With 2.6 million miles on his record-breaking, shiny red 1966 Volvo P1800, 67-year-old Irv Gordon is now aiming to achieve a near impossible milestone - driving three million miles in the same car.
Gordon, a retired science teacher from East Patchogue, N.Y., purchased his sporty 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 dedication to vehicle maintenance and a passion for driving, Gordon logged 500,000 miles in 10 years. 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.
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. And now, the treasured Volvo P1800 continues to roll through the ages despite the wear of road and time, Gordon - like any mighty record-holder at the top of his game - has begun to think about his legacy.
"My goal is to reach three million miles in the next five years," Gordon said. "But, whether I reach that mark is more up to me than it is the car. The car’s parts may be able to take it, but I’m not so sure about my own.
"I turn 72 on July 15, 2012," he added. "That seems like a nice day to clock three million and park the car once and for all. It will be a fantastic testament to the engineering genius of Volvo as well as to the resiliency of folks my age.
"I’ll also feel comfortable that three million miles is a record that no one will ever be able to reach in the same car," Gordon continued. "That is, unless Barry Bonds decides to start driving his car more after he retires from baseball."