The Type 44 Audi was on its way out of production (in the West, at least) in 1991, but it went out with a bang. The big news was finally the release of the 20V Turbo motor into the lineup for the US market. A development of the motor utilized in the Sport Quattro and then the RR Quattro in Europe and later S2, Audi also popped the 3B turbocharged inline-5 package in the 200. As an added bonus, it was available in both sedan form and the innovative Avant wagon. Producing 217 horsepower and a bit more torque, the 200 20V was capable of 0-60 runs in the mid-6 second range if you were quick with your shifts. But this wasn’t a bracket racer – the 200 was a luxury car through and through, with a well-appointed cabin full of the things you’d expect – Zebrano wood trim, electric powered and heated leather seats front and rear, and a high-quality Bose stereo. Unusual for a luxury car of the time, but underscoring the German’s feelings towards driving, were the number of driver-oriented items. The dashboard was full of gauges, and unlike the V8 and 200 Turbo, the 20V was manual only. Next to the shift lever was the manual rear differential lock, though as with all the second-generation quattro drivetrains, the electronic lock disengaged at 15 m.p.h. automatically. The center differential was a Torsen unit capable of varying power as well. And the brakes were unconventional floating-rotor designs, intended to help haul the heavy 200 down from triple-digit Autobahn speed with ease. Unlike the normal 200, the fenders on the 20V were flared slightly to accommodate BBS forged wheels, 15×7.5″ all around and shared with the ’91-up V8 quattro. It sounded like a recipe for success and was a well-regarded car when new even if the unconventional manual/turbo-5 setup lacked some grunt compared to the V8s of the day. Truth be told, though, “success” in Audi’s sales numbers in the early 90s was relative; somewhere around 1,200 or so of these 20Vs were sold in the US. This one looks pretty slick, so let’s take a peek:
Month: January 2023
The 1991-1992 GTI followed the same basic recipe as the 1987 model the double-overhead-cam motor was introduced in, but everything was turned up a few notches. Starting in the mid-1990 model year, all US-bound A2s received the ‘big bumper’ treatment; new smooth aerodynamic covers front and rear. To help to differentiate it a bit, the GTI’s blackened arches were widened. Filling those arches were new 15″ wheels from BBS. The multi-piece RMs were lightweight and the perfect fit for the design, echoing other contemporary class-leading sports cars such as the M3. Volkswagen color-coded the mirrors and rear spoiler to match the car, as well, and the GTI got a fresh face with more illumination; quad round lights filled the grill, and foglights were integrated into the lower bumper. Prominent GTI 16V badges still encircled the car.
Power was up to match the heightened looks. Now with 2.0 liters of twin-cam fun, the 9A in the GTI produced 134 horsepower at 5,800 RPMs and 133 lb. ft of torque at 4,400 RPMs. Coupled to the close-ratio 5-speed manual, that was good enough to drop 0-60 times below 8 seconds. That may not sound like much today, but at the time it was another league of performance compared to the typical economy car. Holding you in place were the same heavily-bolstered Recaros that special editions like the ‘Helios’ 1989 Jetta GLI Wolfsburg had enjoyed.
It was a recipe for success, but these cars were also relatively expensive in period, and fell into the global recession time frame which affected sales of nearly all European marques drastically. The general consensus is that around 5,000 of the last of these GTIs were imported, putting their rarity on the level of the M3. But because they weren’t M3s, there are far less around today to enjoy and few turn up in stock configuration for a myriad of reasons. This example is far from perfect, but its rarity means that the price…well, you’ll see.
CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1992 Volkswagen GTI 16V on eBay
The Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 RS models are finally starting to roll out and people can not get enough of them. Well, those who can afford them. Just to refresh, these had a starting price of just a tag over $150,000 and the sky is basically the limit in terms of options. Naturally, the Weissach Package adds a quick $13,250 and several other things you wouldn’t think would cost a bunch of money, but actually does. Then of course is the markup. On the secondary market, sure, you can expect that. However, a Porsche dealer retailing the car as new with just 18 miles? Wait until you see this asking price.
CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2023 Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 RS on eBay
There is always something satisfying about the Mercedes-Benz W123 chassis. Even more so when it is preserved like today’s example. This 1979 240D up for sale in Florida is finished in the wonderful Caledonia Green with matching hubcaps and a light beige interior. The odometer says 68,000 miles but I usually only trust these odometers as far as I can push them; though, all things considered, this one might actually be a low-mileage car. It’s all roses until you see the price.