We’re still waiting for Pandem or Prior Design to release the first great body kit for the new Golf R, the Mk8. It’s a fantastic hot hatch, good at almost everything, but there’s always something lacking in the design department. Not this one though, because the 3D piece of art by Avante Design is mid-engined and boasts a complete widebody kit.
Avante is one of the best makers of digital body kits, and we can’t wait to see his 3D models being produced. One for the Honda Civic is on its way, but this widebody, mid-engined machine probably can’t happen without VW’s support.
The artist calls this a rear-engined Mk8 and says it’s going back to the roots of the VW Beetle. But we don’t buy it. Europe had a whole era of making mid-engined cars from hot hatchbacks. Yes, the engine is at the back, behind the driver… but it’s more in the middle than anything else. Not like an old 911, where it’s hanging over the butt of the car.
Every VW fan will see this rendering and instantly think of one official VW concept, maybe one of the craziest hatches of all time. In 2007, CEO Martin Winterkorn asked his engineers to create a Golf supercar for that year’s GTI meet, and the mighty W12 engine was stuffed in the back of an Mk5 to create the Golf GTI W12-650. Making 650 horsepower, it was enough to send the car to 201 mph.
The Golf W12 was also 6 inches wider than stock and came with a lot of custom parts made out of carbon fiber, which was still uncommon at the time. Avante’s 2023 Golf R looks about as wide, but it’s also designed using modern techniques, boasting complex shapes and sharp lines.
The Golf R is full of air ducts, all finished in bright orange on the inside. Carbon fiber blades also define the sharp ground effects of this kit, reminiscent of the world of Group B rally cars also reminding us of the Golf Rallye R60.
So what engine goes into what robot?
The engine is right in the middle of the car, a Ferrari unit with lots of exotic components, breathing fresh air thanks to large intakes around the rear widebody or the roof scoop.
Knowing Avante’s past work, we feel like there’s an anime theme to this. There are plenty of purple Gundam mobile suits that match this look. The closest would be an AMS-123X Varguil from Mobile Suit Moon Gundam. The most famous purple mecha of all time is, of course, EVA-01 from Evangelion. Which do you think was the inspiration here?
The only real car to ever match this level of lunacy is a widebody, mid-engine Mk1 Golf GTI with 1200 horsepower. It makes 1200 horsepower, was designed by Kyza, and belongs to a renowned German tuner/car modifier JP Performance / Jean Pierre Kraemer.