Last updated: November 2, 2014

Project "Ultimate 1983 Rabbit GTI"
Interior ...

 

Index of Project web pages

Project Overview, Goals & Initial design specs
Project car initial condition
Chassis development
Bodywork & Paint
Suspension, Wheels, Tires & Braking System
Engine & Transmission

Electrical & Fuel System
Interior
Performance validation
VW Vortex Thread on this project
Videos
My original 1983 Rabbit GTI (owned 1983-1987)

 

While the original GTI midnight blue seat fabric was in generally good shape, I took the approach of getting SMS Fabrics to custom make all new OEM spec GTI seat fabric material and I am getting the seats, front and rear, completely re-built with new bushings, foam and fabric. I will also install deluxe new OEM looking carpet and headliner. The dash looks pretty good but I will take care to make sure every inch of the interior looks stock and mint. That said, there will be some minor trick additions: a hidden (in the 1 DIN stereo location) Clarion VZ401 flip out 7" LCD monitor audio control unit and a killer audio system using Boston Acoustics speakers, hidden in the stock speaker locations, with the addition of larger drivers under the dash and in the trunk area. Gotta have state-of-the-art sound and Bluetooth smarkphone calls and wireless audio streaming capabilities ...

 

SMS supplied original OEM VW Rabbit GTI Midnight Blue fabric (so much nicer than the old faded/worn material - it turns out I got the last of it. Oh my!) ...

 

 

Clarion VZ401 Audio Head Unit, Boston Acoustics S35, S75 Speakers mounted in stock locations, 6x9" speakers hidden under dash and in the rear, and a 10" sub-woofer hidden in spare tire well with amplifiers (I will keep the LCD hidden unless I need to program it) ...

 

I have been working on the rear suspension system over the past week at the same time that I have been working on the seat frames and replacement foam. I have a great seat guy that has already cut all of the midnight blue fabric and sewn in the 1/4" foam on the backs of each of the 'panels' while I have been welding up the seat frames where they are weak and tend to flex and crack around the tops of the front seat frames. I also custom cut some extra firm foam for the seat bottoms - a tough, delicate process when shaping the side bolsters. I will finish painting the seat frames when my black SPI epoxy arrives and then my seat guy will finish them off. BTW, I was able to purchase new plastic replacement parts from VW Air Heads and will color match them soon. - April 14, 2014

Starting the dying process ...

Starting the foam cutting process ...

Welding up the tops of the seats ...

 

The rear seats are now complete and the fronts are 80% done - July 20, 2014

 

The front seats are also now complete - August 5, 2014

 

I got the steering wheel back from Custom Craft today: they re-wrapped the wheel with 1mm of foam and then soft leather. I am very pleased with the end result: a very nice feel to it, not too soft, not too firm, just the right diameter, with the stitching where my fingers want to engage it. I will treat the leather to match the soft gloss of the vinyl center section - October 8, 2014

 

Index of Project web pages

Project Overview, Goals & Initial design specs
Project car initial condition
Chassis development
Bodywork & Paint
Suspension, Wheels, Tires & Braking System
Engine & Transmission

Electrical & Fuel System
Interior
Performance validation
VW Vortex Thread on this project
Videos
My original 1983 Rabbit GTI (owned 1983-1987)

 

 

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