Favourite 480 memories

Here you can talk about the joy owning a Volvo 480 brings. Non-technical discussions take place here, like what is the difference between an ES and a S version.

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Norm57
Knows where Volvo is from
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Favourite 480 memories

Post by Norm57 » Wed Mar 25, 2020 10:09 am

Hi all, just to make everyone smile in these tough times how about posting your fav 480 moments! Mine was in 1998 I was driving a 460 at the time and passed a used car lot in Stanningley near Leeds. I spotted the front end of a 480 turbo and remember saying to myself “ wow what’s that” anyway 20 min later I was the proud owner of said m reg turbo and have been hooked ever since. Once a wedgie addict there’s no escape!

jifflemon
480 Is my middle name
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Re: Favourite 480 memories

Post by jifflemon » Wed Mar 25, 2020 10:38 am

Wierdly, my obsession started from a different place;

Back in 1986 my next door neighbour got his new company car - A MK1 toyota MR2. Wedge shaped, pop up headlamps... I was in love.

I went on to own one myself (and still do!).

A chap on the forum did a photoshop mock up of a "coupe" version - it looked remarkably like a 480...

And the lightbulb went on. I'd dismissed them when they came out because they were well out of my price range, and somehow, they got stuffed into that dark and dusty corner of the brain...

Now? 3 of the damn things! :rofl:

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MisterH
Knows an Aerodeck isn't a 480
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Re: Favourite 480 memories

Post by MisterH » Wed Mar 25, 2020 12:17 pm

My obsession with the car started through quite a long winded way:

Growing up with a WR-quattro being a very present factor in my childhood, my palette of cars has been shaped in a certain way. I long dismissed modern cars as being not up to the same levels of character as classics, and have always been one to follow the crowd, but in my own unique way. As such, while I am a classic car enthusiast, I have always been fond of the underdog cars that really aren't that bad (indeed, I did not truly understand the quattro's providence until relatively long into our relationship).

Anyway, by about age 13 I was already looking for my first car, I initially tracked down a Ginetta G26 kit car to learn in, and at age 14, it was the first car I drove properly. But there was a problem, while it was a fun car, a lack of power steering, a ruined interior and porous fibreglass bodywork meant that it simply was unsuitable for what I needed. My parameters for the car I wanted was that it had to be cool, have the performance to do everything a modern car can, be suitable for daily use, and have an engine smaller than 2 litres to ward off insurance sharks.

So, while on holiday to Montenegro, and driving through Bosnia, my father exclaimed at a strange car coming up on our six'. None of us could work out what it was, but then it overtook us and we saw to our amazement it was a Volvo! It must have been either an Arctic or Paris blue one, with body coloured bumpers. My heart was set there and then, it was everything I wanted, the perfect car.

A few years passed from then, but all of them were spent constantly checking Car & Classic, Here, and eBay for 480s that come up, and my desired model changed a lot: initially it was one just like the Bosnian one; body coloured bumpers, taurus wheels, then it was the TT, then ones with black strips, and finally settling on a very early car as can be seen in the model introduction video on brinkie's channel. Trust me to want the rarest, most troublesome model!

in September 2018, a dust covered '88 car came up for sale at auction. as it was such short notice we couldn't do anything, so left it. Then it came up, all clean, on eBay, a viewing was arranged but it sold the morning we were due to view it - foiled again! Finally, it came up again on eBay, with the chap who bought it. We viewed it this time and bought it, I still remember turning the corner and seeing it parked, in all its 30 year old genuineness.

And so that was how I came to get my first car (to be driven on the road by yours truly) and cornerstone of my future classic car collection I hope!

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Last edited by MisterH on Wed Mar 25, 2020 10:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Martin Mc
Can tell where the 480 was built
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Re: Favourite 480 memories

Post by Martin Mc » Wed Mar 25, 2020 1:36 pm

Well, I'm on my 6th Wedge, having started back in 2006 with my 'first love' a white low mileage ES 1.7 (1991 vintage)
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The love affair was not in any way dimmed by my first major drive in her, during which the catalytic converter collapsed, causing the car to refuse to rev above 1200, whilst I was heading north on the A1 in very heavy traffic- not fun going at 7 mph (couldn't stop due to having no AA cover at the time!).

She was sold on due to cashflow issues in 2008, and appears to have been scrapped in 2011 according to DVLA records- a shame because when I sold her she was in tip top condition, with unobtanium extras such as plastic floor mats (full set unused), cassette holder, tow bar and rear venetian blinds. I always regret having parted with her, but the bug was deeply burrowed into my driving consciousness.

After that I had a 2 litre red ES (1993) with terminal rear end rot, and very briefly a white 1.7 S, which needed too much work so I sold it on quickly..

