Irvin Gordon, already the long-time holder of the Guinness World Record for ‘Highest Mileage Vehicle’, has sailed through the five million kilometre mark, crediting the use of genuine parts and regular authorised servicing as key to his 50-year old Volvo’s outstanding reliability and durability.
Mr Gordon, a retired science teacher from Long Island, New York, bought his shiny red P1800S brand new in June 1966 from his local dealer Volvoville (now Volvo Cars of Huntington), where the car still heads for major servicing.
Mr Gordon’s pride and joy retains its original four-cylinder petrol engine and four-speed manual gearbox, although he says more than 20 sets of tyres have rolled under the now famous coupe over five decades.
The high-mileage die was cast early with Mr Gordon covering 2,400km in his first 48-hours of ownership, and for many years a 200km daily (round trip) commute to work helped keep the odometer spinning.
A fanatical dedication to maintenance and a passion for travel (by car) saw him log 800,000 kilometres in his first 10 years of ownership.
In 1998 with 2.7 million kilometres on board, he entered the Guinness Book of World Records for ‘The longest distance driven by a single owner in a non-commercial vehicle’.
In 2002 he drove the car’s two-millionth mile (3,218,680km) down Times Square in Manhattan, and in 2013 hit three million miles (4,828,020km) on a first-time trip to the wilds of Alaska.
The sleek P1800 was produced from 1961 to 1973, and Mr Gordon visited Australia in 2011 to help celebrate the model’s golden anniversary.
He changes the P1800’s engine oil every 5,000km and the spark plugs every 30,000km himself, but credits authorised dealer servicing as a key factor in achieving such remarkable trouble-free mileage.
For the last 15 years the same certified Volvo Cars of Huntington technician, Nino Gambino, has attended to Mr Gordon’s car.
“Irv follows the owner’s manual and truly cares for and loves his car. In fact, Irv always says he takes better care of the car than himself,” Mr Gambino said.
Every time the wheels on Irvin Gordon’s Volvo turn he is extending this amazing record, and at 75 is not ruling out another mileage milestone.
“The car’s better than new. Everything is 100 per cent. It has never broken down and it always starts right up no matter how hot or cold it is outside,” Mr Gordon said.
“Everyone asks, what’s next? Well, I’ll keep driving to auto shows and taking trips across the country. Not much will change. But whether I drive six million kilometres is more up to me than it is the car. The car may be able to take it, but I’m not so sure about me,” he said.
Five million kilometres equals…
635 return trips from Sydney to Perth
125 times around the globe
14 return trips to the Moon