July 11, 2018


This summer, Volvo Museum organise a temporary exhibition, where some beautiful convertibles get to aerate. One of the most notable object is Hot Rod Jakob – a modern version of the classic Volvo ÖV 4. Below, you can read more about this piece of craftsmanship and the story behind Hot Rod Jakob. Scroll all the way down to experience the vehicle on film!

On April 14, 1927, the very first series-produced Volvo car leaves the factory. The model, ÖV 4 (the Swedish abbreviation for Open Car, 4 cylinders), received the nickname Jakob. The name was inspired by a name for one of the 10 pre-series ÖV 4 that was ready on 25 July, Jakob’s name-day.

Almost 80 years later, Leif Tufvesson decided to build a personal interpretation of that very first Volvo – but in a Hot Rod-style. He harnessed the full width of his knowledge, which had already won him awards such as “Hot Rod of the Year” and “Most Innovative Car” in that Mecca of Hot Rods, the USA.

“Volvo has always been a special make for me. These were the cars I learned my skills on in my youth, and I also worked for a while at Volvo’s concept-car department. So instead of obtaining inspiration from an old Ford, as is usually the case in Hot Rod circles, I wanted to build something that meant more to me personally. That’s why I chose to bring together the most classic attributes of Volvo, the Jakob, and my own modern Hot Rod style,” explains Leif Tufvesson.

The entire build is typical of Leif Tufvesson’s style. Lean. Aesthetically elegant. Stylishly minimalist. Largely because most of the components have been hidden away inside the body. For instance, the springs and dampers, the electrical components and exhaust system. The result is that the body and axles look like they are floating in the air. A glance at the instrument panels reveals no conventional gauges. Instead, all the functions are gathered into a single, in-house-developed instrument to the right of the steering wheel. The dial face changes colour and function when pressed. Press once: the ignition comes on and the button glows red. Press the clutch and the button turns purple. Press once more and the engine fires up smoothly at the same time as the button’s colour turns Volvo Blue.

Similarities between the original Jakob and Hot Rod Jakob


Differences between the original Jakob and Hot Rod Jakob

But there are nonetheless a number of classic Volvo parts in the Hot Rod Jakob. The steering wheel comes from a 1962 P1800, as do the gear lever gaiter and steering column. The brake pedal and brake master cylinder are from the 140 Series. Supplied by Volvo Genuine Classic Parts (Volvo has one of the industry’s widest ranges of genuine manufacturer’s spare parts). The M90 gearbox is Volvo’s last rear-wheel drive variant and comes from a Volvo 960. The engine, on the other hand, is brand new – a powerful Volvo T5 converted to run on eco-friendly ethanol, all so as to underline the lifecycle approach to this entire project.

Stop by Volvo Museum this summer to experience Hot Rod Jakob at the cabriolet exhibition. We are sharing a glimpse of this beauty here: