Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Epiphany Special: 2003 Volkswagen Golf GTI 20th Anniversary

Today is January 6th, the traditional feast of the Three Kings Day or DT's Epiphany Special.  It is a celebration of when the three wise men visit the new born baby Jesus bringing him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh.  Unfortunately, frankincense and myrrh are basically forms of tree sap and gold is way pricey -- so instead we bring gifts of golf, frankenbenz, and myrrhkur.  First of the wise men is Balthasar who comes bearing golf -- this 2003 Volkswagen Golf GTI 20th Anniversary edition here on eBay bidding for $5,100 reserve-not-met with 1 day to go, located in New Fairfield, CT.

The 20th Anniversary GTI was a limited run of 4200 Golfs sold in North America for the 2003 model year only.  It was similar to the European 25th Anniversary edition that was also sold in the US as the 337 Edition, but featured throwback red GTI script front/rear and an old school bunny emblem on the back.   However, the changes were more than just a few external cosmetic pieces of flair.

Under the hood is the same 1.8 liter turbocharged/intercooled 20-valve inline-4 that powered most of the Volkswagen fleet in the early 2000s, but it now was rated at 180 horsepower (up from 150hp from a few years prior) and mated to a 6-speed manual gearbox.

The inside featured a number of special items, including a set of manually adjusted Recaro sports seats with red GTI embroidery/silver accent piping, a golf-ball style shifter knob, and VW's Monsoon stereo system.  The MkIV Golf might be one of the cheaper generations of Golfs to get into, but it is actually a much nicer/better car than the previous MkIII and has better engines/gearboxes to boot.

See a better gift for a newborn king?


  1. " of golf, frankenbenz, and myrrhkur" - you guys crack me up! Best wishes for "Twelfth Night".

    1. I can't wait to see what they've got lined up for the myrrhkur...

  2. Pretty car even like the color, probably looks better with the black moldings than it would with yellow. Would want to check out that 'custom exhaust' before I put in my money.

  3. Proud owner of a 337 from the previous year which benefitted from a sunroof delete for the past 12 years. Despite the naysayers who complain about the MKIV being too heavy, these are still very quick with the turbo and given the improved suspension on both the 337s and the 20th AEs, quite fun to drive around the twisties if you stay with good rubber. Regarding the "custom exhaust" - I'm not sure about that one. The exhaust tip looks almost exactly like the stock one that the 337s and 20th AEs came with from the factory. That said, with a clean report, this would be a great car to pick up with relatively low mileage for its age. Just bring a spare coil - they tend to eat these like I eat cereal.

    1. I don't know why the MkIV gets as much hate as it does -- okay, there is that coil pack problem, and then wiring can be problematic...the 1.8T likes to sludge...but they are really nice on the inside and drive like a car that costs much more. The best part is that you can pickup a special edition like this for next to nothing and will run for miles as long as you use synthetic oil.


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