For Sale: Paul Newman’s ’95 Volvo 960 Wagon with Supercharged 5.0 V8 Engine Swap

While we normally do not feature cars here that are for sale, we had to make a rare exception after we ran across Paul Newman’s Supercharged 5.0 V8-converted 1995 Volvo 960 station wagon on In fact, we made another one of those “rare” exceptions for one of his other cars previously with our feature of his ’63 Bug convertible that had a mid mounted Indy car engine, which can be found in “Related Links” at the bottom of the following page. Seems the guy had a real penchant for Ford V8 engine swaps. Ain’t nothing wrong with that. This was a guy who used to trailer his race cars up to Mulholland Drive back in the day and street race them on the famous curvy stretch of mountain road when he wasn’t busy with his professional racing or acting careers. James Dean, Steve McQueen, Paul Newman, and now Paul Walker, all prominent Hollywood actors who loved driving the hell out of their sports cars (and wagons) more than anything else, RIP.
We have included DailyTurismo’s story in italics on the following page, which can be found linked at the end.


For V8 Volvo nuts like us, finding Paul Newman’s 960 for sale online is the equivalent of an archeologist finding Excalibur in a thrift store.  This supercharged wagon is stuff of legends and its story famously told on the air by David Letterman while being interviewed by John Stewart – read all about it from this 2003 story from Swedespeed later republished in 2010 via Jalopnik.  Cool Hand Luke himself passed in 2008 but the whereabouts of the “puffer” equipped custom was unknown…until now.  Paul Newman’s 1995 Volvo 960 is for sale on for an undisclosed price, but with Auto Appraisal Network’s 2011 appraisal of $95,000 attached to the ad.
Unfortunately the thrift store knows exactly what they have and this Excalibur is priced as if you have to ask, you probably can’t afford it.  We’re certain we are not the only ones scratching our heads that we found this car on an obscure site like instead of something mainstream like hemmings, craigslist or ebay.  The contact info is a simple telephone number and says the car is located in Forest Lake, CA.
Pop the hood of Newman’s 960 and it is immediately apparent that the original inline-6 has been replaced by a 5.0 liter V8 from a Ford Mustang.  The stock 300 horsepower was deemed insufficient and a Kenne Bell supercharger was added for an estimated 400 horsepower.
The sister car to this grey one was purchased by Letterman and in this video of Comedians and Cars Getting Coffee (linked above) and you can see Jerry Seinfeld leaving groceries, soccer balls and a little bit of the rear tires behind under acceleration.
Newman didn’t just order an engine conversion from Converse Engineering, he also added some stiffer anti-roll bars, lowering springs and a custom transverse rear-leaf spring setup.   The interior of this car was listed as in excellent condition (actually excellent was selected for every single other category, questionable given the apparent rust on some lower control arms…) but it looks great for 41k miles on the odometer, aside from typical leather wrinkles.  
The only problem with this tire shredder is the price tag, and while we aren’t accusing the seller of being a hustler, we would say he knows the color of money and a little bit about winning.
Find it here at:
Converse Engineering
275 Pea Ridge Road
Chester, ME 04457
(207) 344-7671


Originally posted 2013-12-01 17:28:21.

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