Volvo Record Holder And The Man Who Loves It

July 15, 2010

Dear Irv,

I can call you Irv can’t I; anyone who’s driven the same car 2.8 million miles has to be a regular guy. I read about your goal to turn 3 million miles by the time you celebrate your 73rd birthday and please accept my wishes that your recent 70th birthday was a great day.

You compared your feat to that of Joe DiMaggio’s consecutive hit streak; if you ask me it’s more like landing on the moon. I have to agree though, that like DiMaggio’s record, no one will ever break your mile mark. That, after all is why you’re in the “Guinness Book of World Records”.

There are some questions that I have for you though. The account I read on PRWeb mentioned only in passing your devotion to regular service and maintenance. I would have to believe that it’s close to a religion for you. Was 3,000 miles the oil change interval you adhered to?

What really impressed me was how well the machine held up. Anything else made in 1966 has long been digested by a shredder and reformulated somewhere in Asia but not your Volvo P1800. And it wasn’t light duty service either, from what I can tell your area of New York is subject to typical northeast winter weather and a lot of salt air blowing in off the sea. Did you take any extra precautions to protect the under-car parts, not to mention the fenders and doors etc.?

I’m trying to keep this short, because I know that anybody who has driven 500,000 miles in ten years has places to go and people to see. Which was more of a motivational force, your love of the car or your love of travelling (road trips of course)? On second thought, I know the answer must be that you found the perfect vehicle for both passions.

The article said that in June of 1966 when you bought the Volvo you drove 1,500 miles in the first 48 hours. Has anything else during your relationship with the car come close to that initial infatuation?  

One more thing I need to know. How did you ever avoid a major crash? Even if you averaged 60 mph you have spent over 46,000 hours in that Volvo. It seems to me that after awhile the odds sort of catch up with you.

I know that you have mentioned selling the car for a dollar for each mile it was driven. I would like to cast one vote for your earlier idea of sending it to a museum so that visitors could see the Volvo that Irv Gordon loved and that returned the love with (by then) 3 million miles of service.


John DeCostanza


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