1987 Volkswagen Golf GT

The 1987 launch of Volkswagen’s fabled 16 valve motor into the Golf lineup created an interesting transition. VW had a high performance version of the GTI now, but it was also a bit dear at $12,000. So, VWoA decided to continue running the less-expensive 8 valve version for alongside for one more year (this was mimicked in the Jetta GLI lineup, as well). This split lineup would resume in 1990 for the GTI.

However, for the ’87-88 model year, VW added a third Golf performance version. Labeled the GT, outwardly it shared many characteristics with the early A2 8V GTIs. The same 14″ alloy wheels were there, black fender flares, special interior fabric, a 4-spoke sport steering wheel and red-splash decals front and rear. However, if you looked closely there were several differences to the GTI. The GT didn’t have the red-stripe trim outside of the more illustrious GTIs. Nor did it have the rear spoiler, sport seats, or a few other unseen details of the same-year GTI like uprated suspension and 4-wheel discs. So why get one? Well, first off it was a bit less expensive than the GTI. And, underneath it carried the same close-ratio 5-speed manual hooked to the high-compression RD 1.8 8V from the GTI. But the real benefit of the GT was that it came in more colors, with more doors (there was no 5-door GTI in the U.S. yet, nor for a while) and with an available automatic (again, not for the GTI). Of course, by the time you selected all of that stuff you were in GTI pricing…which meant that few GTs sold, and they’re very rare to see today:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1987 Volkswagen Golf GT on eBay

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2017 Mercedes-AMG GT

One of the things that always intrigues me is how one set of cars, usually a specific model or family of models, hits an arbitrary point in its depreciation and just sort of stays around that number as long as there aren’t any extraordinary circumstances around a specific car like accident history or a super high amount of miles. That was a really long sentence, but stay with me here. What I always like to look is how cars end up being the price that they are on the used market. The overwhelming majority of cars I feature here don’t really follow the rules of normal depreciation because they are often super niche models or cars that are so old that they are actually on their back up in terms of value. Other times this happens if the car is really limited production and just doesn’t register on the radar of 99% of the general car buying public. Today’s car, a Mercedes-AMG GT, falls into that category.

The AMG GT, along with the GT S, GT R, GT C and up coming GT 4-Door Coupe, aren’t built on a normal pedestrian production model and then shipped to AMG for them to do their thing with. The C190 was built to be an AMG car since day one and might be on track to have their values stay relativity stable if history repeats itself from the other cars that were exclusively born as AMGs. The only real example we have of this is the SLS AMG that seems to have settled around $150,000 for the Gullwing version and $125,000 for the Roadster. The prices only go up from there once you talk about ultra-low mileage examples and the endless number of special editions they made of them. Mercedes doesn’t have a replacement planned for it and calling this car, the C190, a successor of it is a stretch at best. So what do we make of AMG GT prices as they sit right now? Time to buy or still more room for a drop?

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2017 Mercedes-AMG GT on eBay

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2018 Mercedes-AMG GT C Roadster Edition 50

“Just when I thought I was out, they pull me back in.”

Not only is that a great quote from The Godfather: Part III and even better quote from The Sopranos, it is what I said when I saw another version of the Mercedes-AMG GT. I’ve covered the GT S, the GT C Roadster, not one, but two GT Rs and I figured that would be it for a while. Then this came along. The GT C Roadster Edition 50. The Edition 50 is to celebrate the 50th anniversary of AMG which was founded in 1967. As you might have guessed it, AMG made 100 of these Edition 50 cars split evenly between roadsters and coupes, with a handful coming to the United States. Painted in either ‘Designo Graphite Grey Magno’ or ‘Designo Cashmere White Magno’, these special editions received black chrome highlights as well as some different colored wheels. No increase to performance or suspension, just some cool paint and some different badging. So I have to ask, is it worth the premium over a regular GT C Roadster?

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2018 Mercedes-AMG GT C Roadster Edition 50 on eBay

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1995 BMW M3 GT

While you’re no doubt familiar with the great lament of the de-tuned E36 M3 and the inflated price of the very limited Lightweight model, Europe enjoyed a full spectrum of Motorsport performance. One of the potent additions to the lineup was that of the M3 GT. Intended to homologate racing bits and aerodynamic tweaks for the E36, 350 limited BF99 examples were produced in early 1995. The motor was turned up to 295 horsepower with hotter cams, special oil pumps and Motorsport oil pan and revised computer controls. They also had stiffened and lowered suspension, a strut brace and a 3.23 final drive. Outside new spoilers front and rear increased downforce, and like the Lightweight the GT wore the M forged double spoke staggered wheels. Harder to spot were the aluminum doors the car wore to help keep weight down. All were painted 312 British Racing Green and featured Mexico Green Nappa leather interior with Alcantara bolsters, special Motorsports badging and carbon fiber trim.

