Being a creative revolves around the never-ending hunt for unique content to share with the world. As the proverbial envelope is pushed harder across the board when it comes to automotive culture and styling it isn’t often that a grassroots builder stands out in the way that Tony Grimmel does. I featured his one-off Jetta coupe with Rallye Golf arches last year and when I caught wind of the bespoke Rieger car that he had almost finished building I was definitely intrigued.
Much like his boxy-bodied MK2 that has also graced the site, this old school watercooled work of art has an affinity for wide hips. The story behind the acquisition of this chassis is one for the ages and the journey that ultimately leads to the destination of this gem’s completion is nothing short of period-correct goodness.
The ‘barn find’ moniker couldn’t ring a truer bell as Tony and his wife sourced a proper shell for the better part of three years before landing on the S1 Scirocco seen above. The original plan was to find a Rieger kit from the 1980’s and graft it onto a GTI, but aquiring one turned out to be incredibly difficult. They stumbled upon a rusty roller that had been sitting in a farmer’s field around 100 miles away from home and after some lengthy negotiating the car belonged to it’s new owner.
After removing the vegetation that was residing within the interior and tackling most of the surface rust, Tony and his wife towed the car to their bodyshop of choice and waited patiently for all of the fiberglass work to be completed. This process took multiple months, but the finished product looks incredible. The body kit fits the factory lines of the wedge shaped Scirocco like a glove and it is the only running Rieger’d S1 in the world at this time.
With the bodywork out of the way and the kit properly installed on the car it was time to get the interior and suspension sorted. According to Tony and his wife Alissa this was the most difficult phase of the build. The two of them worked in the garage together for numerous weekends and pieced together the guts of the Scirocco along with getting the fitment dialed in and ride height reduced. This was the first time that Tony had tackled an air suspension install and after a few tweaks the Rieger kit and AZEV rollers mated perfectly.
Tony set out to build a one-off car and smashed the nail smack dab on the head. Not only does it look the part, but this dog bites just as hard as it barks. Much like the Rallye Jetta that he also owns, the “Scirrado” is a driver’s car and it’s legs are stretched quite often. I thoroughly enjoy telling such a classic story of ‘concept to completion’ and I’m looking forward to seeing this thing in person when the world becomes a more normal place in due time. Until then here are a few more photos of one of the coolest looking and period-correct Frankenstein cars in the game right now. Hats off to Tony, his wife, and network of friends and family that made this build possible!