The Car That Killed VW Motorsports - Driving and Tearing into the MK8 Golf GTI TCR

The Car That Killed VW Motorsports - Driving and Tearing into the MK8 Golf GTI TCR

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(car engine growling) (car engine revving) (exhaust pipe crackling) (car engine revving) (birds chirping) (gentle bright music) - [Nate] Sitting right next to me is a Mark 8 Golf TCR. Now this is a car I was super excited about and could not wait to be turned into a proper touring car and see what it could do on the racetrack. Now unfortunately, Volkswagen Motorsport pulled the plug from the program before the car was fully developed and finished. But what we're left with is this awesome zebra print prototype that really shows what the car could have been if it was fully finished. So looking at this car, you can see it still has its camo livery on it.

They didn't want people to understand exactly the curvatures of the body, but that really shows what was the development of this car underneath it. You can see different ducting, different surfaces really make this car create a lot of down force, and a lot less drag if you look at the side of this thing. Now, in addition to that, you can see they mounted a lot of stuff really low down to the floor to lower the center of gravity. They really developed a proper touring car that was gonna go against the best of 'em. Now I can't wait to put on my suit, hop in this thing and really give you guys a feel for what this car can do.

(gentle bright music) All right, so here we are in the Mark 8 Golf TCR. A very, very comfortable place to sit. Feels very much like the Mark 7. Let's fire this thing up and let's go. So first thing we're gonna do, main, clutch in.

(car engine purring) (car engine revving) Fire it up. A bunch of different screens, make sure everything's working properly. There's a good one.

All right, clutch out. We're in neutral. We'll spin up the gear box. Now, we're gonna select first gear, and we're gonna give this thing a go.

(car engine revving) (upbeat music) (car engine revving and crackling) (Nate laughs) The smallest throttle (indistinct) this thing. I just want more touring. Out of the gate, the improvements made from the Mark 7 TCR were extremely evident even when driving way below the limit. The first thing you notice is the changing controls. Rather than a full round steering wheel, the car now has a formula car-inspired steering wheel. Weight reduction was another big initiative that the car benefited from compared to the Mark 7.

In the Mark 7, we often had to race slightly over the minimum weight as a car wasn't capable of being any lighter. The Mark 8, on the other hand, was made lighter than the regulations would allow and sported nearly 150 pounds of ballast bolted down to the passenger side floor. The drop in center gravity and moving all the mass towards the center of a car has made the car pivot on a dime. (car engine revving) You could feel the amount of front-end grip from the geometry changes, and the aero became apparent by how planted the car felt in the higher speed sections. (car engine revving) I could feel the additional chassis stiffness the Mark 8 could provide, especially when the road got twisty. With the front wheels locking themselves down to the asphalt, and the rear pivoting around like any proper race hard shift.

(car engine revving) I just want more touring car in my life. (car engine drowns out speaker) This is where racing is at, man. These are the coolest little cars in the world. The power delivery and transmission had been updated as well. While the SADEV gear box remained relatively unchanged, the shift mechanism was updated to a pneumatic actuation, which further increased the speed of the gear changes. In addition, the engine is mechanically similar, but the real magic that Volkswagen was playing with was the engine management ensuring that the driver could get all 420 newton meters of torque to the ground.

(car engine revving and cracking) (upbeat music) Those are no standard pops and gurgles. Instead, what Volkswagen was playing with on this prototype was an anti lag system or ALS. A tuning method used to keep boost pressure on standby at all times. So when the driver gets back on the throttle, the boost is already built up and ready for immediate throttle response.

We'd be lying if we didn't say it sounded equal parts badass as it does hilarious. (car engine revving and cracking) There's a balance bar on the pedal to dial in the front and rear bias along with proportioning valve in the rear to limit pressure spikes. This stops rear lockups on the initial stab of the pedal. The car wants to put you through the windshield under hard break conditions, but has the feel you need to manipulate threshold breaking without ABS. (car engine revving) (upbeat music) As I left both the FCP Euro Proving Grounds, and the main track at Limerock Park, I couldn't help but start to feel for the hardworking engineers and designers who had poured their hearts and souls into this market prototype. The improvements they made from the Mark 7, a car we've become so accustomed to, were so evident.