Next was a black 1994 1.7S which I rescued from a scrap yard in Nottingham after having a random chat with the owner on a train from London to Preston. He told me he'd abandoned a low mileage 'project' due to illness and lack of space, and when I found out it was a 480 I got straight onto the scrap yard and negotiated it to be trailered up to me in Lancs. There is loads of detail on my adventures with this car, here on the forum (a thread called 'she lives!' from about 5 years ago.. Here she is...
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This car now lives in Wiltshire, I believe :)
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After that, I had a couple of years off and moved house and briefly had a fling with Celebration 467/480 (now wonderfully brought back to life by David (DC Walker) under the name of 'Nilani' -see her own thread too!) - David rescued her from me after the house move proved too arduous to allow me time to spend on 'the extra-marital car' as Maeve (my wife) puts it..

And now, I'm really enjoying my latest, last and greatest - although just like everyone else, I can't do much driving at the moment! Hey ho :)

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I'm sure I've missed one !

YUP! I fad forgotten the metallic red ES 2.0 I had for 12 moths in 2012-13. That had 74400 miles on it when I sold it on, and was a 1 previous owner car with half leather, an odd combo of white and orange light clusters, a bit of trouble wiith flaking lacquer and a tendency to flatten batteries for no apparent reason. I didnt' get much use of that car, due to house moves and getting married and other such distractions, I think, from DVLA that it is another that has gone to the great grey wedge in the sky - shame! Will post pics later on when I find them.
Last edited by Martin Mc on Sat Mar 28, 2020 10:15 am, edited 1 time in total.
Volvo 480 - There's NOTHING like it!
Previous 480 pedigree: 1992 ES (1.7 White) 1993 ES (2.0 Red) 1994 S (1.7 White) 1995 S (1.7 Black) #467 / 480 Celebration (flame red metallic) 1993 ES (2.0 Paris Blue)

Alan 480
480 Is my middle name
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Re: Favourite 480 memories

Post by Alan 480 » Wed Mar 25, 2020 7:46 pm

I'm only on number three . .. . ..
my rational reasoning was that they were the modern version of a Reliant Scimitar Se5a, which I had re-built, then had to go when got married as lack of power steering (and auto) meant SWAMBO could not/would not drive it, 3litres of finest Essex cast iron :wink:

First one was a red 1700, E plate, bought from my oppo, well actually not as he had traded it in two weeks earlier :-(
ran it for a fair few years and sold to oppo at work for £100, after bought another red one

two litre 1993 version bought in 2002 and it came with low mileage ex Germany, engine was 'iffy' but body-work was spot-on and only discovered engine was iffy after purchase :-(

problem was two red 480 in car-park at work caused confusion for me, I'm sure I didn't leave it there type thoughts. .. . ;)
and still got it so 17 years motoring and paid £1700 so £100/year depreciation is OK ?

and last one is existing Celebration version

up until this one I'd only ever bought 8 cars and still had four of them, first purchase sold last year to make way for thsi one (space in garage being a premium)
Alan

480 ES 2litre x 2, C30 1.8ES, SS1

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dragonflyjewels
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Re: Favourite 480 memories

Post by dragonflyjewels » Wed Mar 25, 2020 8:02 pm

I've always been interested in cars - my first husband and a group of friends built a racing mini to compete in formula 7 in the 60's. No Sunday opening then, so carparks were deserted and used to hone driving skills and practise handbrake turns, especially when it snowed. I hung out in the garage with them, cleaning oily bits in petrol and bagging and labelling all the various nuts,bolts etc. alongside making constant cups of tea. A modelling career took off (briefly as it turned out) enabling me to splash out on a car. I'd set my heart on a Marcos 1800 but couldn't find one - no internet back then. However, an enquiry at the Chequered Flag in Chiswick turned up a Piper - also an 1800 with a worked head and adapted manifold plus of course a Piper camshaft in a Lotus Cortina engine. LBH 8H was mine for a short while - here it is converted to a track car:

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0-60 in 6 seconds flat, top speed 140, just 3 feet tall - the mini skirts were a bit challenging but nowhere near as challenging as the 8 inch front tyres and 10 inch rears in the wet. Aquaplaning became the order of the day - the car only weighed 8cwt. It was great fun - we had proper skidpans in those days. You got a tatty mini with bald tyres and oil on top of water on the track - terrifying at first but we learned fast. We also had pretty empty roads, even in London, and speed cameras were unheard of. All good things come to an end though, when we found out the M3 was going to be extended to Sunbury, just a few hundreads yards from where we were living at the time, we decided it was time to head for the hills only to discover that Norfolk was somewhat short of them. Parenthood followed along with boring, sensible cars.

My love of the 480 started when I first saw one – a beautiful pointed nose crept up alongside me in a traffic jam and I watched with interest to see if it would get far enough past for me to see the badges. I was amazed to see it was a Volvo, such a dramatic change from the square boxes normally associated with the brand. Wow, that's snazzy I thought. I told Al about it and got told it was nonsense, no such thing as a pretty Volvo. He had to admit I was right when I spotted one parked and stopped to show it to him. A few test drives of 1700’s piqued our interest, but it wasn’t until 2001 that 480s came close to my price range. I'd decided it had to come from a family-run business in Lowestoft selling nothing but Volvos who had an excellent reputation for looking after their customers. After 9/11 I saw an article in the paper saying second hand car prices were being reduced as no-one wanted to spend money while waiting to see what would happen next. I decided to take the plunge and rang the dealer who said he only had one 480, a 2 litre just reduced from £3950 to £3250. We hot footed it over there and the car proved to be everything I’d hoped for – fast enough off the mark to give our Mk II Golf GTi a run for its money coupled with excellent road holding. Luckily the salesman had the Golf as a hostage so he hadn’t come with us - I was free to put it through its paces with only Al clinging on through handbrake turns, emergency stops and fast cornering - he's a terrible passenger. He was about to go off to the middle east to work so the uncomfortable lowered Golf was sold and I stayed home to hold the fort.

