1974 Volkswagen Golf GTI MK1
The Volkswagen 1974 Golf GTI MK1, a family sports car ‘nobody wanted’ and yet 2 million different variants were sold. Read here more on the classic family car turned sports car and the history on how it became so popular.
Car Technical Data:
Engine: EA827 (1,588CC)
Wheel drive: Front
Max Horsepower: 108hp
Max Speed: 113mph
In 1969, Germany Car Manufacturer Volkswagen was in a bit of a financial crises after the failure of the Beetle which resulted in poor sales and no interest. However, 2 employees from Volkswagen, Anton Konrad & Alfons Löwenberg, decided that they wanted to make a change. Both were keen racing car fans and decided to create a sports car out of the regular Golf that could be used for speed and acceleration during the weekends but still get you to work in orderly fashion during the weekdays. Both Anton (Head of the Press Department) and Alfons (Previous Kadett Engineer) started planning how they would turn a Golf into a Sports Car that was also affordable to the public.
Promoting their idea to the wider ream, more skilled colleagues joined the cause including (Hermann Hablitzel, Gunter Kühl, Jürgen Adler, Herbert Schuster, Franz Hauk, Horst-Dieter Schwittlinsky). With the help of famous car designer Giugiaro and Gunhild Liljequist, the GTI (Grand Tourer Injection) started its first prototype production in March 1974. The Golf GTI MK1 incorporating: an upgraded engine with increased torque, new chassis box design, improved sports suspension and steering handling.
With signature seat quilted interior, a golf ball feel gearstick and red styled GTI exterior lining, the 1974 Volkswagen Golf GTI MK1 was reviewed by VW leaders and had the thumbs up on the 28th of May, 1975. Production could now commence and eventually sold 460,000 by the time the production ended, in 1983!
Why we love the classic sports car from Germany
Fast forward to 4 decades later, the Golf GTI is still a renown classic with more improvements and modern-day upgrades to still be a sports car and family car in one. The 1974 Volkswagen Golf GTI design of a red styled grill, round-eyed like headlights and box-shaped interior started the trend and opened the market for family sports cars for those racers of the track and comforts of the road. The sports car was the first to incorporate the MK1 (Mark 1) series and progress to further MK2, MK3 and MK4 versions, keeping the original car’s history alive.
Do we see them around today? Of course we do, with many modifications and some with none, the 1974 Volkswagen Golf GTI brings back fond memories for those who once owned the Volkswagen car. Now that the work is moving to a more economical and environmentally friendly stance, these classic cars may not be around for very much longer and could potentially only be found in Museums. Let’s hope that we can keep this Volkswagen classic car and the story around the GTI alive for younger generations and for newer models to come.