Locally Sourced | Mar. 25-29

3:18:00 AM GRIPSET Co. Founder 0 Comments

Jonathan L. " 2004 Volkswagen R32"

WHO SHOT YA'! Photos by Jason Manchester, Gripsets 'official' Canadian photographer. Like all our staff, whom supported GS from the start, today he drops his first featured shoot.

Euro-sweep. There's no short of euro love in world, and certainly not in Canada. From the German depths of warfare to a civilian battle in the streets, the VW Autogroup marched into our lives. What was once a war vessel that could drive in and out of water created a way for the future. The VW beetle was truly a world renowned auto, and made famous by such movies, like; "( Herbie ) The Love Bug." The Golf/Rabbit; successor to the beetle, did not make it's official claim to fame until the mid 1970's, when the company captivated buyers with it's new release, that finally surpassed the beetle; ironic term - 'dubbed'  the Golf ( rabbit for the US market ). Beginning it's life as a fwd sohc the Golf was intriguing like that new hot guy/girl in school. The R32 just further skyrocketed that to new heights. It was, and is, VW performance. It's all-wheel drive system, coupled with a 3.2L V6 engine producing 240bhp 236ftlbs of torque made it a surface-to-surface missile. But once it hit the hands of Jonathan L; the possibilities became infinite. Drizzled in VW 's signature "Black Magic" paint, the urge to make a menacing ride was inevitable. With double the factory power after mods, read on, boost on, with this story that passion built.......

The Motivation
In 2003 when VW decided to shoehorn a 3.2L VR6 engine and Haldex 4 wheel drive system into a Golf it became my dream car... the ultimate hot hatch and the pinnacle of the Golf platform. When the car came to the US they sold out quickly and until 2008, bumper laws made the cars illegal to import. Living in Canada, owning a MK4 VW R32 seemed like an unattainable dream…

My first two cars were Volkswagen's, a ’95 Gti and a 2004 GLi however in 2009 with the rising fuel prices, I decided to step away from the VW scene and settle down into a cheap, reliable, Honda Civic. I regretted it the day I drove off the lot. It wasn't just the car and the sense of quality and attention to detail I missed, it was also the VW community, the waves and nods from fellow dubberz that I would get driving by. It's funny that Honda advertises "Civic Nation" because I never experienced any of that when I had my Civic. So in the summer of 2011 when I came across a local MK4 R32 on Craigslist I jumped on it right away. It had a trashed interior, cracked windshield, damaged paint but I didn’t think twice and bought it on the spot. As I drove away I couldn’t help but feel that this was a homecoming for me. My motivation since ownership has been to bring it back to the condition it deserves and then to take it to its full potential. The MKVI Golf R had just been announced and I wanted to make sure that my MKIV would not be outclassed. Being away from the VW community made me appreciate it more so I also immersed myself back into the local dubberz.com forum and reached out to those who could help me achieve my goals. This car is as much a product of the local VW community as it is mine.


CTS Stage 4 Turbo Kit – Precision HP6262s-B 68ar T4 vband | 409 all wheel HP  458lbft @ 23psi on 94 Octane | C2 Motorsports 550cc Tune | CTS Turbo 3” turbo back exhaust | Greddy Profec B Spec II Boost Controller

Clutchmasters FX400 Clutch | Dieselgeek Short Shifter

Carbon Creations Carbon Fiber Boser hood | JOM Honehcomb Grille | SEAT Cupra Lip | Smoked HID Headlights | Smoked M3 style taillights | Stubby Antenna

Custom Seats by Velocity Upholstery | Euro Full FIS Gauge cluster in KPH | Pioneer Double DIN DVD deck | PODI Electronic Boost Gauge | TWM Performance shift knob

Wheels / Suspension
3pc Porsche Kinesis 3.6 cup – Chrome dipped | 17x8.5 Front 205/45/17 | 17x9.5 Rear 215/45/17 | FK Silverline Plus X Coilovers | Unibrace XB

Future Plans
I have parts all over my living room right now! I’m currently working on retrofitting HIDs into another set of headlights as well as installing power folding stubby mirrors. Running low on 17” wheels has also been pretty new for me. I drive my car daily and I’m seeing the benefits of airride suspension so I think that mod has moved up the schedule. I also have plans to have my pillars and headliner recovered to match the seats. That’s all….. for now…

Shout Outs
Big thanks to the following for their help and support:
Clay Marshall and the boys at CTS Turbo
Tim Cardon, Velocity Upholstery, for your mad upholstery skills
Jeff at PG Performance for your brilliant work and generosity,
Static Captains crew for keepin' it real,
Lastly, I really do have to thank my fellow dubberz who have helped me work on my car: Steve, electronics guru, Tyler who’s always been willing to help even into the wee hours of the morning and Jason, wheel fitment expert who’s always down to shoot my car and who arranged this feature.

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