Rev Your Engine: The Ultimate Guide to the Mk2 Volkswagen Golf

Welcome to the ultimate guide for Mk2 Volkswagen Golf enthusiasts. Whether you’re a long-time fan or just discovering this popular car for the first time, we’re here to provide you with all the information you need to fall in love with the Golf all over again. From its sleek design to its powerful engine, the Mk2 Golf is a car that has been beloved for more than 30 years. And with its timeless style and excellent handling, it’s no surprise that it’s still a favorite on the road today.

The Ultimate Guide to the Mk2 Volkswagen Golf

But what exactly makes the Mk2 Golf so special? In this guide, we’ll take a closer look at its history, its features, and some tips for keeping your Golf in top condition. We’ll also share some of our favorite stories about this iconic car, and help you discover why it’s still one of the most popular models in the Volkswagen lineup. So buckle up and get ready to learn everything you need to know about the Mk2 Volkswagen Golf!

The History of the Mk2 Volkswagen Golf

The Mk2 Volkswagen Golf, also known as the Golf II, was introduced in 1983 as a successor to the popular Mk1 Golf. It was designed by German car designer Giorgetto Giugiaro and was produced in Germany, Belgium, and Mexico. The Mk2 Golf quickly became a favorite among car enthusiasts and proved to be a huge success for Volkswagen, selling over 6 million units worldwide during its production run.

Design Features

The Mk2 Golf had a boxy exterior design that was a departure from the curved lines of its predecessor. The exterior was more aerodynamic than the Mk1 Golf, which helped to improve fuel efficiency. The interior was well-crafted and had a more spacious feel than the previous model, despite being slightly smaller in size. The Mk2 Golf also had more safety features, such as a stiffer body, increased crumple zones, and a standard driver airbag.

The Mk2 Golf was available in a number of trim levels, including the standard Golf, the sporty GTI, and the more luxurious GL. It was also offered in different body styles, such as the classic hatchback, the four-door sedan, and the convertible. The versatile design of the Mk2 Golf meant it could appeal to a wide range of buyers.

Production Run

The Mk2 Golf was produced from 1983 to 1992, making it one of the longest-running Golf models. During its production run, it underwent several updates and changes, such as the addition of a catalytic converter to meet stricter emissions regulations. The Mk2 Golf also saw the introduction of new engine options, including a fuel-injected 16-valve engine that was available in the high-performance GTI model.

The Mk2 Golf was produced in Germany, Belgium, and Mexico, which helped to make it a truly global model. It was one of the most popular cars in Europe during the 1980s and 1990s and was a common sight on roads around the world. The Mk2 Golf’s reputation for reliability, fuel efficiency, and practicality helped to cement its place in automotive history.


The Mk2 Golf is now considered a classic and iconic Volkswagen model. Its boxy design and well-crafted interior have given it a timeless appeal, and it remains popular among car enthusiasts and vintage car collectors. The Mk2 Golf was also a trendsetter in terms of automotive design, influencing other models that came after it.

Today, the Mk2 Golf has a dedicated fan base and is often modified and restored to its original condition. Its legacy as a versatile and reliable car has helped to keep it in the hearts of many Volkswagen and car enthusiasts around the world.

Performance Specs of the Mk2 Volkswagen Golf

The Mk2 Volkswagen Golf is widely regarded as one of the most successful hatchbacks in automotive history. When it was first launched in 1983, it took the world by storm with its stylish design, spacious interior, and exceptional performance capabilities. Let’s take a closer look at the performance specs of the Mk2 Volkswagen Golf.

Engine Options

The Mk2 Volkswagen Golf offered a range of engine options to cater to the different needs and preferences of drivers. It came with a choice of 1.3 L, 1.6 L, 1.8 L, and 2.0 L engines, with both diesel and gasoline options available.

The 1.3 L engine was the base option, delivering 55 hp and 75 lb-ft of torque. It could go from 0 to 60 mph in 14.5 seconds and had a top speed of 96 mph. The 1.6 L engine was the next step up, generating 75 hp and 92 lb-ft of torque. It could go from 0 to 60 mph in 11.4 seconds and had a top speed of 108 mph.

The 1.8 L engine was the most powerful option, producing 112 hp and 114 lb-ft of torque. It could go from 0 to 60 mph in just 9.7 seconds and had a top speed of 122 mph. The 2.0 L engine was the sportiest option, delivering 134 hp and 133 lb-ft of torque. It could go from 0 to 60 mph in 8.8 seconds and had a top speed of 129 mph.

Overall, the engine options of the Mk2 Volkswagen Golf provided plenty of power for a wide range of driving needs and preferences. Drivers could choose an option that suited their individual requirements, whether they were looking for fuel efficiency or sporty performance.

Transmission Options

The Mk2 Volkswagen Golf was offered with a range of transmission options to enable drivers to enjoy a smooth and comfortable driving experience. It came with a choice of 4-speed and 5-speed manual transmissions, as well as 3-speed and 4-speed automatic transmissions.

