360 All matters 360 GLT

LaurieLaurie @Laurie Mornington Peninsula area
I have started this thread for discussion about the 360 in general. Stories, maintenance, availability of spare parts etc. As this model Volvo is becoming rare with less than 150 registered on the road world wide I feel that it is important to keep track of them. There is European and British registers with which I am in contact. A lot of helpful information is swapped, particularly on availability of spares.

If anyone wishes to send me details, Vin, body number, photo I will keep an Australian register of 360's and forward the details to a guy in Holland who has started a world wide register if you wish.
I am Class Captain of the 360 model of The Volvo Club of Victoria.

I hope that this thread will offer a place to comment on the 360 rather than using personal threads for discussion.

So here goes, fill up the pages!


  • edited May 2019
    History of the Volvo 340 (Daf 77)

    During the 1960’s Daf had plans to develop a larger car. Some sketches and mock-ups were made by Daf and Michelotti. There were 3 models being developed: the Daf P200, P300, P400 and P500 (one of the projects was sold to BL and has led to the Triumph Dolomite). None of them went into production at Daf but when these projects were cancelled the P900-project was started in the end of the 1960s.
    Some sketches of the Daf P300 and P500, some elements were used in the P900

    The P900 should be a new midsize car which should share some components with the yet to be introduced Daf 66. The new car also should have the variomatic transmission.

    The first sketches of the P900 were presented in January 1970, containing several saloon, hatchback, coupé and estate-models. In 1971 four scale models were produced, designed by Michelotti, Bertone and De Vries. The models were identified as A, B, C and D. The employees of Daf choose the D-model (designed by John de Vries) as best design and after a windtunnel-test (where the D-model performed much better) the other designs were dropped.
    A sketch of the P900 by John de Vries

    Due the oil crisis and economical crisis Daf needed a partner to produce the car. Several manufacturers were contacted for developing the P900 together. Daf talked to Ford, General Motors and Peugeot but they were not interested. Volkswagen was interested but they saw the P900 as a entry-level Audi. Also Chrysler liked the idea for a joint-venture but BMW showed serious interest. BMW had plans for building the BMW 2002 Touring in Born and even began making some modifications at the P900-design (like moving the transmission, change the engine etc). But some of the board members of Daf didn’t want to work with BMW (in the meantime BMW said they couldn’t produce the engine Daf wanted for the P900) and wanted to contact Volvo again (Volvo was also contacted but thought a joint-venture was too expensive).


    The Daf P900 prototype, designed by John de Vries

    Renault had some good news in 1972: the 1.1 litre and 1.3 litre engines which was fitted in the Daf 66 could be upgraded to a 1.4 litre engine, just the engine Daf was looking for! Volvo was now really interested in Daf because Volvo didn’t need to develop a new smaller engine for a smaller car. In September 1972 it was announced Volvo should take a 33% share in Daf Car B.V. starting from 1973 (the share should be increased to 75% in 1975).

    The clay scale model of the Daf P900-car (Daf 77) in the Daf Museum in Eindhoven


    The front of the scale model. This car should become the Daf 77 but became the Volvo 343

    Daf itself had some doubts about the P900: the design of John de Vries was good, but there were some doubts about the size (should it be bigger or shorter), the model (saloon, hatchback or estate), a external designer etc etc. Daf asked Trevor Fiore to come up with some ideas and designs for the P900 car. Fiore presented a modern sporty model. When this design was finished Volvo took the share in Daf and were asked what their thoughts were of the project. Jan Wilsgaard (chief designer of Volvo) had to choose between the design of De Vries or the design of Fiore. Wilsgaard wasn’t really happy with both designs because both of them should be modified a lot. But he choose the design of De Vries, which should have some details of the Fiore-design. Wilsgaard wanted to change more things but the project was far advanced so there was no room for big changes (except bigger bumpers, a new grille and some minor modifications). Daf also choose for the De Vries-design (its design was more timeless and gave better results in the windtunnel) and wanted to call the car the Daf 77 but because Volvo increased their share in 1975 (and also renamed the Daf 66 to Volvo 66) the new car was named the Volvo 343: the thirth Volvo-series developed since the Amazon, with 4 cilinders and 3 doors. The Volvo 343 was equipped with a 4-cilinder Renault 1.397cc (1.4 litre 70bhp, called the B14) engine and Variomatic transmission (CVT). The performance wasn’t great but a bigger engine couldn’t be fit under the hood.


