Junkyard Find: 1993 Volvo 240 Wagon

junkyard find 1993 volvo 240 wagon

Volvo made the beloved 240 for 19 model years, 1975 through 1993, and the car didn’t change much during that period. By the early 1990s, Volvo had “replaced” the increasingly dated-looking 240 three times, with the 740, 940, and 850, but plenty of buyers were still choosing the ancient brick over the more modern iron. It had to end at some point, though, and 1993 was the last year for these cars.

Here’s a very clean, very high-mile ’93 wagon in a Denver-area self-service yard.

In fact, the 240 was based on the even more ancient 140, being more or less the same car from the A pillars back, and much of the 140’s chassis design came from the antediluvian Amazon. You could say that the 1993 240 is based on designs from the 1950s or 1960s, and you wouldn’t be wrong.

Someone took very good care of this one over its lifetime, putting better than 12,000 miles on it every year over a quarter century. There’s no rust, the interior looks great, and the paint is less faded that what you’ll see on a lot of 10-year-old cars.

Changing the timing belt at 256,500 miles, because it’s due, shows the kind of dedication to maintenance you don’t see with most owners of older cars. Sure, it’s a non-interference engine and the timing belt may have been replaced after it broke, but I’m betting it was done because the maintenance schedule said so.

The final 240 had 114 horsepower from its 2.3-liter engine. These cars weighed a lot less than their bulky profiles might suggest; the 1993 wagon scaled in at just 3,051 pounds. That’s 150 fewer pounds than a 1993 Mustang GT.

Volvo got rid of the “245” name for these wagons after 1979.

I see many, many Volvo 240s in wrecking yards these days, but their numbers are decreasing.

Are you considering a minivan for your family? You might as well stuff your kids into a wood chipper!

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  • Qwerty100 Qwerty100 on Jul 19, 2018

    I owned an '83 240 sedan, and now own a '94 940. Both are excellent cars, though despite love and nostalgia to the contrary, the 940 is the better of the two, with many improvements over the 240. The engine pictured is not the 5 cylinder, but the venerable B230 red block, which I suspect is fully capable of doubling its mileage with no rebuild. While not perfect, these cars represent a high water mark for quality and long term durability seldom or never seen today.

  • Frantz Frantz on Jan 03, 2019

    I know this is an old post, but I had to share quick. I'm sitting here in our Volvo showroom and an older fellow just gave the thumbs up to his timing belt replaced for it's 2nd scheduled time. It was due back on 210k and he's up to 234k. Real world example, Volvo customers are amazing folks. This guy was just slacking in waiting an extra 2 years.

  • Snickel Fritz I just bought a '97 JX 4WD 4AT, and though it's not quite roadworthy yet I am already in awe of it's simplicity and apparent ruggedness. What I am equally in awe of, is the scarcity of not only parts but correct information regarding anything on this platform. I'm going to do my best to get this little donkey back on it's feet, but I wouldn't suggest this as a project vehicle for anyone who doesn't already have several... and a big impressive shop with a full suite of fabrication/machining/welding equipment, and friends with complimentary skillsets, and extra money, and... you get the idea. If you don't, I urge you to read up on the options for replacing anything on these rigs. I didn't read enough before buying, and I have zero of the above suggested prerequisites... so I'm an idiot, don't listen to me. Go buy all of 'em!
  • Bryan Raab Davis I actually did use the P of D trope, but it was only gentle chiding, for I love old British cars of every sort.
  • ScarecrowRepair The 1907 Panic had several causes of increased demand for money:[list][*]The semi-annual shift of money between farms and cities (to buy for planting and selling harvests)[/*][*]Britain and Germany borrowing for their naval arms race[/*][*]San Francisco reconstruction borrowing after the 1906 earthquake and fire[/*][/list]Two things made it worse:[list][*]Idiotic bans on branch banking, which prevented urban, rural, and other state branches from shifting funds to match demands. This same problem made the Great Depression far worse. Canada, which allowed branch banking, had no bank failures; the US had 9000 failures.[/*][*]Idiotic reserve requirements left over from the Civil War which prevented banks from loaning money; they eventually started honoring IOUs illegally and started the recovery.[/*][/list]Been a while since I read up on it, so I may have some of the details wrong. But it was an amazing clusterfart which could have been avoided or at least tamed sooner if states and the feds hadn't been so ham handed.
  • FreedMike Maybe this explains all the “Idiots wrecking exotic cars” YouTube videos.
  • FreedMike Good article! And I salute the author for not using the classic “Lucas - prince of darkness” trope, well earned as it may be. We all know the rap on BL cars, but on the flip side, they’re apparently pretty easy to work on (at least that’s the impression I’ve picked up). On the other hand, check the panel fits on the driver’s and passenger’s doors. Clearly, BL wasn’t much concerned with things like structural integrity when it chopped the roof off a car designed as a coupe.