The VOLVO 260 GL and GLE was introduced in 1975 in Europe, and one year later in North America. The Volvo 240 and Volvo 260 share the same chassis and body. They are basically the same car but the 260 has more luxury items and the more powerful V6 engine. Depending on the year it is equipped with power mirrors, power windows, leather interior, lots of chrome on the outside, upscale sound system, mag wheels and other luxury items not found on the base Volvo 240. The 260 was the top of the VOLVO line in terms of luxury, replacing the Volvo 164 model produced until 1975 for the title. Differences between the 240 and 260 varied with time. New features were first introduced on the 260 model and later added to the 240. Some features of the Volvo 260 were offered as options on the 240.
The VOLVO 260 was not an entirely new car design for Volvo. It inherited from the Volvo 140 and 164 the whole body, interior and exterior, from the front firewall back to the rear bumper. The windshield, dash, seats, doors, roof, trunk, everything rear of the firewall is the same as the 140 and 164. The novelty on the 260 and 240 is the front end and the introduction of Mcpherson front suspension struts. The hood, fenders, headlights and everything front of the firewall was redesigned.
The main difference between the 260 and 240 is the V6 engine of the 260, while the 240 got an in-line 4 cylinder. The B27 V6 engine had 2.7 liter displacement from 1975 to 1979. In 1980 the B28 engine was introduced with 2.8 liter and an output of 130hp @ 5500rpm and 153 ft.lbs @ 2750. It was also available with the D24 Diesel engine for some years, as shown in the production tables below. In 1980 and 1981 some 264 were sold with the 4 cylinder B21F engine of the 240 series.
From 1975 to 1980 the car was available with a standard or automatic transmission. From 1981 only the automatic was available.
Important fact about the 260 V6 engine: the first B27 version is known for its poor lubrication system. The camshaft will wear prematurely if the engine runs low on oil or if old oil blocks the oil orifices. It is important to check the oil level often, change the oil regularly and fix any oil leak as soon as possible. Quite a few 260's were retired early because of engine failure.
The Volvo 260 was available in 3 body styles: 2 door sedan (262), 4 door sedan (264) and 4 door station wagon (265). From 1975 to 1979 to badge on the car would read 262 GL, 264 GL or 265 GL. Starting in 1980 Volvo changed its badges on all models and the 260 was now identified as GLE. The 4 door and wagon models got a GLE badge on the back. The 2 door coupe model got a COUPÉ badge.
The Volvo 264 4 door sedan was sold from 1975 to 1982 and a total of 131500 were produced. The best year for the 4 door sedan was 1976 with 25287 units sold.
The Volvo 265 station wagon was introduced in 1976, one year after the sedan, and was sold until 1985. A total of 35132 Volvo 260 wagons were sold. The best year for the wagon was also 1976 with 8108 units sold. From 1981 the 260 wagons are quite rare. Only 704 units were sold in 1985 which makes it one of the rarest Volvo produced.
The Volvo 262 2 door sedan version was first offered in 1976 and 1977 simply as a 2 door version of the 260. In 1977 only 230 units were sold ! This makes it very collectable and even Volvo enthusiasts are not aware of this fact. In 1978 a completely new 2 door Coupe was presented. The 262C was an extremely exclusive model, which was built by the Italian coachwork designer Bertone. They are recognized by their lowered roof, covered with black vinyl, fancy leather interior, and even more gadgets like power antenna, power sun roof, rear lighter and courtesy lights. In 1980 the roof was not covered with vinyl.
Why so few Volvo 260's survived and are being restored ? The first obvious reason is the low production, much lower than the 240 series. The second reason is the well known fact that luxury models are less attractive to the do it yourself crowd because of the extra costs, complexity and low reliability of gadgets like power antennas, power roof, power mirrors and the like. The final reason is availability of parts and knowledge for the 6 cylinder engine. Since millions of Volvo's use the same 4 cylinder engine in the 240/740/940 series, parts are easy to find used, new and aftermarket. The mechanics are also familiar with the 4 cylinder maintenance, repair and common problems. All this is not true for the 6 cylinder engine used on the 260 and later 760 series. A lot of parts are available only from a Volvo dealers and not cheap. Mechanics don't like the 6 cylinder because they have less experience with it. The camshaft lubrication problem described above certainly doesn't help the reputation of the V6 engine and lead to many cars being scraped earlier than they should.
In 1982 the VOLVO 760 was introduced as the top of the line VOLVO model. Interest in the 260 diminished and the 260 sedan production ceased in 1982. The 260 wagon was produced until 1985, the same year 760 wagon was released. The 760 is a very different chassis but uses the same B28 engine and transmissions inherited from the 260 series.
Models and Engines
|VOLVO 260 GL,
|-||1975||1985||The 260 GL or GLE is basically the same car as the VOLVO 240 with more luxury items and a V6 engine. The 260 GL is equipped with power mirrors, power windows, leather interior, lots of chrome on the outside trims, upscale sound system and other luxury items. Difference between 240 and 260 varies the years. The badge changed to GLE in 1980.||View a picture|
|VOLVO 262C, COUPE||-||1978||1981||Identifies the 260 with 2 doors coupe style designed and built by Bertone in Italy, from 1978 to 1980. They are recognized by their lowered roof, covered with black vinyl (not 1980), fancy leather interior, wood trims and even more gadgets like power antenna, power sun roof, rear lighter and courtesy lights.||View a picture|
|VOLVO 260 DIESEL||-||1980||1982||The VOLVO 260 Diesel came with the D24 Diesel engine produced by Volkswagen. The D24 engine is has 6 cylinder inline and a displacement of 2.4 liter. Note that 240 Diesel's were also produced.||-|
|VOLVO 264||4 door sedan||200 Series, 6 cyl. engine, 4 door||1975||1982||131500||View a picture|
|VOLVO 265||station wagon||200 Series, 6 cyl. engine, 5 door station wagon||1976||1985||35132||View a picture|
|VOLVO 262||2 door coupe||200 Series, 6 cyl. engine, 2 door||1976||1981||9951||View a picture|
|VOLVO 264||1975||264 GL||B||1||9674||B27F||M46,BW55|
|VOLVO 264||1976||264 GL||E||9675||25287||B27F||M46,BW55|
|VOLVO 264||1977||264 GL||H||34470||12045||B27F||M46,BW55|
|VOLVO 264||1978||264 GL||L||46515||15590||B27F||M46,BW55|
|VOLVO 264||1979||264 GL||M||62105||20950||B27F||M46,BW55|
|VOLVO 265||1976||265 GL||E||1||8108||B27F||M46,BW55|
|VOLVO 265||1977||265 GL||H||8115||2805||B27F||M46,BW55|
|VOLVO 265||1978||265 GL||L||10920||4815||B27F||M46,BW55|
|VOLVO 265||1979||265 GL||M||15735||6040||B27F||M46,BW55|
|VOLVO 262||1976||262 GL||E||1||3099?||B27F||M46,BW55|
|VOLVO 262||1977||262 GL||H||2430||230||B27F||M46,BW55|
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