    The Daf 77 prototype

    The Volvo 343 (designed by John de Vries, not Michelotti or Fiore) was presented to the press on February 19 1976 in Gothenburg (Sweden) and presented to the public at the Geneva Autosalon in March 1976. At the beginning the design of the car (especially the back of the car) wasn’t very popular but soon other manufacturers like Ford (Escort) and Alfa Romeo (the Alfa 33) adopted this design.

    The Volvo 343, the first model of the 300-series

    The first years the car wasn’t really succesful: the press and public wanted also a manual gearbox (instead of the noisy automatic CVT gearbox) and a better performing engine. But the car had also a very poor quality which couldn’t meet up the Volvo standards. The heating system was bad, the rear seat wasn’t good, the car was noisy and the cold start was terrible, dashboard problems, most cars had leakage problems and of course the poor performance. It is said the car went too early on sale and needed another year of development.

    Most of the problems were solved within a year, but the high rear seat couldn’t be changed because the Variomatic took a lot of space. New rubbers were used to solve the leaking problems, the dashboard was slightly changed and new rubbers and components were used at the transmission. Also the seats were improved and had a deeper type of cushions and a better backrest. The 343 was much better and quieter than before! One year later (August 1978, MY1979) the manual gearbox was available (the same gearbox as the 240-series had: the M45 four-speed gearbox) and the sales were increasing.

    In 1979 the Volvo 345 was introduced, a five-door version of the 340-series. It became available since ModelYear 1980. A commercial van (called the 340 Van) was also introduced in 1982, with blinded rear windows. A four-door saloon was introduced in 1983. The diesel-engine (1.6 litre, also made by Renault) was introduced in 1984 and the 1.7 litre engine of Renault was available one year later (only with a manual gearbox).

    The Volvo 345 Van

    The 300-series was not only produced in Born (The Netherlands) but also in Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia) since 1985. Because importing cars at such long distances was a problem and there were some import regulations Volvo decided to open a small factory in Kuala Lumper where the cars has been sent as kits (called the “Completely Knocked Down” parts) and should be put together in Malaysia. The 300-series were sold in Europe, Australia, some Asian countries, but not in the USA.


    A Volvo 360 assembled in the Malaysian plant

    In some countries (like The Netherlands) the 360 is very popular for racing and rallysport. At Zandvoort (the Netherlands) the Volvo 360 Geen Modena (“Not a Ferrari Modena”) Cup is a big competition with only Volvo 360’s. In Britain the 360 can be seen in the rallycross-scene and all over the world the Volvo 360 is used in drifting competitions.

    Production of the 340 ended in 1991, but some overstock-models were sold in 1992.


    History of the Volvo 360!!

    In 1983 Volvo introduced the Volvo 360. They had find out a way to fit a B19-engine in the small motor compartment of the 300-series. The spare wheel was put in the trunk instead of under the hood. The 360 didn’t match the names Volvo was using for his cars but it indicated it was a different car than the 340. However: there are some 300-series with a B19-engine sold as a 340 in the Netherlands. The 360 was available with a B19A (carburator) or B19E (fuel injection) engine. The powerful engine was a real turn-on at the pretty light car. The performance was excellent and the car was very luxurious. In 1985 the B19-engines were replaced by the B200-engines (B200K and B200 with Bosch LE-Jetronic system). The 360 was very popular in race- and rallysport and even has its own 360-Cup in the Netherlands at the Zandvoort Circuit.

    Read more: http://www.volvotips.com/index.php/340-360/history-340-360/#ixzz5ozGuHPF7

  • So if the 360 uses the M45, will the M47 fit as a 5-speed option?
  • edited May 2019
    I'm pretty sure it's essentially an m47 in the 360's, but as a transaxle setup. The m45 was in the 340s with the Renault b14 engines. The bellhousing on the 360 is suited for an m47, so technically it will bolt on...but then you'd need a suitable rear end with a custom prop shaft and likely modify the tunnel a little bit.
  • LaurieLaurie @Laurie Mornington Peninsula area
    Good work Alex, the article is a good version of the history of the 3 series Volvo.
    All Australian delivered 360s were equiped with the manual M47 gearbox. A 360 with any other gear box is usually a private import. Many years ago I drove a 360 that had been converted locally to automatic. It was good for city traffic but that is were it ended.
  • A great read, thanks. I am clueless about these cars and learned things.
  • Awesome little beasts!
    I miss running around in one of these..
  • The 300 series was such a common car in the UK in the 1980s -- but on the UK Car and Classic website right now there's only one for sale, while there are plenty of 240s. My parents had the successor to the 340 -- the 440, which was produced side by side with the 340 for a while. These seem to be even rarer than 300 series cars now (with the exception of the 480).

  • I really like the 440's, they kinda look like a 740 had a baby with a 360. Although, I don't care much for fwd cars these days. Did Volvo make many/any fwd cars before the 440?
  • I can't think of any fwd Volvos before the 440. My parents' 440 was very nice, zippy and positive to drive, but had a cooling system fault that was never rectified by the dealer. The needle would climb high in slow traffic, but the situation could not be repeated by the dealer. They sold it and bought a civic which was frightening to drive on Devon lanes because the seating position was too low too see over any hedges, and hard to judge where the corners of the car were (critical on very narrow roads).
  • Was the 440 around before 92? Oddball 850s started then
  • egads wrote: »
    Was the 440 around before 92? Oddball 850s started then

    Trusty Wikipedia says they were built from 87-96.
  • Cool! Maybe came here late?
  • PaddlerEdPaddler Ed @PaddlerEd New England Region, NSW
    First up was the 480, then the 440 (and 460), with the 850 arriving in 1992. x40s arrived in 1995(?) I think. Facelift on the 400s was around 1992, when they took on a nose like the 850.

    400 series used the same 1700cc as the 340 did, but the later 1800 and 2000cc engines weren't related to the N series engines.

    In the UK the 440 diesel was a 1900cc Renault lump, that I think was related to the one that went in the x40s (by which time it wasn't too bad in the higher BHP trim)
  • LaurieLaurie @Laurie Mornington Peninsula area
    Alex has prompted me to confess that I own 4 360 GLT's. see the photo. L to R.

    Car 1. Bought it new and it has been extremely reliable over 850+k. I tried to sell it/trade it at about 600k and was told to bugger off and bury the little bastard. A new Volvo would have cost 50k+ and by now I would have done at least 30k cold. So I kept it.

    Car 2 red. Given to me by old lady who couldn't sell it. It has covered only 230k and is original to the last nut and bolt. All it needed was a clean out/ detail inside and a light polish, it is a concourse winner in It's class.

    Car 3. Bought for my daughter when she got her licence 20 years ago. She drove it for 300k and handed it back to me when someone tried to pinch it and buggered the wiring under the dash. I found out that This car was partly prepared for racing and had a lot of subtle work done on suspension and more importantly on the engine. After obtaining some of the original paperwork it was recently retuned to the original "hot specs" It weighs in at 1005 kg and supposed to put out 128kw. And it goes very quickly, more poke than most comparable new small Audi's, BM's etc. It finishes about 4/5 lengths behind a Golf GTI in a 0-100 showdown. I'm restoring the suspension components. Should make it a lot stiffer and sharper in the handling dept. But I'll have to be very careful in the wet because I tend to drive the 360's 10 to 15% faster around corners/ roundabouts etc in dry weather. Wet weather is an equaliser though!

    Car 4. Bought for my son 15 years ago but he went to Perth and he tossed the keys to me. Extremely reliable but tin worm is starting in a few places, nothing much that a weekends work wouldn't fix. Paint is polished off to undercoat in a here and there. Give it a service and it would go to Perth and back, no worries! Everything works in it, A/C is the best ever.

