It takes a lot of work to build a car.  It’s not like in the movies where engines are repaired in one scene, using one wrench.  We all know reality involves considerably more blood, sweat, tears, and profanity.  Reality is also lacking in musical montage, unfortunately.  Working with any car can be physically exhausting and time consuming, making the more unique platforms all the more impressive.

Photos By: Jens Sveder exclusively for

Patrik Lindgren became quite familiar with the concept of hard work during the build process of his 1975 Volvo 242.  The 25-year-old sheet metal worker from Sweden tells us his very specific search for a project ended September of 2009 when he took the 242 home.  Patrik says the car was in questionable shape, requiring considerable attention before it could be deemed roadworthy.  Due to his plans for the vehicle, he chose a ’75 as it is easier for vintage vehicles to pass inspection in Sweden.  Needless to say, his plan didn’t fit the definition of what one would call a ‘factory restoration.’

Despite the clean, factory appearance of the Volvo the chassis has been modified extensively.  The rear end is converted to one from a 1979 model for an updated look and the 242 received some widening during the transformation as well.  A full roll cage is present, adding strength to the aging structure.  Underneath, the transmission tunnel and rear axle have been raised to accommodate the low ride height.  Finished in a green hue with new bumpers the car looks great, far from the dilapidated state Lindgren tell us the project began as.

Determining the best wheel offset to produce a certain look is a very important, prompting many to describe it as “everything” in the wheel-fitment realm.  However, sometimes offset isn’t the only factor that must be addressed.  In order to attain his desired wheel fitment Patrik relocated the entire rear axle 1-inch forward, a notable feat that produced exceptional results.  Unlike an S-chassis or a Civic, aftermarket suspension solutions are not plentiful for the 242.  A combination of coilovers and cut springs are employed to provide the stance.  Beneath the fenders reside a beautiful set of staggered BBS RS wheels; sized 17×9.5” -15 on the steering end with 17×11” +6 filling out the widened rear.  Falken provided the 205/40/17 and 245/35/17 tires.

Patrik felt that the original mill was lackluster.  He eloquently describes it as “slow as hell.”  That issue was remedied by the installation of a silky-smooth Bavarian straight-six, pulled from a ’92 5-series.  The BMW M50B25 provides healthy propulsion for the Volvo and since it’s a ’75 it passes the required inspection.  This was the original goal for the build and was the first major change the Volvo experienced.  Lindgren tells us a turbocharger will find its way into the engine bay, sometime in the future.

Motivation can run thin in the midst of projects like this one, a feeling Patrik became acquainted with during the later parts of the process.  He offers a huge thanks to the Oijoij Crew for supporting him and getting him the motivation to finish up and get the car painted.  With future plans for a more complete interior and forced-induction this already impressive Volvo 242 promises to become even more special.  Fabrication skills obviously can contribute heavily to the completion of an exceptional build, nevertheless — motivation and hard work will always be the most essential qualities necessary to bring dreams to life.

[toggle_item title=”Wheels/Tires/Suspension” active=”true”]Coilovers in the front
Cut springs in the back

Bbs Rs 17″
9. 5″ ET -15 with Falken 205/40
11″ ET -6 with Falken 245/35

[toggle_item title=”Exterior” active=”false”]242 from 1975.
Rear-end from a 1979
Widened rear fenders
No spare tire-barrels
New bumpers[/toggle_item]

[toggle_item title=”Interior” active=”false”]Full roll cage
Rebuilt the rear axle mounting and transmission tunnel to be able to lower it properly
Rear axle moved 1″ forward so the wheel fits better to the fender
Stripped interior

[toggle_item title=”Engine” active=”false”]Engine and gearbox from a BMW
525 1992 (m50b25)[/toggle_item]