The Volkswagen Corrado was in production from 1988 through 1995. The cars were finally offered for sale in the United States beginning in 1990. The car was developed by Volkswagen and built by Karmann in Osnabruck, Germany. It was a three-door hatchback coupe with 2+2 seating layout. All models (except for the VR6) had sub-frames, suspension, steering and braking components from the A2 platform (also found on the MK2 Golf and Jetta). The VR6 had suspension components from the A3 model range, including the rear axle assembly and some parts of the A3's front axle assembly.
The Corrado VR6 had a wider front-wheel track which necessitated the fitting of new front wings and wider wheel arches and liners along with a new front bumper assembly. The larger VR6 engine required a raised-style bonnet.
All versions of the Corrados were front-wheel drive and powered by petrol engines. When introduced, it was available with two engine choices, a 1.8 liter, 16-valve inline-four that developed 136 horsepower. A scroll supercharged 1.8-liter, eight-valve four (marketed as the G60) delivered 160 horsepower.
In 1992, two new engines became available, a 2-liter, 16 valve, 136 horsepower, four-cylinder which was not available in North America, and a 12-valve VR6 unit. The VR6 engine came in two flavors, a 2.8-liter developing nearly 180 horsepower and sent to the United States and Canada markets and a 2.8-liter version which developed 192 horsepower for the European market. The United States VR6 model was marketed as the Corrado SLC (sport luxury coupe).
With the introduction of the VR6 engine, the G60 engine was fazed out from the North American market after 1992 and European market in 1993.
The VR6 engine featured two-cylinder banks angled at a 15-degree angle with a single cylinder head. In this configuration the six-cylinder engine was able to fit in places previously occupied by four-cylinder units. Though not as smooth as the straight-six, it was surprisingly smooth.
1994 was the final year for the model in the United States. 87 examples were sent to Canada for 1995. Production continued for the European market, but ceased after 213 examples were produced. The United Kingdom had a limited production model called the Corrado VR6 Storm. These versions had 'Storm' badging, a colour-keyed front grille, and 15-inch BBS 'Solitude' alloy wheels. 500 examples were produced with 250 in Classic Green with a cream leather interior, and 250 in Mystic Blue, a colour unique to the Storm, with a black leather interior.
By Daniel Vaughan | Dec 2011