This Swedish-American hybrid fetched tons of attention…
While there’s an odd charm to Volvo’s old brick-like wagons, we definitely prefer something with a little bit more muscle to it. Paul Newman apparently did as well, so the gearhead actor did the only sensible thing, plopping a Buick Grand National turbocharged 3.8-liter V6 into one. We knew we liked the guy on a few different levels but his taste in vehicles was excellent.
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This odd Swedish-American wagon was recently featured on Bring A Trailer and people just about lost their minds. With all the attention the listing gathered, bids came pouring in and this contraption sold for a rather healthy $80,740. While we think it’s cool, we’d be hard-pressed to pony up that kind of cash to own it but congratulations to the person who did.
Not only does this 1988 Volvo 740 Turbo have the Buick engine, a Borg-Warner 5-speed manual gearbox keeps things appropriately entertaining. Being a man who raced cars competitively, Newman understood a build was about more than just maximum power, which is probably why this wagon also features lowering springs, a limited-slip diff, and a turbo timer to keep that oil from cooking.
Seeing this Volvo build gives some interesting insight into what Newman was like in his private life. Think about it: the man could’ve afforded a Rolls-Royce or just about any car, but he chose a vehicle some would call a grocery getter and turned it into one hell of a sleeper. We think he probably wanted to fly under the radar yet still have fun at the same time, which this is a great way to do it.
With wagons really going the way of the dodo lately as even Europeans abandon them in favor of crossovers, this truly is a relic of its time. We hope the new owner takes good care of it and has a lot of fun driving.
Images via Bring A Trailer