The manual transmission options provided a sense of control and precision that many drivers preferred, while the automatic transmission options were ideal for those who sought a more relaxed and convenient driving experience. The different transmission options offered drivers greater flexibility and ensured that they could choose the right option for their individual needs and preferences.

Suspension and Handling

The Mk2 Volkswagen Golf boasted superior handling and stability on the road, thanks to its advanced suspension system and front-wheel drive. The suspension was independent, which meant that it could adapt to the contours of the road surface and provide a smoother ride. The front-wheel-drive system enhanced the car’s stability and control, providing for a more enjoyable driving experience overall.

Overall, the Mk2 Volkswagen Golf was a highly capable car that offered exceptional performance, handling, and comfort. The range of engine and transmission options ensured that drivers could find an option that suited their individual needs, while the advanced suspension and front-wheel-drive system provided for a smooth and enjoyable driving experience. It’s no wonder that this car is still highly sought after by car enthusiasts all over the world.

The Mk2 Volkswagen Golf GTI: A Legend in Its Own Right

The Volkswagen Golf GTI is a car that needs no introduction for fans of the hot hatch genre. Simply put, it is a legend in its own right. The original GTI revolutionized the car industry in the late seventies, and after a few years Volkswagen launched the second generation of the Golf in 1983 with the GTI included in the lineup. However, it’s the Mk2 Volkswagen Golf GTI that really cemented this iconic vehicle’s place in automobile history.

Introduction of the GTI

When the Mk2 Volkswagen Golf GTI was introduced in 1984, it was already an instant hit among car enthusiasts. It was a sportier version of the Golf but with significant upgrades to its engine and suspension, which made it faster and more agile than its predecessor. The design was more rounded and sleeker, while still maintaining the classic Golf look. The GTI was more aerodynamic, allowing it to cut through the air with greater efficiency.

Performance Specs of the GTI

Under the hood, the Mk2 Volkswagen Golf GTI came equipped with a 1.8 L four-cylinder engine that was capable of producing up to 138 horsepower. This was quite impressive considering that it was a small and compact car with only four cylinders. The GTI’s engine was paired with a five-speed manual transmission that made shifting gears smooth and responsive. The GTI also had an upgraded suspension system, which made the handling sharper and more responsive. All of these features combined made the Golf GTI a fun car to drive, with faster acceleration and top speed than standard Golf models.

Legacy of the GTI

The Mk2 Volkswagen Golf GTI is considered a pioneer of the “hot hatch” segment. It set the bar for the industry with its sporty design, powerful engine, and superior handling. The GTI was the inspiration for many sporty Volkswagen models that followed, including the Golf R and the Scirocco. Additionally, the GTI became an instant icon and a symbol of the 80s youth culture. Several movies, songs, and television shows featured the GTI, making it a cultural touchstone of the decade.

In conclusion, the Mk2 Volkswagen Golf GTI is a car that has gone down in history as one of the all-time greats. Its design, performance specs, and legacy have made it a beloved classic among car enthusiasts and a reminder of the glory days of the “hot hatch” segment. It’s no wonder why the GTI has continued to evolve and inspire new generations of Volkswagen vehicles that are now dominating the performance car arena. The legend of the Mk2 Golf GTI lives on, and it is well-deserved.

The Mk2 Volkswagen Golf in Popular Culture

The Mk2 Volkswagen Golf is undoubtedly one of the most iconic cars in automotive history. It is a car that has stood the test of time and continues to be loved by car enthusiasts all around the world. The Golf has not only been popular among car enthusiasts but also popular culture. Let us take a closer look at the presence of the Mk2 Volkswagen Golf in popular culture.

Movies and TV Shows

The Mk2 Volkswagen Golf has made appearances in a number of movies and TV shows over the years. It has had its fair share of appearances in James Bond movies, with one of the most notable being in “The World Is Not Enough” where it played a significant role in the opening scene chase sequence. It has also made appearances in TV shows such as “Top Gear,” where it was featured in different segments, and “Mr. Bean” where Mr. Bean famously drove a green Mk2 Golf.

Video Games

The Mk2 Volkswagen Golf has also been featured in many popular racing video games, which include “Gran Turismo” and the “Need for Speed” series. It has become a popular choice for car enthusiasts and gamers alike, as it can be modified to give it a unique and personal touch. The Golf GTI 16V has become a fan favorite in many of these games due to its performance capabilities.

Celebrity Owners

Over the years, the Mk2 Volkswagen Golf has been owned and driven by several celebrities. David Beckham, former Manchester United and Real Madrid footballer, famously drove his black Golf GTI 16V to training. Another celebrity that owned and drove a Mk2 Golf was British artist Tracey Emin, who was known for her love of the car and even had a personalized number plate that read “TE Golf”

In conclusion, the Mk2 Volkswagen Golf has found its way into popular culture through movies and TV shows, video games, and celebrities. It has become an iconic and beloved car that continues to inspire car enthusiasts all around the world. Its timeless design and performance capabilities have made it one of the most successful cars in automotive history.

