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68 MIN READ TIME

FINE AND CANDY

Words: Tony Saggu

“It’s the colour,” explained Craig Levens while carefully massaging the microfibre over his candy-coated creation. “People love the colour, I get asked over and over what colour it is.” The 30- something Cumbrian custom car connoisseur is used to fielding colour queries; this one-off GTI is not his first attempt at a hot hue on a mad motor: “I had a bright orange Subaru STI before this,” he told us. “I was deep into the Scooby scene back then and the car had every modification available on it, as well as a lot of custom stuff.” Craig was obviously munching on the Scooby snacks pretty hard; the 450bhp flat-four 4x4 cost a rumoured £100,000 in parts and labour. Strong money indeed, but Craig did get a lot of Subi silverware and legend status among Fast Car types, bagging ‘Best in Britain’ in 2009 didn’t hurt either.

Photos: John Colley

While what he’s trying to express may have changed, Craig’s got the hang of using colour to make a statement, but fast and loud have given way to cool and classy. “The car has undergone a couple of makeovers to get it to where it is now, but playing with colour has really changed its character all through the project,” he said. Craig admits the GTI was nice enough straight out-of-the-box, aside from a little rims-and- springs action he was content to leave it factory fresh. “My friend had one,” recalled Craig. “It was awesome to drive, from the first minute I drove one I knew I had to own one.”

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About Performance VW

Welcome to the Cool Britannia issue. The UK scene continues to push boundaries, bring out ideas and develop trends and put simply, blow our collective minds. So we thought it was about time we put together a special issue packed full of some of the UK’s finest cars to drop over the last year. With the flawless execution of Martin Barker’s restomod’d two-door Audi 80 to Jim Offord’s impeccable Mk2 G60 and Carl Levy’s homegrown Mk1 Caddy we’ve got the old school covered. And with Shaun Lewis’ ever-evolving T5 and Craig Levens’ incredible Mk5 we’ve got the new school wrapped up too. We haven’t forgotten the smaller Dubs either, Jamie Jackson’s 400bhp Lupo is a real giant-slayer and Jake Belfied’s carbed Mk2 Polo Coupe proves you don’t have to build a Golf to take the showfield by storm. Like the cars themselves, PVW magazine continues to grow, push boundaries and hopefully, inspire people as it goes. We’re in this together, and it’s a great place to be, Enjoy the issue.