The Paradise Duett 1957 Volvo PV445 proceeds to Benefit American Red Cross

Price: - Item location: Portland, Oregon, United States
  • Condition: Used
  • Make: Volvo
  • Model: 445
  • Type: Wagon
  • Trim: burned
  • Year: 1957
  • Mileage: 54365
  • Color: Brown
  • Engine size: B18 Forged by fire
  • Number of cylinders: 4
  • Fuel: Gasoline
  • Transmission: Manual
  • Drive type: RWD
  • Interior color: Brown
  • Drive side: Left-hand drive
  • Options: CD Player, Leather Seats
  • Vehicle Title: Clean
  • Want to buy? Contact seller!

1957 Volvo 445 burned

The Paradise Duett,
Documentary link:
More Photos:
More video's:
The Paradise Duett is a 1957 Volvo PV 445 purchased new in late 1957 by Lee Pearce in Sacramento California. This was Lee's first new car he ever purchased, at the age of 26 Lee did quite a lot of homework making notes in the sales brochures he collected weekly (included with sale).
Mr Pearce was a mechanically gifted individual and upon purchase of the car he acquired a Volvo factory shop manual (included with sale) where he made notations regarding the changes and repairs he made to the car throughout his life.
video link to brochures and shop manual:
Mr Pearce wound up purchasing more new Volvo's over the 60's and 70's but his first was always special. he brought his kids home from the hospital in it, taught them how to drive it, they took their drivers tests in it, they drove it to school.
Some time in 1970 Mr Pearce was involved in an accident in another Volvo he owned, (a 1969 145 4 speed) and as the Teacher of Auto shop he and his class removed the motor from the wrecked car and installed the B18 with 4 speed in the Duett replacing the original B16 with 3 speed gear box. (noted in the pages of the shop manual and by family members)
Mr Pearce drove the car until his passing in January of 2012, a photo can be seen in the provided pictures above. Included with sale is a collection of Photo's provided by the family of the car through the years.
In the summer of 2018 Mr Pearce's Grandson took the car to his home in Paradise to mechanically restore the car as a gift to his Mother, he had completed a complete rebuild of the drivetrain, suspension, and brakes. All that was left was to reinstall the reconditioned gas tank, Sadly that day while at work The Camp Fire quickly enveloped the town of Paradise California.
His Grandson Camron lost everything including his grandfather's beloved Volvo.
In December of 2018 I saw a photo of the car (second one in provided photo's) and reached out to the family, A agreement was reached and on January 26th 2019 my family and I drove to Paradise to pickup the car.
it was the most heart wrenching experience of my Life, but once we met them and saw the documented history we knew this car had to live on.
2019 restoration
Starting on January 30th 2019 began a complete mechanical restoration of the car, the frame was removed and checked for square, and 2 parts cars were acquired to provide the difficult to locate parts for the project.
the frame, selected running gear, underside of the body, interior, and pockets/cavities where cleaned, stripped, rust treated, and coated with oil based rust inhibiting equipment enamel.
The chase was reassembled with all new bushings, hardware, seals, lines, etc. and the front brakes were upgraded to 1966 Volvo 122 disk brakes.
Given the unknown of the rear axle another one was chosen to match the one Mr Pearce installed from a 1966 Volvo 122. the original axle is included with sale.
Rear suspension was used from a 1962 Volvo 210 Duett and the front was from a 1962 Volvo 544.
The Engine upon removal and inspection was found to be mechanically perfect from and internal point of view, so all exterior parts including the timing gear were replaced, the engine was resealed and reinstalled with a replacement M40 transmission and new clutch.
in late February of 2019 one month after starting work the motor roared to life again.
The exterior and body appearance was preserved with a linseed oil treatment (retreated every 3 to 4 months) and items like the melted glass headlights, melted locks, and melted trim were left.
the entire car was of course rewired and a few extra fuses were added to isolate possible issues via the use of 2 Volvo 544 factory fuse blocks.
the glass was partly reused from parts cars and what we lacked was recreated by Enterance door glass of Portland Oregon from original pieces we had.
all new seals were installed with the bulk of our parts coming from VP Auto Parts and Classic Swede.
the interior feature original late 50's Volvo seats (front and back are not matching but 100% original material)And custom made wood panels featuring 1960's road maps of California with vintage fruit crate labels from Paradise and nearby farms.
the headliner is a collection of roadmaps, photo from the restoration and family, as well as copies of Mr Pearce's collection of vintage sale brochures.
The car runs and drives beautifully and all lights function as they should, the yellow fog lights upfront act as headlights and the rear lights were modified with 2 dual filament LED bulbs for increased visibility.
all doors open and close but the drivers door was deformed in the fire, we did our best to reshape it but it does require more effort to open and close it.
There are some parts I have just located for the car not pictured above, the heater controls, factory turn signal switch, wiper assembly, and read door latch are on there way and if there is time I will install them on the car before the new owner takes it.
This car, is the single greatest car I have had the privilege to work on. its story encompasses everything car culture represents. a documented timeline of work and care, photo's going back to its purchase, a well documented restoration, and the passion of its owners.
its Engine is in my mind the single greatest and most durable engine ever built, The B18 is the same engine holding the world record for most miles on a car as seen in Irv Gordon's 1966 Volvo P1800 currently with 3.4 million miles and still going.
I hold a clean clear title, and about 5 inches of paperwork going back to just before the car was purchased. All will be provided with the sale and a detailed walk through of the car and work completed by me personally will be proved to the owner as well as my full information incase and issues or questions arise
the family of Lee Pearce would also ask the new owners keep in touch with them regarding the cars future. they hold it quite dear and if for any reason the new owners choose to sell it in the future they would like right of first refusal.
Further more, all profits from the sale of the car will be donated to the American Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund to help families affected by wildfires.
Contact information
I urge anyone with questions to reach out to me vie Ebay, Email, or by phone number upon request.
The car is currently located in Portland Oregon and can be stored up to 30 days after sale for new owners to arrange pickup.
This car encompasses so much, from car culture, family, history, and the very story of Paradise itself, it stands as a testament to engineering, resiliency, and how no matter how destructive life can be, you can always rise from the ashes.
On November 8th 2020 the car will be making a 1000 mile round trip journey from Portland to Paradise and back leaving Portland On Friday November 6th with a stop Sunday November 8th at Courtesy Volvo of Chico California to lead a classic car cruise from Chico to Paradise. the car will be returning to Portland and placed on display at Jim Fisher Volvo for the rest of November or until pickup.