1973 Volvo 142DL

 

 

This 1973 Volvo 142DL, owned by Jonathan Stillman, has undergone extensive mechanical and body restoration work which is near final completion. The car was found parked on the street in Hazleton, PA in December of 2000 with only 35,000 documented miles. Unfortunately, the car's exterior had been damaged by years of exposure to the elements and the salty roads of the Pocono Mountains.  Jon was encouraged by his father not to buy this particular car because of its condition and his apprehension about this model, but he went ahead with the purchase for $650.00 anyway.

Young's Auto Body of West Chester performed the exterior restoration which proved to be substantial because of the rust repairs required. The interior work was done by M&A Upholstery of West Chester, PA.  Jon and his father worked together on the mechanical restoration along with John Woodland of Stillman Volvo, who has been a Volvo technician since 1976.

In regard to safety, the 1973 142 represented the introduction of reinforcements welded into the doors for side impact protection.  The sales brochure touts a new padded steering wheel designed "to lessen the chance of chest injury in a collision" and shock absorbing bumpers that take an impact at 5 mph without damage to the body metal.  1973 was the first year that all Volvos in the U.S. were built with fuel injection.  This engine is a 2.0 liter in-line four cylinder that produces 112 horsepower and 115 ft. lb. torque.  70,550 of these cars were built worldwide in the 1973 model year and most of those have been destroyed. Today, this car serves as a great reminder of how much Volvo has evolved while maintaining a heritage for safety. It also provides a great opportunity to appreciate what Volvo looked and felt like to drive in 1973.