780 Bertone Turbo - 1 owner - 61k
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780 Bertone Turbo - 1 owner - 61k for sale
July 11. 2013 MotorTrend article:
"Future Classic: 1987-1991 Volvo 780/coupe
"Greed is Good. said Gordon Gekko in the 1987 film “Wall Street. ” In Swedish. that's girighet är god. and in Volvo-ese. that sentiment translated to the 780 coupe. Gothenburg was clearly tired of watching the Germans rake in obscene profits during the status-conscious Me Decade. so the company decided to try to get back in on the action by taking a second swing at a flagship coupe. Once again. the job was entrusted to Turinese coachbuilder Bertone. which had produced the chopped 262C/Coupe from 1978-1981.
But this time. the Italians were empowered to design an entirely unique body to drape over the spanking-new 700-series rear-drive running gear and the 90-degree Peugeot/Renault/Volvo V-6 engine. which had just been upgraded with an even-firing crankshaft. Indeed. the hood. roof. and deck are lower than on a four-door 740/760 sedan. Although Nuccio Bertone takes credit for the design. it certainly looks as though Volvo design honcho Jan Wilsgaard was holding the other end of the pencil.
This Scanditalian stallion arrived in U. S. dealer showrooms for 1987. boasting every creature comfort that could be crammed into its glove-leather and beechwood-lined custom interior. with a sticker price of $34. 85 -- more than $7500 above the next spendiest Volvo. The very next year. a multilink rear suspension with self-leveling Nivomat shocks added $3005 to the price. making it the equivalent of $70. 35 in today's money (think Audi RS 5. BMW M3). That makes this the most expensive Volvo production car in its history (today's S80 tops out at just $54. 45). A more powerful 2. 3-liter turbo-four joined the lineup for 1989 (175 hp versus the V-6's 145). with fatter wheels and tires that upped performance marginally. but this hefty. safe. boxy car would never be mistaken for a Bavarian bahn-stormer. The final 1991 models were badged Coupe. and all got turbos good for 188 hp. plus a limited-slip differential and beefier anti-roll bars.
Bertone built a total of 8518 780/Coupes and shipped about 5700 of them to North America -- small enough numbers to ensure rarity and future collectibility. Given that the sheetmetal. grille. and head- and taillamps are all unique. such rarity also means you'll have trouble locating replacment parts. so find a complete one and don't shrug off a cracked lens as a cheap fix. Water drains around the rear quarter windows can clog. leading to serious unseen rust damage. so regard any rust spot under those windows as the tip of an iceberg-size repair. Volvos are as inherently reliable as they are repulsive to speed freaks and hot rodders; therefore. nice. high-mileage survivors are out there and are probably well worth the trouble to seek out. "
"The Volvo 780 coupe made its debut at the International Auto Show in Geneva. Switzerland in 1985. It marked the return of a two-door 2+2 seater coupe to the Volvo stable after a four-year absence following the departure of the 262C in 1981. The 780 became available in Europe in 1986. and would come to the United States a year later.
Like its predecessor. the 780 was designed and built by Carrozzeria Bertone in Turin. Italy. However. unlike the 262C. the 780 was not merely a two-door 760 with a “chop top” roof. Bertone gave the 780 its own distinctive shape which set it apart from the other models. yet was still identifiable as a Volvo. The car had a sleek. low profile. inheriting some of the styling of the other 700 series cars. but without many of the severe angles and sharp corners. The hood. trunk. and roof lines were all slightly lower than the standard 700 series profile. and the C-pillar was wider and had a more gradual slope down to the trunk. Headroom was improved over the 262C. thanks to Bertone's mere 1 centimeter lowering of the roofline! Window frames all had black matte trim. and were accented with chrome. Chrome also highlighted the door handles. bumpers. and side mouldings. Headlamps were large. flush-mounted units with integrated high and low halogen beams. and the grille was a black. “egg-crate” design similar to the 740 Turbo. Fog lamps were integrated into the air dam. The design for the taillamps was a new departure from the other 700 Series cars in 1985. but by 1990 and beyond this design would be applied to all other models in Volvo's lineup (other foreign automakers would later copy this design as well) Following traditional Italian coachbuilding practice. Bertone endowed the 780 with badges of its name and famous logo. which appear on the base of the C-pillars.
