Weekend Edition – A Volvo 142E Convertible Conversion

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Welcome to another Hooniverse Weekend, and this weekend I thought I would highlight some of the discussions that have been bouncing around the halls of Hooniverse HQ. You see, we receive tips from our fans across the globe, and sometimes the editors make chance findings on our own, and then discuss the relevance of each discovery as it pertains to the Hooniverse. Sometimes we mock these creations, while other times we are in awe and have to share them with our audience. Well, this is the weekend I show you what we have discussed this past week, starting with this Volvo found by CraigSu (Thanks Man!). So let’s all discover this modified 1971 Volvo 142E.

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According to the eBay Listing:

Super rare 142 E convertible prototype produced by Volvo at their secret special projects lab in Gothenburg Sweden in 1971! Ok I am kidding, the truth is I bought this car at a garage sale a little over a year ago from a guy who did the conversion himself. It was not running when I bought it and had been sitting for close to 8 years, I drained the fuel, changed filters and plugs and have been driving it ever since!

A little online research told me that cutting the roof off your old Volvo is somewhat common in Sweden where it is known as a “Kirunacab” popular in the more “rural” regions.

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In his email, CraigSu stated what was readily apparent: “Obviously not a measure twice, cut once kind of guy.” But it was our own Tim Odell who summed it up quite nicely: “You know… I have a hard time hating this. Too bad a nice car had to be butchered to make it, but it’s probably pretty fun to drive. Drop a few bucks on a good cage, lose the wheels, and you’re good to go.”

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The current bid for this fine piece of Swedish machinery is $760.03 with an unmet reserve. So what do you thing it will sell for, and would you want to own such a fine piece of workmanship? See the listing here: [sc:ebay itemid=”300918499032″ linktext=”Volvo 142 E Convertible” ]

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21 responses to “Weekend Edition – A Volvo 142E Convertible Conversion”

  1. FuzzyPlushroom Avatar

    I'm having trouble hating it, but that might just be the gorgeous-if-a-bit-too-warm weather we're having here. Definitely needs tasteful wheels, then we'll talk.

    1. BobWellington Avatar

      Yup, those wheels gotta go.

  2. dukeisduke Avatar

    There's an amazing amount of WTFery going on with this thing. I'd say just buy it and drive it. Or, weld some extra frame rails to the body underneath, and then cut out the interior bracing. It might work.

  3. BЯдΖǐL-ЯЄРΘЯΤЄЯ Avatar

    It has a lot of potencial, the 71 and 72 142's are some of the most beautiful Volvos ever build.
    Put back the steel wheels with hub caps and chrome rings. Get that roof redone, I would try to figure out a retractable hard top.

  4. stigshift Avatar

    Holy Erector Set, Batman! A+ in theory, D- in execution. It's a great idea, though.

  5. Sjalabais Avatar

    Wheels, stance and execution are wrong, I agree on that. But if you live in a hot place this car might just be it. The mechanics will not die on you, and if rust is no issue – heck, why not? I would love to try it and check out how stable the ride is. Proper "Kirunacabs" do often have welded doors just to make the things stable. An ad for these cars will often underline "öpningsbarra dörrar" (doors that can be opened) as a bonus.
    Have a look at the Swedish choice – execution is not a priority with Kirunacabs. Neither are cherished factory looks. Going down the Lincoln Continental lane though can look nice-ish:
    <img src="http://cdn.blocket.com/static/1/images_full/64/6430290811.jpg&quot; width="600">

  6. topdeadcentre Avatar

    If you're going to go through all the effort to create your own convertible, please spring for a canvas-type top so it doesn't look horrible.

  7. Dan Avatar

    I had a set of those wheels on a 1995 Camaro Z-28 I bought (although they were probably wider than what's on that Volvo). I hated the darned things and thought they were ugly as sin. But for $2800 when I was 16, and a car that topped out at over double the speed limit, I didn't complain too much.

  8. Mad_Hungarian Avatar

    It ends up looking like a Swedish version of a '62 Rambler American convertible:<img src="http://www.amcrc.com/sale/bobwatson1.jpg"&gt;

    1. Toxic Avenger Avatar
      Toxic Avenger

      Nice Rambler – one of those old basic cars. I had a Volvo ONCE. Need a pocket full of kroner and a passport to find any part.

