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Hagerty
Hagerty Employee

A $65,000 Callaway ... Volkswagen?

According to all the experts, high rates of inflation are upon us, and that means just about everything is a lot more expensive now than it was in 2020. Milk, electricity, beans, '83 Volkswagens, you name it. Since we focus on cars here, though, let's stick with that last one.
https://www.hagerty.com/media/market-trends/hagerty-insider/a-65000-callaway-volkswagen/
44 REPLIES 44
CR500R
New Driver

One of these damn things blew my 1979 Trans Am WS6 right into the weeds on an on-ramp drag race (two lanes going into one, Freeway entrance 170 south.) a girl was driving it. Sold the trans Am that next week.
buellerdan
Instructor

Did your T/A have the Olds 403 automatic?
turbobill
Intermediate Driver

I smoked a brand new '78 Smokey and the Bandit Trans Am in the summer of '78 with my big block Chevy wagon. I don't know if the kid sold the car afterwards but he was as red faced as I've ever seen and his girlfriend was laughing her you know what off.
RedDuck
New Driver

This is another case of "A fool and his money are soon parted".
MATTMERICA
Technician

Exactly. I am not casting any dispersions on what anybody "likes", but c'mon man, $65k for a beat GTI? Seriously, if you have $65k to blow on a beat rabbit, why not sack up and drop $100k on it?
SAG
Technician

Oh, how about the
$1M
paid for a license plate.
Availability drives pricing.
SAG
Technician

If you weren't a average person, [lets say, not making $5M a year]
And your income "Peaked" above your Dreams.
_ collecting a Fast/Rare car is always worth the price
SCHNELL
Intermediate Driver

Nice pics, but none of the motor
SAG
Technician

a stock / GTI / S - motor
all looked the same. no frills.
no fancy Alloy valve cover [street rodders go faster with this stuff]
A Webber Throttle valve & factory looked identical to a novice
CP66
Intermediate Driver

It would have been interesting to see the turbo installation though.
slammin
Pit Crew

For many collector cars the market is red hot. Anyone looking to buy a 60s or 70s muscle car had better have at least 60K in their pocket. Those lucky enough to have very deep pockets seem willing to spend what ever it takes to acquire their "dream car", money be damned. The rest of us regular folks can only watch and shake our heads.
MATTMERICA
Technician

Yes, follow the lemmings off the inflation cliff lol. So there is a little juice in the market, it is about time inflation shows up. All we had to do was drop $4T into the economy and let OPEC jack their price per barrel and now everybody is acting like it is the end of the world. Take a breath. It will be ok.
drhino
Technician

What does one do with a 19,000 mile (bolt-on turbo equipped) 38 year old GTI? Especially one you just paid $65,000 for. Leave it sit, because you don’t want to cause wear and tear (and subject it to some hammerhead running into it)? Enjoy it, as it must be a ball to drive? Does the buyer expect further appreciation in value? The real story on all these vehicles that sell way over what most seem to think is a reasonable price is what the buyer is thinking. What the motivation was. Unfortunately, that typically goes unknown.
TG
Technician

after paying that kind of stupid money for an '83 Rabbit, I don't think you have to worry about driving it being the cause of devaluing it
drhino
Technician

I didn’t indicate driving it would devalue it; but that it would cause a change in its condition. My overall point was it would be interesting to dig into the motivation of the buyer. I certainly don’t understand paying that sort of money for that car; but there are plenty of things all of us do that others don’t understand either. Most folks think it crazy that I have 5 motorcycles and don’t understand why MotoGP is my favorite sport. Some of you reading this may understand both. Some won’t. The passion that you find perfectly logical and defensible, others think completely crazy.
acooper529
Advanced Driver

