Volkswagen’s first true sports car Buying and living with the 19901994… — Volkswagen Corrado

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Volkswagen Corrado

Volkswagen’s first true car: Buying and living the 1990-1994 Corrado

Photography by J. McCourt; additional images Volkswagen.

When you mention Volkswagen” to your average car they’ll likely react, !” Some of the older respondents bring up the Scirocco. The fact those are the default answers surprising, as those models enjoyed long runs and production numbers. The truly VW enthusiasts, on the other hand, bring up the most exciting and model of all, the little-remembered .

Readers of the September 2013 (#97) of Hemmings Sports Car will find a celebration of the this month’s Buyer’s We’ve illustrated the story photographs of Carlisle, Pennsylvania, James Yemzow’s incredible Corrado SLC. This car the second version of Corrado was sold in the United States 1992 and 1994; the first is the Corrado G60.

The Corrado G60 was by a special supercharged version of corporate 1.8-liter, 8-valve its SLC replacement was powered by the unique naturally aspirated VR6 engine.

supercharged 1.8-liter four-cylinder G60 engine.

The Corrado SLC’s aspirated 2.8-liter “VR6″ V-6

While working on this guide, we spoke with two who shared their many of experience of living with the G60 and SLC models; they more good information for our points than we had print for, so we’d like to their thoughts here.

Volkswagen of America PR employee and Corrado G60 owner Patrick currently owns a Nugget a pristine example that long searched for. His comments on buying a G60 are below.

Like all 1.8L 8v VW engines, pretty stout. The only problematic piece is the G-Lader itself. It’s highly and is easily susceptible to disintegration if not maintained. Be on the lookout for smaller-than-stock used to squeeze more by turning the assembly at a faster Know how many miles are on the especially with a smaller Rebuilt blowers, or those low miles on a smaller pulley, be okay. I bought my car with a dealer-maintained 70,000 miles, and I had the blower rebuilt. Prevention is the cure.


Vacuum leaks are another spot. Fortunately, most are easily seen from the top of the bay.

I recently had a VW technician me that the average life for all three motor mounts is years. It’s pretty if they’re bad, as the interior and vibrates like a car with mount bushings. I replaced three years ago, and were already bad by this They’re expensive, but worth the to eliminate the interior drone and

Transmission: Aside from a 1st gear synchro, the transmission is as well. If the owner has avoided the inside tires in turns, or one-wheel burnouts, they up well. The cable shift can be a little stiff. Also, the at the base of the shift lever brittle. If it breaks, you can’t Speed shifting should be

Brakes and suspension: The front bushings are known to wear Most owners upgrade to the bushings used on the VR6 models. from this, the brakes and on Corrados don’t have any issues. Just beware of a that has been slammed, or one uses cheap aftermarket

Fortunately, the Corrado seems to suffering from the ‘saggy syndrome that is common on old generation-Golf platform vehicles.

The biggest issue with the is rust on the rear hatch the rear windshield; it’s very Another place to watch for is in the bottom of the doors. The front and rear bumpers can warp slightly, causing the gaps to look a little It’s also common the rear spoiler does not

Virtually every single out there has a busted hood cable. Most people myself, and I have a working attach wire hangers to the mechanisms, and tuck them the grille. If the cable ever (and it will), you simply the grille and yank the hangers to the hood. It’s hard to but don’t let this dissuade you buying a car.

Interior: Beware of any wiring issues. Corrados have enough electrical so don’t buy a car that adds to the Many MKII generation VWs odometers that stopped between 120,000 and 160,000 The one in my car stopped at 71,000 miles. sure it’s working in the drive.

Electricals: This section both G60 and VR6 Corrados. Here’s a of the most common electrical with the Corrado:

— radiator fan – Rear wing not extend/retract – Automatic seatbelts don’t – Wipers don’t work – Sunroof doesn’t – Flickering headlamps

Most with the Corrado are electrical. A lot of a new fuse box will solve a lot of the The last G60 I bought – the mint one – had an sunroof, wipers, seatbelts and a right headlight. I installed a new $20 box, and all was fixed. Everything on my including the A/C, works. looking to buy a Corrado, regardless of its should accept the fact will be dealing with issues during their

A huge red flag when at Corrados is if a car has been modified An aftermarket exhaust and quality set up should be okay, but beware of modifications. The G60 is a finicky engine, and if not modified, it won’t last A stock engine is a much comforting proposition.

Former VW staffer and four-time Corrado SLC Anthony Garbis has owned his SLC for six years; he’s hung this one because he says – a laugh — that most works. Read on for his thoughts on a good VR6-powered Corrado

With the VR6, one thing always talks about is chains. There is a myth there is a 100,000-mile change for these; however, there is no mileage-based repair. A lot of people and say that any Corrado with than 100,000 on it, that still has its original is a ticking time bomb. the car may be a time bomb, it’s not the chains that are going to first. The issue is not that the go bad, but rather that the guides crack. On my second I noticed a lot of rattling at start-up the engine was cold (this occur for about two or three When I dropped the oil pan to change the (which will inevitably be on any Corrado, as will be the oil seals), I found pieces of the guides sitting in the bottom of the Needless to say, that car chains right away.

I bought my current Corrado from the original owner; it miles. The original owner was an gentleman who had meticulously taken of this car. He did synthetic oil every 5,000 miles new. My engine’s chains are quiet, and when I removed the cover gasket during my V9 supercharger install, I inspected — none of them were and none were sitting in the of the pan. As Patrick said, oil changes are the key, and maintenance to back them up are needed. at 112,000 miles and I don’t needing to change the chains any soon. It is risky business because if the chains break, buying a new head. It’s a involved job to change the chains, so people put it off, but if you have to do work, it’s a great to also install a new clutch and cylinder and perform all sorts of maintenance.

