The city of Gothenburg was chosen by the Swedish broadcaster to be host city to the 1985 Eurovision Song Contest. This year, the Netherlands chose to withdraw from the contest because it collided with the country's national Remembrance Day. Yugoslavia also decided to stay home because of a national holiday. Israel and Greece returned to the contest so the number of participants was 19 again, just as in the previous year.
The set in Gothenburg's Scandinavium was very modern and bigger than any venue before. Parts of the set would later be re-used for the Swedish national final, Melodifestivalen, in 1987.
Norway surprised everyone with their victory this year. The entry La Det Swinge by the duo Bobbysocks, won after a close race with the German entry, Für Alle by the group Wind. Bobbysocks consisted of the singers Elisabeth Andreasson and Hanne Krogh. Elisabeth had already taken part in the Eurovision Song Contest in 1982 for Sweden where she was one half of the group Chips. Hanne Krogh had represented Norway already in 1971, but only came 17th with her song Lycken Er.