I want you all to know first off that I am not writing a review of an everyday normal VW GTI. I am writing one for the special edition GTI 337 Edition, of which only 1500 will be imported to the U.S.
Some pictures of this special car can be seen here:
This car is a basic GTI with the following factory modifications made:
180-hp 1.8L 20V Turbocharged I-4 engine
Lowered sport suspension
18" BBS RC wheels
Brake system from Audi's TT
Red brake calipers
Michelin Pilot Sport 225/40-ZR18 tires
Recaro racing bucket seats
Monsoon CD/Cassette 8-speaker sound system
Front air dam
Rear deck hatch spoiler
Leather trimmed steering wheel and shifter with red stitching
Special edition golf ball shift knob
Only comes in Silver
This is the tightest car I have ever driven. German engineering is a wonderful thing. I bought this car after owning Jeeps for most of my life. Quite a change in size, but it was worth it.
The steering in this car is phenomenal. The car stays dead-on straight when you don't touch the wheel. As soon as you want to turn, consider it done. This car has race-car like steering precision.
The ride is very stiff, thanks to the upgraded suspension. You'll feel bumps but I don't consider it uncomfortable at all, this is coming from a man with a bad back. The Recaro seats fit my 6' 250lb butt like a glove, I don't move around in them at all. Supremely comfortable, and more comfortable than I expected.
The engine-transmission pairing is perfect. At 55 in 6th gear, the engine will pull hard if you need to speed up or pass. No reason to downshift. This car also goes from 0-60 in 6.2 seconds, so getting up to speed quickly is not an issue for this car. The Michelin Pilot tires have infinite grip, I can horse around as much as I want in this car and remain confident that I will not lose control thanks to the big, wide sport tires.
The cargo space is very decent for this hot hatchback. I routinely carry my golf clubs in the back with the rear seat folded down, I can accommodate three to four bags with all of the seats folded down. Passenger room in the front is more than spacious, while the back is somewhat cramped as expected in a smaller car. The seats in the rear are still comfortable.
The safety and security features in this car are second to none. There are EIGHT airbags protecting every side of the car, and even protecting the rear passengers. If this car was about to be in a large accident, I joke with my friends that it would float away out of the trouble as soon as the airbags deployed. This car has a security system that honks and flashes if doors are opened from the inside while locked. The key-fob remote houses a LOCK, UNLOCK, OPEN TRUNK and PANIC button. The car also comes with a valet key that will only open the driver's side door and start the ignition. The key does not allow access to the trunk or glovebox.
The sound system is adequate. I expected booming bass from this "Monsoon" system but have yet to discover that. If the system is cranked to a high volume there is no distortion at all, but I was disappointed with the sound overall. I don't like to blast my music in order to hear the full spectrum of sounds in a song.
Overall I couldn't be happier with my pocket rocket. Unfortunately this car will be near impossible to find. I've seen one on E-Bay and I've heard of dealers who still have one but are charging something like $8000 over MSRP. I was lucky and picked mine up for the MSRP of $22,500. If you do have the chance to get one, don't turn it down. You'll regret it, believe me.
Amount Paid (US$):
2002Model and Options:
337 Special Edition