Ruminations and recipes from a small kitchen in a big city.


Swedish heavy metal: VROOM in action again.

This Volvo is so old it was built before the Berlin Wall came down. Yet it appears to be brand new. I found it on a used car lot in Alphington.

The Volvo, a 740GL model first registered in March 1990, is a time warp. If you are sitting in the back, the glasshouse is so large it is like riding in one of those trans-national railway observation cars. The car handles like a train too.

Designed by Volvo legend Jan Wilsgaard, the 740 was poorly regarded by critics at the time of its release:
In 1983, Autocar's Gordon Murray said, "To me it's obscene ... goes right against the grain of what everybody else is trying to do. To me it looks like a European version of a North American car."
Murray still didn't like the model in 1990:
Ordinary passenger cars are getting bigger and heavier, and that's an awful trend. If everyone drove around in Volvo (700 series) there'd be no room on the road for you and me! It's ridiculous making these massive cars for people to travel around on their own.
Murray got that wrong. Today, everyone is driving around in SUVs the size of a block of flats; while the 740GL is sought after by hipsters and lovers of retro style for its cubist boxiness, sharp verticals and wedge nose. Also, I can play my old cassettes in it.


The white 740 GL is the tenth Volvo acquired by VROOM (Volvo Rescue Organisation of Melbourne). VROOM spokesman and sole member, Mr K. Hand, said with tongue firmly in cheek that rescuing old Volvos played a vital social role in developing an innovative approach to sustainability; and that "the alternative was too terrible to think about. Apart from that I could never drive a Prius".

Earlier VROOM acquisitions include:

* A pale blue 1978 245DL.

* A stunning orange mid-seventies 244DL in mint condition.

* A 1988 760GLE.


Melbourne Girl said...

Keep up the rescue work KH...someone has to.

paul kennedy said...

Dogs, cats, Volvos ... it's a busy life being a philanthropist.