(car engine revving) Holy crap, I don't even know what to say. This car is so amazing. It is everything.

The Mark 7 was plus a little bit more. Let me hop outta this thing and let me talk to you guys about it a little bit. You know, sitting in this car, it really reminds me of the Mark 7 a lot. But then, you look around and you see all of the things that have just been. The edges that have been polished.

Wow, you sit, it's so low, I can barely see like the mirrors. My eyes are at the level right here. I cannot see where the front wheels are or anything like that, but the car drives so well, like even with this, who knows what setup they had on it, the last test day. There's different springs, all that sort of stuff. The car just handles so well.

When you give it wheel, you can feel the front just bite right in. You can feel the back, kinda pop around the corners where it needs to, and then as soon as you press the throttle, it just takes off in the direction you want it to. It's a super confidence-inspiring car. Definitely feel very comfortable going mirror to mirror, bumper to bumper with people with this thing. One of the things I love about TCR is it's really a driver's car. There's no driver aids whatsoever.

We don't have any traction control. We have no ABS. This is completely just mechanical feel. It's really the way the car used to be. And as you push the tilt and brake pedals and you're pushing fluid into the Alcon calipers, you can really feel everything going on.

And you know, even here, when you start to turn the wheel, you feel the camera changes in the front. You can feel the wheel start to lock up a little bit and you can control it and it's an experience that is just so visceral and so mechanical. And when you get in in the groove with a car like this, it is the most rewarding feeling you could ever feel. I'm so stoked to be able to drive this car and have this opportunity. Big shout out to Volkswagen Classic and Jamie Orr for making this happen. This is really, really amazing.

Now, I am a touring car nerd. I cannot wait to bring this thing back to FCP Euro where we're gonna put it on the lift next to a standard street car market, and we're gonna really dive into the different suspension geometries and anti-rollbars, and the center of gravity, seat heights, all those things that they did to this car to make it perform so well on the track. Stay tuned because we're gonna dive into the details, and we're gonna really get to the bottom of what makes this car such an awesome race car. We do more than just sell car parts at FCP Euro. Whether we're helping you wrench in your car over the weekend with our DIY content, whether we're putting really cool builds out on the road and out in the racetrack, or traveling around the country competing in professional motor sport, subscribe here to learn more.

(gentle upbeat music) So here we are back at FCP Euro in the garage. We have the Mark 8 TCR on one side, and we have a street car Mark 8 on the other. Now we're going to get both of these cars up in the air, and we're really gonna dig into the nuts and bolts of what makes these things so special and, specifically, what makes the TCR different from the street car.

We're gonna dig in behind the fender flares and really see some of the suspension geometry changes, some of the system changes and really see what Volkswagen Motorsport was doing to make this such a great touring car before the program was canceled. All right, so here we are under the hood of the TCR. Now, the first thing you're gonna notice is that there's a lot of stuff missing. There's no big airbox over here, there's no cowl panels and trim pieces over the front. We don't have a battery over here, we don't have a break booster.

There's just a firewall back there, no ABS unit. So there's a lot of stuff missing from this engine bay that really clears up a lot of space and makes it a little bit easier to work on. But then, if you look at the heart of it, you look at the engine, the engine at its core is really the same, it's the EA888 Generation 4 inline turbo four-cylinder. Now this is sort of the bread and butter of Volkswagen engine.

The intake manifold, the throttle body, the valve cover, the coil packs, all of that stuff remain the same. Yes, this has a slightly larger turbo based on the Golf R, but at its core the engine is really the same. Now along with around the engine, you'll see that there are a lot of the substructure around. The front of the car has been cut away.

