10k: Thorsday Rallybrick – 1980 Volvo 242

Want to go stage rallying, or even rallycrossing but don’t want to spend years building a car? Need to practice your Scandanavian Flick on gravel roads in a simple, strong and reliable RWD chassis? Have $7.5k burning a hole in your pocket? Then you may want to skip this feature…because this might just be too tempting. What we have here started life as a regular 1980 Volvo 242 but was built into a full stage rally car many years ago, and is being sold as a complete turnkey ready-to-rally package. Find it here on the turbobricks.com forums, in the San Fernando Valley, CA area for $7500.

This 242 has a long, long list of modifications to make it suitable for rally duty, has seen several incarnations over the years, and has been used as intended; it was the 2011 champion in the California Rally Series CRS-5 class. The body has been modified through lightening and seam-welding, and features a full rally-legal rollcage, Lexan windows, custom jacking points with matching stands for quick service, and a full bellypan to protect the vital bits from rocks.

Inside we see two full racing seats with harnesses – as it should be, since you’ll need a willing (and mentally unstable) co-driver to help you navigate as you fly sideways down a dirt road approaching triple-digit speeds. The rally computer and intercom system are essential for competition, and the genuine Volvo R-Sport steering wheel and gauge cluster are a nice touch.

The engine has been upgraded to a later 2.3L turbo B230FT unit from a 940, which has had recent top-end refreshing and should prove reliable with mostly stock internals and factory-fitted piston oil squirters. A larger-than-stock Garrett T3 turbocharger has been fitted and might be in need of attention soon, but the exhaust manifold should be able to accept any turbo with a T3-style turbine inlet flange…and there are hundreds of those to choose from. Much custom fabrication has been done under the hood of this beast, even though it looks stock – so you can bet that it was done right and shouldn’t fall apart when you hit that first jump.

Speaking of which, this car is set up to handle whatever you can throw at it, or whatever you can throw it off of. The suspension has been completely gone over and built with rally-specific long travel struts, dampers and springs, with bracing and reinforcement as necessary. 240s are solid cars from the factory, but slamming them into the ground repeatedly will cause “issues” unless they are upgraded like this one has been.

This car has recently been refreshed by the seller with a new paint scheme and WWII fighter plane theme – hence the gunmetal gray paint, mean-eye headlights, USAF roundel insignia, and “Fickle Bitch” nose art complete with pinup. We like it!

NASA and SCCA / CRS rally log books are included to give the new owner a history of all the events that the car has seen, and a good indication of what maintenance and repair work might be necessary in the near future. The fact that the car has passed tech inspection numerous times is a big plus and this documentation will prove that. The seller does state that the car will need refreshed harnesses, as the current ones are past their FIA-mandated expiration date.

We think this rally brick would make a fantastic introduction to the art of drifting in the dirt – for points! Being fully sorted, with a long competition history, a reasonable price and spare parts included doesn’t hurt either. Good luck to the next owner – we’re sure they will have a blast with it.

The seller’s full photo album can be found here, hosted by his blog, rallybrick.com.

An extensive history of the car is told by the seller, with pictures, here on the turbobricks forums.

We’ll part with some words from the seller:

It’s not the fastest thing on the road, but it’s tough and reliable. It won’t turn a ¼ mile in 12’s, but it’ll do 100 mph in a drift on a fire road with a sheer wall on one side and a 1000 ft dropoff on the other without flinching (the driver, maybe not so much). It’s not the most expensive build, either, but it’s more important to last a season of hell than a single event of bliss – and the logistics of running races costs money outside of car prep. It’s not nicely painted because you’re just going to sandblast it with gravel anyway. There’s no money in rally, so the less you spend on pretty parts, the more you can spend on go fast bits, unbreakable **** made out of unobtanium, and beer for your volunteer crew. What it is – is a mean bitch with hell-on-wheels determination to do one thing – haul ass on gravel. This ain’t a garage queen here – this is the SOB that came in and roughed up your garage queen, made some snide comments to that AWD poofter in the corner, slapped your FWD econobox in the forehead on the way out, and then took off to go have fun with its buddies, tear-assing out in the forest.”

Find another Scandanavian brick that enjoys being flicked? Email us here: tips@dailyturismo.com