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Topic: Sam’s 84’ Mars Red GTI - Factory RHD German Wolfsburg Import (Read 2026 times) previous topic - next topic

Sam’s 84’ Mars Red GTI - Factory RHD German Wolfsburg Import

I know, I know, it's my second 'new to me' Mk2 in 2 weeks! 

 

This one was really unexpected - I initially saw it on Facebook MK2OC sales and had just been listed. I sent it straight to Mr Mac, phoned the guy. There was someone else interested in the car and wanted to view the next morning. Therefore, Me, Ali and Jasmine went down straight away to view. It was fairly local so an hour later we were with the car. 

 

The previous owner was very transparent and very upfront about the work needed - it's not perfect but it seems like a great base to get started and the history is really interesting. 

 



 



 



 



 



 



 



 



 

These are the worst bits:

 



 



 



 



 



 



 



 

So as you can see - much to keep me busy with. 

 

It seems that the arch was hit a few years back and then just filler over - it feels solid underneath but time will tell. The sill on that side will need replacing, a heritage replacement was included in the sale. 

 

It seems that the inner skin was done on the turret but not the outer, previous owner sent me this for reference: 

 



 



 



 



 

Still unsure if this is a 'correct' fix so will look to replace this after seeking advice when the sill is replaced. 

 

Anyway, I went back the next day with the trailer 

 



 



 

Jasmine loving the purchase! 

 



 

So here it is! 

 



 



 



 



 



 



 

Apart from the obvious - it's a really solid base and really original - even has all the stickers, service history is ridiculously amazing with original first aid kit! 

 

The backstory with this car is quite strange and after some investigation, I've found that it's an April 1984 built car - delivered on 30th May 1984 from Wolfsburg to Schwalmtal (West Germany). It was ordered to spec RHD and taken to Bristol apparently to avoid a car waiting list. I have all the strange German documents below: 

 



 



 



 



 



 

Once in the UK - it was assigned this plate and the sold to the director of Epping Motor Company in Feb 1985 to which the plate transferred to "JL40". This owner spent A LOT of money on the car over the years - FSH with a VW dealer, engine rebuild etc. Looking at the history, the car got anything it needed! The plate was removed in December 2002 and then parked up in dry stored from 2003 onwards. There are still invoices from this point for an engine rebuild and other mechanical parts: 

 



 

It was then kept in dry store and sold to previous owner in 2019 who kept it also in dry store at which it looked like this:

 



 



 



 



 



 



 

Previous spent a lot of money restoring the fuel system and braking system so everything in that department is new! 

 

Therefore, my plan is to get this as perfect as possible! First thing is first - try and work out what is correct. 

 

One person has disputed that it shouldn't have red trim bumpers and another even suggested it should have a single light red stripe grill: 

 



 

Any tips and advice - feel free to post below! 

 As usual, thanks to Ali and the usual suspects for the help!

Hopefully updates to follow in due course!

Re: Sam’s 84’ Mars Red GTI - Factory RHD Wolfsburg Import

Reply #1
That looks like an excellent example!

And yes, those red stripe bumpers do look like they shouldn't be there.
Pretty sure red stripe was originally supposed to carry around the rest or the rubber rub strips on the doors, which you don't have, being an early one.
Mk2 Driver
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Mk2 BBM ABF
Bora 20vt
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3.2 TT Roadster
Mk2 Red 16v
225 TT Coup
3.2 TT Coup
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Mk2 BBM R32
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Re: Sam’s 84’ Mars Red GTI - Factory RHD Wolfsburg Import

Reply #2
Are the P slot centre caps in the car somewhere? on the storage pics they are there but on your's they're not. I know when I got mine the seller had left them in the boot as he didn't want them nicked.

I saw this come up for sale and thought of you, but knowing you'd just bought one I didn't expect you to buy it. So well done.
Looks like it'll take a bit of work, and it deserves to be done properly but I'm guessing this one will be a keeper.

There's a lot of debate over really early one; such as no red strip on bumper, single light grill and GTI badge on the other side, however that last note I think is because of a German press photo being flipped to depict a RHD car. It's worth bearing in mind there will be photos going about that were of pre-production cars. While the Germans were testing and fine tuning, some of those pics would have been given to the press to announce the car that would soon be available.
 
