This VW Cabrio Is One Adorable Way To Go Surprisingly Fast

Screenshot: The Smoking Tire (YouTube)

“There’s nothing stock on this car,” automotive journalist and test driver Jason Cammisa explains as he introduces his adorably simple-looking Volkswagen Cabrio. Looking is the key word there—make no mistake this basket is bad-ass.

You’ve probably seen Cammisa’s face or byline if you’ve been following car stuff for a while. He’s a self-described fan of cars that are small and delicate, and his personal fleet pretty much reflects that.

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This build came about because he was looking for something with a convertible top, four seats and a short enough wheelbase to reasonably park in San Francisco. The current engine, which is a mechanical Frankenstein’s monster of a bunch of Volkswagen powerplants, apparently makes about 165 horsepower with 11:1 compression.

“How long was this stock,” The Smoking Tire’s Zack Klapman asks.

“Eleven miles.”

The video description gets a little more specific on that:

2.0-liter (9A) block, shaved 1.8-liter 16V head (PL) with Euro intake and cams (KR). Full Scirocco 16V driveline swap (10.1-inch / 9.4-inch discs and 18.5:1, 3.3-turn rack). Koni shocks all around. TSW alloy wheels Hockenheim 15x7s. Mk2 GTI 16V seats. Much other stuff.⁣⁣⁣ ⁣⁣⁣ Weighs 2,399 lb (full tank of gas, subwoofer, etc). 0-60 in about 6.7, will do about 122 flat-out according to the math.

Based on the disposition of the people in the car in this video, it sounds like the labor that has gone into this thing was well spent. This plucky little car looks like an absolute riot.

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About the author

Andrew P. Collins

Reviews Editor, Jalopnik | 1975 International Scout, 1984 Nissan 300ZX, 1991 Suzuki GSXR, 1998 Mitsubishi Montero, 2005 Acura TL