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A 1966 Volvo P1800 nears 3 million miles

One of history’s most iconic and beautiful cars, the Volvo P1800, turns 50 this year. Helping celebrate the stunning Swedes anniversary is Irv Gordon, original owner of a 1966 example, who just reached the 2.9 million mile milestone in his P1800. Gordon has the goal of 3 million miles firmly in his sights, which he plans to achieve within two years. “In honor of the P1800′s 50th anniversary, I’d like to reaffirm my goal of reaching three million miles within the next two years,” said Gordon.


“Recently my P1800 has been through some terrible weather, and never complained once. What a great automobile! Hitting 2.9 million miles is a true testament to Volvo and those who designed it.” Helping Volvo celebrate the 50th anniversary of the P1800, Gordon is making several appearances in behalf of Volvo and the P1800. Last month he attended the TechnoClassica show in Essen, Germany –the world’s largest indoor classic car show. In September Gordon will visit Australia. Purchased new in June 1966, it only took Gordon 48 hours to put 1500 miles on his P1800. He continued racking up the miles at an incredible rate and thanks to his 125-mile round-trip daily commute he surpassed 500,000 miles in just 10 years. Gordon set a record with the Guinness Book of World Records in 1998 when his beloved Volvo reached the 1.69 million mile mark for the “most miles driven by a single owner in a non-commercial vehicle.” He celebrated the P1800’s 2-millionth mile by driving down Times Square in 2002. Not only does Gordon continue to break his previous record; he also breaks the world record daily in his P1800. The P1800 replaced the 1955 to 1957 Volvo Sport roadster, which never caught on with the public. Only 67 examples were built. Volvo wanted a prestigious car that would attract “foot traffic” in their show rooms and therefore needed to go back to the drawing board – literally. Volvo President Gunnar Engellau ordered design proposals from Italy. The winning design was penned by Pelle Petterson, son of Volvo consultant Helmer Petterson. Helmer snuck his son’s design in with the four Italian designs and Pelle’s was chosen by everyone on Volvo’s board. Pelle was a recent graduate of Pratt Institute in New York and although employed by Pietro Frua was a Gothenburg, Sweden native.