The VW Syndicate 10th VW-Audi meet, Kaufpark, Goettingen

DSC_0064The Volkswagen-Audi scene in Europe, and more specifically Germany, is quite unlike any other scene anywhere in the world. What’s impressive is the sheer size of it; the high quality of the cars and the boundaries that are pushed in trying to create something new. If you take a look at a lot of the trends influencing modified cars around the world, a fair percentage of them originated from the German Volkswagen scene.

DSC_0165Any Given Reason happened to purely stumble upon this show in Goettingen, central Germany. Whilst it was tiny compared to the likes of famous shows such as Edition 38, its approximately 300 cars still provided a good indication as to the trends currently influencing the scene. Given that the Volkswagen/Audi scene is all about trends, this is a perfect chance to take a look at a few of them.

DSC_0087The first trend that’s been around since the dawn of time and doesn’t look to be going anywhere soon is the classic Volkswagen Golf/BBS mesh combination. And why would want to change it? It’s a look that’s been honed to perfection. BBS could be found on everything from Mk1’s right up to the latest Mk6 and 7.

DSC_0069Using the OEM stock wheels from a ‘higher’ manufacturer wowed the scene a few years back when somebody first fitted a set of Bentley Continental rims and this trend has only become more and more popular since then.

DSC_0034Probably my favorite example was this Bora Wagon riding on what looks like matte white painted BMW X5 wheels.

DSC_0077Porsche wheels (Porsche badged, at least) have been popular for some time now. The stance on this Bora does look kind of mean, until you remember that Bora’s aren’t rear wheel drive, making both the width and offset of those rear rollers vaguely ridiculous in comparison to the narrower fronts.

DSC_0050This Audi A6 took it a step further with an Audi R8 fuel door and Bentley fuel cap.

DSC_0142The ultimate incarnation of the OEM theme turned out to be my favorite car of the show. Not only was this B5 RS4 Avant riding on wheels from the latest model 2013 RS4…

DSC_0143… but it also was fitted with that car’s full carbon ceramic brake package, front and rear. I think this RS4 was such a favorite because it effortlessly blends both form and function, seemingly sacrificing neither.

DSC_0055One trend that surprised me in its popularity was trimmed engine bays. I’ve seen this before but it was usually reserved only for dedicated show cars, but there were a number of what looked like street driven cars all sporting this questionable modification.

DSC_0047It doesn’t really make a whole lot of sense to me, but hey, who am I to judge?

DSC_0171One thing I will judge as completely ridiculous was this Skoda. Yes, that is a full leather wrap. Let’s hope this one doesn’t catch on.

DSC_0032Panels of vinyl wrap are also increasingly popular…

DSC_0129… especially the ‘sticker’ wrap, where on this occasion the Volkswagen scene is taking influence directly from the JDM scene. You can buy this sticker wrap by the meter, and this guy had obviously bought this one from Australia, of all places. Nissansilvia.com and Hardtuned.net are Australian websites, and Iron Chef Imports is an Adelaide based business! The world is actually quite small, really.

DSC_0130DSC_0135Incorporating old alcohol bottles and cans is another area where the Volkswagen scene is taking influence, this time from the American rockabilly/hot rod scene.

DSC_0081The American custom influence has always been big on Beetles; especially this one with the chopped roof, two tone paint and pinstriping.

DSC_0086It’s the little details that make these cars, such as the wire drinks basket on the center console. I can’t quite see what those cans are, although I was half expecting them to be Pokari Sweat! Interestingly, this Beetle was the only air cooled car at the show. Same brand, two very different scenes.

DSC_0151Insert Pirelli/crashing/Formula 1 joke here.

DSC_0117There were still a few lingering vestiges of the old Euro Tuner scene that haven’t quite disappeared yet. It’s an endangered species, though.

DSC_0118Okay, I can understand the connection between the Polo’s place of manufacture, nearby Wolfsburg, and the Wolf. But really?

DSC_0120And uh, 1998 called, they want their airbrushed Nokia 3310 back.

DSC_0109But possibly the single biggest trend is attention to detail, and the Volkswagen guys have always been ahead of the game in this department. Just check out these wheels – they had been polished, then masked, and then sandblasted to give a combination matte/gloss effect. Cool.

DSC_0045Regardless of the type of car…

DSC_0073… style…

DSC_0114… or age, you could pretty much count on any car to be exceptionally clean and well detailed.

DSC_0061Because people start with essentially the same blank canvas and there’s so many people doing it, imagination and creativity are king in the Volkswagen world. Some hit and some miss, but I personally can’t wait to see what these guys come up with in the future.

DSC_0106Words and photos by Andrew Coles

 

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3 Comments

  1. Robert August 25, 2013 Reply

    Great write up... AGAIN!
    Really enjoying your articles on your working holiday Andrew!!
    In my experience, Germany especially is positively geared to its manufacturing and transport systems, they encourage this sort of thing and embrace motorists and motoring enthusiasts alike. If you've ever driven one of their vehicles or on their roads, you'll know what I mean.

    I guess that's also why their car manufacturers are making such profits and other not so much. Not only do they make, imo, an excellent product, they also have the landscape to best use it to its full potential, but in terms of speed and luxury!

    • Andrew Coles September 2, 2013 Reply

      Hi Robert,

      Thanks very much for your comments! I'm not sure I'd exactly call it a proper working holiday... I've got the work part sussed, but I haven't really figured out the getting paid side of it just yet, so it will unfortunately have to stop soon :)

      It's actually been really interesting going to different countries and observing the different approaches to law enforcement and its effect on driving and car standards. IMO, the countries with the strictest police and heaviest vehicle modification laws generally have the worst/most unsafe drivers. I think us as Australians with such a large country can learn a lot from places like Germany.

      Of course the problem with Germany at the moment comes from the fact that their car industry, like all their others, is doing so well. A lot of people are questioning why they should be bailing out other EU states like Italy and Greece... but that's a whole other story!

      Andrew

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