Volvo P1800 Cyan Racing Continuation Is a Carbon-Fiber Restomod


From the October 2022 difficulty of Automobile and Driver.

What to do in a protracted, chilly Swedish winter after the glow of profitable the 2017 FIA World Touring Automobile Cup championship has worn off however earlier than the following season begins? Some would possibly dog-sled beneath the northern lights or plot that yr’s Gävle Goat arson, however the Cyan Racing staff in Mölndal, Sweden, had a distinct plan for offseason leisure: rewriting historical past. What if the basic Volvo P1800 had the efficiency to match its design? The parents at Cyan (previously Polestar Efficiency earlier than Volvo purchased the identify) had been simply those to tackle the duty of creating a P1800 as quick as it’s fairly. The work took greater than three years, however Cyan finally launched its completed product amid a pandemic. Now the P1800 Cyan has lastly made it to the States. So we took it to our desert proving grounds to get the numbers. Skål!

How It is Made

Volvo constructed the unique P1800 from 1961 by 1973, with few beauty adjustments throughout its run. Any yr of the basic coupe can type the premise of Cyan’s P1800. “As a result of so little of the unique automobile is used, we are able to begin out with a donor automobile past what would usually be seen as restorable,” says Hans Bååth, Cyan Racing normal supervisor.

Cyan strips and sandblasts the donor automobile, then replaces all exterior physique panels with carbon fiber. Solely a small portion of the unique’s chassis and transmission tunnel stays. Each floor has been flippantly tweaked from inventory. The entire automobile appears to be like smoother and decrease. The cabin is about again, or reasonably the wheel wells are moved ahead, the hood elongated, and the rear fenders shortened for much less overhang and a leaner stance.

The ultimate product weighs 2424 kilos (a brand new P1800S weighed about 2320 kilos), with solely 47.8 p.c of that mass on its entrance axle—good for drifting in Gothenburg or, as we did, happening a brisk 200-mile journey over the California mountains in the hunt for Swedish pancakes.

Step Inside

The elective roll cage is titanium. It is pretty unobtrusive until you must pull the hand brake, which is tucked towards the decrease bar. Racing buckets look snazzy with a five-point harness however can be found with extra padding when you get pleasure from being snug.

Reflecting the understated design Scandinavia is legendary for, the P1800 Cyan’s inside is tender grey felt and black leather-based. A superbly modernized gauge cluster seems classic, and the radio is Bluetooth suitable, so you’ll be able to cue up ABBA songs.

Adelante, Adelante

With most fashionable powerplants hidden beneath plastic covers, one would not count on magnificence when popping the hood anymore. This makes the Cyan’s elegantly displayed turbocharged 2.0-liter that rather more beautiful. Based mostly on the race engine from the Volvo S60 TC1 automobile, it makes 420 horsepower and 336 pound-feet of torque. An Inconel header tucks neatly beneath the block, and a low-mass titanium-aluminide turbine wheel spins up rapidly on ceramic ball bearings. Peak enhance strain is 24.7 psi. The transmission is a Holinger five-speed, and the slim shifter works with the candy click on of a money-filled briefcase being opened in a backroom.

The Handler

The P1800 physique could be basic, however in updating it, Cyan turned to the newest design software program to do 3-D modeling and printing. The staff additionally engineered the chassis geometry in-house with the identical simulation packages it makes use of for its profitable race automobiles.

Cyan reinforces the unibody with metal and carbon fiber. The adjustable suspension, with unequal-length management arms entrance and rear, is Cyan’s personal design. Customized Öhlins dampers, adjustable for compression and rebound, present a surprisingly clean experience. Goodbye, reside rear axle; the rear wheels transfer independently of one another and obtain torque by a carbon-fiber driveshaft hooked to a Holinger limited-slip differential full of Cyan’s customized gearset. Tubular anti-roll bars assist the Cyan nook flat (in contrast to Roger Moore’s white P1800 in The Saint).

Electrically assisted rack-and-pinion steering efforts are pinkie-out mild. Braking will get no energy help, however AP Racing four-piston calipers throughout simply convey the light-weight Swedish steed to a cease. Eighteen-inch solid alloy wheels are wrapped with Pirelli P Zeros, 245/40R-18 entrance and 265/35R-18 on the rear. The open-spoked design ruins any probability at sleeperdom, however Cyan customizes something, so you might go for inventory ’64 hubcaps.

Cash, Cash, Cash

A pleasant unmodified P1800 would possibly run you $20,000 to $60,000. If you’d like Cyan’s reenvisioned Volvo, you will want significantly extra—it takes $700,000 to place this Swede factor in your storage.

Swede Residence California

The highway to Sweden climbs the Tehachapi Mountains and crosses the dry, golden plains of California’s Central Valley. Simply south of Fresno, on Freeway 99, an indication painted with a pink Dala horse seems earlier than the freeway exit. “Välkommen to Kingsburg,” it says.

Established as a rail cease within the late nineteenth century, Kingsburg developed right into a farming city with the state’s largest inhabitants of Swedish immigrants by the Nineteen Twenties. Within the Sixties, as freeway enlargement despatched vacationers rushing previous small cities, Kingsburg determined to attempt to capitalize on its heritage by highlighting Swedish structure and holding themed festivals.

This was the proper vacation spot for a Volvo painted within the colours of the Swedish flag, and the desert and mountain journey was a very good take a look at of the P1800 Cyan’s consolation, efficiency, and air-con. The automobile made the lengthy drive with out a hiccup and acquired a hero’s welcome on the town. Even Mayor Laura North confirmed up in conventional apparel to greet us. We ate Swedish pancakes at Kady’s Nation Kitchen, and Cyan’s Hans Bååth gave them his seal of approval: “My very own grandmother could not do higher.”



1964 Cyan Volvo P1800

Car Sort: front-engine, rear-wheel-drive, 2-passenger, 2-door coupe


Base: $700,000


turbocharged and intercooled DOHC 16-valve 2.0-liter inline-4, direct gasoline injection
Displacement: 120 in3, 1969 cm3
Energy: 420 hp
Torque: 336 lb-ft 


5-speed guide


Suspension, F/R: management arms/management arms

Brakes, F/R: 14.3-in vented, cross-drilled disc/13.0 vented, cross-drilled disc

Tires: Pirelli P Zero

F: 245/40R-18 97Y MO

R: 265/35R-18 97Y MO


Wheelbase: 96.3 in

Size: 165.5 in

Width: 68.8 in

Peak: 48.0 in

Curb Weight: 2424 lb


60 mph: 4.1 sec
100 mph: 10.1 sec

1/4-Mile: 12.6 sec @ 113 mph
130 mph: 16.2 sec
Outcomes above omit 1-ft rollout of 0.3 sec.

Rolling Begin, 5–60 mph: 6.8 sec

High Velocity (mfr’s declare): 170 mph

Braking, 70–0 mph: 192 ft

Braking, 100–0 mph: 388 ft

Roadholding, 300-ft Skidpad: 0.94 g 


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