For a little more than two years, Andreas Schwarzmeier and Thomas Müller from KTS Fahrzeugtechnik have had a very hot “Show & Shine” iron in the fire: a radical Golf Mk 4.
This golf Mk 4 was a real success at the Wörthersee 2015, painted in timeless “Marathon blue metallic”. Although the most striking was of course the brutal lowering and cool magnesium wheels from the Porsche Cup, and the flame war of the purists began.
Motorsport rims on an ultralow Stance Golf: This is not possible, the “Facebook-expert round” draw blood when the first pictures showed up. It got even more interesting, when Andreas said, that the Golf Mk4 is an R32.
The fans of the R32 desperately searched for arguments, to why the Mk4 is no longer wearing its R32 aerodynamic dress or even better: Why are the bumper strips not painted? Many probably do not know the background, why this Golf Mk4 R32 is so unique.
Sometimes an accident is a good thing …
The car was in a wreck and a total disaster for every insurance company, but not for the German craftsmen of KTS Karosserietechnik. Due to the damage from the accident, the entire front part of the R32 was busted. The engine, along with axles, were past being able to remedy and even the frame was not worth repairing. Quickly, they decided to forget about a R32 revival and the idea of a secret “back date” build begun!
An aged 2.0-liter naturally aspirated 16V engine with 136 hp made the race. The engine that was once installed in the Corrado, Jetta and Co. was completely restored and all worn parts were renewed. In order to give the 16V more bite on the chain, the cylinder head was modified. For the cooling circuit, a heat exchanger with a reservoir from the Golf Mk 1 was used.
The ignition from the Golf Mk 2 16V was used, and the engine uses an “old school-like” Weber double carburetor. The engine tuning is complemented by a Ziegler racing intake manifold and for the electronics; KTS uses a modified Golf Mk 4 1.6 liter cable harness.
Before the 2.0-liter 16V with 180 hp and its two Weber carburetors were married to the Golf Mk 4, the Golf Mk4 custom body experienced a long term frame operation that included numerous cleanings.
The front was rebuilt using the frame from a Golf Mk 3. Self-made fenders with wide-mounted wheel arches were added as well as the entire original Golf Mk 4 equipment (series front apron, hood, grill, headlights).
When it comes to lowering, in order to meet the Show&Shine demands, KTS Karosserietechnik has changed the frame and axle geometry. Compared to the series, the front longitudinal beam was relocated about 85 mm higher, so the body sits even lower through the special Gepfeffert coilover kit – and the Golf is moving further away from being street legal.
The “Gepfeffert-suspension” is exclusively available at Gepfeffert.com and the Bavarian “Pfeffer-Gang” also takes care of the entire sales and service in regards of the suspension. For the front axle, a GTI axle with adapted rods were used. The steering gear came from a Golf Mk 2. Power steering is not available. Finally, the radical Golf Mk 4 from KTS is not made for wimps or the road.
The Golf R32 rear axle was modified for the “Gepfeffert” suspension operation. It was then retrofit with a transmission from the large Golf Mk 4 20V, which uses a Sachs clutch, this and the revised 16V engine were then married to the KTS Golf body.
That is why also the exhaust manifold and the Y-pipe coming from the ABF-engine had to be adapted. From the Y-pipe, a self-built complete exhaust system with 60 mm diameter regulates the furious 16V sound storm.
Uncompromising lowering for the new Stance-dimension
Due to the Gepfeffert suspension with its top mounts and the extreme camber, the ultralight magnesium wheels in 7.5 x 18 inch offset 44 (on the front axle) has the perfect stance and at first glance you would not believe your eyes.
To be able to mount the BBS from the Porsche Cup to the Golf at all, adapter plates had to be installed in advance. Flat 165/40 (!) Achilles tires are mounted around the 7.5 inch wheels. At the rear, there are also wider fenders for the 9.5 x 18 inch BBS magnesium wheels that are maximal flush-mounted in the wheel arches. With this stance setup, KTS Karosserietechnik has set a strong signal in the direction of the VAG scene in the UK and US.
At last, the discussion mentioned at the beginning continues about the over-deep (Wörther-sea) monster, which snubs the performance faction or the sea drivers, who still travel to the lake on their own four wheels.
Decent from conviction
Due to its minimalistic style with the body modifications, which can hardly be seen at first glance, the low KTS-4 was a giant hit in the scene. Many find the optics by Andi Schwarzmeier and Thomas Müller simply hot. While many like to let their Golf Mk 4 appear as R32, those two rather pound the beat with their VW as a discrete underdog.
Their Mk4 ensures excitement by the massive lowering, camber, and the beautiful sound of the naturally aspirated engine with its Weber carburetor. The interior is also enticing. Although everything there is still in the R32 series condition, but the KTS guys ensured the right flair in their low “Radical Golf” by a OMP sport steering wheel. Not to forget, with such a lowering and no power steering, you get a lot more than just sweaty palms when driving.
Photos Igor Vucinic, Vau-Max.de
YouTube-Video VW Home
Text Nick K. Hofmeister