You can see that over here, the whole basically hangers on the front wings of the car that would hold the fenders in place have been cut away. There's a tube that goes down between the frame rail, and the strut housing over here. And the same thing over here, you can see there's a tube that's basically been grafted in here, but this whole piece of metal that normally lives here has been cut away and these really nice, thin headlight mounts have been put in place to make sure the headlights are mounted in the correct location. Now one of the things they really did well on these cars, and this is very similar to the Mark 7 TCRs is they really reworked the front of the car to make sure it cools effectively. Not only cooling effectively, but reduces the drag and increases the down force on the car.

To do that, what they've done is they put a very low slang radiator in the car. On the Mark 7s, I know this was based on a European model Passat, but that radiator sits very, very low and is actually canted forward a little bit. It actually stops below the throttle body, and what that does is that allows them to mount the inter cooler by itself on top, direct it down a little bit. That allows to divorce the two cooling systems.

So the radiator only has the air going through the radiator in it, and the inter cooler only has the air going through the inter cooler. Whereas on the street car, the air passes through multiple cooling elements and oftentimes, they heat and cool each other differently. So this makes each cooling element work as efficiently as it possibly can when they're divorced from each other. So speaking of the cooling system, we talked about how it is divorced, the intercooler and the radiator always have separate air moving through them.

To make that work even more efficiently, on the front of the car, the bumper is designed to have separate ducting. So this duct right here is only for air coming up through the inter cooler, and then that exits the hood. Now over here, we have a separate duct that's bringing air into the intake system on the car that's going to be plumed straight back to the turbo to be sucked into the engine.

Now finally, the two last ducts on this car are the bottom rectangle here. This is only for the radiator, and then we have brake ducts on either side that are cooling the brakes. That's something that the street car does not have at all.

They have no brake ducts on the street car. That's really a race car only thing. All right, so talking about the substructure. Obviously we talked about the little piece of tube that is basically supporting through here.

You can see that this inner fender is actually really a big part of the aero package in the fenders on this car. Now we'll talk a little bit more about that later, but I wanna show you underneath here, you can see that there's been a lot of modification to the strut tops. This whole support panel has been welded in place here.

We have a different strut top, and then if we actually bring that down, we can actually see that the engine mounts are fully solid. So the transmission mount on this side, and we move over to the engine mount on the other side, they're just basically steel plate that has been welded together. In addition to some of the substructure, I wanna talk about the prototype nature of this car, and the fact that this car is one of one. Now, when you look around, you can see a lot of zip ties, a lot of bungee cords, a lot of things holding things in places that probably weren't gonna be the final solution. But as they were trying to develop the car, they needed ways to hold things down.

So for instance, this intercooler is held down with two zip ties and that's it. Now moving over to the cooling tank, the cooling tank also held in with zip ties. So clearly, they're trying to make room in the car to really develop the car, and they were just basically mounting things. So one of the things driving the car we really noticed was that Volkswagen Motorsport paid special attention to this car and tried to get the weight as low down in the car as possible. That's gonna make the car handle better, make it break better.

Now one of the things they did over here on this side of the engine, the alternator is normally mounted about right here. They've completely remounted the alternator as low as they possibly could on the front of the engine. That's gonna lower the center of gravity, and that's also gonna make the car handle better. Now obviously this is a race car, there is no air conditioning on here, so there's a little bit of stuff removed there. And in addition, we talk about this a little bit, but the turbocharge on this car is based on the Golf R.

It's a slightly larger turbocharger, it's gonna give it a little bit more boost, a little bit more top in power. But remember, these TCR cars are only going for 350 horsepower. So they're really not trying to be monsters, they're just trying to be really efficient and make sure they get 350 horsepower when they need it.

So looking at the aero on the street car, it's a little different than the race car. Specifically, you can see that this car resembles a lot of the Mark 7, yet there's some styling and some small changes made to it. One of the things we did notice is that Volkswagen has really utilized this top grill more for air intake into the airbox than for anything else.

So they're really not utilizing this top portion of the grill for anything cooling or intercooler or anything like that. They're really using this big section down here, which some people love and some people hate, but they're using this to cool the, you know, AC condensers, the intercoolers, the radiators, everything like that. Now in addition to that, they really want this car to cut through the air efficiently to make sure you get good fuel economy when you're traveling down the highway at 75 miles an hour. In order to do that, you can see some updates to the car where there's actually ducting that goes from here, and there's actually little vents right under here in the inner fender that are gonna push air out and around these front wheels, and the wheels tend to be the most unaerodynamic aspect of a car. A wheel spinning just creates a lot of turbulence, a lot of drag.

And so the the OE manufacturers are really working on getting nice, smooth laminar flows around the wheels to reduce emissions and make the car get better fuel economy. Now, let's take a look at the TCR and see how they did that. So here on the TCR, we have a lot of the same principles, but you can see some of the things that are different.

So we talked about the radiator, and the divorce cooling, and how all of this air flows through. Obviously, we have a lot of air flowing through here, the radiator, and that's gonna exit underneath the car. Everything coming through here though is actually gonna exit over top of the car. That's gonna create less air moving under the car, and that's gonna be the start of creating more down force with this machine. Now you see it, everything is also funneled to the center, whereas on the street car, there's a lot of ducks over here on the side and things of that nature. They really moved everything to the center and wanted to seal this up.

That's gonna help them create down force. Now, one of the things you're probably noticing is this big carbon fiber splitter. Now this is a homologated splitter that all TCR cars have to run the same exact splitter, but the way you can effectively use this is the seal up against the bumper. And you can see that Volkswagen really spent some time to create a good solid seal. So what's gonna happen as the air is going to hit here, it's gonna dam up, start to create high pressure.

That high pressure zone is going to push out all around, and when that pushes down, it's gonna push down on the splitter, creating a significant amount of down force. You can see that they've really worked that. And then even into the body, similar to this little fender here, you can see that's almost like a flick. They're trying to pull the car down with the air flowing up over the front of the car. Now in addition to that, we talked about the air moving under.

You never want high pressure air under the car, and the wheel turbulence creates high pressure, sometimes up under the fenders. So Volkswagen has done a lot. One, this vent here that you can see is actually of 3D printed part that they were prototyping to try to release air from inside the fender.

And then, if you look behind the fender here, you can see that there's a big rounded area that's basically just allowing air to flow out from underneath that fender that's gonna help the car suck down to the ground and create some really good down force. So we're talking about the fender. Obviously this inner fender is a really important part.

The way it vents, you can see that I can basically put my hand all the way into the inside of this. This is gonna allow all that turbulent air that's being created in the front wheel. It's gonna come out here. And then, to really control that turbulent air, you can see that this side skirt is pushed way down in the front and almost cuts it off.

So if there's turbulent air coming out from this front wheel, it's gonna take it and it's gonna pass it by the door and not let it slip under the car. Really the goal is to have nice, smooth flow underneath the car that's gonna suck it down to the ground and all that turbulent flow, you want to get it out from around the size of the car. Now this rocker panel, this whole side skirt is really kinda made to somewhat seal the bottom of the car up and create a tunneling effect underneath the car.

Keep the air from moving back and forth between the two. Now in the regulations, they're not allowed to do full tunnels or ground effects like Formula One did back in the late 70's. But obviously, this you can see, within the rules is sealing up to the ground as much as it possibly can. All right, so as you can see here we have the big arches that the TCRs are so well known for, these big, wide arches in this wide stance. Now you can see, actually you can't really see but I'm gonna try to explain it to you. Obviously there's this crazy camo on this car cuz Volkswagen Motorsport didn't want anyone to see what they had been developing on this car.

But what you can see is this arch comes around the top here, it's relatively smooth and goes over the top of the tire, but down here, there's a big undercut and on the side scale, there's a big undercut here. Those undercuts are due to do the same exact thing that the Mark 8 front aero package does around the front wheel. It's really to push the air around and create an air boundary, a smooth air boundary around the wheel so that this turbulent air can exit the back. If I pop the door open, you can really just see how much wider this stance is if you look right here on the door. This is where the door would normally end.

Obviously, this is the addition of the new body work on the race car. Now, coming around the back, you'll really notice that again, dealing with this turbulent airflow from the wheel, they're trying to section it off from the car. So this part never existed on the Mark 7 TCR.

