Friday, June 10, 2016

Kicking GOLs: 1988 Volkswagen Gol GL

by Matt -- It's not often that you find an ultra low mileage V-dub, and it's also quite uncommon to find a South American market Fahrvergnügen this side of the Rio Grande. Due to the multiplicative property of rarity, we're looking at a value of about a Brazilian obscurity points scored. Find this late 80's successor to the Type 321 Brasilia smuggled into Stateside with fewer clicks than the drive up would've clocked -- a 1988 Volkswagen Gol GL for $1500 via Craigslist in Lubbock, Texas.

The Gol was not a particularly inspiring VW in either looks or performance but one could own what is likely the nicest Alfasud lookalike in the US for Scirocco parts-car cash. The body appears to have been pounded by the sun, but the panels appear straight, true, and rust free. A quick buff and some BBS basket weaves would fix just about all that's wrong in the looks department. 

This one appears to be equipped the upright and inline 'big block' 1.6 liter four with what is likely a Weber 32/26 plopped atop. 'Red flag' would be a strong term but the mention of alcohol fuel testing on an otherwise unmodified car is a little nerve-wracking. Melted pistons and aluminum fuel system bits covered in oxidation that resembles powdered detergent flash across the mind, however, the reason for non-runner status is likely simple.  

The seller makes mention of interior havoc wreaked by the Texas sun, which is disappointing but a contributor to the bargain asking price of roughly one dollar per mile. Clearly the most interesting part of the insides is the odometer showing the 1,862KM traveled before the car made aluminum puddles in the oil pan mysteriously stopped running.

See a better way to relegate the rest of your life saying "No, It's not a Golf"?

Matt, a self-proclaimed bottom-feeder of the classic car market, spends half of his time buying cars, half of his time retrieving them, and the remaining third on keeping them on the road.


  1. I've never seen one stateside, it looks a lot like a fox with a fastback/Rabbit style hatch. You'd definitely have the only one at you local VW show.

  2. For the price it would be worth a tumble. Even if just for curiosity.

    Those EPA guys are always looking to spice things up. They went through the bother of putting a chrome aftermarket air cleaner on it for a little bling I suppose.

    If the engine is fused, a late model GTI transplant into this cheap shit car would surprise a few fart can fans.

  3. Looks like a Fox fastback, especially with the engine in that orientation. I like it.

    1. The NA-market Fox was indeed based on the Gol and also made in Brazil, so there's a reason for that resemblance!

  4. Now that's one old Volkswagen model, is $1500 a good price? If you can still restore it and make it work then might as well give it a go. I saw some college students selling theirs on best paper writers car collector section.

  5. This car is very famous here in Brazil. People like him because he has many reposition parts and it is much cheaper to keep it running. I'm very interested to know more about this car. Maybe this car has an 1.6 Liter 82hp EA-827 engine (basic) or an 1.8 liter with 98hp (optional) it's a very reliable engine with a lot of aftermarket parts. If anyone know more about this car, please tell me! I'm very curious to know his history. Greetings from Brazil!
    Contact me:


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