On May 3 1961, the very first presentation for the press of the new Volvo P1800 took place at the Fars Hatt Hotel in the little town of Kungälv, 30 minutes drive north of Gothenburg. On May 3 2011, exactly 50 years later to the day, a celebration of this occasion took place at Fars Hatt. The event was arranged in the presence of not only media representatives but also a group of former Volvo employees who worked with the development of the car and saw it being born in 1961.
On May 3 1961, the first press launch of the P1800 took place at the Fars Hatt Hotel. Exactly 50 years later to the day, this event was re-created.
The group of ex-Volvo men consisted of Gösta Vallin, Åke Björksund, Helge Castell, Sture Agård, Rune Fritsby, S O Andersson and Sven Bengtson who were joined by the car's designer Pelle Petterson. After a short speech by Claes Rydholm of Volvo Cars Heritage, a toast was made for the car and the people who created it, and then a recreation of the 1961 photo session took place. Two Jensen-built 1961 cars – one red and one white on red number plates (indicating a new car in those days) just like in 1961 – acted as the stars around which the people gathered. The interest was just as great today as it was 50 years ago.
Members of the press examining the car in 1961 and the same spot 50 years later with P1800 development engineer Rune Fritsby, back to camera, tallking to the owner of O 817, Mikael Theander.
After the lunch, a specially-designed birthday cake in the shape of a P1800 was served with the coffee and there were intensive talks going on at every table about days gone by. Happy memories bounced all around the room and for those who needed to freshen up their mental calendars, the newly published book about the birth of the Volvo P1800 was introduced by one of its authors, Kenneth Collander, and handed out to those present.
The designer of the P1800, Pelle Petterson was honorary cutter cut the specially-designed jubilee cake.
This event was staged jointly by Volvo Cars Heritage and Volvo Car Sweden in order to pay tribute to the 1800 and the people who creted it and was one of a series of celetrations of the car during 2011.
The first presscar at the town square in Kungälv on May 3, 1961 and Mikael Thenader's car in the same position exactly 50 years later.