    I was offered a bloody nice RW 5m2zt8uqcl68.jpeg
    85k 360 a few months ago but knocked it back, no where to keep it. It went to the crushers.
  • Seeing the Group A car saddens me as a missed opportunity due to lack of $ on buying it before it left Australia most likely for good for Europe.

    A great car as it had other history from endurance challenge at Surfers Paradise etc etc.

    Would not have been "fast" but a great piece of living history

  • LaurieLaurie @Laurie Mornington Peninsula area
    I believe that The group A car is up for sale in Europe but at double the price. About 28k UK pounds plus freight to get it back here. You would have to have a serious tax problem to spend that sort of money!

    Also I've have received a lot of PM from members wanting to know how similar are my 360's. Mostly they owned 360s, four wishing they never sold them. Yes they are all different in handling, power etc. I will go into the differences later.
  • LaurieLaurie @Laurie Mornington Peninsula area
    Got a clutch release bearing a few years ago from autodoc.co.uk. I think it cost about $A65 landed. But be careful, make sure the part is actually correct. I sent them a photo of the worn bearing with/following order.
  • LaurieLaurie @Laurie Mornington Peninsula area
    Yesterday I drove for the first time all four 360's in quick succession to evaluate them. I chose a route around Marine Pde Mount Martha which has a smooth surface with many twists and turns. This road in now limited to 60kmh. I travel this road 2/3 times a week in both directions. Then on the return trip covered about 4km on a freeway. 23 km for the round trip.

    Refer to the photo of the four cars for the numbers I have given the cars.

    Car1: Smooth and quiet, turns into couriers sharply with little body roll, very predictable over badly broken bitumen.
    Fitted with Recently reconditioned Koni adjustable shocks, new ball joints, tie rod ends, etc, suspension rubbers hand made from a harder rubber than standard. Sway bar is standard size but was retempered to make it stiffer. Basically steering was reconditioned and upgraded. Performs well and easily keeps up with the traffic with the B200E motor.

    Car 2: Smooth and quiet with some body roll from standard suspension. Tends to float over broken bitumen due to terrible new Jap shocks. The shocks will be replaced with reconditioned Konis next week. The Jap front shocks are softer than the 220k originals and tends to yo yo like 1950's yank-tanks over freeway joints and undulations. Slightly out of balance front wheels are detected on freeway. Shocks unable to control wheels. Car tends to wander in the gusty cross wind and has to be continually pointed in the right direction. Performance is about the same as car 1 with its B19e motor although it is not as smooth, a bit raspy though.

    Car3: Not as smooth and quiet as any of the other 360's. This car was originally prepared for racing and has many subtle suspension mods. Rear lowered by about 70mm, front by 25mm. New GAZ adjustable shocks are very firm. Rear springs are made to a thicker profile and temper. The rear shackles are 50mm shorter than standard with the rear end of the springs nearly go over the top of the bottom fixing of the shackles. The wheels look standard but are specially made as they take 205X60X14 tyres. The engine started off as a B19E. Performance is the best of these cars. The exhaust is a 2 3/4 pipe running through what looks like standard mufflers. The cam is a modified K type which has 1.9mm ground off the underside of the lobes to give higher lift. Valves have a larger diameter. All manifolds have been expertly reamed and polished. There is a handmade fuel/ignition controller hidden under the console to suit the mods. The block has been sleeved and the bore is 92.5mm, the stroke is the standard 89mm giving a displacement of approx 2.1 litres. The fuel system is made up of 2.3 litre 242 GLT components. At the best the car delivers no better than 11L per 100 km. I don't mind that for the extra performance.

    This 360 handles like it is on rails even over bumps, corrugations, reverse cambered surfaces etc, it's handling is very predictable. Generally it outperforms the latest "hot hatches" except for AMC Mercs and the Golf GTI etc.

    Car 4: Everything works ok but after driving any of the other cars I have to remember which car I'm driving.
    Though roadworthy, It needs a good suspension work over. It doesn't like rough roads, or cross winds. It has a standard B200E motor. It can give me a few "bloody hell" moments due to its ponderous handling. Even though it's handling is still better than Asian cars I have hired recently.

    Basically all the 360s are very reliable and at least one or two of them always work first turn of the key.

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