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1978 Volvo 240Review
Kevin writes:

1978 Volvo Wagon — This car was as ugly as they come but it was built like a tank. It had the side impact beams in the doors in 1978, mine was a dark blue and was standard and had a 4 cylinder engine. I taught my self how to drive a standard on this car. It was a five speed with the over drive switch on top of the shifter knob.

Pros: Solid, reliable, safe

Cons: Ugly, hard on gas, slow, heavy

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1978 Volvo 240Review
Kent writes:

Looks Can Be Deceiving —

Of all the cars I've ever owned (and I've owned many), this is one of my favorites. The real mystery, though, can be summed up in one word: "Why?" Is it fast? No. Does it handle well? Only if you don't have to turn. Is it sexy lookin'? Yes...if you have an odd attraction to shoe boxes. Is it luxurious inside? As luxurious as the lobby at Ikea. So why should a self-confessing motor head express any semblance of affection for this ungainly, brick of a car? You know what--I'm not sure I know how to answer that question. But I loved it. I even named it...Helga. Thing is, there is a certain charm to the Volvo 240 Series that has more to do with engineering than with style. Like, a lot more. Just like a tabloid diva, there are cars that catch your eye and cause your pulse to race. But they are likewise often out of reach and very high maintenance. The 242 is the antithesis of the supermodel. Appropriate adjectives for this car are words like: solid, dependable, functional, comfortable, reliable. There is an elegant simplicity to the design and engineering of this car that warrants great respect and admiration. Ask any engineer who knows, and he/she will tell you that making something simple is often far more difficult than making something complex. That irony was not lost on me during the time that I owned this car. For the most part, everything worked together seamlessly and the car was amazingly reliable. I acquired it during my senior year of college, when the car was already 11 years old. No creaks, squeaks, or rattles. No mechanical foibles. Ran like a top until I sold it a couple of years later, with close to 250,000 miles on it. And you know what? This car was so unconventional as to be really kind of cool. All my college friends loved it. One of them even gave me a license plate that said 'Helga' in lettering that matched the light tan paint scheme. The only person who didn't like Helga was my girlfriend and I think that was mainly because Helga didn't like her. Really. For some strange reason, my girlfriend was the only person who had trouble getting the car in gear. She would have trouble opening the door and I would reach over and with no more than two fingers pop the door open. Helga would even make strange noises when she was in the car that I never heard when she wasn't...weird stuff. But my girlfriend got the last laugh. I decided to propose to her when I was in graduate school but couldn't afford a nice ring. So in order to raise some cash, I sold Helga. My girlfriend said, "Yes." Nineteen years later, we are still happily married. And now that I think about it, maybe my wife and Helga had more in common than she'd like to admit--smart, dependable, trustworthy, solid. But of course, my wife is much better lookin'! Sorry, Helga.

Pros: Elegantly Simple Engineering, Reliable, Well-built.

Cons: Come on, just look at it!

11 of 11 people found this review helpful.
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Displaying all 1978 Volvo 240 reviews reviews.

Reviews From Other Years

1993 Volvo 240 Reviews

Review By Monty56Python

This is a true classic. A model of thoughtful and thorough design and execution. And remarkably driveable, 28 years after it ceased its long production run. Read More

Review By Stephen

Its loaded with unreliable Bosch injection parts, especially the electronic. Read More

1992 Volvo 240 Reviews

A Fabulous Automobile, The Best Of The Best I've Owned By charlesnd

My dark grey 1992 Volvo 240 Wagon was superior in every respect. I bought it new and kept it 18+ years (my daughter drove it for a while, then I took it back). Had hardly a minute's trouble with it. O... Read More

Wonderful Car But Got A Bit Old By migration_nemandza

Beautiful 2.3 petrol Volvo 240. Loved it so much. Bought it in 2004 and had it for five years. had no real issues with reliability, only had maintenance. It was a guzzler by European standards but bui... Read More

1991 Volvo 240 Reviews

Review By Ladislao

The car the only good was the motor, after that everything is gabage. Read More

A Good Family Car, Student Car, Or General Commuter By al_ngl

I purchased my '91 240 as a commuter and winter car. For what you pay, it drives better than many newer vehicles and has some features (like seat warmers, rear floor air vents, air conditioning, lumba... Read More

1990 Volvo 240 Reviews

In Love By TorreyDee

I've been looking for one for years and I've finally found one! Couldn't be more please with my purchase. I've never driven a stick before and I probably shouldn't be learning on a car like this but w... Read More

Sweeet By Low

Did not get the pleasure of driving for to long due to the fact I was not car savvy. I had my brother-in-law drive it and he thinks that it is a very comfortable, solid and well built car. Very low ma... Read More

1989 Volvo 240 Reviews

Volvo 240 By Predeswaran

I am indeed satisfied with it's performance. It can do burnouts and can still defeat many other cars in the market. Furthermore, it can also drift perfectly. The build quality of this car is serious... Read More

Love It. By Sean

Ok acceleration. Good braking. Handling is Amazing. Squeaks a bit. Has needed about $2600 worth of repair. Outside looks like your classic four-door Sedan. Very sharp. Inside is plain. Gets about 25mp... Read More

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Have you driven a 1978 Volvo 240?