This Record-Breaking Volvo Has Over 3 Million Miles

Modern Volvo cars are renowned for their safety, but the owner of the longest-driven car in the world had other things in mind than playing it safe. Instead of storing cars in garages as an investment, science teacher Irv Gordon bought a Volvo P1800 with the intention of driving it ... a lot. In fact, he drove it so much that his P1800 earned the Guinness World Record for racking up the highest vehicle mileage ever, with an odometer clocking in at an astounding 3.03 million miles as of 2014. Gordon bought his cherry red Volvo coupe for $4,150 in 1966, and had since driven it so often he's traveled a distance comparable to circling world's circumference over 100 times.

Gordon told Volvo that it was not his intention to reach the record-breaking mileage feat; he just enjoyed driving his P1800. The Long Island resident said that he "immediately fell in love" upon purchasing the car, and "couldn't stop driving" afterwards. As for the mileage, it was regularly driven on a 125-mile daily commute, reaching a total distance average of about 100,000 miles per year. However, that barely scratches the surface when it comes to this classic coupe's interesting tidbits.

The longest mileage car made Volvo's P1800 iconic

During its heyday, people came know the 1966 Volvo P1800 as actor Roger Moore's iconic ride in the espionage thriller "The Saint." Even by today's standards, the P1800 still looks dreamy when restored properly. What solidified its place as among the most reliable vehicles, however, isn't being an iconic movie prop. Rather, it was its real-life counterpart, which has longevity that was tested and proven by Irv Gordon. In the interview with Volvo, Gordon claimed that his P1800 never had a problem starting up, "even on the coldest of mornings."

The former middle-school teacher also put a great deal of care into his car. He never stained the interior, prohibiting drinking, eating, and smoking while inside it. Furthermore, Gordon revealed that he never swapped out any of the P1800's major components, as its engine and transmission are the same ones that came with the car when he first bought it. Despite spending so much time on the road, Gordon had never made any illegal U-turns with the car, revealing that he only got two parking tickets in the entirety of his ride's 3-million-mile journey.

Where is Gordon's longest driven car now?

After reaching well over 3 million miles, Gordon's P1800 isn't quitting the race yet. It's still constantly being driven to car shows around the U.S. and even abroad. Unfortunately, Gordon passed away in 2018 (via Hagerty). However, his friend, a Volvo mechanic who goes by Nino Gambino, managed to keep the car running. As shown in the YouTube video, Gambino shared his experience driving the celebrated P1800, explaining that he feels as if Gordon's presence never left the car.

Gambino claimed he often drove the car smoothly, describing Gordon's driving style as "relaxing." He also said that Gordon enjoyed driving his P1800 as it was very comfortable, and it never failed him. The record-breaking P1800 is now in the possession of Volvo, where it's still maintained and goes out on the road for the occasional test drive. Modern Volvo car iterations offer a slew of safety tech, but Gordon's iconic P1800 still continues to embody the company's classic, reliable 1966 craftsmanship to this day.