FAQs about 240 Series

  • 240 Spotters' guide.
  • Information on the 240 series designation.

  • 240 Spotters' Guide.

    Date: Thu, 5 Aug 93 14:12:34 EDT
    From: 05-Aug-1993 1413 <corey@cthq.enet.dec.com>
    To: swedishbricks@me.rochester.edu
    Cc: corey@cthq.enet.dec.com
    Subject: Volvo 240 Spotters' Guide

    Here is the list of Volvo 240 changes over the years. This is a good demonstration of how Volvo continually changed the model over the years, making many improvements. It is especially interesting to note that even in the final years (90-93) Volvo continued to make significant changes and investments in the model with items like Driver's air bag, redesigned air conditioning, Antilock brakes, flush-mounted glass, numerous trim changes and special edition models.

    Hope you find the list useful. No doubt there are some errors here and there. If you spot one, send it to me for correction.




    1975 - 1993 VOLVO 240 SPOTTERS GUIDE

    1975 -  First year for 240 body style (still B20 motor  w/ K-jet) last year for 164 (B-30)
    1976 -  First year for B21F (US), B27F
    1977 -  First Lambda-Sond engines (Calif.)
    1978 -  First year for 242-GT, 260 models.  Revised (thicker) front seats
    1979 -  Body restyled: softer rear tail lights and front grills,
                 trunk lid changed from flat to curved; lock moved from below
                 to trunk lid.  Revised shift linkage M45/M46 transmission.
                Some models get new rotary-type knob AC temperature control.
    1980 -  Model designation no longer 240 nor uses last number in 240 ("24X")
                (Official model designation now "DL, GL" etc.)
                First year B21F, B28F,
                GL models.  First year for D24 DIESEL. Last year for 242-GT.
                Outside mirrors change from chrome to black plastic
    1981 -  All 240s now with quad square head lights w/ black trim under lights
                 Revised instrument panel, dash, center console area. 
                 New wraparound
                 taillights on 245 appear.
    1982 -  First year for "240-GLT" and 240-Turbo.  Reflector trim under 
                 headlights appears;  Grille re-styled, now chrome on GL
                 Revised 1st gear ratio (4.09:1) on M46 transmission; 1st year 
                AW70/AW71 4-speed auto transmission w/ L-Jetronic injection.
                (Some DL have 3-speed auto and K-Jetronic.)
                Last year for 260 series V6
                1983  - First year for B23F.  Group A "Homologated" (Flathood) Turbo 
                model introduced
    1984 -  Last year for 242.  Last year for 240 Diesel.  Bumpers streamlined 
                (closer to body, side extensions longer); First year for galvanization;
                Front air dam now on DL;  Black trim pieces under windows on all models.
    1984.5- 240-Turbo equipped with intercooler
    1985 -  First B230F;  Last year for 240/245 Turbo (U.S.);  Wagon tail lights 
                 get rear fogs added (top lens brake lights become fog lights)
    1986 -  240 restyled: new lower body plastic guards, fenders,
                 grill.  Rear plastic mudflaps now molded into the rear bodywork.
                 Front turnsignals are made smaller.  New dish hubcap with fins; 
                "Bustle" trunk lid.  New rear lower valance panel (hitch and
                exhaust area).  Solid panel replaces former slotted panel.
                First rear high-mount stop lamps; Radio moved to upper dash; New
                black plastic tailgate handle.
                First year for 240 large "TV screen" composite headlamps.
    1987 -  5-speed M47 transmission introduced (avail earlier in Europe)
    1989 -  Last year for "GL" in 240 model designation.
    1990 -  240 equipped with driver's air bag.  "SRS" on steering wheel
                center hub and SRS test panel port on central switch panel
                 between rear defrost and hazard switch.  (also labeled "SRS");
                New full plastic wheelcover;  
                245 tailgate window molding:  heavy bright recessed surround molding 
                replaced, enlarged glass panel.  Tailgate glass now flush-mounted
                with thin black molding.  Rear washer nozzle moved to top center of tailgate.
                Antenna moved from windshield pillar to rear of cars; Roof rack 
                on Wagons changed from 1960's "chrome-dream" style to more modern 
    1991 -  240-SE limited edition model introduced.  "DL" dropped from 240 
                 model designation.  240 windshield bright heavy outside windshield 
                 molding replaced with black flush-mount type.
                 AC controls:  rotary type control knob replaced with 
                 rocker type switch with illuminated blue "snowflake" symbol.
                 New GM type AC system.  Cooling fan in front of radiator for
                 increased AC efficiency can be seen behind grille.
                Radio now has anti-theft coding, changes in radio controls and 
                appearance.  240 auto transmission now has shift interlock.
                (depress brake to shift from park)  Transmission indicator bezel 
                has printed instructions indicating button to defeat interlock;
                Minor changes in wheel covers.  "Volvo" emblem now integral part of 
                wheel cover; not a separate "stick-on" emblem.
    1992 -  "GL" 240 model resurfaces in 244; grille switched from chrome 
                 finish to black finish; door handles, bodyside door moldings now 
                 all black finish. GL has heated outside mirror option w/dash switch 
                 for same on central console with mirror symbol on switch.
                 Different horns can be seen behind grille; ABS now standard equipment;
                 244 "GL" model dropped.  Radio now has 20W amplifier standard,
    1993 -  Heated power mirrors now standard on 240; Radio now has 6 speakers, 
                (addition of two small "tweeters" on upper rear doors); New auto 
                trans shift indicator surround/bezel
                240 "Classic" limited edition model introduced

    End of 240 series

    240 light style spotter's guide:


