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Volvo 240-Series (1974 - 1993)

Last updated 8 March 2013

Can be used every day, comfortable, safe and roomy
Hardly sexy, heavy on fuel, rust gets the sills, and just too sensible


Because there are so many Volvo 240s still in use today, it's sometimes hard to see them as classic cars. But with a launch date of 1974, and a large and loyal following, these workhorses tick the 'classic' box more readily than you might think.

What this tough-mobile lacked in style, it more than made up for in safety and sales. The cars – the 242 was the two-door; 244 was the four-door saloon; the 245 the estate – were based on the 140. However, the fronts were re-engineered for MacPherson strut suspension and a new nose. The interiors were refitted, and made even more impact-friendly, and those all-important impact bumpers were made ever larger and more absorbant.

Aside from Volvo’s existing 1986cc engine, a new overhead-cam 2127cc unit featured; this rose to 2315cc in 1978. 1980 saw the arrival of the more sporting GLT model. Facelifted in 1981 and given smaller bumpers, all were re-christened the 240s, no matter the body-style. They even had some motor sport success, winning the European Touring Car Championship - with the aid of a turbocharger and improbable amounts of boost. The last were built in 1993; as durable in lifespan as they were in quality and strength.

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