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Volvo P179

Dear Classic Lover

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In the news coverage about the Volvo P1900, we were not too enthusiastic. Even seen in the light of what was beautiful (...) six decades ago. But yes, as a car manufacturer you didn't have to miss the connection? It was no different with Volvo. Ever heard of the Volvo P179?


Replacement 'Katterug'

For that we have to switch back to 1952, two years before the P1900. The then young designer Jan Wilsgaard was commissioned by his boss Assar Gabrielsson to sign a replacement for the P444 'Cat Back'. Based on cost savings, they had been instructed by the management side that 'the roof' of that P444 should remain unchanged. Wilsgaard took a good look around, sniffed through books and photos and got stuck with the beautiful design of the Bentley R-Type Continental. And he wasn't wrong about that. It eventually resulted in a nicely lined coupé-like Volvo. Many 'midnight oil 'Later, after seeing a working prototype, the management put the light on green.

External designer

The P179 had to be made production-ready so that it would be available from 1954. The whole plan went smoothly, all preparations were made, the machinery was adjusted, ready-to-leave ... And then Gabrielsson decided to have the model evaluated again by an external designer, a certain Helmer Petterson. Well, he did not care much about the 'new Volvo' and so the whole plan was canceled at the eleventh hour. Die Petterson offered to put a nicer replacement in the world for a much lower investment. You have to have it from your friends? The beautiful prototype ended up without any problems on the scrap heap ... Although hassle-free? During test drives the thing seems to have 'fallen over' twice. Extremely strange of course, because the chassis was really no different than that of a Cat's Back.

Photo: This is how the successor of the Volvo P444 could have looked ... 

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