Back to listings

1980 VOLKSWAGEN Scirocco

View vehicle description

1980 VOLKSWAGEN Scirocco



The Scirocco is the VW Golf’s stylish big brother. More of a 2+2 than a genuine four-seater hatchback, the coupe profile - styled by “Il Maestro” Giorgetto Giugiaro and built by Karmann - appealed to owners for whom looks were more important than practicality.

It was launched to the European market in 1974 - actually six months before the Golf to resolve any production issues before the mass-market model went into build - and offered a range of 4-cylinder petrol engines, all with manual transmission. The most powerful of the first European Sciroccos, the TS, had 85bhp and featured four round headlights rather than the two rectangular units of the less powerful L and S models.

In 1976, the Scirocco GTi arrived - again a few months before the equivalent Golf - and it had a 110bhp 1.6-litre fuel-injected engine, larger wheels and a big chin spoiler as well as improvements to the brakes and handling.

Like its Golf GTi sibling, the Scirocco was always popular across all demographic groups, old to young, rich to poor, and so they have been regular recipients of individual improvements and performance upgrades over the years. As we all know, some mods are of more questionable taste than others…

The car we have here has also had much attention, in fact possibly the most attention we have ever seen on a car, but we don't think anyone can find fault with the final result.

Let us introduce you to, arguably, the most beautifully restored car we have ever had the privilege to offer…

The Vehicle

First registered 2nd February 1980, this Type 1 Scirocco GTi started life painted gold and powered by a 1.6-litre (1588cc) engine. The first owner kept the car for about 8 1/2 years, and the second for 20. By the late noughties the car was in Angus on the east coast of Scotland and then moved south to Coventry before moving down even further to the Southampton area in 2011.

Its last owner (the 6th), an engineer and self-confessed “car obsessive” from Swanage, bought the Scirocco in July 2015 and soon began a no-expense-spared 3-year resto-mod project on the car. The expenditure on the repaint, rebuild and upgrades likely ran into tens of thousands - it is clear that £10,000 was spent just on rebuilding and tuning the 2.0-litre VW Corrado engine - but the resulting 100-point concours-standard finish is extraordinary.

Since completing the restoration, the car won a “Best in Show” prize at a local event - but it could easily win trophies at a national level - so why is he selling? Because he’s started another full restoration project of course! We should be glad that some people derive more pleasure from creating beautiful cars like this than they do owning or driving them.

Take some time to look through the extensive photographs and, when you’ve finished salivating over the insane amount of effort and attention to detail that went into this car, read on.

On the Outside

Following the strip down and bare metal rotisserie respray, the Tornado Red finish on this car is immaculate. It’s the highest quality paint job we’ve seen not just on the outside but in the engine bay too. The paint has clearly been expertly applied, layer by layer and then polished again and again to give it a lustre that only comes from true care and attention - it really is outstanding, as is the panel fit.

The stainless and chromed trim items including the bumpers, window surrounds, filler cap and door mirrors all appear spot on and complement the fabulous red bodywork. At the rear, it’s badged as a Scirocco GTi - which of course it isn’t, it’s actually a far better performer.

The car sits on chromed 15-inch WORK Meister CR01 three-piece split rim alloy wheels which were fitted with brand new high-performance Nankang Ultra-Sport tyres in 2017, and have seen very little use since.

Regular readers will know that we are not often so gushing about the exterior finish of a car, but this one is real triumph and something that needs to be seen to be believed. Use the ‘Contact Seller’ option to arrange a personal inspection - subject to Govt. restrictions of course - or a video call and we can take you on a guided tour around this stunning car.

On the Inside

The interior is a tasteful blend of the beautifully renovated original parts, done with incredible attention to detail, and some high-quality period-feel and performance upgrades. The seats and the door cards, have all been retrimmed in black leather with houndstooth/dogtooth checked cloth facings and look fabulous.

To add to the racy feel of the Recaro front seats, the steering wheel has been upgraded to a leather-trimmed, three-spoke MOMO Prototipo and the gear stick has been swapped out completely for a CAE racing speed-shifter.

This awesome upgrade, costing well over a thousand pounds, demonstrates how the restorer went above and beyond what was needed to finish the car. It still requires the use of the clutch and selection of gears in the same H pattern, but centres the stick after each change making for a quicker, more precise shift.

The dash and instrument panel were renovated too and all of the gauges and dials were renewed. The carpets are all newly replaced, as is the headlining.


The engine bay on this Scirocco has to be the cleanest and neatest we’ve ever seen - even on a production line. The paint finish around the compartment is superb - better than the exterior of most cars that we see, even though it really doesn’t need to be. The engine and its ancillaries look like they’re fresh out of their wrappers and needless to say, there’s not a speck of rust anywhere.

Whilst the engine might not be original to the Scirocco, it is a VW unit and, like the rest of the car, it has been upgraded, breathed on and refined to extract the most out of it. On a recent rolling road dyno test, the car recorded 201bhp at the wheels - which is just mind-blowing for a car like this and is yet another demonstrator of how this is not some thrown together mash-up, but a thoroughly researched and forensically implemented restoration build. It also looks gorgeous in that engine bay.

Underneath the car, the same story of condition continues, all is exceedingly clean and intact and there is good underseal across the floor panels. As the car sits low though, you can imagine that speed bumps need to be approached with caution.

