SOTW: Volvo C70

The Volvos that normally grace the pixellated universe of Shed of the Week are usually boxy beasts such as the 850 T5 estate or saloon, so the appearance of a muscular Volvo coupe as SOTW represents quite a departure for Shed.

The C70 was born at a time in Volvo's history when it was going through a bit of a mid-life crisis. Tom Walkinshaw had turned the boxy 850 estate and saloon into a successful touring car racer, while the roadgoing 850 T5 was getting a reputation as a proper Tarmac-shredder.

So with the unveiling in 1997 of the sleek-yet-beefy C70 coupe, penned by Volvo's British chief designer Peter Horbury, Volvo's image as a purveyor of capacious Labrador-filled boxes was changed forever.

The headline C70 was the 240bhp 2.3-litre T5, but those tend to remain - for the moment - out of the reach of Shed's bag-of-sand budget, so we'll content ourselves here with the 2435cc light-pressure turbo model and its rather more meagre 193bhp.

That would still have been enough to propel a factory-fresh example to 62mph from rest in a respectable 8.5secs on the way to a 137mph maximum -and without the torque steer histrionics that characterised the T5 version.

Editor Chris-R ran one for a year back when he was a fresh-faced yoof (albeit the T5 version) and reckons they make an excellent and rapid motorway cruiser with really comfy seats and a refined ride, but that the front wheels are indeed 'massively unruly' on the T5. Good thing we've found the slower model then...

Chris-R also offers a word of warning - C70s were effectively coachbuilt by TWR and so small bumps and dings can often result in massive bills, which makes the vendor's admission that the bodywork is 'not brilliant' a little alarming.

Even more concerning is the lack of service history, especially on a 133,000-mile example of a car that has a bit of a rep for its gadgets expiring expensively.

Having said that, it is a lot of car for the money, and who could resist that wonderful metallic burnt orange...?

Advert is reproduced below

Shed for Sale!! 2.5 Turbo (1998)
133,000 miles £995

Volvo c70 2.5 turbo. 133000miles. Mechanically sound. Lots of MOT(till Aug 2011) and 6 months tax. Hpi clear. Bodywork not brilliant and no service history, hence the price. Alloys. 4 good tyres. Elec seats, half leather. Cruise control. Gorgeous looking car. Air Con(just had re-gas) Last 8 yrs MOT certificates.

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Comments (116) Join the discussion on the forum

  • Zooks 05 Nov 2010

    Loving the installed anti theft device, Thatchem K9?

  • The Riddler 05 Nov 2010

    Oooooo.. Are these seriously this cheap now? scratchchin

  • BlueMR2 05 Nov 2010

    If they where rwd they would be pretty awesome.

  • SDxsi 05 Nov 2010

    That's quite a chunk of car for £995! Me likey smile

  • Carpie 05 Nov 2010

    I'm considering a change soon at this price point and I keep looking at these. They tick every box (except RWD, which isn't too much of an important one) so at the moment it's a bit of a two horse race between this and a 406 coupe V6. Think I'm going to have to go on some test drives!

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