1998 Volkswagen GTI VR6

After its unceremonious and unexplained exit from the U.S. market with the introduction of the third generation Golf in 1993, the GTI came roaring back in a big way for the 1995 model year. Sure, it was bigger, bulkier and well…roundier, but it came with a bunch more gusto thanks to the addition of the VR6 motor as seen in the Corrado and Passat models. The single-overhead cam, twelve valve head lacked the race-bred feel of the Mk.II 16V, the new motor more than made up for it with the addition of two more cylinders. Good for 172 horsepower and 173 lb.ft of torque, it swept the hot hatch from 0-60 in 7.1 seconds and produced a 15.5 second quarter mile at over 90 mph. But much like the original, the GTI was more than the sum of its numbers, with drivers enjoying the great 6-cylinder soundtrack which accompanied the waves of usable torque.

Of course, like all VWs from the period, it was expensive. Really quite expensive. A base GTI VR6 rolled out the door in 1995 at $18,875, and with a few options it wasn’t difficult to breech $20 grand. Yet that was still only a little more than half the money it would take you to grab a same-year M3, which offered only a bit more motivation and cornering prowess. Catch the pesky BMW driver off-guard, and they’d be unlikely to easily out-drag you. So you could either look at this model as a really expensive Golf or a really cheap BMW. That was what the legendary GTI had always been about, and this was a resounding return to form and continuation of the brilliance that was the GTI 16V, even if they felt (and, looked) completely different:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1998 Volkswagen GTI VR6 on eBay


Year: 1998
Model: GTI VR6
VIN: 3VWHD81H9WM231024
Engine: 2.8 liter narrow-angle VR6
Transmission: 5-speed manual
Mileage: 64,543 mi
Price: $9,000 Buy It Now

Up for sale is my 1998 GTI VR6. It was sold new by Sendell Volkswagen in Greensburg, Pennsylvania and is finished in Ginster Yellow over black leather. Power comes from a 2.8L VR6 paired with a 5-speed manual transmission. I purchased this MK3 GTI from its original owner in May 2018, and has since added approximately 500 of its almost 65k indicated miles. I just recently had the car repainted I wanted to clean up some oxidized paint that would not come back and there was some minor rust and dings from 20 years of use. I also spent over $1,300 in mechanical servicing last year including the following.

a replacement throttle body
thermostat,
thermostat housing,
serpentine belt
airflow meter
OEM NGK spark plugs
NGK spark Plug wires
New german Coilpacks

and lots more as listed below. I have the original window sticker, recent service records, factory manuals, a clean Carfax, Also just had a fresh oil change and state inspection last month.

The car is 100% stock and retains factory badging and US-spec amber front markers. 15? alloy wheels were recently mounted with new 205/50 Hankook Ventus V2 Contact 2 tires. Inside, the carpets are protected by OEM rubber monster mats front and rear. A golf ball-style shift knob is equipped along with a leather-wrapped steering wheel and manually-adjustable seats. Equipment includes power windows/mirrors/locks, Ice cold A/C, cruise control, an AM/FM cassette player, and a power sunroof. A flaw in the interior sunroof cover is pointed out in the photos, and the digital odometer shows currently 64543 miles.

Also want to add one more thing. I know this towers or a weak point on these cars. I do have pictures of all of them but did include a picture of the passenger side rear so you can see that they are in perfect condition.

If you have any questions or want to see the car, let me know. I also have over 150 photos of the car, If there is anything you want to see, Please ask away. I also have a youtube walk around video. put the link below in you tube and the video will come up.

youtube link
=Cy6aC-on9x8

The ’95-6 base price was kicked even farther up with the ’97 addition of the “Driver’s Edition” model. 800 Ginster Yellow and 200 Jazz Blue DEs were produced, and featured Speedline 7-spoke wheels, 10mm lower and stiffer suspension and bigger anti-roll bars, special seat fabric and floor mats, red-stitched steering wheel and handbrake lever, silver-faced gauges, red front calipers, special GTI door sill trim and of course a golf-ball shifter. If it sounds like the 20th AE package, you’re right. That package carried mostly unchanged to the standard ’98 VR6; it lost the tail pipes and red calipers, but the package was otherwise little changed – including the price, which as we can see with this leather-equipped model had no options and cost you $21,285.

Today, this low-mileage and clean, original example is priced at $9,000. That’s aggressive for a GTI VR6, but then this is a pretty special example. Ginster Yellow is the shade to have, and were it me this is pretty much exactly the spec I’d want. Truth told, I’d have a slight preference for the DE and that special interior to match, but some 20 years on from production finding one in this shape is quite difficult. There’s also competition at this price point, from the Corrado to the E36 M3. But if you want to stand slightly apart in a special car that’s fun to drive yet practical, you could do a lot worse than this GTI.

-Carter

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2 Comments

  1. Thanks for posting, Dave. I wasn’t aware of the prior BaT auction or its outcome.

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