This Camouflaged Volvo P1800 Could Be the Factory Electric Restomod We Need

Classic P1800 + fast Polestar drivetrain = rowdy as hell.

byStef Schrader|
Builds photo

Several automakers have hopped on the factory electric restomod bandwagon lately, from Jaguar's E-Type Zero to Volkswagen's revamped Beetles. It's a clever way to increase the performance of iconic cars while making them desirable to new audiences. Now Volvo and its electrified performance specialists at Polestar may be doing their own version with Volvo's classic P1800 sports car, and I am extremely here for it. 

Eagle-eyed Redditor thevolvofans snapped a couple photos of a camouflaged P1800 outside Volvo Hällered Proving Ground near Gothenburg, Sweden. He got some dirty looks from the car's minders when he tried to get closer for photos and noticed a few key differences besides the camo that made him wonder if this could be an upcoming electric restomod.

First off, the car wears a tiny grille-mounted badge, much like many Volvos tuned by Polestar Engineering have. Polestar as a brand has become Volvo's all-electric performance spinoff, making it the perfect source for fast EV components. It's got some much larger wheels, seemingly larger wheel wells and thicker tires than stock that would definitely be needed for a significant bump in power. There's also a sizeable front splitter that in no way looks stock. 


It's hard to tell if what else could be going on from the photos. Are the car's minders just stopping to rest at the gas station? It's pretty flat on the bottom, so are the round parts under the bumper that look like exhaust pipes not connected to anything?

The Volvo subreddit did quite a bit of sleuthing on this car already, so let's give credit where credit's due there. The car itself is a red 1964 Volvo P18335 VD owned by Mattias Evensson, per Swedish registration records found by another Redditor, thedudefromsweden. (Good looking out, Reddit.)

Evensson apparently got the car from Jonas Christian Dahl, who should sound familiar to any Volvo superfan given that Dahl took sole ownership of Polestar in 2004, which later became Volvo's (and later Volvo's Geely-owned stablemate Lynk & Co's) racing division Cyan Racing after Volvo purchased the performance Polestar side of things in 2015. Dahl is still the owner and group CEO of Cyan Racing, according to his LinkedIn profile. Evensson has been the Head of Engine Development at Cyan Racing since 2007, per his LinkedIn. Before Dahl, the car belonged to Cyan Racing AB itself. Needless to say, this P1800 has been around Volvo/Polestar/Lynk & Co's performance folks since 2017. 

Whatever we're looking at is very, very interesting. 2021 is the 60th anniversary of the P1800, so of course they'd want to build something special to show off. An electric restomod would be the perfect way to celebrate Volvo's past and future in one car. The only question then would be, if and when would such a conversion going to be available to customers? 


The Drive reached out to Volvo and Polestar for additional information, however, a media representative for Polestar denied that Polestar had any involvement with this vehicle, and had no additional information on this car. 

Updated: Friday July 31, 2020 11:18 a.m. ET: Added information from Polestar above.

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