Wagon Week: 2000 Volkswagen Passat 2.8 GLX 4Motion Variant

While “Wagon Week” is one of our favorite features, I’ve tried to look at cars this go around that are slightly different than the normal candidates we examine. As such, while typically I look at the infamous W8 version of the Passat and it’s headline grabbing, innovative engine or the lighter weight 1.8T 5-speed, my preferred configuration, this time we’re looking at what was a popular platform – the GLX 4Motion. Equipped with a silky smooth 30V V6, as it was with the B2 generation underneath the B5 Passat was effectively an Audi A4 and shared the same all-wheel drive technology with updated 4-link suspension. That gave the Passat a refined and capable drivetrain and composed suspension setup that made it feel more upscale than the B3 and B4 generation had been. For enthusiasts, unfortunately if you wanted the all-wheel drive option coupled to a manual, you’d need to select an Audi over the more budget-friendly Passat or wait until the introduction of the 1.8T 4Motion later in the B5.5 model run. But many selected the package none-the-less, a capable and competent upscale cruiser that punched north of its price point and was a value luxury car:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2000 Volkswagen Passat 2.8 GLX 4Motion Variant on eBay

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1998 Audi A6 2.8 Quattro Avant

Growing up in Southern Vermont a lot of people had wagons. My parents first shared vehicle was a beige 1984 Subaru GL, my grandmother had an 1990 Legacy and my aunt and uncle had an 1989 Loyale . There have been a number of Subarus owned in my family since and I’m actually the first of the clan to go for something German, although it was still a wagon. Point is, there was no history of Quattro love in my family, no reason that I should feel such a strong connection to these vehicles. However, as is often the case in the automotive community, there is no rhyme or reason for feeling a certain way about a certain car. When a car works for you, it just works for you and for me such is the case with the C4 A6 Avant.

My first experiences with one of these was with my buddy’s 1996 Casa Blanca A6 Avant spec’d out just like this example. Right away I was nerding out on just about everything in the car and it’s still just as impressive now as it was then. We all know that your co-pilot needs to be aware of the oil temp, battery voltage and time so the brainiacs at Audi went ahead and made that information easily available to them by extending the gauges over to the center stack. It’s just one of many design details that makes me think of logging many highway hours in this vehicle with a family and a ton of gear. I remember the seats as being some of the most comfortable I had ever sat in and I’d say that still holds true today.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1998 Audi A6 2.8 Quattro Avant on eBay

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2001 Audi A4 2.8 quattro

In the world of post A4 Audis, you’d be forgiven for thinking you went back to the old Westerns with tumbleweeds rolling across the screen when it comes to color selection. There are several different shades of grey or silver, a few whites, some blacks, and then occasionally a blue will pop up. Some really daring folks chose bright red or dark green, but unless you get into a “S” model, you’re not likely to see an unusual color. That’s unfortunate, because Audi actually offered you many very cool options in the B5 A4 throughout its run. However, if you lament the cool colors went away, it should be no surprise; very, very few people bought them. And given the A4s propensity for being discarded, they’re in most cases even more sparse than when new. Yet these special color cars tended to be bought by people who took good care of them, and usually come to market in fairly pristine shape – so I bet you can guess why this A4 is here today. A non sport package V6 tiptronic wouldn’t usually make the list, but a lower mile India Red Pearl Effect with Ecru/Onyx interior in very good overall condition? You bet:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2001 Audi A4 2.8 quattro on eBay

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1993 Mercedes-Benz 300E 2.8

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We’ve been featuring some high-end metal here on GCFSB this week. It’s always nice to dream but ever the practical one, I’m always on the lookout for a good buy. A car like this 1993 Mercedes-Benz 300E 2.8 for sale in Georgia appeals to my sensible side. We just saw a 1991 300E 4Matic with 71k miles sell for $4,250. Some of us may not want to take on the hassles that come with extra axles, so this rear-drive 300E 2.8 with just over 60,000 miles would be a good choice.

Click for details: 1993 Mercedes-Benz 300E on eBay

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Dwindling Supply: 1996 and 1997 Volkswagen Passat GLX VR6 Variants

The Volkswagen Passat has always been a bit of the odd-man out in the Volkswagen lineup. Not as wildly popular as the Golf or as trendy as the Jetta, the Passat has alternated between the smart choice if you wanted quiet and capable German luxury to the odd choice if you just wanted to be a bit different than the norm. Volkswagen also can’t seem to make it’s mind up on which platform it wants to utilize with the Passat; the B1 and B2 generations, for example, shared their DNA with Audis. But with the B3 and B4 generation, Volkswagen moved to its own bag of tricks and developed a new Passat which mixed items from the Mk.2 and Mk.3 Golf chassis. For the B5 and B5.5, once again Volkswagen turned to the upscale Audi platform and the Passat was more popular than ever – effectively, it was a budget Audi A4, right down to the same powertrains and all-wheel drive systems. As effective as the B5/5.5 was for sales, when the B6 launched it was once again a return to the Golf chassis for the new Passat – and now we hang in limbo with a U.S. specific B7 Passat. But if the B5 and B5.5 were popular as a smart and upscale choice for budget Audi fans, the B3 and B4 seemed a bit odd. First there was the B3, with it’s grill-less design. I always thought it was pretty cool, personally, but apparently it offended actual buyers so much that Volkswagen redesigned the car and in 1993 the car received new body panels and a normal grill. That didn’t seem to bring with it massive sales, though – the Passat was still quite expensive and effectively the same size as the Jetta it was sold alongside. There was really only one trump card that the Passat had – denied the Golf Variant in the U.S., it was the only Volkswagen wagon you could buy here at the time:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1996 Volkswagen Passat GLX VR6 Variant on eBay

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Motorsports Monday: 1992 Volkswagen Corrado SLC – REVISIT

The 1992 Volkswagen Corrado track/race car that I wrote up back in September is back up on eBay, this time with a lowered “Buy It Now” by a thousand dollars to just below $6,000. This really strikes me as a fantastic bargain for the track; less money than some people put into modifying their daily drivers for track duty by a long shot!

