Piece in Brief: Volvo 142 - Aesthetic Post

Piece in Brief: Volvo 142

Volvo 142

Volvo 142

Volvo 140 series in production at their Torslanda plant.Volvo’s 140 series in production at their Torslanda plant.

Volvo 142The stylish interior was was designed with practicality and comfort in mind.

Volvo 142

The Volvo 142 is the 2-door version of the Swedish car manufacturer’s 140 series, introduced in the summer of 1967, and in production through 1974.

The 2-door model followed in the crisp, “brick” shape Volvo’s 140 series introduced, a timeless and decidedly Scandinavian alternative to the bulbous, swollen forms of American cars at the time. During its production period, the 142 saw just a couple of variations in terms of power and comfort, as well as minor design alterations (dashboard and exterior detail, including an update to the now trademark, diagonal-line front grille), the bodystyle enduring. Worth noting is Volvo’s model naming system: the first digit being the series, the second citing the number of cylinders, and the final defining the number of doors.

Slightly lower in price than the 4-door model (144), the 142 had the same technical design, apart from the number of doors; the doors were naturally longer and the front backrests could be folded forward for backseat passengers. Just over 400,000 of the 142 model were built. The 140 series emphasized safety (a Volvo hallmark) and the body was equipped with crumple zones, a hidden roll-over bar, as well as safety belts in the cabin. Because of their very high standard of safety and build quality to withstand Scandinavian winters, some considered the straightforward design of the series to be tank-like, as many consumers expected the superfluous design features of its contemporaries. Nonetheless, Volvo’s 140 series was very successful internationally, the 142, undoubtedly, the most handsome of the line.

The 140 series was designed under the direction of Jan Wilsgaard; when he designed the series, Wilsgaard employed a credo, “simple is beautiful,” this reflected in the restrained, honest design of the car that went on to become an iconic form in automobile design.

More at: Volvo Heritage
Photos: Volvo

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