There's a big long winglet that kinda comes off here to keep the turbulent air that's going on inside the wheel here separate from the smooth air coming around the outside of the wheel. Now this would actually really, really amount to a significant reduction in drag, and that reduction in drag's gonna allow the car to go faster than the straightaways, accelerate faster. And that reduction drag and that smooth air on the outside is going to help the airflow underneath the car, which is actually going to increase the down force on the car in general. All right, so now as we come up from the fender flare on the back of the car, you can really see that the glass and the rear spoiler are actually very similar to the street car.

Now this is a regular glass window. The back hatch is pretty much the same. This whole section is really based on the Mark 8 street car. Now the spoiler's a little different. On the GTI we have next to us, there's a little bit of a lip in it, this one does not. I'm assuming they're really just working on getting flow over this massive wing that all the TCR cars have.

Now one of the cool things about TCR is the front aero elements and the rear elements are all homologated so they have to be the same. But what it really leaves is the engineers of Volkswagen Motorsport and whoever is racing these cars to develop the best use of that aero element. So they're given this wing, it's the same wing on all TCR cars, but what they have to do is they have to make sure it works as effectively as possible.

So what they did, you can see is they built these plates here on this prototype version. They had 'em lettered vertically and numbered horizontally so they could try different locations to basically figure out where the wing would live and where it had the most effect on the car. (gentle bright music) So here we are under the Mark 8 Volkswagen TCR, and the first thing you're gonna see is this thing is pretty, pretty much a full-blown race car.

You can see we have the splitter under here. We have a big aluminum panel that's gonna act as a chassis stiffening unit, but also for the aero, you know, a nice smooth panel underneath here. Now, looking over here, you can see that we have these super tubular control arms and a massive amount of adjustment. That's the first thing I really take from this car is that we have camera adjustment, we have toe adjustment, we have basically anti-dive, we have roll center adjustment, a lot more adjustment than even the Mark 7 TCRs had.

Now in addition to that, we're looking, we have massive front brakes. These are big Alcon calipers with big brake ducts right here. You can see this whole upright assembly has really been kind of tricked out. We have, you know, a new style camber adjustment and toe adjustment on the front suspension, and that new new toe and camber adjustment allows for basically quick camber changes where you can tune the toe at the same time.

One of the challenges we always face with the Mark 7 TCRs was anytime we made a camber adjustment, we would have to restring the car and readjust our toes. Now with this shim unit that this car has, basically you have matching shims. If you match up those shims, you shouldn't need to, you know, realign or recheck your toe in the car. Now obviously, you can see these things are something that's a little different.

These are the air jacks that are on the car, they're still down right now. We have the air jacks, you know, down on the ground just to get it up in the air on the lift. But this car has three air jacks, two in the front and one in the back. I'll try not to bump my head on them. Now moving back, obviously you can see this car has been stripped down of everything it doesn't need, has a massive single exhaust system with a Cadillac converter right here. So all the race cars that are built in TCR home allegations have to have a catalyst on them.

Obviously, you know, these are race cars, they are burning a lot of fuel, but there's no reason why these race cars can't be saving the environment at the same time. So in the addition of catalyst has been a really cool thing in European racing and is really changing the landscape of the environmental side of motorsport. So before we move to the back of the car, I really wanna see the gear box and some of the finer details on this front suspension. So we're gonna take this aluminum panel, we're gonna pull it down, really expose what's going on under here.

All right, so here we are, expose the full engine. So, as you can see from the oil pan from the engine side, this is pretty much standard Mark 7, almost exactly what we saw over there. Whether you look over to the left side or your right side, you can see that this is a completely different unit.

So this is the SADEV sequential gearbox that was going to be fitted in these cars. This is a very compact unit, you can see it's basically, it's a six-speed sequential, starter is mounted very low. Starter is one of the heavier things on the car, similar to what we talked about with the alternator being mounted really low. And then, you can see that similar to the upper side of the engine, all of the mountings are completely solid. So this is a little engine mount here, you can see there's a little tie rod. This is completely metal to metal all the way across holding this thing into the sub frame right here.

