Build or Buy: Racing a Mk4 Golf to P1

Is spring “list your racecar for sale” season or something? Our intent for Build or Buy is not to only feature track cars, but when one pops up on our forums, well, we have to bring it to our reader’s attention. If you’re looking for your own custom racer, you can spend months or years building one, or maybe just plunk down the cash on one that’s ready to go. Like all the cars in this series, the choice is up to you.

Argument: Build
Article: 2002.5 MKIV GTI 1.8T

Check out this very clean and completely stock GTI. It’s rust-free, runs well, and is a 1-owner car (with all service receipts!). It has the highly moddable 1.8T engine mated to a 5-speed manual transmission. Failure-prone items like vacuum lines, the plastic-impeller water pump, and engine gaskets are new and even upgraded.

This little blue GTI needs a little work. The glovebox door needs replacing, the control arm bushings are bad, and the sunroof motor needs replaced. New control arms are included, but who needs a glovebox or a working sunroof in a racecar? Heck, remove the sunroof entirely and weld in a panel.

Now, we will say this 2002 GTI is almost too nice for track use, but for only $3,700, that may give you more money to work with for parts. Check out the craigslist ad for this MKIV GTI in Hudson Valley, New York.

Argument: Buy
Article: Euro Sport’s 2001 MKIV Golf Racecar

Let’s start with the best stuff: Euro Sport packed this 4-door (what!?) Golf full of all their best parts. With all their go-fast goodies like a custom turbo kit, intercooler, diverter valve, and GIAC chip, this silver hatch is making 325 horsepower at the wheels. And with almost 400 pounds of interior material removed, this GTI weighs only 2,480 lbs.

They didn’t stop with the engine and interior strip down. This Golf has a coilover suspension and a bunch of chassis-reinforcing stress bars. Then there’s the lightweight Enkei wheels, the MOMO steering wheel and race seat, and much much more.

In fact, to see all the items that come with this car, check out the ad in our forums. With over $15,000 in parts, Euro Sport’s $8,900 asking price is pretty much a steal. Take a look at the car in-person in Anaheim, California.

So if you want your very own track toy, you can build it yourself, or throw down the cash and hit the asphalt immediately. The choice is all yours.

you can find other great VWs and parts on eBay