The hatchback tailgate has new gas struts which lift and hold it well and a newly fabricated parcel shelf hangs from it. Inside the boot, the carpet and linings are in good order and it now contains the battery - having been relocated from the engine compartment.

History Highlights

The car has a current MOT valid until December 2021, which it passed with no advisories. As it did the previous year too - the first inspection after project completion.

The restoration and modernisation project began in 2016 and finished in the summer of 2019 and there are copious invoices in the history file relating to parts purchased and work done. More than other cars we have sold, please look through the Gallery at the restoration photos - if you haven't been convinced of this car's build integrity already, that will set you right.

If you look through the list of parts highlights below (remember, these are just the highlights) , you can see that not only was the workmanship of the highest quality, there was also no stinting on parts selection and true engineering. For instance, many quick-shift gear linkages are available at cheaper prices than the over £1000 we estimate is paid for the beautifully machined CAE version fitted. 

The details of the project can be summarised as follows:

● Bare metal rotisserie respray to Tornado Red

● Machined and rebuilt 2.0-litre VW 9A Corrado engine with:

○ Omex throttle bodies

○ 11.5:1 compression

○ Forged pistons and con-rods

○ Gas flowed head

○ Custom intake manifold

○ Omex ECU mapped to 201bhp

● Superspring stainless exhaust system

● Wilwood 4-pot brake calipers and discs at the front

● Polo GTI calipers on the rear

● BC Racing adjustable coilovers all round

● CAE quick shift gear changer

● WORK Meister split rim alloy wheels

● Recaro seats retrimmed in dogtooth check and leather

● New carpets

● Battery relocated to boot area

● Full rewire

● New gauges and clocks

● 4 new tyres

● Fabricated parcel shelf

● MOMO Prototipo steering wheel

● Stainless front and rear bumper trims

● Suspension parts stove enamelled

● Lights refurbished or replaced

● Chrome finish door mirrors

The car comes with a genuine VW Scirocco instruction manual, sales brochure, contemporary price list and photos taken during the restoration.

What We Think

A first generation Scirocco, diligently and expertly restored to original factory specification would be a lovely auction lot for us to offer. But a resto-mod that’s also been artfully upgraded to have well over twice the power of the original, and myriad large and small details to match, is definitely one for the distinguished collector. We can attest that it is an excellent performer too - by which we mean that it goes like the clappers - or like the strong wind that the car was named after if you prefer.

We make no apologies for being so effusive about this car; regular readers will know that we’re not usually so unreservedly gushing. But this is not just any restored Scirocco, this is an off-the-quality-scale labour of love, that has elevated a handsome but unremarkable coupé into a fastidious masterpiece of the restorer’s art.

How do you put a value to something unique and so prize-winningly special? Well it’s not so easy, but in recognition of the work that’s gone into it, the phenomenal condition that it’s in and how it now performs - we think it should be somewhere between £25,000 and £35,000 (much less than the c£50k that we estimate this cost to create).

Although sitting a little lower and carrying slightly more bling than a standard first-gen Scirocco (and the wheels are easy to change if they offend), it looks virtually identical to the original Giugiaro design so you’re likely to find a warm, show-stealing welcome among Scirocco aficionados as well as the custom Vee-Dub crowd. Hell, if you are a proper VW nut, this is the car to not just sell your ranks of Golfs/Passats/Corrados for, perhaps you should consider selling close family members too. Genuinely unrepeatable.

Inspection is always encouraged (within Govt. guidelines of course), and this particular car is located with us at The Market HQ near Abingdon; to arrange an appointment please use the Contact Seller button at the top of the listing. Feel free to ask any questions or make observations in the comments section below, or try our ‘Frequently Asked Questions’.

If needed, please remember we have a network of suppliers we work with regularly including: Classic & Sportscar Finance for purchase-financing, Footman James for classic car insurance, Classic Concierge for storing your car plus we have a list of contacts who can help with transport and shipping.  

BORING, but IMPORTANT: Please note that whilst we at The Market always aim to offer the most descriptive and transparent auction listings available, we cannot claim they are perfect analyses of any of the vehicles for sale. We offer far greater opportunity for bidders to view, or arrange inspections for each vehicle thoroughly prior to bidding than traditional auctions, and we never stop encouraging bidders to take advantage of this. We do take a good look at the vehicles delivered to our premises for sale, but this only results in our unbiased personal observations, not those of a qualified inspector or other professional, or the result of a long test drive.

Also, localised paint repairs are common with collectable and classic cars and if they have been professionally carried out then they may be impossible to detect, even if we see the car in person. So, unless we state otherwise, please assume that any vehicle could have had remedial bodywork at some point in its life.

Additionally, please note that most of the videos on our site have been recorded using simple cameras which often result in 'average' sound quality; in particular, engines and exhausts notes can sound a little different to how they are in reality.

Please note that this is sold as seen and that, as is normal for used goods bought at auction, return policy does not apply. See our FAQs for more info, and feel free to inspect any vehicle as much as you wish.

Video Review

Want to know how The Market auctions work? Take a look at our FAQ's

View FAQ's


  • Location: Abingdon, Oxfordshire
  • Seller Type: Private
  • Odometer Reading: 53000
  • Chassis Number: 53A0029407
  • Engine: 2000
  • Gearbox: Manual
  • Colour: VW Tornado Red
  • Interior: Black Leather with Black & White Dogtooth Cloth

Live auctions View more