You can see the transmission's been changed. We have a fully solid motor mount, so you can see the motor mount. It basically goes straight into the sub frame here. This is metal to metal all the way through just like the top. Now coming over, we have an aluminum sub frame. This is something that's very different from the Mark 7 TCR.

The Mark 7 TCR actually utilized a steel subframe. This car utilizes the aluminum subframe, but one thing I can note is different is compared to that Mark 8 over there, there is plates that have been welded underneath the gaps or basically the holes in the casting. So clearly, they're trying to stiffen up the sub frame as much as they possibly could.

Obviously, there's a lot of suspension forces going on in a race car with these slick tires and, you know, the breaking forces that this car could do. So really making sure everything is solid mounted and staying in location was a big priority for the Volkswagen Motorsport team that built this car. All right, so I think, really when Volkswagen engineers sat down at the table to design this car, I think there was three big objectives they were really trying to hit. The first one was a mass centralization and lower the center of gravity. They really wanted to get all of the weight in the car towards the middle of the car, and they really wanted to basically get that as low to the ground as possible, and you can see it in almost everything on the car.

Now in addition to that, I think the other thing they were really going for is more tunability. You see that in multiple adjustment points on the suspension, we can change roll centers that we couldn't do before. We can change dive that we couldn't do before. A lot of additional adjustment in the suspension really tuned the chassis. Now, let's dive into the rear suspension a little bit and understand a little bit more in depth some of the adjustability and some of the changes they made from the Mark 8 GTI.

Now looking at this, you can see the first thing is that cast or press steel arm that was on the Mark 8 suspension. Well, now that's a piece piece of aluminum, and it's been sectioned out so it's lighter and also it has spherical bearings in all the mounting points. So it's more rigid, there's no rubber bushings at all on the suspension on this car.

So when it's locked in place, it does not move. Now in addition to that, you can see that we have a lot of adjustability, a lot of double shear mounting points. So you can see that this rear damper has been moved over here, it has mounted right to this point, and you'll also notice on that rear damper, the spring is is right next to it. So on the street car, we had a spring sitting right here, basically moved inboard. Now, that spring has been moved right to the shock absorber, and the damper itself and is sitting right on it. That kinda keeps everything together, keeps this one unit.

Obviously, there is race car suspension on this car so there's multiple adjustments on it, and then you'll notice things like this arm are usually a cast arm or a pressed arm. On the street car that holds the spring, that is now just a tubular arm. So basically, the same amount of strength, if not more strength, but a whole lot less weight. So the last thing you'll notice under the car is it's pretty bare, there's not a lot of stuff going on here.

And you'll see that this big aluminum thing right here is actually the bottom or the foot of the fuel cell. So again, to the mass centralization and lower center gravity, you can see the fuel has been lowered down as low as it possibly can be and is basically right this whole section. And in addition to lowering the fuel down, they've actually kind of integrated as an aerodynamic element on the car. As you can see that this is just really flat all the way back.

Similar to what the plastic panels were doing on the street car, they've done it with the fuel cell on the race car. So we're gonna go up top, we are going to look at the fuel cell, and the fuel system inside the car, show you some of the details there. Then we're also gonna dive into the safety structure, and the interior of the car.

We're gonna show you some of the finite details, and the special things that Volkswagen Motorsport did to this car to make it better than most race cars. Let's take a look. (gentle music) So here we are inside the Mark 8 TCR, and the first thing we're gonna go over is some of the different changes in this car but also some of the systems. So, obviously we talked early on about the engine bay and how bare it is, and that's due to a lot of the systems moving away from the engine bay.

So you can see down on the floor here, we have our pedals, we have two master cylinders, one for the front circuit, one for the rear circuit, and then we have a clutch master cylinder. Typically on a street car, this stuff is passed through the firewall but on this car, it's all mounted inside the car. Now, another thing you'll notice is how far back I'm sitting. Like I said, the mass centralization in getting the center gravity down and low and in the middle of the car was a huge priority for Volkswagen. So they moved the driver's seat really far back, and you can actually see they moved the pedals back and extended the steering column to be right where I need it. Now in addition to that, we're a whole bunch of adjustability.

