Irv Gordon

American Irv Gordon - driver of the highest mileage vehicle on the road, a 1966 Volvo P1800 - has reach an unmatchable record Sep 17th 2013 with 3 million miles driven in this reliable P1800.

One of the P1800 icons is the British actor Roger Moore, who drove the car in the TV series "The Saint". Another famous P1800 driver is the American Irv Gordon. With more than 3 million miles on his sporty red Volvo sports car, Gordon was celebrating his birthday on 15 July 2010 by affirming his goal of reaching three million miles before his 73rd birthday - forever enshrining him as an iron man in automotive endurance, he made it in Sep 2013 in Alaska.

Gordon, a retired science teacher from East Patchogue, N.Y., purchased his Volvo in June 1966, and immediately fell in love, driving 1,500 miles in the first 48 hours. With a 125-mile round-trip daily commute, a fanatical dedication to vehicle maintenance and a passion for driving, Gordon logged 500,000 miles in 10 years.

In the Guinness Book of World Records
In 1998 with 1.69 million miles, he made the Guinness Book of World Records for most miles driven by a single owner in a non-commercial vehicle. In 2002, he drove the car's two-millionth mile down Times Square to national and international media attention.

Today, Gordon breaks his own record every time he drives, whether it's to Cincinnati for coffee, Rolla, Mo., for lunch or Green River, Wyo., for dinner. Gordon - like any mighty record-holder at the top of his game - is mindful of his legacy, as well as setting a record no one can beat.

"Three million miles by my 73nd birthday sounds right," Gordon said. "But, whether I reach that mark is more up to me than it is the car. The car's parts have long proven they can take it, but I'm not so sure about my own. Either way, it is a fantastic testament to the engineering genius of Volvo as well as to the resiliency of folks my age. 

Like baseball legend diMaggio
"Three million miles is an iron clad number that I'd like to think sits right up there with DiMaggio's consecutive game hitting streak. Who's going to beat that? No one."

Gordon is unsure what to do with his Volvo after three million miles, though he has considered selling it for no less than one dollar per each mile he's driven.

"I used to think I'd park it in a museum where people will get to enjoy seeing the car that beat the odds - all with the same engine, same radio, same axles, same transmission and of course the same driver," Gordon said. "Now I think, ‘no way.' I'll either keep driving it or sell it for $3 million."

And what would he do if he made $3 million off the car?

"I'd spend it on traveling," he said. "Road trips, of course."
 (Source: Volvo Cars Corporation)


Blog's editor column:
As founder and Chairman of the Viking Classic Auto Show 2010 featuring the 50th anniversary of the P1800 presentation to the public in 1960, I had the extreme privilege to establish after 2 years of meet preparation a strong friendship with Irv (who wouldn't), and tried to play the best possible host role during his stay in France. As a mark of gratitude I decided to setup this blog to share more about the P1800 and also about him. Irv passed away Nov 15th 2018, his record is much more than miles : it teaches a lot about taking care of things (normal for a teacher), heritage, driving and discovering the world and people in general, thanks Irv. On top of everything, thanks to have considered me as a Friend.
Irv driving my 1800S in France