1989 VW Passat GT – Classified of the Week

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By Dale Vinten

Estate cars float our boat. You know this. So when this particular 1989 VW Passat GT barge popped up for sale on Car and Classic we just had to feature it as our classified of the week. We see a lot of wagons come through the site, from old school Volvos to BMW E30 Tourings and everything in between, and we love them all, but it’s a rare thing for a Passat GT to rear its head considering how few of them there are left on the road. And this late ’80s model looks to be a bit of a peach too.

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Introduced in 1988 the Passat B3, as it was known, was available as a saloon or as an estate. Based on the Mk2 Golf platform the Passat was enlarged somewhat but shared a lot of its componentry with the smaller car. The fuel-injected, four-cylinder engine was mounted transversely and was offered in 1.8. and 2.0-litre guises (both 8-valve and 16-valve), as well as 1.6 and 1.9-litre diesel variants, depending on where you were in the world. VW’s supercharged G60 motor was also available along with their 2.8-litre VR6 engine should you want the full fat, 172bhp version of the car.

This particular 1989 VW Passat GT Estate is of the 1.8, 8-valve variety and although not quite as eager to get down the road as its more well-endowed brothers, it’s still a great car that handles well and is reliable and practical at the same time. It’s a rare beast too. If the advertiser is to be believed then there are only 7 of these cars left on the road so the chances of coming across another are very slim indeed. Not only that but it appears to be in superb overall condition, boasting a comprehensive service history and zero rust. There’s a lot to like here.

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The car has covered 110,000 miles which isn’t a whole heck of a lot for these cars and they are reliable if looked after correctly, which this one obviously has been. Following a recent full service including a new timing belt and water pump, as well as a fresh MOT, this 80s estate is ready to roll. There may be “a few small car park dings” but that shouldn’t put you off from buying and enjoying what is a pretty tidy car overall. The only real issue we can see is the small area of wear to the driver’s seat but this would be a relatively cheap and easy fix and the rest of the interior, along with that Corrado VR6 dashboard, appears to be in great shape.

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Despite the GT badge this isn’t a particularly sporty steed and with less than 100bhp it’s not going to set the streets ablaze with its performance but that’s not the point. The Passat GT is a cool car in our eyes, even more so in estate form and it will easily hold its value, especially if it continues to be looked after and regularly maintained. Keep it stock or drop it a few inches on some Borbets for a little more street cred, just be sure to curb any delusions of grandeur and enjoy it for what it is. Either way it’s a fantastic modern classic that can be used every day and you’ll still feel like you’re driving something a little bit special, a little bit exclusive, so count out four grand and snap it up please, before we do.

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