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1992 Volkswagen Corrado SLC Race Car on eBay

The below post originally appeared on our site September 22, 2014:

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Feature Listing: 1992 Volkswagen Corrado SLC with 37,000 Miles

Having now written up my fair share of cars on this site, I’m asked from time to time “what’s the next E30 M3?” Certainly the trend that created demand on the M3 would have been hard to predict; while it’s a desirable package for certain and has an illustrious race career, I’ve also outlined how very similar cars haven’t achieved such notoriety. The Audi Quattro and 190E 2.3-16V, for example, though noted for their importance and with strong fan followings just don’t command the premiums of the M3. The Volkswagen world has been similarly fickle; the original GTi has certainly taken off in value, with prime examples now pushing well past $10,000 in today’s market, while other models that are arguably better cars don’t command the values of the GTi. Perhaps part of that appeal lies in the few that remain in good, original condition – especially with lower miles. But if you ask me what I think the next big thing in the Volkswagen market will be, I’d have to answer that the Corrado SLC has to be up there. A popular car to modify, there aren’t many that are left with low miles in pristine original shape. Couple the dwindling good examples with what is acknowledged as one of the best driving platforms Volkswagen has made and good looks, and the Corrado is sure to be a hot item for years to come. They don’t get much hotter than this example, either – with perhaps the lowest mileage Corrado we’ve seen on the market in the past few years, this Flash Red example is stunning:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1992 Volkswagen Corrado SLC on GCFSB

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Tuner Tuesday: 1997 Alpina B6 2.8 Touring

While some other aftermarket tuners such as Ruf and Renntech offer turned up versions of the already potent cars, Alpina operates slightly differently – filling in the voids of models not offered by the manufacturer. There are plenty of examples of this, and if often seems to be misunderstood; Jeremy Clarkson’s review of the Alpina Roadster is probably the most notable case. A slower, softer, automatic version of the hardcore roadster certainly doesn’t make a lot of sense at first glance. But what Alpina does is give enthusiasts the opportunity to enjoy the performance that BMW offered in a slightly different package that sometimes outperforms the original platform car – Chris Harris recently found the B3 Biturbo to be nearly “the perfect car“. One of the notable missing gaps in the BMW lineup was a faster version of the E36 Touring; building off the earlier B6 – effectively, Alpina’s 4-door M3 challenger built between 1992 and 1993 with a bespoke engine and typical Alpina upgrades, the company later launched the Japanese-only market B6 2.8 Touring. Produced between 1996 and 1998, only 136 of these small wagons were produced, again utilizing the 240 horsepower bespoke Alpina motor, special wheels and interiors, Alpina’s own body kit, exhaust and suspension. They were available in 3 colors only; red, silver, and green:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1997 Alpina B6 2.8 Touring on eBay

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Motorsports Monday: 1992 Volkswagen Corrado SLC VR6

For a long time, enthusiasts have claimed that you need to have rear wheel drive to enjoy a car’s dynamic abilities or have a successful race car. However, while limited in their application, front-drivers have a very long and successful track record dating back to the 1960s. Let’s not forget the Mini, SAABs and even some early Audi rally efforts which used front-drive platforms and were winners. In touring cars, Audi ran Coupe GTs and front-drive 4000s in Group 5 and later Volkswagen took the idea of the performance hatchback to their Golf platform in the GTi. Wildly popular as a budget racer since new, the Golf’s basic layout and platform evolved into the Volkswagen coupes – both Scirocco and later Corrado. While the early Sciroccos also gained much success in SCCA racing in the 1970s and early 1980s, the Corrado introduced a new level of performance with the VR6 engine. While the torque-laden application would seem on the surface to be a bad match for a front driver, the Corrado when properly set up is truly an impressive car and massively quick – a great alternative to the E36 chassis, for example:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1992 Volkswagen Corrado SLC VR6 on eBay

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1995 Audi A6 2.8 quattro Avant – REVISIT

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Last fall we featured a 1995 Audi A6 that was in great shape for a low price. Life changed a bit for the seller and after a few weeks on the market he pulled the advertisement and drove the car for the past year. The seller is once again ready to part ways; there are a few additional miles that were accrued but the seller has adjusted the price accordingly and also performed a complete timing belt service. If you’d like a lot of style, class and a smooth performer in any condition capable of carrying a massive load, this A6 looks the part and is ready for the next owner. It’s hard to get a much nicer, more capable car for less money.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1995 Audi A6 2.8 quattro Avant on eBay

The below post originally appeared on our site November 13, 2013:

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