They’re a very special and rarely seen variant of the E36 M3, and increasingly in this collector market that means a higher asking price:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1995 BMW M3 GT on eBay

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1970 Opel GT

Generally speaking, engine swaps are usually an improvement over the stock running gear even when they’re home brews. And if you’re really clever with your swap, you can end up making quite the sleeper; V8 powered Volvo wagons come to mind. But some people go over the top, and throw an absolutely crazy motor into a car which was never designed to have anywhere near the power levels capable of the new mill. Such is not the case here. That’s because the builder of this Opel GT designed that the popular adage “There’s no replacement for displacement” meant putting a V8 into the nose of the diminutive GM product. And by “a”, I actually mean two V8s. In an attempt to dispel the notorious “Mini-Corvette” moniker, this GT tops out at 11.4 liters of American muscle with just a bit of Opel sprinkled into the mix. Though far from our usual flavor, let’s take a look at this crazy creation:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1970 Opel GT on eBay

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Motorsports Monday: 1984 Audi Coupe GT

Far less famous than its wide-hipped brother and mostly unknown to most U.S. customers, the B2 Audi Coupe was available with quattro all-wheel drive in other markets. It shared nearly all components with the sibling 4000 (90) quattro, including 4×108 wheel pattern and 256mm front brakes – items that were also on the U.S. spec front-drive GT. So, one would assume it would be pretty easy to “swap in a quattro”, as the internet posts usually start. Of course, those individuals who start the posts best be wearing flame-retardant clothing, as they are immediately inundated with responses that kindly (or not so) explain the difficulties inherent in this project. You see, everything aft of the firewall on the all-wheel drive floorplan is different than the two wheel drive units; indeed, as I’ve pointed out previously, even the two wheel drive floorpans were different between automatics and manuals. That means to recreate a rest of the world Coupe quattro, you need the floorpan from a 4000 quattro mated to a body of a Coupe GT. This, of course, makes no sense financially as the countless hours involved eliminate all but the DIYers – and even a fair chunk of those with the talent give up on the project. Yet, it apparently didn’t stop the builder of this rally car, who not only swapped the body, but went one step further and dropped in a turbocharged motor and the brakes and wheels from the big-brother Type 44 chassis. The result is a budget Ur-Quattro rally replica without the flare of the original…or, at least, it was a few years ago before it was parked:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1984 Audi Coupe GT on eBay

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1993 Volkswagen Polo GT

The GT badge was one which appeared on Volkswagens in the late 1980s and early 1990s for the slightly less hot version of the GTI. My father purchased a 1987 Golf GT new, a Tornado Red two-door hatch that had the trimmings of the GTI with the familiar 8 valve, four-cylinder engine. It wasn’t a particularly fast car and was not without its problems, but I always appreciated the clean design of the Mk2 Golf. The same goes for the Mk2 Polo GT. It’s not exactly an exciting or exotic vehicle, but a clean design. It’s a car that could have done well and still could do well in the US market, speaking to those buyers who turned to the original Beetle for basic transportation. This 1993 example represents the final year for the Mk2 Polo and is currently on offer in Switzerland.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1993 Volkswagen Polo GT on Classic Trader

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1988 Volkswagen Scirocco GT

Let’s face it. Volkswagen Group of America is screwing us. I’ve touched on this topic before, but one glance at the current lineup on VW’s USA website leaves little to be desired. Nothing beyond the GTI, Golf R and Passat CC do much to stir emotions in the heart of the enthusiast. Now that Volkswagen has shot itself in the foot with this diesel scandal, unlucky consumers in the US can’t even specify one of these miserly oil burners. What’s an enthusiast to do? How about scouring Europe for anything built before 1992, as these vehicles are now legal to import stateside. Such is the case with this low mileage, late model 1988 Scirocco GT for sale in Dachau, Germany. This would be the last year for the Scirocco in the US market, however, Scirocco production would continue on through 1992, overlapping the Corrado in showrooms.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1988 Volkswagen Scirocco GT on eBay.de

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Feature Listing: 1971 Opel GT

Down the road from me is a gentleman who daily drives a Porsche 914. Now, I’ve never been a big fan of the boxy flying pancake. In the right configuration they look pretty cool, but my eyes always gravitate towards the more classic grand touring look of the replacement 924. However, I certainly can understand the appeal of a cheap and simple classic Porsche. For some time about a decade ago I had this dream that some day when I was a little better off I’d pick up an early 911 – because, of course, a decade ago no one wanted them and they were still relatively cheap. Since having a classic car is by no means a necessity, for us with less well endowed bank accounts and no trust funds ownership of such cars remains a dream. In that light, the 914 makes more sense since compared to the rear-engine counterparts it’s relatively cheap – though find a good one and it’ll still be a pretty penny. But dipping in to the classic car market doesn’t have to break the bank, and there are still a few neat older German cars that would be great weekend warriors. Certainly, one of the most unsung heros and yet one of the more visually captivating is the Opel GT. The slinky 2-door had the looks of its parent company sibling Corvette, but motivation by the normal Opel inline-4 drivetrain meant it was much more affordable. These days they’re rarely seen but always a treat:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1971 Opel GT on Cleveland Craigslist

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Now Legal for Import: 1990 Volkswagen Passat GT

When is the last time you saw a Volkswagen Passat B3 on the road? I honestly can’t remember myself. With the B3, Volkswagen decided to finally use the Passat moniker in the US market, after a run of Dashers and Quantums. Those cars were always the outliers in the mid-sized sedan race and so it went with the B3 Passat. During a period when the Honda Accord was the king in this segment in the US, the Passat was a car for those who wanted something off the beaten path but maybe weren’t ready to move into an Audi, BMW or Mercedes. It’s front end sans grille harkened back to the days of their air-cooled products but the rest of the styling was a bit of an evolution of the B2 Passat with a bit of streamlining for the 1990s. This Passat GT for sale in Hannover, Germany was a model we didn’t see in the US. It’s 1.8 liter engine won’t set the world on fire, but the Sebring alloy wheels and two tone red/black livery is eye catching.

Click for details: 1990 Volkswagen Passat GT on Mobile.de

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