So you can see with the master cylinders, we have a brake bias adjustment right here. So I can actually turn that knob, and it's adjusting the brake bias as I do it right down on the pedal. We also have a poppet valve adjustment here. One thing you will see is missing from the race car versus the street car is there is no ABS in this unit.

So this is built to TCR Home allegation, TCR specs. In proper TCR racing, they do not use any ABS, so it's all up to the drivers to use their foot, and feel the amount of grip, and make sure they don't lock up those tires going into the corners. Now, you can really tell this car is a massive prototype. As soon as you flip the switch on, because as soon as I turn the switch on, I can see that there's different stuff on this dash and is referring to SEAT. This car was built in conjunction with the SEAT Cupra, and the Audi TCR.

And you can see there's still a lot of SEAT that's left on this. So the dash has some some readouts from SEAT. You can also see that this dash itself, the actual physical dashboard is based on the SEAT Cupra Design. This does not match what's in the market GTI. I'm assuming if this car was gonna go into production, that's something they would've changed.

But for now, they left it as a SEAT Cupra design just to make sure they could go prototype this car and make sure it worked. Now, speaking of that mass centralization, weight down low, all that sort of stuff, you can see we have a battery down here on the floor. We have the ballast that is required right here.

So this ballast can be moved front and aft. So clearly, moving weight around in the big dynamic control elements of the car were a big priority for the Volkswagen engineers. And you can also see the fire bottle. This used to be mounted far in the trunk on the Mark 7 TCR is now mounted under the driver's side feet. So really bringing all the weights from the extremities into the middle of the car, making sure everything is as efficient as possible, and everything's right here. We have a full cage around us.

One of the things we did notice is the cage is not built all the way up to the roof. I think this was due to the fact that you were sitting so low in this car that you don't actually need the cage to be up and go all the way up to the roof. And by not building the cage all the way up to the roof, they're actually able to keep the weight a little bit further down in the car. Now again, right behind me, we have the fuel tank.

So this actually passes through the bulkhead of the car and it's up here. So we have our fuel pumps, everything right here, just like the old Mark 7 TCR. I think this actually might be the same fuel tank they're using. Some final cool thoughts we have about the car. Obviously, this looks like it was very much a prototype. It looks like they actually had two separate computers mounted above and below each other.

So they're actually trying different electronics out on the engine while they were tuning it. Another thing I found really interesting about this car is you could actually see the anti-rollbar pass through the rear of the chassis. This is that slide in, you know, simple anti-rollbar design, something they updated from the Mark 7 Golf. And to be able to look through the trunk and see it, it's kind of neat. And as it actually, as it goes around, you can hear it clunking a lot because it's picking up all the suspension movement and just transferring that noise right to the chassis.

Now other than that, the car is pretty much your typical TCR. You can tell this is definitely a prototype. We don't have the correct dash in place. We don't have door panels.

This is just a piece of carbon that's folded over it, definitely a work in progress, but I can tell you, they were off to the right start. This is definitely the sort of chassis you wanna sit into, win races and be competitive. And it certainly, they're making sure all the big pieces were ticked when they were designing this car. So you've heard it, you've seen it. Are you as disappointed as I am that this car never made it past the stage into a full production? If you are, leave 'em in the comments below.

We really wanna say a big shout out to Jamie Orr, Volkswagen Classic for letting us borrow this car and letting us really share it with the world for the first time. It's a really special car. Definitely gonna miss not seeing it in this garage, not seeing it in the US anymore. But if you ever have a chance to see it, definitely I suggest seeing it. It is a very special piece of Volkswagen Motorsport history and honestly, if they're gonna go out, it makes sense to go out in a bang, and they certainly did so. If you like this video, if you like the deeper understanding of this car, please give us a thumbs up.

If you have any questions on something we didn't cover, maybe get too specific on, leave 'em in the comments below. We'd love to have a conversation about it. And as always, we'll catch you on the next one.

2022-11-27 19:51

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