Junkyard Gem: 1976 Volvo 264 GL

Powered by the same engine type as the DeLorean DMC-12.

  • Image Credit: Murilee Martin
The Volvo 200 series of cars ran from the 1975 model year all the way through 1993, and the overwhelming majority of the ones sold in the United States came with four-cylinder engines. We tend to think of " Volvo 240" as the generic name for this car, but the second digit in the three-digit identifier stands for number of cylinders, and Volvo put V6s in some of these cars. Here's an extremely rare 264 from 1976, the first model year this car was available in the United States, found in a Denver-area self-service wrecking yard.

The list price on a new 1976 264 was $8,450, which was about $37,000 in inflation-adjusted 2017 dollars. This was a few hundred bucks less than a new 1976 Oldsmobile Delta 88 Royale sedan, complete with V8 engine and several hectares of fuzzy crypto-velour upholstery.

Power came from an overhead-cam, 2.7-liter PRV V6, rated at 123 horsepower. This engine, developed jointly by Peugeot, Renault, and Volvo, went into a bewildering assortment of vehicles (e.g, the DeLorean DMC-12, the Alpine A310, and the Eagle Premier) during its 22 years of production. The four-cylinder engine installed in the 1976 242/244/245 made 98 horsepower, so the 264 was a bit quicker.

This one didn't quite make it to 150,000 miles, and the sun-bleached interior and top-down rust on the exterior suggests decades of outdoor storage. Perhaps something expensive broke, back in the 1980s or 1990s, and the car sat awaiting repairs that never came.

The stories this car could tell!

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