One of the coolest things about drag racing is the variety you will see at the track. In the United States, at any give raceway, you will see old school Corvettes, Fox body Mustangs, and the new Mopar products. But when you travel overseas the variety grows even more. In Europe you’ll find classic American muscle cars mixed in with different European hot rods, and Krister Adeen of Sweden has taken the idea of variety to a whole new level. The Swedish racer took a tube chassis, hung a Volvo 850 body on it, strapped a giant turbo on the four cylinder engine, and cracked off some six-second passes. Obviously there’s a little more to the process than that, but you get the idea.
The Volvo 850 was never designed to be a quarter mile warrior back in 1992. The Swedish automaker used the 850 as its first export to North America, and produced the car from 1992-1997. The car came in a wagon or sedan with a massive 2.3 or 2.4 liter mill available for power. A performance model was offered, the T5-R that had a bit more style and power than the base 850. There have been a few of these cars with V8 swaps in the U.S., but nothing like the monster that Krister and his team built.
Kirster’s machine was originally powered by a cast Volvo block and a 16-valve head. Through experience, the breaking point of the blocks at over 60 pounds of boost was found. To help prevent further issues, a special rally cross-style engine is now used in the car. The giant snail sticking out of the hood is an 88mm unit that helps push the car down the track. A Liberty gearbox is used in conjunction with a Lenders clutch to take care of shifting duties. ME-Racing Service built the full tube chassis the 850 body sets on.
Kirster was the first European to make a six-second pass in a full tube chassis car powered by a four cylinder engine. The team has been running consistently in the 6.80’s at over 200 miles per hour. Check out this video as the car spools up and takes flight.