Jamie Orr is Going to South Africa to Put a VR6 in a Mk1 Golf Built in the ’90s

Whereas Mk1 Golf production ended in 1983 for most of the world, some parts weren’t ready to give up the classic Giugiaro design. Much like the Beetle in Mexico, the Mk1 Golf stuck around for years in South Africa as the Citi Golf. Now, adventurer, groundskeeper Willy impersonator, and VW whisperer Jamie Orr is jetting off to Johannesburg to buy one of his own and restore in time to take it to Worthersee.

Ever a fan of oddities and strangenesses, Orr isn’t just satisfied with any old Citi Golf. Instead, he’s dedicated himself to finding an old one, restoring it to show quality, and then stuffing a VR6 in it and he’s only giving himself five days to do all that and get it back to show condition.

Orr will be looking to source as many parts as possible in South Africa, including the engine (“Suitable part numbers may include 022 100 011 P, 022 100 032 M, 022 100 033 K, and others, intended for the VW Touareg, VW Golf R32, VW Eos, Audi A3, and other vehicles,” he writes), but he’ll need the help of the fandom to finish the project. On top of that, he’ll be sourcing some parts, like the Eurowise engine mounts, from the US.

The car itself will be from between 91-93 so that he can eventually get it into the States, but also allowing him to buy it in one of the original three colors–which apparently was a big deal.

Once he’s done modifying the car, he’ll take it for a tour of the country, with a stop at VDub Campfest in Bela-Bela. There, he’ll show off the other side of his mission, which is bringing books, writing equipment, bags, and other school supplies to needy communities.

The adventure kicks off on January 27 (remember, it’ll be summer in the southern hemisphere) before heading off to Bela-Bela. After that, he’ll visit the Volkswagen Factory and Museum in Uitenhage, 1,200 km (about 750 miles) south of Bela-Bela.

From there he’ll ship the car to Emden, Germany where he’ll visit VW’s Emden factory, eventually driving on to Wolfsburg, which is apparently a big deal or something.

In Wolfsburg, not only will take a tour of the factory that spawned the brand but will also meet up with the USA to Worthersee tour, which plans to drive across Europe and eventually onto Austria for the Treffen.

Finally, he’ll complete his European adventure with a few laps of the Nurburgring—because why wouldn’t you?—before shipping it back to the US.

It’s a hell of an adventure and we’ll be keeping a weather eye on his progress.