I guess if you take off the bumpers and find out if they are genuine VW or not, if so there's a stronger chance they will be original. Also most plastic parts a stamped with a date wheel, so you may find one on the inside of the bumper skins. This would prove it one way or another and end the debate  :))

And finally, welcome to the world of K-Jet

Re: Sam’s 84’ Mars Red GTI - Factory RHD Wolfsburg Import

Reply #3
Thanks both!

Fortunatley I do have the p slot centres in the car - the car has one on to see if they fitted properly!

Yeah this one would be a keeper and actually I didn't expect to buy either Mk2 but I saw this and couldn't pass it up especially being local!

Interestingly, I just had a chat with the first owner - he stated loads of little anecdotes which were great. For example, the engine was making a weird noise so they did a full engine rebuild and realised it was just a HT lead arching on the cylinder head.

Weirdly, he did say that the car had a light upgrade - he said he couldn't remember if the spotlamps were the upgrade or the units were upgraded. The main lights look original so I think it's likely it had a single grill from Germany and possibly LHD lights. Although he did state the bumpers were red stripe from factory which doesn't agree with other A reg GTI's.

Hopefully I can get these little issues ironed out, not that it really matters to anyone apart from us on here!

Re: Sam’s 84’ Mars Red GTI - Factory RHD Wolfsburg Import

Reply #4
Ok so this is odd, there is a registration window of August 1983 - July 1984 for it to be an A reg.

According to online checks you have a build year of 1984 and a first reg date of 17 August 1984, check your V5. But by my reckoning that would mean it should be a B reg.

Maybe it was pre-reg by the dealer hence the late A reg. End of year models are often offered with deals to clear stock. This may have been the case ready for the 85 model.

I know you can't really go off reg date as you don't know how long a car has sat in stock, but I know you can check build week off of the boot sticker or work it out form the VIN. Regardless, but it looks like your car is from the very end of the first year run. (Bear in mind a VW production year is not a calendar year, and is slightly out of sync with registration years so sometime around June to September the 85 spec would be launched.

So it's very likely the factory floor would start to roll out 85 spec parts as this seems the trend for every other year. The cars evolved throughout their production period and it seems when VW decided on an update they started it there and then, it's only the major facelifts that actually saw them a 'new' models.

The alternative might be the dealer fitted some 'newer' parts to help the car sell once the 85 models hit the show room. So I have no reason to think the bumper or grill are anything different to how it left the showroom. How it left the factory is debatable, but either way red trim bumpers and quad lamp grills make a GTI for me so I wouldn't go changing it.

Either way, cracking car, can't wait to see how you tackle this one. Please keep us updated .... I'd start by tearing it apart.


[EDIT:]

Looking at the pics from the sale ad, that looks like the red stripe might be a stick on vinyl strip anyway. Not the red rubber insert of the later cars. Maybe applied by the dealer ??



Re: Sam’s 84’ Mars Red GTI - Factory RHD Wolfsburg Import

Reply #5
Ok so this is odd, there is a registration window of August 1983 - July 1984 for it to be an A reg.

According to online checks you have a build year of 1984 and a first reg date of 17 August 1984, check your V5. But by my reckoning that would mean it should be a B reg.

Maybe it was pre-reg by the dealer hence the late A reg. End of year models are often offered with deals to clear stock. This may have been the case ready for the 85 model.

I know you can't really go off reg date as you don't know how long a car has sat in stock, but I know you can check build week off of the boot sticker or work it out form the VIN. Regardless, but it looks like your car is from the very end of the first year run. (Bear in mind a VW production year is not a calendar year, and is slightly out of sync with registration years so sometime around June to September the 85 spec would be launched.

So it's very likely the factory floor would start to roll out 85 spec parts as this seems the trend for every other year. The cars evolved throughout their production period and it seems when VW decided on an update they started it there and then, it's only the major facelifts that actually saw them a 'new' models.

The alternative might be the dealer fitted some 'newer' parts to help the car sell once the 85 models hit the show room. So I have no reason to think the bumper or grill are anything different to how it left the showroom. How it left the factory is debatable, but either way red trim bumpers and quad lamp grills make a GTI for me so I wouldn't go changing it.

Either way, cracking car, can't wait to see how you tackle this one. Please keep us updated .... I'd start by tearing it apart.


[EDIT:]

Looking at the pics from the sale ad, that looks like the red stripe might be a stick on vinyl strip anyway. Not the red rubber insert of the later cars. Maybe applied by the dealer ??




Where did you find the for sale ad, I missed the pictures and yeah I just discovered the same thing not so long ago - it looks to be just a vinyl tape - so I’ll get that sorted.

