Junkyard Find: 1990 Volvo 240 DL Wagon With 393,888 Miles
Because Volvo made the 200 Series cars well into the 1990s, they were pretty reliable, and 240 owners tend to stick with their cars for decades. I still see plenty of Swedish bricks in the self-service car graveyards I frequent.
In fact, I walk by a dozen or two discarded 240s for each one I shoot, but I appreciate good manual-transmission wagons and high-mile veteran vehicles and this ’90 checks both boxes.
I see junked Civics and Camrys with this sort of odometer reading all the time, and I’ll bet most of the end-of-the-line Amazons and 140s I see have accrued interstellar mileage figures that don’t show on their five-digit odometers. Most of the forcibly-retired 240s I see have around 200,000 total miles, so this one was exceptionally well-cared-for.
The seat upholstery looks good for a 29-year-old car in a harsh climate.
Most American Volvo buyers opted for the automatic transmission by the early 1990s, but the original buyer of this car wanted a four-on-the-floor rig. Maybe that decision came about because three-pedal cars are more fun, but the 240-wagon-buying demographic tended to be more about the fuel-efficiency and practicality benefits of the manual transmission.
Which isn’t to say that these cars didn’t have their frivolous side. Check out that air-conditioning! Stern, frugal Swedes might disapprove, but it doesn’t get very hot in Scandinavia.
The stickers on the rear glass come right out of Volvo Wagon Central Casting, of course.
To be fair, I do see some 245s with NRA or Gadsden Flag stickers here, but not many.
Volvo nitpickers may take issue with my reference to this car as a 245, since Volvo North America dropped the third-digit-in-name-indicates-number-of-doors naming system after 1982, but at least I called it the correct name in the headline. The DL was the cheapest trim level in 1990.
Power came from this 2.3-liter SOHC straight-four, rated at 114 horsepower. Curb weight on the wagon came to just a few cans of Surströmming over 3,000 pounds (the 240s always looked heavier than they really were, thanks to the brick shape), so acceleration with the base engine wasn’t so bad.
Safe from even runaway pianos!
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Mor2bz on Nov 20, 2019
I remember going to some wretched dance bar as a 30-something male. I actually had decent clothing on. I approached a female of extreme beauty with whom I was somewhat familiar and attempted to make small talk. At this time her younger brother appeared, met me, and then went off, he said, "in search of some vulva". I stated that my brother once had a Saab, at which the woman smiled broadly. Check but no checkmate.
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