Volkswagen Reprises Blue Lagoon GLI for 2021 Show Car

volkswagen reprises blue lagoon gli for 2021 show car

Among water-cooled Volkswagen aficionados, the Mark 5 2004 Jetta GLI in a color called Blue Lagoon has become a unicorn. With this in mind, for 2021 Volkswagen rolled out a Jetta GLI concept car that reprises its sought-after predecessor.

Volkswagen limited the GTI 1337, a special edition made two years prior to the Blue Lagoon GLI, to just 1,500 examples. However, the GLI, a sedan with a body kit, BBS wheels, and Recaro seats just like the 1337, wasn’t designated as a special edition, and consequently, no record exists as to how many were produced in this exact configuration and paint color. Regardless, “The Jetta GLI has been an enthusiast favorite throughout its 37-year history,” said Sean Maynard, Volkswagen’s enthusiast and motorsport marketing specialist. “Paying tribute to the Mk4 with this build concept celebrates the passion that goes into these vehicles.”

Under the supervision of former Volkswagen product launch manager Andres Valbuena, a 2021 Jetta GLI Autobahn with a manual transmission was modified in the spirit of the 2004 model. Using a 2004 GLI’s fuel door to match the blue lagoon color, he and his team were able to come up with a shade that Orafol, the vinyl wrap manufacturer, calls midnight blue metallic. Wrapping the car in its entirety, door jambs and other pieces included, even when the doors, hood, or trunk are opened, it has the appearance of a car that’s been painted.

Air Design, the Oceanside, California-based studio for Mexico’s Air Design S.A. de C.V., a manufacturer of body kits, installed the exterior side skirts, and rear trunk spoiler, before Fifteen52 put the front lower spoiler in place. 20-inch BBS CH-R wheels, with Continental ExtremeContact Sport 235/35 ZR20 tires, were mounted by AlphaParts, and H&R Springs’ street performance coil-over suspension kit was utilized to provide the GLI with a more aggressive-looking attitude than it had previously.

The only interior modifications were Recaro Ergomed ES leather front seats, and a golf ball shift knob from Black Forest Industries. From start to finish, it took Valbuena’s team a little over a month to complete the build.

The first of what is being called the 2021 Volkswagen Enthusiast Fleet, can be seen at car shows and events across the country, a list of which was not provided.

[Images: Volkswagen]

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  • EX35 EX35 on Feb 28, 2021

    The hell with the color. Bring back the 6yr B2B warranty. No way I will own one of these outside a warranty.

  • Speedlaw Speedlaw on Feb 28, 2021

    This is funny. My GTi Mk2, had...BBS wheels, Recaro Seats, and a Golf Ball shift knob. The suspension won't pass US regs, too low. So, they did the exact same thing they did back then. I hope Air Design didn't get paid too much for this "design". Also, 20 inch wheels ? Only if you live in Germany.

  • FreedMike Back in the '70s, the one thing keeping consumers from buying more Datsuns was styling - these guys were bringing over some of the ugliest product imaginable. Remember the F10? As hard as I try to blot that rolling aberration from my memory, it comes back. So the name change to Nissan made sense, and happened right as they started bringing over good-looking product (like the Maxima that will be featured in this series). They made a pretty clean break.
  • Flowerplough Liability - Autonomous vehicles must be programmed to make life-ending decisions, and who wants to risk that? Hit the moose or dive into the steep grassy ditch? Ram the sudden pile up that is occurring mere feet in front of the bumper or scan the oncoming lane and swing left? Ram the rogue machine that suddenly swung into my lane, head on, or hop up onto the sidewalk and maybe bump a pedestrian? With no driver involved, Ford/Volkswagen or GM or whomever will bear full responsibility and, in America, be ambulance-chaser sued into bankruptcy and extinction in well under a decade. Or maybe the yuge corporations will get special, good-faith, immunity laws, nation-wide? Yeah, that's the ticket.
  • FreedMike It's not that consumers wouldn't want this tech in theory - I think they would. Honestly, the idea of a car that can take over the truly tedious driving stuff that drives me bonkers - like sitting in traffic - appeals to me. But there's no way I'd put my property and my life in the hands of tech that's clearly not ready for prime time, and neither would the majority of other drivers. If they want this tech to sell, they need to get it right.
  • TitaniumZ Of course they are starting to "sour" on the idea. That's what happens when cars start to drive better than people. Humanpilots mostly suck and make bad decisions.
  • Inside Looking Out Why not buy Bronco and call it Defender? Who will notice?