1982 Volvo 240 GLT Sedan 2.3 fuel injection I-4 115hp from North America
Safety, dependability and character. Everything a 13 year looks for when buying an old automobile
I've only had the car three weeks, so nothing has really had a chance to go wrong (knock on wood). Anything that's gone wrong can't be blamed on the car.
The air conditioning didn't work when I got it, but I'm not complaining 'cause I'm a hardy Canadian and you can't reasonably expect it to be ice cold at 23 years. This is where the power windows and sunroof come in...
I shredded a *temporary* tire (due to my own careless driving)
I broke the interior dome light thanks again to my own wrecklessness.
When I first got the car I had trouble engaging in first and second gears so I found myself launching out of third. With some practice I've found her 'sweet spot' and she's been running beautifully.
These cars are notorious for running up over 600 000 km providing reliable and reasonably luxurious transportation along the way. I've been doing most of the body work myself (I bought the car as a project) and rust has been a minor issue.
Mechanically, I can't really complain. Change the oil, oil filter, the pads (on the four-wheel-discs which I so love) and the dome light that I so foolishly broke. All easy fixes and maintenance to keep the car in *mechanically* A-1 condition.
I mustn't lie. I'm only 13years old so I am restricted to driving my car and truck around the 50 acres we live on. I bought the car for $300 CDN about three weeks ago and am aiming to have her on the road for my sixteenth.
The car handles much like my truck (partially because of the heavy duty suspension fitted my the previous owner) with most weight in the front and a wheel-rear drive configuration. I love how easy it is to control how the tail wags (so to speak) and the four-wheel discs really do the job with brilliant ease.
People have described the 240 as having delayed or 'relaxed' handling characteristics matched with an underpowered and un-refined, or un-sophisticated four banger. My theory is this:
If it's not cornering quickly enough you aren't driving hard enough. If it's not going fast enough you're not pushing hard enough. The less sophisticated, the less to go wrong and the easier to work on. Done.
I bought the car for Volvo's reputation for rock solid, reliable and safe cars (my family has owned four Swedish cars). The 240 always stuck out as I am a great fan of rear drive and the wagons are something of a legend. I would have waited to come accross a wagon, but I simply could not pass by the deal I got.
I was motivated to buy the car as an interest to learn how to drive a manual transmission with rear drive and a more efficient (and reliable) engine than my truck's beastly 4.3L V6. One day I was going to need something to get me to school and until I'm 21 my parents would make me drive the 'kid's Buick'-brrrr. PS- Who doesn't love European cars?
Thanks to Ontario's classic vehicle laws my Volvo won't be in need of an emissions test to be certified for the road. Believe it or not, the old beater will be classified 'historic' in just two more years. After only 20 hard years of Canadian winters and summers a Canadian car is exempted of the regulatory emissions certification. The only thing stopping it are its cheap, mis-matched tires that I am having replaced this coming week. The GLT (Grand Luxury Touring) was the top of the line model with such things as leather interior, air conditioning, sun roof, power windows and locks-all of which still work... minus the air conditioning. Not bad for a 23 year old machine.
As a closing note I need to add this;
When I was young I went to a school called Waldorf in which there are 600 world-wide. If any of you are familiar with Waldorf culture you might note every second 'Waldorfian' drives an old Volvo. I still remember day dreaming out the class room window wishing I was driving any one of those Volvos in the parking lot.
They're kind of characters- each and every Volvo. You can't really compare them to anything else to come from Japan, North America or even Europe.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 22nd August, 2005
I am the original writer of this review. I must apologize, the GLT was the sport model with stabilizer bars, the manual with over drive and it was the first in the (Canadian) Volvo line to have the B23 fuel injected engine. It was slightly bored out to 127 hp (my mistake, not 115- as the rest of the fuel-injected engines)
The 1982 B23E Volvo engine is 136HP at 4500 RPM... not what you said (115 or 120 something). It has a special low friction camshaft, which all GLTs had at the time.
If you service the air conditioning at Volvo, it should last about 11-15 years before next service (my experience).
Opening windows and sunroof at 35C and high humidity is crazy!... even as a Canadian... with air conditioning, driving this car is civilized and luxurious!
I have owned my Volvo GLT since new with no winters on it, and have had the A/C serviced twice by Volvo and just tune-ups, and am on the fourth set of tires.
All my maintenance has been Volvo... except once for 4 shocks (Bilstein "High Pressure" original installed). Did not replace the top rubber bushings in the engine compartment... went back... fixed... by doing the front shocks over again... and said never but never again... only "VOLVO" service from now on.
The most fun car I have owned. Of all the cars I have now, this one is my favorite!