Only the usual, panel gaps and paint match. Mechanically they are usually sound. Have to go with an open mind. It WILL have been thrashed - you just can't help it . I bought a 'dog' and have had no problems at all.
It's just had the engine re-built after the head gaskett went, new exhaust and bushes, got a new MOT but no Tax. 116K miles on the clock but no history. The guys sounds quite genuine on its history he bought it from the Police as it had been left on the road after the head gaskett had gone, the police ticketed it and then recovered it. The old owner didn't want to pay the fines and recovery / storage charge so the police disposed of it. The guy has had it for 5 months and has the V5 (he applied for it from DVLA) and has just had it all sorted but has to sell it for financial reasons.
He says the interior and external are imaculate with no sign of rust and only some scuffing on the side bolster of the drivers seat.
I would say watch the wiring in the engine bay. Its pretty robust, but mine had one prob from cghaifing anf there is some naff looking oxidised cable on the fog light wiring, although it still all works ok, 4 years on!!
Only other probs I have had is the seizing up of the brake proportioning valve (linked to suspensiion) just needed freeing up and greasing. And a fe bits of placcy in the inside have become a bit brittel and broken off, butr nothing major.
I have done over 70k in my 8 valve, over 4 years, and it had 104k when I got it!! Its great fun cheap motoring!!
BTW. the wiring in the engine bay is the three wires in the loom to the fuel rail, one t's off to an earth on the coolant housing (8v) on the head. They rub togeter, up the sleeving, and rubbed through, so one day out of no where, the fuel rail live just earthed and the car stopps! Took me a while to suss wherre it was, although I could tell immediately the fuel pump wasnt working!! Good tip to check for mk 2 owners!!
1. At the base of the A pillar. With the door open, peel back the rubber trim strip that runs down the piller from the roof next to the windscreen. Rust can start at the base behind the rubber and eat away a lot of metal and cause a major weakness. You can't see it unless you pull back the trim.
2. The tailgate. There is a rubber gaiter that the electrics run through into the tailgate. It is commen for rust to eat away where it connects to the body and tailgate. Pull back the seal and check it out. Not impossible to fix though. Also, if possible look at where the number plate is screwed on, have seen bad rust here.
3. Around the filler neck seal. Because the fuel tank filler runs through the rear wheel arch all manner of crud builds up inside the seal of the gaiter between the filler neck and the car body. Peel the gaiter away from the car body and check for rust. If it gets a grip here it will spread into the inner wing and the rear quarter panel.
Well looked nice on first viewing, but Graeme had a real good look at it and said he wouldn't buy it, which is good enough for me.
It has had a new rear panel at somepoint and he could see jig marks underneath. The tailgate didn't line up properly either uneven gaps either side. Engine started fine and ran OK, didn't even test drive it given the bodywork findings.
Oh well it will be our third car so I'm in no hurry, I wait out for a decent one. Another question, it has to have PAS (requirement of the Mrs) did any of the 8Vs have PAS and from what year same on the 16V did they all have PAS or did it come in at a certain year.
My memory is not a good as it used to be - I used to know all this off by heart when I had my 16V! But if I remember correctly the 16V always came with power steering the 8V only got it in final year of production. The 8V was spec'ed up near the end with the extras the 16V came with as standard, tinted glass, half smoked rear clusters etc.
The 16V got power steering as std around '89 (I think) . All big bumper 16v s had pas. The 8v got pas as std around late 90/H reg. It also got standard green tinted glass, central locking and diagonal stripe upholstery at this time.
In late 91 the 8V was upgraded to look like a valver with rainbow trim, 15 inch BBS alloys and smoked rear lights. It was n't as low as the valver tho and did n't have the bee sting ariel as std. At this stage it also became available in the hallowed oak green.
Do remeber that these are near 14 yr old cars now! You should expect the to have had a few nicks and scrapes, most of them will have. Also, some body parts are only available in pattern now, and the quality can be a bit pants. But mine has had a new wing and front bumper before I got it, and to be fair it all lines up a treat. Front end allignment is not too much of an issue as it can be tweaked here and there, with having bolt on parts. BUt if the tailgate and rear apnel was duff, there will be better nes out there. UNless it was real cheap!
As a matter of interest, what was he asking for it?
I've had mine 9months now. Is an F plate 147k miler in Alpine White. One lady owner from new with fully documented VW service history. Completely unb4st*rdised and original. Am having her re sprayed at the moment. Really goes like the clappers. She put out 148.8bhp on the rolling road at Stealth Racing with no mods whatever.
Don't settle for any old crap (and there is a lot of that with mk2s now), just be patient and wait. There are some fabulous cars out there if you look hard enough.
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