Goldilocks Turbo: 1990 Volvo 240 Wagon

The consensus from the crowd is that the 740 horsepower Volvo 240 from the other day was too much power for the car and the 300ish horspower Cummins 6BT Torino Wagon was too much torque for the power (and probably too much soot for the air), so how do you feel if we split the difference and find something that has as much power as torque and won’t melt tires or the polar ice caps. The only thing this wagon needs is an injection of manual gearbox. Find this 1990 Volvo 240 Wagon offered for $6,500 in Sarasota, FL via craigslist. Tip from Cory.

From the seller:

1990 volvo 240dl wagon
condition: excellent
cylinders: 4 cylinders
drive: rwd
fuel: gas
odometer: 105455
odometer broken
paint color: grey
size: full-size
title status: clean
transmission: automatic
type: wagon
I am the 3rd owner of this Florida car, the car was originally purchased in Sarasota. Bought it with 78,000 miles in 2012 and it never let me down. I have completed so many services and upgrades. Note a 240+T is not a factory turbo car, but built up as a turbo car, which is common. Most of which is compiled in the list below. Almost all of which has less than 500 miles on it for testing and setup. Engine compression test is like new, total odo now is approx 105,455 miles, as they do on these cars the odo stopped working.

I have been a certified auto tech as well as professional IMSA race mechanic for over 25 years, the car is built correctly and not built to be a show car, but a fun sporty daily driver. The car drives great, under 3000 rpm its a solid N/A Volvo, over 3000rpm 15psi boost, manually shifting it, becomes a turbo beast. I originally spec’d the car for 18psi, but only ran that as to test it, no problems.

The car is virtually rust free, a little surface showing on spots underneath, but its really nothing, it has one larger dent on roof from original owner big tree branch falling on it. Very very few dings, body is incredibly straight for a 31 year old car. Original paint except hood, the roof and upper fenders showing Florida sun damage now, but wow with a new paint job, would look amazing.

The interior has the typical wear and broken plastic parts, all of which is now available online.

Now there are a couple issues I did not resolve, the windshield was replaced back in 2014, seems the guy did not put in spacers at the bottom, the sealant softened and the windshield has slid down slightly, so its mis-aligned with the trim now. The windshield washer pumps no longer work, the windshield wipers seem to run a little slow, may be time for a motor rebuild. The left front headlamp assembly took a rock and cracked it. Since I have the modified computer chips, on big turbo boost it will trip the CEL, but there is nothing wrong. Occasionally the right rear brake light will trigger the dash light, its always been like this, just never replaced the circuit board. The A/C low side connector has an o-ring leak, I was just topping it up regularly, but that fitting should be replaced.


IPD adjustable cam gear
IPD VX performance Camshaft installed 10deg adv
Camshaft lifter shims and adjusted to new cam
All belts
All poly accessory bushings
MAF Sensor
TPS Sensor
Water pump
Timing belt
Timing belt tensioner
Bosch Alternator
Die Hard oversized battery
Rad / Coolant / Rad hoses
Rubber fuel lines to tank and return
Bosch 7900 spark plugs in engine
Spare set NGK BPR7ES spark plugs
Kingsbourne Plug wires
Bosch Cap and Rotor
87C Thermostat
Idle air control motor
Ford E-core hi output ignition coil
Crane Hi-6 multiple spark ignition box
Various engine gaskets
HD External Oil cooler with 12” electric fan
Mann Oil Filter and Liqui-Moly full synth oil 5w40 oil
New tropical clutch fan
Coolant tank
R134 AC conversion
Bosch 02 sensor
Cone air filter
Custom engine blow by setup with separator can
Various vacuum lines

Extra Gauges:

Mechanical Oil Pressure
Turbo boost / Vacuum
AER Wideband


Gold Box EZK with custom chip and 3 deg advance jumper
945 Computer ECU with custom chip and 6800 rpm limiter


Bosch #9454556 flow matched 4 hole nozzle injectors 43.5 lb @ 3 bar
Bosch 3 bar fuel pressure regulator
High pressure fuel pump wiring harness
Bosch high pressure Fuel pump
Fuel filter
Rebuild of pump/filter mounting plate
Bosch high volume turbo in tank fuel pump and filter
Main Fuel relay


CXR T-3 with external waste gate (adjustable) currently running conservative 15psi
42 AR Exh fast spool
.63 AR Compressor housing
Rated for 350 hp+
.060” oil restrictor and external serviceable filter
All AN fittings / braided lines
OBX Stainless Turbo Header (wrapped)


2.5” intercooler tubing
2.5” thick 14” x 15” size intercooler
Manual waste gate
Manual blow off valve


Custom 2.5” to Magnaflow resonator
Starla factory 2.5 “ turbo after resonator
Stainless resonator exhaust tip


New filter
HD External extra Hayes transmission cooler with 12” fan
Transmission solid shift rod modification
Royal Purple fluid


IPD Roll Bars Front and Rear
IPD Lowering springs
IPD upper strut braces
IPD Panhard bar
KYB Shocks and struts
Upper strut plates
Chassis camber modification to add negative camber
All SKF wheel bearings
Driveshaft hanger bearing
3 of 4 driveshaft U-joints (1 in box)
Front lower A -Arms
Super Pro poly front control arm full bushing kit
Ball joints
Outer tie rods
Reman steering rack
All PS hoses, pump and extra steering pump filter
Steering rack to column coupler
Complete brakes including flex lines and fluid flush

Wheels and Tires

15” x 7 Borbet alloy wheels
Michelin Premier 205 / 60 tires

Misc installed parts:

A/C temp controller switch in cabin
Tailagate struts
E-Code front headlights with HID conversion
Shifter bushing
Engine mounts
Transmission mounts
Rear tail light lenses
G80 Locker (not installed)
Box of old computers, dash cluster, filters, tubing, etc, misc stuff

See a better way to drive Goldilocks’ wagon?