Volvo Cars began manufacturing the Volvo 144 at Torslanda, Sweden (Torslandaverken) in the late summer of 1966. The 144 series, which followed the Volvo Amazon was the first Volvo to use a tri-digit nomenclature, indicating series, number of cylinders and number of doors. Meaning, a "144" was a 1st series, 4-cylinder, 4-door sedan. The range included the Volvo 142 2-door sedan, the Volvo 144 4-door sedan and the Volvo 145 5-door station wagon.
The basic shape of the car survived into the 1990s as the 200 series. The 144 series used many of the drivetrain components of the Amazon, with many improvements, including disc brakes on all four wheels. The engine in the standard 144 came from the standard Amazon (121), the 1.8l B18A. The 144S had a more powerful B18B from the 123GT and 1800S. The 142 (2-door sedan) production started in 1967 and the Volvo 145 5-door station wagon in 1968.
|Volvo 144 1966|
|Volvo 142 1968|
|Volvo 145 1968|
In 1969 the B18 enlarged to the 2.0 litre B20. Also in 1969 Volvo introduced the 164, which shared much of the 140 series structure while incorporating a 6-cylinder engine, the B30. In 1971 the B20E engine was introduced, it was a high compression version of the B20 with Bosch D-Jetronic electronic fuel injection.
|Volvo 144 1971 (Facelift 1)|
|Volvo 144 1973 (Facelift 2)|
In 1973 the 140 series received a major facelift in 1973 with a new plastic grille, new larger indicators and a completely revised tail end. Also, the S designation was dropped and the range consisted of 3 trim levels, standard (with no designation, known as L, or "luxe") de Luxe and the most upmarket, Grand Luxe.
|Volvo 145 1972 (Facelift 2)|
|Volvo 164 1969|
The Volvo 140 series had a total production of 412,986 “142” 2-doors sedans, 523,808 “144” 4-doors sedans and 268,317 “145” station wagons. The 140 series evolved in the 240 series in 1975.
Volvo 140 series adverts