|Body and chassis|
|Body style||2-door coupe|
|Engine||2.0 L B200ET turbo I4
2.0 L B204FT/GT turbo DOHC I4
2.3 L B230FT/FT+ turbo I4
2.8 L B280F V6
2.4 L D24TIC I6 turbodiesel
4-speed manual & electronic
|Wheelbase||2,770 mm (109.1 in)|
|Length||1986-88: 4,800 mm (189.0 in)
1989-1990: 4,785 mm (188.4 in)
|Width||1,760 mm (69.3 in)|
|Height||1,400 mm (55.1 in)|
The Volvo 780 Coupé debuted at the International Auto Show in Geneva, Switzerland in 1985, marking Volvo's return to the two-door coupé market following the departure of the 262C in 1981. The 780 became available in Europe in 1986 and in United States a year later.
Like its predecessor, the 780 was designed and built by Carrozzeria Bertone in Turin, Italy. The hood, trunk, and roof lines were all slightly lower than the standard 700 series profile, and the C-pillar was wider and had a more gradual slope down to the trunk. Headroom was improved over the 262C because of Bertone’s mere 1 cm lowering of the roofline. Window frames all had black matte trim, and were accented with chrome. Chrome also highlighted the door handles, bumpers, and side mouldings. Originally, it had been planned to use a smaller 2,458 cc turbocharged version of the PRV V6 (as seen in the Renault 25 and Alpine), which had been successfully tested in 740s and 760s. In the smaller engine room of the 780, however, the engine overheated and the PRV V6 Turbo never appeared in a Volvo.
In the first two years the 780 was available worldwide ('86 and '87) the 780 was available with the B280F V6 engine and a solid (live) rear axle. In the Italian market, originally only the Volkswagen built D24TIC was to be offered, with 129 PS (95 kW), but soon the V6 also became available and a 155 PS (114 kW) 2.0-litre turbo (B200ET) Italian tax special was also added in 1986. In the following year, the 780 came equipped with Volvo's independent rear suspension, which used self-leveling Nivomat shocks, to keep ride height correct.
The B280F at this point had roughly 150 hp (110 kW), but the car itself was nearly 3,400 lb (1,500 kg). To address concerns over performance, Volvo introduced the B230FT+; a B230FT with Volvo's boost controller, Turbo+, increasing the engine output to 175 hp (130 kW). The following model year saw it increase to 188 hp (140 kW). In Italy, late 780s were available with the B204GT. This was a 16 Valve Turbo motor producing 200 hp (150 kW). In the car's final year, 1991, it was rebadged simply as "Coupé". At this point, the car came only in turbo guise.
Volvo's official production total for the 780 is 8,518 cars built between 1986 and 1991. From 1986 to 1995, Volvo offered a small, sporty coupé, the front-wheel drive Volvo 480, but a successor to the 780 would only be introduced in 1997 when the C70 became available.
Volvo offered various transmissions depending on the year/model/engine combinations including the:
- M46 manual transmission (4-speed + Laycock de Normanville overdrive)
- M47 manual transmission (5-speed)
- AW30-40 electronically controlled automatic transmission (4-speed, lockup torque converter)
- AW70/AW70L automatic transmission (3-speed + overdrive, lockup torque converter on some models)
- AW71 automatic transmission (3-speed + overdrive)
- AW72L automatic transmission (4-speed, lockup torque converter)
- ZF 4HP22 transmission automatic transmission (4-speed, lockup torque converter)
Suspension and axle
There were also different suspension combinations depending on the model chosen:
- 1030: Standard rear axle
- 1031: Heavy-duty version of the 1030
- 1041: Rear axle with Eaton locking mechanism
1987 Volvo 780 side view