The 780's interior also received Bertone's undivided attention. The instrument cluster and general dashboard layout was carried over from the 760. but otherwise the interior was uniquely designed for the model. Birch burl wood accents with a high-gloss finish highlighted the dashboard and door panels. In front were contoured. sculpted bucket seats with height-adjustable headrests—reminiscent of Bertone's classic designs for Alfa Romeo and Ferrari in the late 60's and early 70's. This style of bucket seat would be imitated extensively by most automakers by the early 90's. The rear seat was specially shaped for two occupants and featured integrated headrests. Seats were of course covered in hand-stitched leather. In addition to the full complement of standard luxury equipment inherited from the 760. the 780 had some unique features of its own. It was equipped with a four-speaker stereo system with cassette receiver. seven-band electronic graphic equalizer. and a high-power amplifier mounted in the trunk under the rear hatshelf. Map reading lights were mounted above and behind the rear passenger side windows. Buttons on the side of both the driver and passenger seatbacks tilted the seatbacks forward to allow for entry to the rear. And until the arrival of the 850 in 1993. the 780 was the only model to feature a power moonroof. Like the 760. a driver's side airbag and anti-lock brakes were standard equipment (both of which were otherwise considered a luxury item in 1987).
In 1989 the 780 finally became available with the turbocharged B230FT 4-cylinder engine. In addition. the 780 also received a “Turbo+” accessory kit as standard equipment. which was a relay and vacuum-controlled valve system designed to raise the turbocharger's boost pressure at a specified RPM. This consequently increased the base turbo engine's output from 160 to 175 HP. The 780 Turbo also featured new striking. 15-inch “Multi-X” pattern alloy wheels to differentiate it from the V-6 powered 780. For the first time. “Volvo” badges appeared on the sides of the cars. actually serving as plugs for the side marker lights. which were standard on the Euro-spec cars but not installed on the U. S. cars. Inside. a switch for the door locks was added to the driver's door control panel. The front seats also had a new “memory glide” feature: by folding the seatback and pressing a small button on the underside of the seat release lever. the seat moved forward automatically to facilitate entry to the rear. Upon returning the seat back to its upright position. pushing and holding down the same button on the seatback release returned the seat to its original position.
Volvo's official production total for the 780 is 8. 18 cars built between 1985 and 1990. However. this number has often been disputed as different sources have often estimated the actually total to be higher. As before. a coupe would remain absent from Volvo's model line for several years until 1997. ten years after the 780's introduction in the U. S. The C70. based on the 850 front-wheel drive platform. would be Volvo's first coupe for the next century.
B230FT 4-cylinder Turbo
The 780 Turbo was introduced at a time when Volvo was producing a more refined. reliable turbo engine. benefiting from intercooler technology and water-cooled turbochargers. Based on the ever-stalwart Volvo inline 4-cylinder. the 1989 turbos and the 1990-1991 “Generation 3″ turbos are both perfectly reliable engines. given regular oil changes and proper idle intervals before engine shutdown. The “Generation 3″ B230FT has the added benefit of increased performance and less “turbo lag” from the newer. smaller turbine in the turbocharger.
Typical of the four-cylinder engines. the turbo transfers more vibration to the chassis and exhaust. causing the occasional rattling muffler. The engine is noisier under acceleration than the V-6. and can strain somewhat with accessories such as air conditioning running. Also. since the bulk of the turbo's power is in the 3000-5000 rpm range. torque at low rpm is a little weak until the engine is sufficiently revved. However. the turbo offers much better performance than the V-6 and. besides proper oil change intervals. has less demanding maintenance requirements.