It’s weird the boot sticker is as follows:







So it looks that the car built on the 20th Week of 1984 on the 3rd Wednesday. So, looks to be 16th May 1984. I have a delivery date of 30th May 1984 and then V5 is registered  17th August 1984.

I think it “should” have a single red stripe grill but the odds of me finding one are pretty common actually. I think the plan therefore is to keep the quads and find another grill with genuine red stripe and badge whilst removing the coach tape. Therefore, that follows a genuine A reg UK spec car rather than a German one.

Hopefully, It’ll look good at least when the car is finished!

Re: Sam’s 84’ Mars Red GTI - Factory RHD Wolfsburg Import

Reply #6
I'm guessing it took a while to get to the UK and was registered in August 84 but got an A plate because it is actually a pre Aug 84 car that had been on the road.

I'm assuming it has the early clocks with econ needle.

Re: Sam’s 84’ Mars Red GTI - Factory RHD Wolfsburg Import

Reply #7
That’s my understanding too! And yes it does - needles working and all the clocks working too. Was quite surprised even the external temp works!


Re: Sam’s 84’ Mars Red GTI - Factory RHD Wolfsburg Import

Reply #8
Can you check if the drivers seat is height adjustable? I had an 85 seat for spares and it was fixed. I wasn't sure if height adjust was a age related addition or 86 onwards.

It's these little additions that help build a profile of the evolution of the car throughout the production life.


The Original sale post that I spotted it on: https://www.facebook.com/groups/230231787160153/permalink/1777600222423294/

There will be lots of little things you might spot when you start to compare with the 88.

On the inside of the tailgate, halfway along the pillar you might find rubber grommets on the 84 that are not there on the 88, I guess they are to aid with access to the wiring for the heated screen. I assume that they discovered a way to improve production and these were no longer needed.

Also your boot lock, the whole body of it, should be cast aluminium not plastic.

Re: Sam’s 84’ Mars Red GTI - Factory RHD Wolfsburg Import

Reply #9
Can you check if the drivers seat is height adjustable? I had an 85 seat for spares and it was fixed. I wasn't sure if height adjust was a age related addition or 86 onwards.

It's these little additions that help build a profile of the evolution of the car throughout the production life.


The Original sale post that I spotted it on: https://www.facebook.com/groups/230231787160153/permalink/1777600222423294/

There will be lots of little things you might spot when you start to compare with the 88.

On the inside of the tailgate, halfway along the pillar you might find rubber grommets on the 84 that are not there on the 88, I guess they are to aid with access to the wiring for the heated screen. I assume that they discovered a way to improve production and these were no longer needed.

Also your boot lock, the whole body of it, should be cast aluminium not plastic.

You’re right! Pictures below:






Such strange differences I would have never noticed!


Re: Sam’s 84’ Mars Red GTI - Factory RHD Wolfsburg Import

Reply #11
Looks a cracking original car there, KJets are so much more lively than digi I found, I also think the very early interior like that look the best, I also prefer the shifter bellows over the later style.

Good luck with it, that's a keeper right there!


Re: Sam’s 84’ Mars Red GTI - Factory RHD Wolfsburg Import

Reply #12
It's the push button itself, where the lock barrel goes that is cast alloy.

Interesting - it looks the same as my 88. However, I have 4 keys with this car so it’s had a genuine VW lock set somewhere in history.

88:




84: 



Re: Sam’s 84’ Mars Red GTI - Factory RHD Wolfsburg Import

Reply #13
Looks a cracking original car there, KJets are so much more lively than digi I found, I also think the very early interior like that look the best, I also prefer the shifter bellows over the later style.

Good luck with it, that's a keeper right there!



Thanks mate, appreciate it! I prefer the earlier interior bits too!

Re: Sam’s 84’ Mars Red GTI - Factory RHD Wolfsburg Import

Reply #14
Two Golfs.. now that is just greedy....!
Only jealous....I'd love to have a Corrado and a 190 2.6 and maybe a VR6....but we already have an Octy Scout a Citigo as well as my BB 8v moredoor!

Hope you don't unearth many surprises on the GTI.
One thing I notice about the early ones is the seat covers go baggy. I know you can get replacement foam but has anyone had any success with plumping the original foam with steam, like the guy did on the Salvage Hunters Range Rover? I know Tim has done it too, Could be a cheap fix.
1991 Tornado Red BB 8v GTI Moredoor
2008 Skoda Octy Scout aka dirty diesel