  9. Rust-MyEnemy Avatar

    I can hear the frame flexing from where I'm sitting; and I've currently got Tame Impala playing really loud. In fact, there's a bit of what looks like primer just behind the left hand door, and the other door doesn't seem to quite close properly. I'll bet those doors pop open over bumps.
    Doesn't mean it isn't incredicool, though.

  10. sporty88au Avatar

    I'm guessing Washington state doesn't require annual inspections. With all of the visible compromises made to execute the conversion, the obvious mismatched parts (anyone else notice the door handles), and the litany of issues listed in the ad, it makes you wonder what other surprises lay hidden in wait for the unwary buyer. That said, the price is low, it runs, looks OK (in a rat-rod kind of way) with the top down, and has current registration. I can live with the wheels, but would probably change them at some point. It looks like a fun dry-weather cruiser – just don't expect to rely on it (at least as-is) as a daily-driver.
    I remember seeing a very tidy white 142 convertible at a car show here about 25-30 years ago, back when DIY convertible conversions (as long as you had bracing underneath and didn't have bars through the door openings) were legal here. The 1980's saw a lot of coupes and 2-door sedans converted – some legal, some not – VW Beetles and late 60's Valiants were very common. It's a pity that our rules here are so restrictive now that converting any closed car is effectively outlawed.
    That black one posted above is just beautiful. If the oily bits are as good as the outside looks……

    1. mdharrell Avatar

      The only vehicle inspection in Washington is one which is sometimes required upon bringing a vehicle from elsewhere. I've brought four vehicles from out of state and only once did the licensing office insist upon inspection by the State Patrol. This is intended primarily as a VIN verification but the inspecting officer is at liberty to check whether the vehicle meets other aspects of the law.
      There are also emissions tests every two years in some parts of five counties for vehicles between five and 25 years old. They used to test a wider range of years but reduced it to this to save costs. The justification was that essentially everything newer than five years passed anyway, so why bother testing, whereas essentially everything older than 25 years either passed the applicable standards for its year of manufacture or, if it failed, couldn't be made to pass within the limits of the amount of money that the owner could be compelled to spend under state law towards fixing it, beyond which it would receive a waiver. Again, why bother with testing at that point?

      1. ˏ♂ˊ mzs zsm msz esq Avatar
        ˏ♂ˊ mzs zsm msz esq

        Now I'm curious, which is the car that was inspected and was there anything notable during the inspection?

        1. mdharrell Avatar

          It was my '80 KV. Aside from the fact that the paperwork consisted solely of a couple of twenty-plus-year-old documents from France and a handwritten bill of sale from Georgia, the "VIN" contained only three characters and was already in use by another vehicle in Washington, and the Microcar Museum's website (which the inspector had found) misidentified both its year and its make (KVS vs. KV), everything went, um, well….
          I ended up with a three-year "ownership in doubt" registration-without-title, but the title was issued without incident at the conclusion of the third year.

    2. joedunlap Avatar

      Looks like the more than just the door handles. The entire doors are different. The passenger door has the flush handles from the later models, circa 74 or 75 as I recall

  11. ˏ♂ˊ mzs zsm msz esq Avatar
    ˏ♂ˊ mzs zsm msz esq

    best garage sale purchase ever

  12. craigsu Avatar

    I know some have said it doesn't bother them and for $800 (current bid) it probably shouldn't bother me either but, it's what's behind those mismatched doors that really bothers me. Oh, and those purple seat covers have to go as well.
    <img src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-Y1jvIwCL2Q4/Ub_q7ap4MlI/AAAAAAAAPDA/l8p8iDnuM4c/s1600/2.jpg&quot; width="600">

    1. Sjalabais Avatar

      It's even a lightweight solution!

  13. Van_Sarockin Avatar

    Really nice but not quite there. The home made rood is really good for home made. Get rid of it and embrace the inner roadster. It's got a Volvo heater, so what more could you want? Take the car to a guy who does upholstery for speedboats, and let him give you a nice, waterproof interior. Get better wheels, and tires with some sidewall.

  14. ocr Avatar

    I am surprised to read that the current bid for this Swedish machinery piece is $760. I want to have such low priced and wonderful piece of machinery.

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