The Scirocco 16V was my first affordable performance car


The Scirocco 16V was my first affordable performance car

There was the performance car you first fell in love with, and the first one you could actually afford to make your own

At 3 I realized what cars were and had my first crush. An early Saab 900 turbo. At 8 I became aware of Group B rally racing and Formula One. What an awakening. I loved these cars so much the one book in the library that contained images and details of these legends went hidden under my bed so long that we actually had to buy the book from the Library. I still have that book. At 11 or 12 I realized the significance of men like Colin Chapman and Enzo Ferrari and machines like the Lotus Esprit Turbo and Ferrari F40 became the near focus of my life. I had a picture of il Commendatore sat proudly on the stand beside my bed. The passion was real.

At 16 I got my first car. It was a rare car, a very cool car, but with 0-60 in 8.8 seconds and a seriously tall ride height it wasn't a true PERFORMANCE car. 18. 18 years of age was the time. I got my first performance car. A flash silver 60k mile 1987 Scirocco 16v.

after a year of ownership I had the car sitting close to ideal with the exception of those ghastly US spec bumpers
I am not sure if shorts and white socks worked, even in the '90s

The car was serious performance spec as well. Crank windows, sunroof delete (or rather they simply hadn't spaced one but c'mon, let a boy enthuse) and two part leather and velour center seats with a manual gear box and Oettinger breathed on 16v cylinder head. Yes. Straight away I was hunting apexes, cruising down my favourite stop light laden boulevard at 3,800 rpm hoping to catch out that 5.0 mustang, eagerly awaiting the opportunity where I left my friends behind on our favourite curvy roads. Those were some of the best days and nights I would ever have in a car. Yes there was glee unmeasurable when I drove my first Lotus, my first Porsche, my first Ferrari, my first Lamborghini.

To me that car contained the keys to the kingdom. It opened up a new world to me. I took it to autocross events. I modified it late at night with friends. I scrimped and saved to afford the light weight alloys I had dreamed of. It was a dream realized.

Autocrossing the car. Famously an image of this very car adorned a full page of Super Street magazine along with a cone I had just hit. Going for it even then.

In this video I recount the joy this car brought me then, and the joy a car nearly identitcal to that original car brings me today.

As always, thanks so much for watching. If you are regular watcher or even a first time viewer, I would love it if you would hit subscribe on the YouTube channel. The more successful the channel the more time I can dedicate to car reviews, builds and more. Cheers! 

My current '88 Scirocco 16V sat next to my 1995 Lotus S4S finished in Lotus Racing Green and wearing OZ futuras.