So you are telling me and thousands of others who spent our entire lives in Auto repair that this NOT just another throw away piece of horse hockey?
And the first time that the magic 200 horses hit that the golf cart quality teams was not sent straight to the road?
This is a story, but doesn't belong on these pages because a couple of idiots trolled someone into BUYING this thing.
I am personally hitting the BS button on this one and am EXTREMELY tired of hearing about this silly cr**. Its a fugitive from a junk yard... AT BEST!
GIVE US SOME MORE QUALITY PLEASE.
1933ford
Intermediate Driver

you are being to obtuse! This was waste of my time in my life i will never get back luckily I stopped reading after the first paragraph feeling this was bull poopies. Thanks for telling me I was right. I have noticed lately that Hagerty is not at all selective on what they print hence i hardly read most of there offering!. I hope it backfires one day and they fail so that others learn from there mistake of offering garbage!.
acooper529
Advanced Driver

...should say trans
Turbo4Joe
Intermediate Driver

BAT sale prices continue to prove PT Barnum right!
kip
Intermediate Driver

I agree, but I will admit that I will probably be listing one of my classic Jags on there next month. People seem to like the auction format, even more so than ads on Hemmings and ebay. Cars sit on Hemmings and ebay, they seem to sell on BaT.
Turbo4Joe
Intermediate Driver

They should rename that auction site:
BaCP

'Bring a Crack Pipe'
kip
Intermediate Driver

Some sales I can see, some I cannot. This may be a nice vehicle in its own right, but I cannot see that kind of money for it. Seller must be skipping happily somewhere on his island vacation.
Wedgehead
Intermediate Driver

Wonder if this is the same golf that is racing,and beating exotics on YouTube? Same color....
SAG
Technician

the 'Red trim accents / interior' give it away.
These things were "Tweaked" but still had the Bosch "Kjet F.I. system".
Scirocco 'S' was on the same platform.
The fancy Mitsubishi "Turbo" in the '90s couldn't keep up with these cars.
and the VW's were 10yrs [+] older
RobErnst
New Driver

Actually, it looks a LOT like a Dodge Omni (at least on the outside). The GLH would most likely STILL blow it into the weeds.
Turbo4Joe
Intermediate Driver

True!
Imagine trying to hook up that "200 HP" FWD tin can with those skinny tires....lol
Plus the added fun of uncontrollable torque steer when it finally does gain traction!
slammin
Pit Crew

I test drove a new 84 GTI at the local VW dealer, was really impressed with the way it handled and seriously considered signing the dotted line. Instead I bought a used 1980 BMW 320is. That was almost 40 years ago, but the 320 remains one of my favorite cars.
2OldVolvos
Pit Crew

These VW GTIs were an absolute blast to drive. Handled like a go cart, short throw shifter and I am sure they seemed faster than they really were.
2OldVolvos
Pit Crew

I should have said in pure stock form these were fun. With that much additional HP the torque steer must have been a handful!
dpizi01
New Driver

I bought a 1984 GTi new and it was probably the worst car I ever owned. Of course, I wish I still owned it and am now on my 4th GTi.
br427
Intermediate Driver

I had a 77 Trans Am with the Pontiac 400, T10 4 Speed and a 3.42 rear end. with 20000 miles on it when I bought it in 1980. It was mint. White with red trim and interior. I added Headers, 2.5 Inch Duals with Turbo mufflers, a half raunchy Cam. Reworked the Quadrajet (raised the metering rods etc) and I ate for dinner every new car that came along. New Trans Ams, Z28s, Corvettes and a lot of fabled Musclecars like a 70 Superbee with a 440 4 Speed. All those cars needed was a bit of tuning. Never lost a race in that car.
br427
Intermediate Driver

I would have loved to have met one of those volks............
Gary_Bechtold
Specialist

An interesting car for sure. 200hp in this tiny thing must have been a lot of fun to see as it stomped on various performance cars of the day. $65k? Not for me.
SuperDeLuxe
Advanced Driver

