Lot 299 - 1972 Volvo 1800 ES
|Odometer reading||47,950 miles|
|Estimate||£19,000 - £23,000|
In December 1957, the first hand-built P1800 prototype was driven to the headquarters of Karmann. Volvo had hoped that Karmann would be able to take on the tooling and building of the P1800 and they were ready to build it which meant that the first cars could hit the market as early as December 1958. But in February, Karmann's most important customer, Volkswagen, forbade Karmann to take on the job as they feared that the P1800 would compete with the sales of their own cars and threatened to cancel all their contracts if they took it on. This setback almost caused the project to be abandoned and it looked doomed until a press release surfaced with a photo of the car, putting Volvo in a position where they had to acknowledge its existence. These events influenced the company to renew its efforts with the car and it was presented to the public for the first time at the Brussels Motor Show in January 1960. Volvo turned to Jensen Motors, whose production lines were under-utilised and they agreed a contract for 10,000 cars. The first production P1800 left Jensen for an eager public after its much troubled inception. In 1972 came the last model, the 1800ES, a coupé station wagon with an all-glass tailgate, sometimes described as a shooting-brake.
This lovely example has been in its current ownership for 41 years. Since its acquisition and due to the owner’s long-term work commitments overseas, this car was only used for short runs around the Surrey countryside on dry days before being loaned to the Bentley Wildfowl and Motor Museum in Halland, East Sussex, where she was exhibited from April 1982 to August 2004. The car is presented in metallic blue with black leather interior and also comes with a sunroof. Upon returning from abroad and having built an eight to ten car garage at his home, the vendor brought this Volvo back from the museum on a trailer where it has been nurtured in the good company of his collection of vintage and classic cars. A thorough and comprehensive programme of renovation was then undertaken using genuine Volvo parts, to attain her present unique pristine and showroom condition. Some £12,500 was spent on parts alone, not including labour.
Since then, this stylish example has been sought by Volvo to feature in promotional material for their new range of vehicles. High praise indeed!
Previous lotLot 298 - 1987 Mercedes-Benz 560 SL Roadster
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