Volkswagen struck a chord with enthusiasts by introducing a concept called Jetta GLI Blue Lagoon, which pays homage to the 2004 model. It is finished in a throwback blue and receives a long list of aftermarket parts.
Released in 1984, the first generation Jetta GLI aimed to deliver the GTI’s performance and handling in a three-box package better suited to American drivers’ tastes. Then 20 years later, the fourth-generation model was available in a striking shade called Blue Lagoon. Volkswagen no longer has this shade in its color palette, so the 2021 concept carries a vinyl wrap over its factory-applied Deep Black Pearl paint.
California-based Fifteen52 provided the front splitter, while the side skirts and trunk-mounted spoiler come from Air Design. H&R Street Performance coilovers give the Jetta that oh-so-2000 look, and 20-inch BBS alloy wheels wrapped in Continental tires add a finishing touch to the design. All in all, the Blue Lagoon concept has clearly changed, but it remains fairly subtle and elegant. It’s no exaggeration in a “Fast & Furious” way.
Inside, the Jetta gets leather-wrapped Recaro front passenger sports seats and a weighted golf ball-shaped gear knob from Black Forest Industries. Volkswagen hasn’t made any mechanical changes, meaning the power comes from a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine up to 228 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque. It turns the front wheels via a six-speed manual gearbox and steers the GLI from 0 to 100 km / h in 6.1 seconds.
For context, the 2004 Jetta GLI that echoes the concept came with a 1.8-liter turbo four rated at 180 horsepower and 173 pound-feet of torque. Keep in mind that in 2004, the downsizing was largely for businesses and investment portfolios, so Volkswagen also offered the GLI with a 2.8-liter VR6, good for 200 horses and 195 pound-feet of twist.
It doesn’t sound like the Blue Lagoon concept will join the Volkswagen range. It is one of several design studies the company will build in 2021 to display at enthusiastic events across the United States. However, it’s mostly built with standard components, so fans looking to scratch the nostalgic itch can easily recreate a replica.