A short introduction of Volvo 240 Turbo in Group-A

The European Touring Championship (ETC) according to the Group-A regulation, a BMW 635CSi and a Jaguar XJ-S or a Rover 3500 dragged the shortest straw. I know it sounds simple but in the end its the truth. As earlie as in the debut-race in 1984 season a Volvo 240 Turbo drove 100 of 150 laps in front.
 
1982 Volvo 242 made the debut in the ETC series wich started in 1963. It was Greger Pettersson, Anders Olofsson and Peggen Andersson, they took a modified Turbo Cup-car to England. During the practice the injection engine broke and when no one was looking the carburetor engine was put into the car instead and then the bonnet was kept closed. The team had to call it in anyway due to a broken exhaust pipe.

In 1983 Thomas Lindström with Stanley Dickens and Per Stureson with Ingemar Persson drove on the season premiere at Monza in Italy. Both this teams drove a selection of the races in the European Championships that year. But in the Tourist Trophy at Silverstone that same year, they started somewhat bigger. At that time it was premiere for the Evolution model of the Volvo 242 Turbo. A larger turbo, intercooler and a rear wing was the big a few of the changes. On spot four Volvo teams were presented, besides the already mentioned names like Greger Pettersson, Anders Olofsson and Per-Gunnar "Peggen" Andersson in a Sportpromotion 242. And in a common car called the Infra Paint drove Robert L. Kvist and Börje Thor. None of the cars finished the race sadly. However the Infra Paint Volvo qualified to a 9th place in the field of 20 cars totally in the strong division 3. For the Sportpromotion team the race ended already in the warm-up before the qualifying when the engine blew.   

1984 Volvo started for real in the ETC-series. The next coming year 1985 Volvo won the Championships totally. Even in the 1986 season of ETC Volvo had good chance of winning the ETC if Tom Walkinshaw and his Rover didn't start to start problems for the Volvo. According to him Volvo didn't drive according to the regulations. Fédération Internationale du Sport Automobile (FISA) disqualified Volvo, because Volvo drove on unleaded 99 octane standardfuel on Anderstorp and on Zeltweg Volvo drove with an elegal fueltank and dashboard so two victories was taken from Volvo. But later it came to knowledge that the other teams drove with way to big engine. But FISA had an special interest in 1985 for Volvo. 240 Turbo was homologated 1983 for the american market. Fivehundred evolution cars was delivered, but the American authorities never made any records of the 240 Turbo cars. The FISA regulations were the reason why Volvo pulled out of the 1986 championship two weeks after the last race on Estoril. 



Introduction of the regulation of Group-A

A car from the Group-A of ETC must be a four-seated car who at least have been manufactured in minimum of 500 identical ex. The cars must be able to be used on a public road by ordinary people. Before these 500 evolution cars there must have been 5000 produced  standard cars, with mean 5000 Volvo 240 Turbos.


Volvo drove with a cylinder volume over 2100cc in the Group-A series which meant that Volvo could be driving up against cars with non-turbo and they could have up to a cylinder volume up to 3000cc, all according to the Group-A regulations.

Some of these cars who drove against Volvo in Group-A series was following:

BMW 635CSi (1982-1989) Jaguar XJ-S 12 (1984-1986) Rover Vitesse 3500 V8 (1985-1989)
 
Mercedes 190 2.3 BMW e30 323i Ford Sierra XR4 TI

 

 

 
BMW e30 325i Mazda 929i Holden VK Commodore

 

 

 
Maserati V6 Biturbo Ford Mustang V8 Alfa Romeo 75 Turbo

 

 

 
Alfa Romeo Alfetta GTV V6 Alfa Romeo 75 V6 Chevrolet Camaro Z28

In 1983, when Volvo came into the ETC, the greatest resistance came from the Jaguar XJ-S, BMW 635CSi, Alfa Romeo GTV and Rover Vitesse. The following year, 1984, it was once again the Jaguar XJ-S, BMW 635CSi and Rover Vitesse, which accounted for most of the resistance to Volvo. In 1985, the BMW 635CSi and Rover Vitesse was the toughest to hit for Volvo on the track and this resistance persisted to the end of ETC 1986. All cars being seen as sport luxury cars in their own countries, and yes the Volvo 240 ... The car was an old-fashioned and well-liked family and taxicab that anyone could afford at the time.

Later the Nissan Skyline, Toyota Supra, Ford Sierra RS500 and the BMW e30 M3 came into the picture, all the excellent racing cars! BMW e30 M3 and Ford Sierra RS500 was later to dominate the group-A.

Ford Sierra RS500 BMW e30 M3

 

 
Nissan Skyline GTS-R Toyota Supra Turbo

The European Touring Championship (ETC), according to group-A Regulations, it's BMW 635 CSI, Jaguar XJ-S and Rover 3500 that draws the shortest straw. Sure it may sound simple, but it is nevertheless the truth. As early as 1984 season, Volvo was driving 100 of 150 laps in front, in the lead. This angered many of those drivers just drove these sport luxury cars, they could not understand how A VOLVO 240 could overtake and then go for the win. Volvo thus became extra scrutiny from FISA (Fédération Internationale du Sport Automobile), at the request of the other teams with the larger cars, and believe me many attempts were made to get Volvo to look like cheaters. 1985 Volvo became audited by FISA, it felt that something was not right with Volvos Evolution cars, but there was nothing wrong and Volvo could continue with their honor intact. But then Volvo were convicted of three things in 1986, incorrect fuel (high octane), to large fuel tanks (123 liters and 122 liters to permitted 102 liters), and finally to a faulty dashboard. This cost Volvo the chance to win the ETC once more...