1989 Volvo 240 DL from North America - Comments

8th May 2008, 16:18

Our 1992 Volvo 240 wagon is a trusty old battleship. We bought it new in June of '92. It handles fine -- but not like a sports car -- and it goes through snow (with snow tires only -- it's lousy without them) very well. Little has ever gone wrong with it (last real repair was a new air-co compressor 3 years ago). At 205,000 miles it still looks good, starts easily even in below-zero F. temps., and I don't hesitate to take it on long trips. The driver's seat is worn out, but we're going to have new foam and new upholstery put on. If they still built 240s, we'd buy another in a heartbeat. This type of long-haul reliability makes it the ultimate economy car.

28th Aug 2008, 08:19

We bought a 1989 240 dl wagon a year ago with 302,000 miles on it. Exterior is flawless except for a small black strip of decal that runs along the bottom of the windows. I scraped it off and taped it up and painted it so it looks original again. The white paint is glossy. I replaced the front grill because it was missing the emblem and I found a new grill on EBAY for 40 bucks. The only rust is an area around the rear hatch near the bumper that you can only see when the hatch is opened. Will fix it soon. The engine purrs like a kitten and only drips a small amount of oil. I add a quart every couple months. I replaced the blower motor a few months ago. It was 50 bucks off EBAY and I got the instructions off the web. Blue leather? interior is in new condition, map pockets are perfect. I have put 20,000 miles on it this year without any problems for a total of 322,000 miles. We even tow a 2800 lbs boat down the street and load it in and pull it out of the water with no problem. People stand there looking at us like we're crazy when we back the 22' cabin cruiser down the ramp with the 240. No one can believe it. Barely hit the gas and we are rolling right up the ramp. That's where the 3000 lbs weight of the 240 comes in handy and also the monster pistons on that beast.

We are going to try to break 500,000.

29th Sep 2008, 10:17

We own a dark blue 1988 240 DL wagon with about 200K on it. It was given to us as a spare car. I'm very impressed with it...

It's built for durability and safety and has out-lasted all other vehicles we have owned. One day I actually read the manual and figured out the mysterious button that makes the rear lights brighter so I can be seen going over the foggy mountains. Only Volvo could think of that one.

Starts out like a lead-covered snail at the green light, but rolls-along nicely once it gets going. We've hauled all sorts of furniture and stuff in it. Lots of cargo space w/the seats folded down.

Leather seats are nice, heated seats are awesome when it's 0 degrees outside. I bought a cheap cup holder I hang from the glove compartment and aim the vent at it to keep my coffee warm. It's not great in the snow, but I'll just add snow tires to it. The paint is almost perfect.

I have to replace the stereo speakers and some of the plastic parts I have broken, but if this car was re-issued, I would buy it again. A very durable, well-built, battle-wagon!

3rd Jan 2009, 20:33

I own a 1988 grey volvo 240 DL and "Tin Man" is a bloody beast. I've run through many deer unscratched, into many snowbanks, and pushed many of my friends cruddy Volkswagon's and Toyota's out of many predicaments. Its got over 300k miles on it and I'm definitely keeping it until 500k. Many electric additions such as subs, and a system, and the electric is a tough one to tackle because of the Germans and their ways, has been done. This car is phenomenal and if you take care of it, it can look nice and be as reliable as the Guiness flowing in Ireland. The review about it turning fast is completely bogus. The backseat can be slept in if had to and is spacious and comfortable. Get one if you don't have one!

3rd Mar 2009, 20:14

My 1988 Volvo 240 wagon, bought new, is still fabulous at this date. Outside looks great, no rust. White paint is perfect. A little slow up hill but otherwise no problems. I have the original engine and automatic transmission! I am looking for new seat covers for the front... which have just begun to tear on the seams. This car has over 300,000 miles. Driven across the US numerous times and and in deep snows of Boston and Buffalo winters (with snow tires/chains). We have four other Volvo cars (three kids have one) and we bought a new 2004 S60 but we all refer to the 240 as the "good Volvo". Only Volvo lovers understand such love for a car!

18th Mar 2010, 15:58

Thinking of buying a 1989 Volvo 240DL. It has over 200,000 miles on it. Mechanically I was told by the owner that the engine has been taken care like a little baby.

No major issues with the car as of this writing. It does need a driver's side seat as well as a door for the glove compartment. As important, the car currently has a valid inspection sticker good for another 6 months.

Do I need to replace the timing chain/belt (preventive maintenance) with the kind of mileage that is on there now. The owner does not have any recall of replacing the timing chain/belt.

Also, the mileage charts I've read on this car indicate crappy gas mileage. Around 16/city and 22/hwy. That's horrible for a 4 cylinder car.

Can anybody tell me what this car is worth? Is there any specific "part" of this car that is known to cause trouble or break? Would you drive the car for any long distances?

20th Sep 2010, 20:20

I recently purchased a 1989 240 station wagon and love the car to death. I agree that it does take curves like a sports car. It's my first Volvo and is in great condition. I do need a replacement navy blue leather/vinyl seat for the drivers side and the release mechanism so the back seat can lay down. I'm also interested in having the original radio. Can anyone help me? I have a sister with terminal cancer, and I promised to take her cross country in this car, so I'm getting her ready for a road trip.

24th Sep 2010, 22:21

Re your 89 240DL. Don't worry about the timing belt. It is a non interference engine. If it breaks, just replace it then. You can peek at the belt. Take the upper timing cover off or pull it back, and look for cracks and suppleness. You can spray belt conditioner on it with the engine running. It will revitalize the belt. The car is worth about 900.00 with decent running, good body and interior.

24th Sep 2010, 22:28

Hey, if you buy the car, make sure the first thing you do is check the flame trap to make sure it isn't clogged. Other than that, the cars are bullet proof.

Only problem on the 240 is the running lights get funky; usually just clean the connectors, and the earlier years had ignition problems due to the placement of the wiring harness under the fly wheel. Relays are scattered throughout the car. Get a good manual.