My Corrado is a 1992 VR6 no sunroof, which is something you see. I believe there are a handful of VR6s in the country a sunroof. Not having one is a thing, because the sunroof’s always break, and if you’re a guy – I’m 6-foot-2 – you’ll have a time fitting in the Corrado. the sunroof, I gained another few of headroom, and I fit fine in the car. people swap out the original sunroof for one from a contemporary which is glass. That’s a nice upgrade, and something to do if sunroof rails are broken.

the rear spoiler, which is one of the features on the Corrado, these break, too. There power window motor raises and lowers the spoiler, but in this motor gets If your spoiler stops most of the time you’ll that its fuse has blown the motor was working too hard and too much amperage; it needs a lubrication. My spoiler works via the switch, although it recently stopped at 45 MPH; my cruise control stopped working. There is an issue with a loose or a speed sensor, although I’m towards a loose wire, if the speed sensor is bad, the usually stops working and you other issues.

The VR6s had an official Volkswagen recall for a core repair. People blowing their heater because the VR6 is crammed into a engine bay and likes to run hot. The would build up such that the plastic end caps on the core would crack, coolant and smoke into the As part of the recall, VW would the heater core if it had cracked — required removing the entire – or if your core was intact, install a pressure valve the upper coolant hose runs to the heater core. A few ago, my car’s hose sprung a likely because the valve reduced pressure on the heater increased pressure on the hose. I the hose, not realizing I needed to over the valve. I installed it, for 50 miles, and then was greeted by coolant pouring into the and smoke in the cabin. After bypassing the core with a 90-degree (connecting the two heater core I ordered a new heater core, has been sitting in the trunk since. Let’s be honest: if you apart the dashboard on a 21-year-old it’s never going in one piece. Given how frail of the plastics are, I’m sure I’d end up numerous rattles, so I decided it. This is now an April/May and September/October

Volkswagen Corrado

The VR6 transmission is pretty strong. I’m on the clutch, and it hasn’t skipped a VR6 got a really beefy clutch. I do some people having issues, but I don’t knowledge in that area. I do I can launch the car numerous times, and the clutch with no problems. even chirped the tires on a shift. I’ve had the supercharger for 10,000 miles and have had no or clutch issues; actually, none of my VR6s have had any transmission or issues.

Suspension wise, the VR6 can MkIV (2004) Golf R32 arm bushings; this is an that I did. I also the ball joints, tie rods, bearings, axles (mine had CV boots, and it was cheaper to replace the axle), struts and springs and HR), and strut bushings. parts aren’t very

Engine mounts are an area will need updating, simply the stock engine mounts get soft over time. There are of polyurethane upgrades with different durometer ratings. I did a poly engine mount but if I hadn’t planned on adding a I probably would have replaced with the OEM mounts, so I get any vibration in the cabin. Another component that many people overlook is the crossmember bushing; there are four two each side, that wear. When do, they’ll make it seem one of your engine mounts is broken, as the mount sits on this and it can allow engine movement. an easy repair that takes a bit of time and a

As for the electronics, the 1992 SLC was very like the G60. Aside having an on-board digital computer, there that many differences. I the G60s also used the AKTIV system, which isn’t the The door speakers had an amplifier to them, and that amplifier all three speakers on that of the car (dash, door, rear The problem is that these usually go bad, and you can’t pop in new speakers; you have to rip everything out and it.

It’s important to note the Corrado can’t operate power windows at the same

Exhaust upgrades are great for the VR6, it’s one of the best-sounding affordably engines. Lots of people the catalytic converter, as the stock one is a monster. I installed a high-flow cat and a new O2 and it was a drastic improvement, also adding a subtle sound. I like the look, so I kept the rest of the stock.

The ignition switch in my car bad; this is a very common and is a very cheap fix. The problem is that it takes a lot of to complete: You have to pull the wheel, the clamshell, and the lock which is the hardest part to Another interior issue is door handle pulls are to break, as they are plastic, and it gets cold, they I replaced mine with after my passenger side’s

An exterior trouble area is the windshield The wiper arms sometimes have enough tension the windshield, and when you use them, just smear the water all over. are fixes online showing how to down the spring inside the arm to it apply more tension.

Virtually every Corrado you’ll have cracked fog lights, the glass that was used was not Replacing the lenses is futile, as will just crack There are some aftermarket that make lens but they are pricey. The headlights produce very much because the 9004 bulb was not the design.

Regarding the brakes, the fails. It’s a very design, and even when it was I doubt it was very functional. of people have issues their rear calipers as well as with the emergency cable getting stuck or

Patrick also mentioned the release cable snapping, did happen on one of my Corrados. The cable is cheap, but you’re in for a bear of a if you try to replace it. As he also mentioned, the lines under the hood may of the ones on the VR6 are easy to get to, and replacing is cheap. You’ll know if are cracked because your control may not work, and your computer will show a low MPG.

Going back to temperatures, many people flush cooling system and replace the G11 with G12; they say brings lower running Regarding oil, 5w40 synthetic is to use in the VR6. Many want to run 15w50, but not a good oil for this engine as too thick.

The later 1993-1994 switched from a distributor to pack, and these are more

I’ve posted lots of threads with photos of of my repairs/upgrades on VWVortex.com .

Many to James for sharing his beautiful with us for photography, and we appreciate and Anthony’s expertise!

Volkswagen Corrado
Volkswagen Corrado
Volkswagen Corrado
Volkswagen Corrado
Volkswagen Corrado
Volkswagen Corrado

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