Most 80s cars you see that are worth buying have had a combination of upgrades and degradation that may look just fine but give an underlying impression of “used car.” Every once in a while we get to see an icon in its purest form, and this 1984 Rabbit L is a shining example. Original-spec tires make an i3’s motorcycle wheels look like steamrollers. Chrome shines on every trimpiece. The tiny 1.6-liter four barely has any dust on it, let alone oil or grime. It all looks like a museum piece, or perhaps a classic military show item.
The latter isn’t too far from the truth as this Rabbit has spent nearly its entire life with a military doctor’s family. It clearly received the utmost attention throughout its three decades, and now the seller has given it a thorough refresh, making what is quite possibly the nicest, basic, decidedly-not-a-GTI Mk1 Rabbit.
We featured this 1980 Volkswagen Rabbit L at the end of last year, but it’s worth another look as you don’t see nice non-GTi Mk1s in such good nick. Offered at no reserve, this Rabbit has been well-cared for by a noted Volkswagen enthusiast and GCFSB follower. If you’ve been looking for a unique Mk1, time to get your bid in on this one.
The below post originally appeared on our site December 13, 2014:
Who buys a Rabbit back in 1981 and, well, does not drive it?
Little old lady? VW fanatic? Neat freak?
Regardless this Rabbit L has lived for 31 years and has only covered 9k miles. Unlike many “time capsules” this one actually looks the part. Still in stock form it looks frozen in time.
From the seller –
“Selling our 1981 VW Rabbit. It is an L model with the only option of a cloth interior. It was a step up from the base model with the vinyl interior. The L model was all about transportation with minimal frills. The vent windows don’t even open and there is not a radio. The factory radio block off plate is still in place.
I have all of the records since new that back up the mileage of the car. It even comes with the original window sticker. On my photo gallery I also posted some of the carfax pages that document the miles are correct.
The car is very original and not altered. The headliners tend to sag on old VWs and this one was replaced. I found some NOS trim rings to brighten up the rims but didn’t paint the rims so that they have that original patina look. The car was driven a few miles each year. The only surface rust is on the front lower A arms and suspension but not bad at all. You can see how nice the underside is on the car if you view the photo book on my web site. The car shows well and people just love it when we drive it. The paint shines very nice and all paint is original. There are two stains on the lower back fender where tar was left on the paint for a long time and stained it lighter than the paint. The location is not very noticeable. The carpet is a little dirty but I did not want to clean it. I have also detailed the engine a little from the photos.
The 1.6 L motor runs great. I had to change several of the fuel injected components to get it to run great. One item was a new Bosch fuel pump. The transmission is a 4 speed which shifts fine. I picked up a NOS Abarth muffler for it and that really made it sound nice drive even better.
The pictures on my photo album describe the car well. If you have any other questions just ask. This is quite the museum piece. The mileage is actually 8,200 mile (unless I take it out this weekend).”
Neat car, there is a part of that is so very happy that cars like this still exist. The other part that makes me wonder how on earth people find stuff like this. Either way, $9.5k is a whole lot of $$$ for any vintage Rabbit. That said, you would be hard pressed to find one nicer.
Kudos to the seller for a thorough seller and keeping the this bunny stock as possible. Best of luck.