One of the things buyers consider for new or used cars is how long they can expect it to last. Various car brands have different reputations for the number of miles you can expect from their car models. Of course, many people put companies such as Toyota and Honda at the top of the list for this metric, but overall, a typical passenger car should last for about 200,000 miles or slightly more, according to aarp.org.
However, from records, several cars have surpassed this mark. We also believe many more cars must have achieved the feat without fanfare. Another impressive feat is that some of these vehicles were owned by the same person for multiple decades, and one example of such is a certain 1966 Volvo P1800. According to Jalopnik, the luxury car was driven an astounding 3.25 million miles.
So, what’s the story behind this almost undying vehicle?
The Car With The Highest Mileage Ever: Who Owns It?
One question most people have when they learn that a car was driven for over 3 million miles is “who owns it?” This is because it takes a special person with a great amount of dedication to make a machine last for that long.
This 1966 Volvo P1800 was owned by a certain driving enthusiast named Irv Gordon. He is considered a legend when it comes to long-distance driving. Gordon bought the car brand new in 1966. He is said to have never ignored the slightest out-of-place noise from it. The brakes were changed every 100,000 miles, and without fail, he changed the oil every 3,000 miles. Not only that, but the first clutch lasted for an unbelievable 450,000 miles. The average lifespan for a car clutch is 20,000 to 150,000 miles, according to drivparts.com.
Mr. Gordon is also said to have gotten the new car inspected only a week after buying it, and as you can imagine, he was a regular customer at his local Volvo dealership.
This car holds the record for the highest mileage for two main reasons. First, Gordon was extremely diligent in ensuring that the car was well taken care of. Besides this, Volvo is simply known for producing great cars that can last. Sure, no one is expecting them to go for millions of miles, but this shows that the feat is possible when adequate care is given to the right machine.
Notably, Volvo took note of Gordon's exploits. After hitting a million miles, the company gave Gordon, who was a retired science teacher at that point, a new car. Despite this, he continued to drive the car, and when he hit the next million, he was given another new car and a Times Square parade.
This legend passed away in 2018 at the age of 77. Check out this YouTube video to see the iconic ride in motion.
The Car With The Highest Mileage Ever: Specifications
The 1966 Volvo P1800 is a great car. It is powered by an in-line 1.8-liter engine that has a maximum output of 103 horsepower and 147 lb-ft of torque, according to Car Info. Also, the car is a two-wheel drive car, and it is fitted with a 4-speed manual transmission.
Performance-wise, this car has a top speed of 102 mph, and it can accelerate from rest to 62 mph in 13.5 seconds. This isn’t a fast car, but it’s also not intended to be. It’s a modest ride that’s meant to carry people around in style. Luckily, this one did it for a really long time.
As far as features go, we have to remember that this car is from the '60s. What this means is that it has everything you need, but not very much else in terms of the extras. It comes with a regular FM radio as well as your typical car clock and instrument cluster. The upholstery in the car is leather and the seats come in 5 different color options.
The Car With The Highest Mileage Ever Highlights Volvo's Great Reputation
When it comes to luxury cars, Volvo has always had a great reputation. Not only do they produce awesome cars, but the company offers luxury at a much lower price than many of its competitors. The 1966 Volvo P1800 is a prime example of this. Not only that, but it’s a big factor in the company's widely perceived strong reputation. After all, not many brands can boast of having their products last for millions of miles.
For the sake of comparison, the vehicle with the second-highest number of miles is a 2006 Chevy Silverado 3500 HD. It traveled over 1 million miles in only six years.
All that said, this can be a lesson to everyone when buying new cars. Firstly, do your research and pick one that’s built to last. Also, you can’t cut corners when it comes to vehicle maintenance. Get your oil changed when you’re supposed to, get it inspected to prevent issues, and most of all, don’t abuse your car. The 1966 Volvo P18000 holds the record for the most miles put on a car, and we don’t see it being beaten for eons to come.