In the 1980's I sincerely believed there would come a day when all the carved-from-a-bar-of-soap econo-boxes would be rusted away or recycled, never to be seen again. Now they bring '61 Impala hardtop money. Probably a good thing I didn't become a financial advisor. To each their own.
Maestro1
Technician

Andrew, thank you, and $23,000.00 in eighteen months is a portrayal of two things: One is herd lust, and the other is Calloway. It's an absolute Seller's market.
farna
Advanced Driver

To each his own. To me it's not worth anything near what it brought, but then my 63 Rambler isn't worth to others what it's worth to me. Shortly after I (more or less) finished it in 2003 I took it to a local cruise-in. A fellow bugged me several times, asking what I would sell it for. He was a tire kicker, not really interested, that I could tell. Well, the last time he came by I told him he could have it today for $20 grand. He was a bit surprised! Asked if it was really worth that much. I told him no, it was probably worth $12-15K as it was (a mild custom, Jeep 4.0L drivetrain), but it would take $20K to get it. No more bugging me!

Someone grew up with a GTi or wanting one bad, and now has more money than they know what to do with. If I had a lot of disposable income there are a lot of cars I'd buy, but coming up having to work for everything I have and be a bit conservative with the little disposable income I did have, I think I'd make wiser purchases today. There is no one car I just "have to have". If I wanted a GTi turbo and it went this high in an auction, I'd have just waited for another to come around or purchased a couple and built one. It's not worth that much as an original with low mileage... TO ME...
Geok86
Instructor

For MANY years, all I ever wanted was to own a Ferrari…now that I can easily afford one, I’m like you, and used my common sense to realize I don’t need one, and it won’t make me any happier than my daily driver 2017 GTI Sport. For many of us, with age comes wisdom.
DD21
Pit Crew

In 1992 I bought a 1980 VW Rabbit Convertible that had received the full Callaway treatment when brand new. In addition to the turbo, it had Bilsteins, sway bars, Recaros, Momo wheel, 13"(!!) BBS wheels, Euro headlights, front air dam, and more. I autocrossed it and did track days at Mid-Ohio, where it surprised a lot of "faster" cars. It was a hoot to drive, especially when you turned up the adjustable boost knob tucked away in the glove box. The sub-3000 rpm boost lag and torque steer added to the fun. I sold the car in 2001 for the $5K I paid for it. Would I pay $65K for it now? Uh, no!
sego
Intermediate Driver

Might have gone for more if it had the plaid seats!
TonyT
Technician

Love the Cub emoji!!
Robin
Intermediate Driver

OK, so 65K could be argued as excessive for the car sold on BaT; but obviously someone wanted it, and had the scratch to pay that amount. Hooray for them!
Personally I've shook my head in wonder at the 100K some 60 and 70's American Iron brings. Each to their own tastes.

Long ago my 'off the shelf' 1984 Rabbit GTI greatly embarrassed a Buick Grand National thru the twisties on OH 741, with 4 adults in the car, and the A/C blasting.
Same car shammed a Mustang GT thru twisty mountain roads in WV where I did a lot of downhill, inside passing when the 'stang's breaks were overheating and fading.
Just a simple girl and her beloved GTI....wish I still had that car!
plank
Intermediate Driver

Performance, fast, German engineering, blah, blah, blah....that's one butt ugly vehicle. Who, in their right mind would pay that kind of money for that sh-t wagon?
mhealy1
Advanced Driver

Who’da thunk…? Sounds like an incredibly fun car, but I doubt the owner will enjoy it that way. As far as it’s value-to each his own. While I wouldn’t spend $65K on it, I might not want to spend that kind of cash on YOUR favorite car either. Why so much hate? This hobby has plenty of room for all kinds of oddballs, both cars and people.
badsneakers
New Driver

I owned the exact car (black with blue interior) from 1987-1992. Although I did modify it, I did not install a turbo kit. If I recall correctly, I sold it for $2,500.

Forty to sixty grand, dang, I wish I kept the car. Even twenty grand would be nice!