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Four Million Miles on a Volvo?

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On: Mon, Aug 10, 2015 at 9:04PM | By: Gary P Garry


Four Million Miles on a Volvo?

You certainly have to respect the engineering efforts when a particular automotive model becomes legendary for its longevity. I have quite a bit of mileage on me at this point, and, back in the day, when I was coming up in the 1970s, the Dodge Dart's ability to take a lickin' and keep on tickin' was legendary.

Even though the company built a lot of them, they were hard to find used, because nobody wanted to sell their Dart. It was the perfect car to pass on to your teenage child. The slant-six would never die, and, if something needed to be replaced, it was easily done because the cars were notoriously easy to work on.

Plus, you didn't have to worry about a teenage speed racer getting hurt because, while the car may have been reliable, it wasn't known for its speed.

I had a friend who found himself an old Dodge Dart when we were in our twenties. He drove the thing until the body essentially rotted out from under him, but the engine would still run. The car had about 200,000 miles on it at that point, and we are talking about an era when 100,000 miles was a near miracle.

Subsequently, the Japanese cars became known for their longevity. I have previously posted about the Toyota Corolla that I put over 200,000 miles on, and when I sold it, it was still running strong.

A couple of hundred thousand miles is impressive on a certain level, but there are other plateaus that are truly mind blowing. If someone asked me to estimate the record for car mileage yesterday, I probably would have been somewhere in the vicinity of 500,000 or 600,000 miles. However, I heard about a car today that blows that number out of the water.

It turns out that a guy named Irv Gordon is in possession of the car that holds the Guinness Book of World Records title for the highest mileage on a car. The car in question is a 1966 Volvo P1800s, and Gordon purchased the car when it was new. He says that he paid as much as he made during that year.

The car set the record when it hit the 3-million mile mark in 2013, but it has been rolling ever since. Gordon has the 4-million mile threshold in his cross hairs, and I wouldn't bet against him.

There have been two engine rebuilds over the years, but it has never been restored, and there are still many original parts. You have to admire the guy for his dedication, and you certainly have to take your hat off to the Volvo engineers of the 1960s.




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