Restoring and Maintaining a Mk2 Volkswagen Golf

The Volkswagen Golf is a popular hatchback model known for its reliability, performance, and longevity. The Mk2 Volkswagen Golf, in particular, was produced from 1983 to 1992 and is a classic model that many car enthusiasts still enjoy driving today. However, as with any vintage vehicle, a Mk2 Volkswagen Golf requires good care and maintenance to keep it running smoothly. In this article, we’ll discuss some common issues that plague the Mk2 Volkswagen Golf, steps for restoration, and tips for maintaining your beloved hatchback.

Recognizing Common Issues

One of the most significant issues that owners of a Mk2 Volkswagen Golf face is rust. The car’s underbelly and wheel arches are particularly susceptible to this problem. Electrical issues are also common, especially with the car’s lighting system and dashboard controls. Worn-out suspension components are another common issue, resulting in a bumpy ride and poor handling. Identifying these issues early on can save you time and money in the long run.

Steps for Restoration

Restoring a Mk2 Volkswagen Golf requires patience, attention to detail, and a bit of mechanical knowledge. The following steps can guide you in the restoration process:

  1. Comprehensive inspection: Before beginning the restoration process, thoroughly inspect the car inside and out. Look for rust spots, dents, scratches, and other cosmetic issues. Check the engine, suspension, brakes, and wheels to identify any mechanical problems. Create a list of everything that needs to be fixed or replaced before moving forward.
  2. Addressing cosmetic and mechanical issues: Once you have identified all the issues, start by addressing the cosmetic ones first. Clean the interior and exterior of the car, buff any scratches or paint chips, and replace any broken or missing trim pieces. Afterward, move on to the mechanical issues. Replace any worn-out suspension components, fix any electrical issues, and perform a full brake inspection.
  3. Sourcing and installing replacement parts: Finding genuine parts for a Mk2 Volkswagen Golf can be challenging. Some parts are no longer manufactured, and others are expensive to buy new. Look for used parts from reputable dealers or online sources. Be sure to test all replacement parts thoroughly before installing them to ensure they work correctly.

Tips for Maintenance

Maintenance is essential to keep your Mk2 Volkswagen Golf running smoothly. By following these tips, you can minimize the risk of expensive repairs:

  • Regular oil changes: Change your engine oil every 3,000 to 5,000 miles to ensure the engine runs smoothly and lasts longer.
  • Keeping the body clean and waxed: Regularly wash your car and wax it to protect the paint from moisture and pollutants that can cause rust.
  • Addressing issues promptly: Ignoring small issues can lead to more expensive repairs down the line. If you notice any warning signs, such as strange smells, odd noises, or warning lights, address them promptly before they become a more significant issue.

In conclusion, restoring and maintaining a Mk2 Volkswagen Golf requires time, effort, and resources. However, when done correctly, it can be a rewarding experience that allows you to enjoy your classic car for years to come.

Rev Up Your Golf: It’s Time to Hit the Road

We hope this guide has been helpful in revving up your engine and getting you excited about the timeless classic that is the Mk2 Volkswagen Golf. From its sleek body design to its reliable performance, the Golf has earned its place in history as a fan favorite within the Volkswagen brand. Whether you’re a seasoned Golf enthusiast or a newcomer to the game, we believe this guide has something for everyone to learn and appreciate.

Thank you for taking the time to read this article and we hope you found it informative and enjoyable. Make sure to check back for more articles on the Mk2 Volkswagen Golf and other classic cars. Remember, there’s no feeling quite like hitting the road in your Golf, so get out there and start driving!


1. What makes the Mk2 Volkswagen Golf so special?

The Mk2 Golf is considered a classic due to its sleek design, reliability, and popularity within the Volkswagen community.

2. Is the Mk2 Golf a reliable car?

Yes, the Mk2 Golf is known for its reliability and durability, making it a great investment for car enthusiasts.

3. What is the price range for a Mk2 Volkswagen Golf?

The price for a Mk2 Golf depends on the condition, mileage, and additional features. On average, they can range from $5,000 to $15,000 or more.

4. How often does a Mk2 Golf need maintenance?

Regular maintenance is recommended every 5,000 to 7,500 miles for optimal performance.

5. Can the Mk2 Volkswagen Golf be used for racing?

Yes, the Golf has a rich history in racing and is a popular choice for enthusiasts looking to modify and race their cars.

6. What is the top speed of the Mk2 Golf?

The top speed of the Mk2 Golf varies based on the year and model, but it can reach up to 130 mph.

7. How many Mk2 Golfs were produced?

Over 6 million Mk2 Golfs were produced between 1983 and 1991.

8. What is the most popular color for a Mk2 Volkswagen Golf?

Red and black are the most popular colors for the Mk2 Golf.

9. Is the Mk2 Volkswagen Golf a good investment?

Yes, the Mk2 Golf has proven to be a good investment for collectors and enthusiasts due to its popularity and timeless design.

10. How does the Mk2 Golf compare to other Volkswagen models?

The Mk2 Golf is considered a fan favorite due to its reliability, sleek design, and popularity within the Volkswagen community. However, the comparison to other Volkswagen models depends on personal preference and needs.