First introduced in 1974, Italian designer Giorgetto Giugiaro conceived of the Volkswagen Scirocco as a hatchback coupe that shared a floor plan and mechanicals with the VW Golf. VW released the second generation Scirocco, the Mk2, in 1981. Midway through 1986 Volkswagen released the 1.8-litre Scriocco 16V. Powered by a new multi-valve engine, the 16V was the quickest and most powerful Volkswagen in production.
Volkswagen made several significant changes during the 1986 model year. The Scirocco GT gained a GTX style body kit; the GTS was now available with a 1,588cc GTL engine; and VW dropped the GTL model completely. The Scirocco GTX-P acquired alloy wheels and a spoiler. Most significant was the release of the 1,781cc Scirocco GTX 16V. While the MK2s production run ended in 1992, as of 2010, VW continues to develop the Scirocco for European markets.
Different Scirocco models were powered by either a 1,457cc or 1,588cc engine; in the second half of 1986 VW released the 1,781cc 16V. With a high compression ratio of 10.00 to 1, the 1.8-litre, multi-valve, inline four-cylinder engine was mated to a five-speed transmission. Producing 137hp at 6,300rpm, the advanced 16V engine redlined at 7,200rpm, slightly below Ferrari's highest-revving V-8 engines of the period.
With a wheelbase of 94.4 inches, the 1986 Scirocco was 159.4 inches long, 64.2 inches wide and 51 inches high. Ground clearance was 4.1 inches. The front-wheel drive Scirocco's performance was enhanced by a low curb weight of 970kg. New body features for 1986 included fender flares and a large, functional rear spoiler.
The Scirocco 16V could accelerate from zero to 60mph in 7.90 seconds, a figure that outperformed a Porsche 944 at half the cost. Acceleration from zero to 50mph occurred in 6.10 seconds. With a top speed of 127mph, the 1986 Scirocco could complete a standing quarter-mile in 16.30 seconds.
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