The desert east of LA always offers interesting automotive sights, and last Sunday was no different. I spotted this custom Volvo wagon sitting outside the Autozone in Twentynine Palms, and immediately turned back to my car for the camera. It’s clearly a 245, but identifying an exact Volvo model year always proves difficult. Based on the (single) factory tail light, it was built between 1981 and 1993, and I doubt anyone will narrow it down beyond that.
It appears the side glass and rear doors were sacrificed to support the chop job, and that the driver’s side tail light has been replaced with a steel insert to allow the owner to mount a tailgate side pivot hinge.
I talked to the passenger and discovered the owner worked in the stunt industry, and hoped to use the car in future films. She also said the car had frightened several children in a local parking lot.
As we were talking, the owner appeared and confirmed the car still used a Volvo power plant. I was a bit disappointed to hear this, since this beast really needs thumping V-8 propulsion. However, the owner noted that it’s hard to change out engines here in California, since smog checks are required on this model. At the time of purchase, he did try to find a diesel powered wagon (California does not require smog checks on car registered as diesels), but none were to be had.