Driving my 1983 Rabbit Gti in a 50 mile per day commute with no A/C in the summer was just not cutting it. Meanwhile, I was in the midst of a search for a low mileage, black, 2.0L 16V Golf or Jetta for about six months. In simple terms, this meant a Golf Gti or a Jetta Gli within the 90-92 range. I had more of affection the Jetta Gli.
The European headlight package, BBS rims, and the 90-92 big bumper and body trim had always caught my attention. While attending some VW shows, I was amazed by the potential these A2's can have. I stumbled into exactly what I was looking for at a dealership on the Lynnway in Lynn, MA. It was perfect. It was showroom clean, with a few minor "parking lot," dings. It only had 76K miles when all the other Gli's I had seen had well over 100K. This car looked great. I envisioned the usual 16V plans as I stared at this car in the lot.
I test drove the car. Needless to say, I was not too impressed with the acceleration, even though I was carrying two passengers. (Only later do I find out the 2.0l 16V is not an engine for low rpm. It is the high rpm's that this engine shines!) I guess I was trying to compare it with my quick ratio tranny in my 8v Rabbit Gti. I was not too impressed with the Recaro seats and the Activ radio. Despite these small issues, the car simply had everything else going for it. It was like going from a Geo Metro to a Lincoln Town car in terms of comfort and luxury. Oh, let's not forget the ice cold A/C.
After getting rejected with my initial offer, the salesman and I both were in a stubborn mood to negotiate. I walked out of the dealership, business card in hand, angry and disappointed. I had to sleep, worry, plan, and pray that the car did not get sold for one week as I could only deal with this on the weekends. I called him on the following Saturday to at least get the price down to Blue Book value on the phone. Within a 1/2-hour we made the deal. He had promised to fix a dent and have it ready by mid-week. Ask me about how I found out about the kill switch?
I met Vinnie at Vinnies Auto Sport in Cambridge, MA. He raced a few Corrado's and knew VW's inside and out. He had connections with Techtonics Tuning in Oregon. Soon, the Jetta was set up with a K&N air filter, a Stainless Steel exhaust, and a TT chip, of which Garret Lim admitted he programmed himself for TT a few years back. What a difference these three modifications made to this car! An upgrade of the factory chip should be the number one priority for anyone with a Motronic engine.
Future plans for this particular car include and are not limited to a Nuespeed/Bilstien suspension, and a Tire/Wheel upgrade. The stock suspension and tire package is often required to deal with the "pot hole" filled Boston area. This car continues to be my daily commuter.
Update on the H&R Cup Kit installed, 01/09/04.