Published on August 18th, 2021 | by Subhash Nair


Volkswagen Golf GTI BBS Concept Draws From The Past

A Volkswagen enthusiast winds the clocks back for inspiration for this Golf GTI BBS Concept.

Volkswagen of the US has been working with a lot of fans recently on concepts. Just last month, we got to see the Atlas Cross Sport GT Concept, and this week we’re getting a look at the Golf GTI BBS Concept. This model was dreamed up by Volkswagen enthusiast Jamie Orr.

Volkswagen Golf GTI BBS Concept in motion

He took inspiration from a modded Golf GTI Mk2 but imagined what it would look like on the latest Golf Mk8.

The Volkswagen Golf GTI Mk8 is the most powerful one ever sold with 241 horsepower out of its 2-litre TSI engine. Orr kept some of the core factory equipment but made some modifications of his own.

“We wanted to maintain the soul of the Mk8, so we went with more traditional modifications. But we left the interior, body, and powertrain exactly as it came from the factory,” Orr said. “Take those wingback seats, with this striking red design – they are just phenomenal. Changing any of that would have been a shame.”

Here are some of the modifications made:

  • Swapped wheels for BBS 19×9 Super RS wheel set wrapped in Delinte 235/35/19 D7 tyres
  • Swapped the suspension
    • H&R coilovers
    • front set is modded for camber adjustment
  • Borla exhaust system
  • Finished in retro red and black vintage livery with pinstriping
Volkswagen Golf GTI BBS Concept interior

Here’s the press release with more information.

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The Volkswagen Golf GTI has defined the genre of  hot hatch for decades, and the new 2022 Golf GTI follows in tradition. But progress doesn’t have to mean losing sight of heritage– which is why Volkswagen and Philadelphia-based VW enthusiast Jamie Orr worked together on an enthusiast concept that injects a healthy dose of the past into the latest generation.

The inspiration for the concept was an enthusiast-built Mk2 version of the GTI, which supplanted the only U.S.-built generation of the GTI in 1984. The goal: To highlight what has made the GTI special through the years.

“I saw the Mk2, the concept was based on, at a show in 2019 and was drawn to the simplicity and strength of the build,” said Sean Maynard, Enthusiast and Motorsport Marketing Specialist for Volkswagen. “I had the chance to meet Brock Bickford, from Evansville, Indiana, and learned that this was a project that he has been building with his daughter since she was seven years old. It’s stories like this that give me a deeper appreciation for the VW enthusiast community.”

“We try to do most of the modifications to the exterior and leave the interiors stock on the enthusiast fleet vehicles,” Maynard added. “That way someone that might not have any experience with the Brand can still get a true feel for the vehicles.”

First, Orr and his team changed the wheels, giving the Mk8 a classic look with a set of BBS 19×9 Super RS – featuring the iconic BBS waffle and hex pattern – wrapped in Delinte 235/35/19 D7 tires.

Then, Orr lowered the car. “We started with a set of coil overs that H&R makes for the Mk8,” says Orr. “The rear fitment is stock, but I re-designed the fronts a little because I wanted to add camber adjustment, so it’s more of a custom mix of H&R components.”

Orr was particularly happy with the new exhaust from Borla, the first available for the new GTI, which “is just a step beyond” the stock material. Finally, he gave it the BBS retro red and black vintage livery with pinstriping running from stem to stern.

For the original Mk2, “Volkswagen used all the elements their customers loved about the first GTI and built upon them,” said Orr. “The Mk8 has a new body style and more power under the hood, plus a bunch of tweaks that make it the best handling GTI I’ve ever driven.”

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Written work on @subhashtag on instagram. Autophiles Malaysia on Youtube.

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