

    Oil Slick… I live in Florida and have over half of my life. Been doing rust repair on just about every sports car made in the 1800s era and none of them had any interior panel rust protection top or bottom. I’m not saying this car has rust everywhere underneath but the body and sub frame underneath and behind the front wheels needs a close look. Also, Florida being a party state there are plenty of cars, like the one we rebuilt in the picture, that spent some time in the ocean after a big party. Lot of welding up rusty panels on that one! And no, I don’t know why the picture is 90 degrees off. It doesn’t go up hill that well.

    Like 8

      Yes Bob I lived all around Fla. The sun eats the paint and then the rust starts on top. Don’t know if its been under water but thats usually how it goes down there.

      Like 1
  5. Stevieg Member

    My only experience with a Florida car sold me on the idea of never buying a Florida car again lol.
    My Dad lived in Tampa for a few years. He brought back a 1972 Electra 2 door. He gave it to me for my 18th birthday. I was driving down the freeway with it when the vinyl top tore off, taking the sheet metal outer skin of the top with it lol. The electronics were also corroded from the salt air. I think I will stick with cars from either the south west or from the rust belt, because rust belt cars are more solid than Florida cars lol.

  6. Thomas Wasney

    My cousin and her husband bought a red convertible new at Volvoville dealership in long island ny… The cars were converted at the dealership. Bodies reinforced and tops mounted. They abused it and I would borrow it for weekend cruising.. Wash, vacuum and wax and done… They were slow to accelerate and a bit wallowy handling but what a cool little red car it was… Spoke with Irv Gordon about his 3million mile coupe, said he wanted a vert but couldn’t afford it.. He did okay with his 1800…

  7. jpb

    I live in Fla. Know these cars well. Have a 71e. This car would HAVE to be visited. Besides prev comments—B20 engine came in 1969 and 95-1 is baby pale blue====so , this car has much to learn about. Well over priced in observed via media condition. BTW– owners’ ph # is from Dayton, OH…….may be a rust belt car………

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