Volvo PV51

The Volvo PV51 is a car introduced by Volvo in December 1936. It was replaced by the mildly restyled PV53 in 1938.[1] This car remained in production until the end of the Second World War.

Volvo PV51-PV56
Volvo PV52 Sedan 1938.jpg
ManufacturerVolvo Cars
Body and chassis
Body style4-door saloon
LayoutFR layout
Engine3,670 cc (3.7 L) EC I6
Transmission3-speed manual with optional overdrive
Wheelbase2,880 mm (113.4 in)
Curb weight1,540 kg (3,395 lb)
PredecessorVolvo PV 36
SuccessorVolvo PV 60


The Volvo cars were quite expensive compared to their imported competitors. The PV51 was the answer to a request from Volvo’s dealers to offer a smaller and less expensive model. The rear end of the body was similar to the Carioca, but the front was new and the interior was simplified, to cut the price. The PV51 had to make do with a live front axle.

In early 1937 the de luxe model PV52 was introduced. The equipment list included twin sun visors, twin windscreen wipers, a watch, a heater and armrests on all four doors.

In March 1938 the PV51 Special and the PV52 Special were introduced. On these cars the spare wheel was moved from the bootlid to the boot floor. The cars had an expanded boot to increase the luggage space.


  • PV51: 1936-38, 1754 cars built, base model
  • PV52: 1937-38, 1046 cars built, de luxe model
  • PV51 ch: 1936-38, 205 cars built, commercial chassis


In the autumn of 1938 the PV51-52 was replaced by the PV53-56. These cars had a new front end, modified suspension and steering, uprated interior and dashboard.

After the outbreak of the Second World War production continued, to provide transportation to the Swedish Armed Forces and other official functions. Most of these war time cars had a wood gas generator mounted on a trailer behind the car, since the engine had been converted to run on this domestic fuel.


  • PV53: 1938-45, 1204 cars built, base model
  • PV54: 1938-45, 814 cars built, base model with larger boot
  • PV55: 1938-45, 286 cars built, de luxe model
  • PV56: 1938-45, 1321 cars built, de luxe model with larger boot
  • PV57: 1938-45, 275 cars built, commercial chassis



  • Volvo Personvagnar-från 20-tal till 80-tal by Björn-Eric Lindh, 1984. ISBN 91-86442-06-6 (in Swedish)


  1. ^ "Volvo: The Swedish Individualist". Motor. Vol. 152 no. 3919. 26 November 1977. pp. 34–39.

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