A few weeks after buying Snazzy, the speedo died so I rang the dealer, got an apology and was asked to take it back. They got it working again but a week later it stopped. Went back a second time, and it stopped again on the way home. Very humble apologies, and would I take it to the Volvo main dealer in Halesworth who they had authorised to fit a replacement cluster and give me a loan car at their expense. Impressive customer service ! I still have this car, she has done 230k miles, of which I have driven 150k and I have never been tempted to sell her. Looking back on the bills, she cost very little for the first 8-9 years I had her, just the annual service and mot most years. I remember around 2005/6 a colleague at work commenting that he wouldn't fancy the bill for an mot on such an old car (about 13 at the time) when I mentioned I'd taken her in. He was truly amazed when she only failed on a light bulb.

Currently she's sitting in a nice warm,dry workshop part way through a major restoration - it's a well earned rest and lots of love for a car that has given me so much pleasure.

Hope this has been a bit of light entertainment to alleviate the lockdown - more stories please !
Sylvia

Snazzy - 1993 Paris Blue ES red dipstick 2.0i bought 2001
Lethal Lily - 1991 White Turbo with richmod
hubby has
Sven - 1994 Dark Green GT
Evil Eva 1992 Paris Blue Turbo with Robou mod

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Van
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Re: Favourite 480 memories

Post by Van » Wed Mar 25, 2020 8:19 pm

Many fond memories but this in particular: the low floor allowed my Bernese Mountain dog to easily get in -and step out! Jumping out of a car is not good for dogs bones!- I had removed the rear central armrest you understand to accommodate 50kg's of Bernese. Oh and I used a dog safety belt. When temperatures allowed, I'd take him with me. My pal loved it in there. I could go out shopping while he stayed in the car guarding, ahem, sleeping. If it was too warm, and I had to take him with me, I'd leave the engine and air-con running and locked with the spare key.
after over 10 years parted with the 1995 Volvo 480 ES 2.0

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Jay-Kay-Em
Started learning about 480
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Re: Favourite 480 memories

Post by Jay-Kay-Em » Wed Mar 25, 2020 11:00 pm

I remember my first 480 in 1988.... some 32 years ago now. Brand new it was.

It was white, and I recall the windows being ever so slightly tinted. The graphics down the side weren't to everyone's taste, but I liked it.

I took it everywhere. Fond memories.

Kept it for six years and outgrew it really.

No idea where it is now. I have however been able to find an image of it here online.

Wherever it has ended up, it's probably in better shape than the one I have now :rofl:

jifflemon
480 Is my middle name
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Re: Favourite 480 memories

Post by jifflemon » Thu Mar 26, 2020 8:29 am

Jay-Kay-Em wrote:
Wed Mar 25, 2020 11:00 pm
I remember my first 480 in 1988.... some 32 years ago now. Brand new it was.

It was white, and I recall the windows being ever so slightly tinted. The graphics down the side weren't to everyone's taste, but I liked it.

I took it everywhere. Fond memories.

Kept it for six years and outgrew it really.

No idea where it is now. I have however been able to find an image of it here online.

Wherever it has ended up, it's probably in better shape than the one I have now :rofl:
:rofl: :rofl: :rofl:

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brinkie
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Re: Favourite 480 memories

Post by brinkie » Thu Mar 26, 2020 10:17 am

There is a pretty posh family living at the end of the street. I think the man in the house must be doing pretty well in business since he is always driving brand new Mercedes, BMW and Volvo. He gets thumbs up from me every time he drives by, as you don't see many special cars here (mostly Skoda and Toyota, usually black)

Anyway, I had just bought my 480, next month six years ago and I was standing next to my car with my neighbours whom I was showing the features of the 480. The aforementioned guy was driving a brand new Volvo XC90 back then, drove by, stopped, stepped out, walked to me and shook my hand. "I always wanted to have a 480 when I was a lad. Congratulations!"

Turned out he is a real estate trader and also took care of the properties of the local Volvo dealership organisation.
Robert.

Present cars: 1994 Volvo 480 GT 2.0i Vase Green, 2010 Volvo V70 2.0F Momentum Mystic Silver
Past: 1981 Talbot-Matra Murena 2.2 Rouge Mephisto, 1995 Volvo 480 GT 2.0i Paris Blue

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Van
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Re: Favourite 480 memories

Post by Van » Thu Mar 26, 2020 9:06 pm

The little boy at the corner of a narrow street. Obviously never seen a 480 before. So I popped up the headlamps, the expression on his face ... :D
after over 10 years parted with the 1995 Volvo 480 ES 2.0

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