What's old is new again.
Remember when Volvo was spotted testing a camouflaged prototype of the old P1800? Well, it turns out the company was working on a unique project to celebrate the coupe's 60th birthday. Introducing the Volvo P1800 Cyan, built by triple World Touring Car Champions, Cyan Racing.
"Our company was founded in 1996 to race Volvo cars in Sweden and the Volvo P1800 Cyan is closing the circle for us," said Christian Dahl, CEO and founder of Cyan Racing.
"We claimed our first world title with Volvo in 2017 and have since then won two further world titles with two other manufacturers. The first world title was a milestone for us, and we felt it was a good time to reconnect with the past and to those before us racing Volvos. The first Volvo P1800 Cyan carries our blue and yellow racing colours to mark our heritage."
The P1800 is not the most well-remembered car of its era, arriving in 1960 just one year before the Jaguar E-Type, two years before the Ferrari 250 GTO, and three years before the Porsche 911. But Cyan proves why the P1800 deserves your admiration, even compared to its legendary contemporaries. Cyan wanted to keep a raw driving experience, so this modernized P1800 lacks stability control, ABS, or even a brake booster. The car is all about retaining the connection with the driver.
The project started as a 1964 P1800, which was then reinforced with high-strength steel and carbon fiber. Under the hood, the same engine found in the world title-winning Volvo S60 TC1 race car, a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder, produces 420 horsepower and will rev all the way to 7,700 rpm. A five-speed bespoke Holinger gearbox sends power to the rear wheels, retaining the feel of the original transmission but adding durability.
Other improvements to the car include independent rear suspension, and a torque-biased limited-slip differential. Cyan considered using a slew of other engines including an inline-five or inline-six, or even the twin-charged four-cylinder used by Volvo today. "The efficient and lightweight VEA (Volvo Engine Architecture) gave us the best base, also allowing us to transfer our experience from the different versions of the VEA that we have designed for our race and performance cars of the past decade," said Mattias Evensson, Project Manager and Head of Engineering at Cyan Racing.
Volvo says the P1800 Cyan is available to customers for a semi-reasonable $500,000. The restoration and modification process will be made upon request with no set target on production, but a Cyan spokesperson told CarBuzz that it will be produced in "very low volumes."