The Volvo P1800 Was the Volvo Sports Car that Wasn’t
Volvo is best known for its tough and boxy sedans, but it’s always had a sporty side to its character. The Volvo P1800 was Volvo’s very first sports coupe (it began its sporty tradition with the PVS44 Sport), but the P1800 was never meant to be a super-fast sports car—it was actually be more of a smooth, grand touring machine. It was durable, practical, sturdy, and comfortable. It didn’t have utilize any single radical ideas, but rather it used elements that were long-established and had been proven worthwhile to create a car that looked like a sports car, with a strikingly individual appearance.
This car was for those who dreamt of owning a sports car but were all right with the idea of a sports car rather than an actual sports car. Volvo played to this in its advertising of the P1800 using headlines as follows.
“This car won’t do 150, it just looks like it will.”
“This is either the most expensive economy car in the world, or the least expensive Gran Turismo car in the world. We’ll sell you either one.”
“What’s it like to own a $10,000 car? Find out for $3,995.”
Some additional ads and brochures are posted below.