vw golf gti, vw corrado and vw polo tuning and styling - with Matey-Matey

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:: Martin Allen's Mk2 GTi G60 Synchro ::


I’ve owned my G60 Syncro for just over 1 year and to be honest it’s been the most reliable car I have ever owned. My love for the Mk2 began about 6 years ago when I managed to find a rather poorly kept 1991 1600cc 3 door Driver on the list of cars to go to auction. My Dad worked for Arnold Clark and I always got the pick of the best before they went to auction. 

The car was covered in dirt and the interior was filthy with a pair of manure-caked boots left in the back. A quick wipe revealed that the paint was actually metallic black and an HPI check revealed that it was actually an 1800cc carb engine. 

My mates had a valeting business so I stripped the interior out, blasted it using some rather nice-smelling chemicals and then attacked the bodywork with a buffer and some cutting compound. The car was completely dent-free and in pristine condition. It’s sudden end came one night when a couple of Chavs stole a £200 Sierra, tried to outrun the police and used the back end of my Golf instead of the brake pedal.

I only paid £1100 for the car but my hard work obviously paid off as the Insurance Inspector offered me £2700 when he saw the condition (not to mention the fact that he used to own an identical car and got a lump in his throat when he saw the devastation). 

Then came a couple of Citroens followed by a couple of VAG specials that together brought me more pain than all of the other cars I'd owned previously. A SEAT Ibiza Cupra 20 Valve Turbo and then a SEAT Leon Cupra R that used to return from servicing with bits broken off thanks to the stupidity of the technicians. 

I finally decided to sell the Cupra R and spend my money on something that I used to dream about when I was younger...

I stumbled upon a great-looking Tornado Red 5 door G60 Syncro on the SuperGolfs web site. After around 10 phone calls and no reply I eventually gave up but began searching for some more examples. Information was scarce but I managed to find a guy in Wolverhampton that had a site dedicated to his pristine 3 door version which was also in Tornado Red. A few emails back and forward and I eventually found myself and a mate traveling down on the train. As soon as the Garage door opened I thought “holy s**t!” it’s immaculate.

My mate whispered “buy it! buy it! buy it!” in my ear. After a long inspection and review of the massive service history and receipts, a deal was done and I found myself traveling up the M6 (at about 5mph at 17:00 on a Friday!) sitting on the wrong side of the car. 

It was like taking my driving test again but I loved every second of the 350 mile drive back up to Scotland. Kids would hang out the window and wave. It felt sluggish but I put that down to the fact that I had previously been driving a 225 BHP Leon and that the Golf had 4wd and more friction, but by the time I had reached Fife the engine had started to free-off.

With only 58,000 miles on the clock if felt as close to buying a new Mk2 as I could hope for. As soon as the car rolled down my driveway the garage was open and the Meguiars put to work. The paintwork only had a few very light scratches that had been generated by the German owner taking it through a carwash. Some Scratch-X and some elbow grease were employed and the bodywork was restored to former glory.


After hours on the net searching through various reviews I found myself taking receipt of a set of FK Konigsport Coilovers. My idea being that all of the previous performance VAG cars that I had owned had lacked a bit involvement and knowing that the Golf would never be anything special in a straight line I wanted it to be the best balanced drivers’ car that I had owned. Oh how I was wrong! 

Once I had rebuilt the supercharger, run it in for 1000 miles and replaced the perished vacuum pipe and fitted a chip and pulley, I found that the thing went into the red in 5th! I was shocked to see a speed of 240KPH from a 4wd mildly tuned Golf. 

I feel compelled to preserve the car in it’s current state as a testament to the original owners devotion to rare VWs. He originally purchased the Golf back in 1990 when he was 70 years old, and kept it for 12 years before finally giving up driving due to poor eyesight. I do not suffer from ‘Status anxiety’ and I am on no way a Number Plate Snob. The car is for my pleasure and is not a status symbol hence the reason why I went from a 1 year old Leon Cupra R to a 15 year old Golf. I suppose in a way I am actually a ‘Plate Snob’ as I love the fact that the car is so clean and still a storming performer, even after 15 years.

The car is due for a small make-over soon as I have purchased from VAG brand new exterior plastic trim comprising of new bumpers, sill extensions and arch trims. It is sitting on G60 Steels just now and to be honest I love them even more than the BBS splits as they make the car even more of a ‘sleeper’ and they have that new shine to them. I have stripped and refurbished the BBS 001’s that currently reside in my garage but I’m not sure whether to part with them or keep the two, car and wheels, together as they left the dealership.

See a bigger picture here

Here's the full run-down:

Suspension: FK Konigsport adjustable coilovers.

Wheels: BBS RC001 'split rims' refurbished 1 month ago with bead blasted and powdered centres and Bright Nickel plated and polished outer rims / New G60 Steels

Tyres: 195x45x15 Continental Sport2

Mounts: Uprated Vibratek engine mounts

Spacers: 4x20mm FK wheel spacers with lengthened bolts

Charger:  Full G-Lader Supercharger rebuild with up-rated chip and pulley kit

Fog Lights: 'Crystal' fog light set

Head lights: 'Crystal' Head light set with up-rated Philips bulbs

Indicators: 'Smoked Crystal' front Indicator with Philips 'Silverlight' bulbs

Steering wheel: Momo 'Racer' steering wheel

ICE: Blaupunkt Din size SatNav head unit PLUS Original (still in box) Volkswagen Beta Radio Cassette (Charger sounds good enough)

Badges: Wolfsburg Edition Trimsport alloy side repeater blanks, Silver G60 Trimsport side trim badges

Labour: Circa 200 hrs with the elbow grease and entire Meguiars range

Thanks to Martin for taking the time to write this up for us - as always, if you'd like your car featured, please get in touch :-)

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