    2-round headlight: 1975-77 244 DL/GL, 245 DL;

    1975-80 242 DL/GT

    4-round headlight: 1976-77 264 DL/GL, 262 GL, 265 DL/GL;

    1978-80 244/245 DL

    4-square headlight: 1978 264/265 GL, 262C;

    1979-82 260;

    1980 240 GL;

    1981-85 240

    Current composites: 1986-on


    1975-78 early narrow square pod tail lights - 240 series (common with

    73 164, 73-74 140)

    1976-78 early extended square tail lights - 260 series (common with 75 164E)

    1975-80 early wagon strip tail lights - 240/260

    1979-83 later smooth tail lights - 240 series (DL)

    1979-82 later increased area taillights (no rear fog) - 260 series,

    1980-84 later increased area taillights GL

    1984 later increased area taillights DL

    1981- New wagon wraparound tailights (no rear fog)

    1985- later wide tail lights (w/ rear fog in upper lens)

    1985- new wagon taillights w/rear fog in upper lens (previously, these

    upper lenses were the brake lamps. When the fogs were added,

    the lower lenses became the brake lamps shared with the taillights)

    Date: Sun, 8 Aug 93 11:08:12 EDT
    From: Tim Takahashi <tim@me.rochester.edu>
    To: marka@sol.metaware.com (), swedishbricks-request@me.rochester.edu
    Subject: Re: Volvo 240 Spotters' Guide
    Cc: swedishbricks@me.rochester.edu

    On Aug 6, 10:34am, marka@sol.metaware.com () wrote:

    } Subject: Re: Volvo 240 Spotters' Guide
    } > 1983 - First year for B23F. Group A "Homologated" (Flathood) Turbo model
    } > introduced
    } I've seen references to "Group A Homologated" before in this mailing
    } list, but have no idea what it is. Was it a stock car, or a mod kit?
    } (I don't think I've ever seen a 240 turbo with an old-style flat
    } hood.)
    } --Mark "245 GLT Turbo lust" Alexander
    Homologation run cars.... Hmmm.....

    OK. For many forms of "showroom stock" racing, there are production limits used to define what is and isn't a mass produced car. Typically, you need to make 500 cars in a calendar year to qualify as mass produced. Recent factory homologation special cars are things like the "king of the road" Corvette, or the 1989 LE1 Camaro IROC 350 (I know this guy who has one).

    Prior to its late 1980's denial of motorsports, Volvo was reasonably serious about factory racing. There have been several factory runs of "homologated" cars, each subtly different.

    In my 1982 dealer brouchure, it states that "select" 1982 242GLT-turbo's were available minus the sunroof, power windows, power door locks, automatic transmission, heated seats, power mirrors, etc. The dealers at the time called this a "low-line" turbo. Basically, this appears to have been a factory homologation run - bare-bones car, hot motor. You never hear about these cars.

    In 1981 there was a european factory homologation run. Dan Theil, of Kurt's Garage, owns a group-A pro-rallye car built off of this platform. His car is true european spec - for 1981 this means, front fenders typically seen on 1986-> US cars, big composite lights simlar in style to the 86-> US model, but an early style flat hood (typical of 1975-80 2-door 240's). This style was the norm in europe during the mid 1980's.

    There are a number of folk here who own what they claim to be "Factory Homologated 242 Turbos" built in 1983. These are strange cars, but the "homologation" purpose is not clear. These are loaded 240 turbos, replete with power everything, sunroof and automatic - but have the european style flat hood, a unique grille, and the 4-rectangular headlamp front fascia. I saw one at the Canadian meet. Didn't look special...

    >From 1981-1985 Volvo styling in North America differed from European Spec. The hood with the centre bulge is, in reality, a 260-series hood - not a 240-series hood. The front fender style changed in europe in 1981 and in north america in 1986. 1983-85 US cars shared the 1981-85 european spec bumpers, while 1983-85 Canadian spec cars use the bumpers found on 1975-82 US spec and 1975-80 european spec cars. The soft "bug-eye" composite headlamps were used beginning in 1981 in europe. The flat composite headlamps seen ocassionally on 75-85 Canadian cars was used in 1975-80 260 series cars in europe (these are the dual H-1 filament Cibie's, euro 240's used single H-4 Hella's).


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    Information on the 240 series designation.

    From: volvo245@aol.com
    To: swedishbricks@me.rochester.edu
    Date: Mon, 25 Oct 93 19:39:12 EDT
    Subject: Re: Need info on 2xx series


    I am sure you will get a ton of more explicit responses, but here goes... If you want a 4door, then its a 244 you seek. (242 is a 2door, 244 is a 4door, and 245 is the 5door wagon) I own a 1980 245(wagon) with 'only' 122,000 miles. No airbag, but quite frankly, if there was any car I would want to play chicken with a concrete truck, it would be a 240. Repair shops are plentiful, and from experience, you will pay a bit more for that service than, say, Toyota or Nissan. On the other hand, They are alot cheaper than, say, a Saab or an MB. As for reliability, stories of high mileage are not fantasy, but reality. The engine in my car (B21F) weighs almost as much as my Nissan Sentra! The Swedes like cast iron! There are a few things about the series that make me wonder what kind of drugs the engineers were doing when they designed it. (and why they didn't fix it after almost 20 years)! But those things are only slightly annoying. A plus about these cars, is the fact that you can get a late model for short money, and since the '83's look like the '93's to the general public, you look good in it, too! All in all, out of all the cars I have owned, (trust me, A LOT) I would definatly recommend a 240.

    Mark Wentworth

    P.S If you come across a 1980 245 for sale, let me know!

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