The hatchback, a very popular car. Something you average driver can afford and use. Easy, compact and reliable, so, why is it that the Volkswagen Golf has garnered such a high-class cult status? The story started almost 45 years ago with the original 1983 GTI Mark 1. Which was based on the VW Rabbit, and delivered what no economy car at the time could—fun! Entertaining to drive, with taut handling and reasonable acceleration, for the early 1980s at least. It was something the market hadn’t seen before, it was young and fresh. The original Golf Mk1 was a front-wheel drive, front-engined replacement for the air-cooled, rear-engined, rear-wheel drive Volkswagen Beetle. In 1987, the Mark II GTI came along and offered a 16-valve model pushing out a 123 hp (impressive at the time) and quickly adopted the nickname as “the original hot hatch”. The next few generations of GTI became turbocharged and even V-6-powered. In 2003 VW created a special 20th anniversary U.S. edition with a firmer suspension and more serious components, this paved the way for each future model to grow and mature getting better and better each year.
Though it’s those first two generations of GTI that created the fan base and later aftermarket industry for these front-drive fun machines. That doesn’t mean that the latest VW gen doesn’t have it's place in bringing back much of the fun of the earlier cars. The current Golf GTI is a 217-hp, all-wheel-drive monster GTI that can hit 60 mph in around 6.5 seconds. That, of course, is before the Behemoth amount of mods available for the car. A fact of which Mahmoud I. Hamed took full advantage of with his 2015 VW MK7 GTI.
AM: What cars have you previously owned? And did you modify any of them?
MH: I have a bit of a thing for VW’s. Previously owning two, including a MK4 GTI and Jetta V5 but I’ve also owned Renault Clio Sport 182. All three of my previous car were modified.
AM: Did you buy this car with the intention of modifying it? and how long before you decided and started the modification process?
MH: Of course. The GTI is made to be modified. With 45 years of legacy behind it, every mod guy wants to eventually get their hands on one and see what they can do with it, how far they can push it. I knew before I even bought the car I was going to start with the mods, in fact, I even ordered and brought some of the parts before I’d even bought the car. Why did you decide to modify it? I wanted to create a car that reflected my personality, it was about following my passion for modifications, all while creating a car I would love and could enjoy.
AM: Where have you got the majority of the parts from? Were the of the parts installed by a garage or did you do any yourself?
MH: The parts that I couldn’t get in Bahrain I ordered online and the rest I got through Aryan Xtreme here in Bahrain. To answer your second question, the majority of the mods were installed at the dealer I always made sure I was on top of them, with timings etc. and then some parts that had no technical difficulties I installed myself (I’m not a mechanic Geek, I’m just a good researcher with wild visions).
AM: What is the before and after affects of the modification? Max speed, power etc. and if you don’t mind saying, how much money have you spent?
MH: Simply an 80% power increase, and full satisfaction. The max speed the car is now capable of is 280 km/H, 373WHP / 393Nm. Money wise I have a heart attack just thinking about it. A lot.
AM: How much time have you spent on this car? Has it been an enjoyable project? And how is the car to drive now compared to how it was before?
MH: In total it took 18 months to complete and I got a hell of a lot of enjoyment out of the whole process. I use the car daily, its comfortable to drive and I now
have the added power and performance, and well as the pleasure of knowing the car is 100% me.
AM: Do you plan to make future modifications to this car? And will you race it, or is it more of a show piece?
MH: Yes, there are a few remaining mods to be done, and I will update you when they are completed. And as for races, I do enter a few legal races, but as I mentioned its mainly my daily driver, and its just for me.
AM: Would you do this again? with another car and modify it? If so, what car? and what mods? What would be your dream mod project?
MH: Dream project would Definitely have to be a BMW M4 F82, as for doing this again, yes of course. I will never stop, its my passion. Hopefully my next project will be M from BMW, I want to experience the RWD, using the same mods, exterior, interior, engine and improve the safety.
AM: Do you have any advice for anyone thinking about modifying their car?
MH: Always do full research before ordering even a single part and don’t spend money on cheap mods, always make sure to work in unparalleled power & Safety.