RAD EDITION 003
“Bought as a Cat-D write off back in 2012 with just 770 miles on the clock, the ex-RAC (yep, really!) van was the perfect repository for Matt’s vision. “After building and owning two previous pre-facelift Caddys, I wanted to build a facelift model with every possible upgrade to make it as nice to drive as possible.”
He wasted no time in completely redesigning the front end, using brand new genuine Touran parts, along with creating a totally one off, custom made hybrid Touran/Golf Mk7 GTI bumper, incorporating arches from the European market only Caddy Cross. This theme is carried on all the way to the back, with Caddy Cross skirts and rear arches making the less than subtle machine look even more unique. At the back, Matt decided to totally replace the two rear doors with a single piece tailgate; no easy task. After changing cross-members to make it fit, he still wasn’t happy, so a narrowed plate recess and Mk6 Golf badge/boot release found their way on.
The sadder of us reading this will notice the lack of sliding door on either side; Matt decided that he liked the uncluttered look, so he sourced a genuine LHD near side rear quarter panel, grafting it in flawlessly. What you may not have noticed is the missing fuel filler cap, which now resides behind the near side rear light, giving Matt the opportunity to use the old sliding door mechanism to create without a doubt the coolest piece of automotive engineering we’ve come across for a while; a ram that pushes the light out horizontally at the flick of a switch. Running the sides of the van with no doors left Matt needing to do yet more work on the super rare Cross kit, as it’s designed for vans with twin sliders. It’s testament to the standards these boys work to that we genuinely thought the whole shebang was factory, not extensively modified.
The top class graphic work was both designed & fitted by David Jorge at Slam Signs. When first done, it was so convincing that the brothers had a letter from the RAC within 24 hours of releasing the first pictures, ordering them to change the logo as it was too similar. It’s certainly a head turner, and raised more than a few comments both during our shoot, and upon release of some teaser shots on social media.
If you’re expecting the inside to be full of aging copies of The Sun and dirty builders’ mugs, you’re in for shock. After totally stripping the shell, the boys fully Dynomatted it to ensure they got the best out of the the extensive audio setup. Mk6 Golf heated leather front seats, a customised Touran centre console with adjustable leather armrest, Touran leather door cards with retrimmed alcantara tops and Audi A1 dash vents certainly add flair, whilst the Mk6 Golf GTI leather multifunction wheel, Mk7 GTI gear knob and gaiter make you forget that this is a van. The Touran Highline clocks, complete with sweeping blue needles, along with the ultra cool glazed bulkhead, add to what is an incredibly well thought out package.
After Revo worked their magic on the 1.6 TDI powerplant, it needed something more substantial than the standard brakes to bring it to a stop. What better than a set of 356mm Forge 6 pots on the front, paired up with Golf GTI rear discs and carriers, utilising Caddy front calipers on the back to beef it up. Obviously those weren’t going to fit under the standard wheels, so Matt made the most of their status as official fifteen52 UK supplier, and fitted a set of their incredible Tarmacs, in 19 x 8.5″ (et35) flavour. V-Maxx Xtreme coilovers and a modified rear beam, to allow better exhaust clearance, ensure this van sticks as well as it goes. Their very own RAD steel sumpguard/skidplate gives piece of mind when driving the static van hard."
Watercooled Society write up. Full article can be found here