Volvo 245 GL

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Volvo 245 GL

1976 - 1985
4 cylinder
2127 cc
91.7 kW @ 5500 rpm
4 spd. man
Top Speed:
155 km/h
Number Built:
1 star
By the time the Volvo 245 GL arrived on Australian shores, the marque had built a stellar reputation for building robust, reliable, safe but boxy cars.

It seemed every year the same formula was applied, with just the occasional cosmetic update to set it apart from last year's model.

Although a large number were purchased by well off middleclass retirees, in reality the Swedish vehicles had plenty to offer the motorist with a more modest budget.

In most countries, four cylinder Volvos were in solid demand on the secondhand car market, ensuring resale values were high.

Service intervals come only every 10 000 km, and fuel consumption was reasonably attractive; the manual fours being good for up around 10 liters/100 km on the highway and 13.5 liters/100 km in city conditions.

But it was the cars reputation for build quality and strength that made it such a popular second hand car.

Like the four-door sedan models, the 245 wagon was powered by Volvo's keen-to-please B-21 F 2130 cc single overhead cam engine. Alloy-headed but with a regular cast-iron block, the B-21 F was a masochistic beast that cries out for hard work.

In the larger markets there was a wider choice for the potential Volvo wagon buyers than was offered in Australia.

The cheapest 245 was the carburetor version of the DL, in this configuration the engine producing around 80 kW. Then came the better equipped GL,  which shared similar mechanicals to the top-of-the-line GLE, the fuel-injected engine developing 92 kW.

The wagon gave away nothing to the 244 sedan in comfort, appointments, handling, and maneuverability; it was even exactly the same length and width as the sedan. The big cargo area (around 2 metres long with the rear seat folded down) was just 59 cm above the ground, the sizeable cargo area being further enhanced by the use of a large one-piece tailgate which swung upwards out of the way.

Owners soon discovered that this doubled as a handy awning in wet weather. Held open by gas struts, the tailgate opened and closed with little effort. A washer-wiper system on the tailgate window ensured clear, safe visibility from the driver's seat. A boon for large families was the optional extra fold-away rear compartment seat. It was a back to front seat because Volvo considered this the safest way for the kids to travel. What the extra double-seater did, of course, was take the wagon's passenger carrying capacity to seven.

As an economical (to buy and to run) wagon, offering around five times the cargo space and all the usual features of the sedan, the 245 also shaped up as the logical choice for those motorists who needed a people mover. They are not collectable, but they were bloody good.

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Volvo History and Heritage
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