Nivomat Self-Leveling Rear Shock Absorbers
The 760s and 780s were equipped with the Boge Nivomat self-leveling rear shock absorbers as standard equipment. This system employs the combination of a heavy-duty shock absorber and a lighter coil spring. The self-leveling feature is activated automatically by the normal up-and-down motion of the car's suspension during driving. eventually raising the car up to normal ride height under empty or load conditions. If the car is not driven for several days. the rear of the Nivomat-equipped cars will naturally sag (usually within one inch of the rear wheels) due to the lighter springs. This is a normal characteristic of the Nivomat system and the car's rear should eventually return to normal ride height after a period of normal driving.
The Nivomat shocks can usually last up to 100. 00 miles or more under normal wear and tear. But if the car's rear is chronically sagging even after periods of driving. or fails the standard “bounce” test when physically pushed down. they may be due for replacement. Replacement Nivomat shocks are not cheap—as much as $450 retail or more per shock. However. if your 780 is a 1987 model which does not have the Multilink independent rear suspension. there is the option of replacing the Nivomats with standard shock absorbers. You will also need to install standard springs in place of the lighter springs. which came with the Nivomats. Unfortunately for 1988-1991 780s equipped with the Multilink IRS. there currently are no options available from Volvo for converting to standard shocks.
About Carrozzeria Bertone
Carrozzeria Bertone of Turin. Italy. has been a center of automotive styling and design excellence since its founding in 1912 by Giovanni Bertone. Like Pininfarina and Zagato. Bertone's coachwork has long been associated with such legendary Italian automotive marques as Alfa Romeo. Ferrari. Fiat. and Lamborghini. but Bertone also produced designs for other automotive companies. including BMW. Opel. and of course. Volvo.
Under the guidance of Nuccio Bertone. Giovanni's son. the company grew rapidly from a small workshop to a fully-industrialized coachbuilding company. and would produce many memorable and innovative automotive designs over nearly five decades. Nuccio had a gift for finding the best in design talent for his company. and the three legendary designers who shaped their careers while at Bertone were hired by Nuccio in succession: Franco Scaglione. Giorgio Giugiaro. and Marcello Gandini.
The famous 1954 Alfa Romeo Giulietta Sprint. Giulia 105 Series GT Coupes and Montreal. a version of Ferrari's 1961 250 GT. the 308 GT4 Dino. the Lamborghini Miura and Countach. and the popular Fiat X1/9 coupe were just some of the many classic and successful designs to emerge from the Bertone studio. Nuccio Bertone devoted most of his life to serving the company his father had begun. and was still active in the business up until his death on February 26. 1997 at the age of 82.
Bertone's first collaborations with Volvo began with limited production vaiants of the 200 series cars. among them being the 264TE—a “stretched” limousine version of the 264 sedan. Bertone's first. true “larger scale” project with Volvo was the 262C Coupe. built from 1977 to 1981. Bertone would be called upon again in 1985 to design the coachwork and interior for the 780 Coupe. "
Some flaws with vehicle #008566
This has sat in storage for the past 7 years. It needs tires as the current Dunlops are bald. and due to sitting in storage have been flat spotted over time.
There are 2 dents in the passenger side front fender. 1 dent on the driverside door. and 1 small dent on the roof. These are all accessible and can be easily removed by someone skilled in paintless dent repair.
Before being taken off the road. 2nd gear would sometimes slip out of gear under hard acceleration (high boost levels)
Weak battery due to age.
The interior is flawless. Nothing is broken. everything works. and is the epitome of handmade Italian coachwork.
The buyer responsible for all shipping. The vehicle currently runs. drives. however due to the tires and length of time in storage i can not advise driving it to wherever its new home may be. I removed all the old gas (which did have stabilizer added). and put roughly 3 gallons of shell 93 in. Trailer is required.
Very rare car with the most desirable motor. and a even more rare color/motor combination. I dont recall ever seeing another pearl blue on tan leather Bertone turbo.
I have roughly 60 pictures saved. however i am limited to posting 24. I can email the rest to anyone interested.
Also published at eBay.com
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