Greatest road tests ever: Volkswagen Corrado 16v

Greatest road tests ever: Volkswagen Corrado 16v

Tested 29.7.92

The revised Corrado featured a new grille, reshaped bonnet and fresh alloy wheels, while the Mk2 Golf GTl-sourced 1.8-litre engine was replaced with a torquier 2.O-litre unit from the Passat. 

Still, the car retained the best front-drive chassis around, with abundant grip, impeccable balance and the ability to forgive any indiscretions. Feel was superb, and the car took inputs from steering and throttle in equal measure.

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The sombre interior had excellent ergonomics and felt rock solid in its build quality. Passenger and luggage space were reasonable – although the rear bucket seats felt rather claustrophobic.

The better peak torque, accessed lower than before, improved in-gear stats, but the 1.8 was quicker through the gears, and the new engine also lacked refinement. The sloppy, tall-geared Passat ’box didn’t help matters. That the Corrado could shine so brightly, despite such a weak powertrain, spoke volumes of its chassis’ talents.

FOR Handling, feel, driving position, packaging, styling AGAINST Coarse engine, sloppy gearchange, rear seats

Price £17,192 Engine 4 cyls in line, 1984cc, petrol Power 136bhp at 5800rpm Torque 132Ib ft at 4400rpm 0-60mph 10.2sec 0-100mph 30.4sec Standing quarter mile 17.8sec, 81mph Top speed 126mph Economy 31.3mpg

WHAT HAPPENED NEXT… The Corrado’s halo model arrived soon after in the form of the 190bhp 2.9-litre VR6. Usurping the short-lived 16Obhp supercharged 1.8-litre G6O, it reached 60mph in around 7.0sec and could hit 144mph.

Sadly, VW called time on the Corrado in 1995 and a Golf-based coupé stayed off-menu until the Mk3 Scirocco arrived in 2008.