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Cars and Bids Bargain of the Week: 2002 Volkswagen GTI 337 Edition

For both classic and modern vehicle enthusiasts, Bring a Trailer is an auction site worth checking out. But if you prefer the modern over the vintage, that’s what Doug Demuro’s site Cars and Bids focuses on. And if you’re a fan of hot hatches, you’re in for a treat. That’s because this week’s Cars and Bids bargain is a 2002 Volkswagen Golf GTI 337 Edition.

The 2002 Volkswagen Golf GTI 337 Edition wasn’t an ordinary Mk4 GTI

A red 2021 Euro-spec Volkswagen Golf GTI
2021 Euro-spec Volkswagen Golf GTI | Volkswagen

The current Volkswagen Golf GTI, like the first-gen Mk1, is a great combination of practicality and performance. However, in between then and the upcoming Mk8 GTI, the hot hatch had one or two missteps. The early 00s Mk4 GTI is one of them, Car and Driver reports.

The Mk4 Volkswagen Golf GTI isn’t necessarily a bad car, CarThrottle reports. Especially a 2002 or later example, with the 180-hp 1.8-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine. However, it’s overshadowed by the faster and more powerful AWD Golf R32. And to quote Autocar, “the Mk5 can be seen almost as VW’s apology” for the Mk4.

A silver 2002 Volkswagen Golf GTI 337 Edition
2002 Volkswagen Golf GTI 337 Edition | Cars and Bids

The 2002 Volkswagen Golf GTI 337 Edition, though, isn’t a typical Mk 4 GTI, Car and Driver reports. It’s known as the ‘25th Anniversary Edition GTI’ overseas because it was originally launched in 2001 to honor the Mk1’s 1976 debut. When it came to the US, it was renamed ‘337 Edition’ as a reference to the Mk1’s original project code name, VWVortex explains.

The 2002 Volkswagen Golf GTI 337 Edition's Recaro seats
2002 Volkswagen Golf GTI 337 Edition Recaro seats | Bring a Trailer

As a 2002 model, the Golf GTI 337 has the 180-hp engine and a 6-speed manual. But it rides 1” lower than the standard car on sportier suspension and 18” BBS wheels with Michelin high-performance tires. The hot hatch also features red brake calipers, a body kit with chin spoiler, a new rear wing, and a stainless-steel exhaust system. And it only comes in one color: silver.

The Volkswagen Golf GTI 337’s interior also has some upgrades. It offers Recaro front sport seats, aluminum pedals and trim, and, exclusively for the US, a Monsoon audio system.

The 2002 Volkswagen Golf GTI 337 Edition listed on Cars and Bids

Admittedly, the 2002 Volkswagen Golf GTI 337 currently for sale on Cars and Bids isn’t stock. But the modifications it has are in keeping with the hot hatch’s reputation.

An overhead rear 3/4 view of a silver 2002 Volkswagen Golf GTI 337 Edition
2002 Volkswagen Golf GTI 337 Edition overhead rear 3/4 | Cars and Bids

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Its 1.8-liter turbocharged four-cylinder has been tweaked by known tuner APR. Despite that, it remains emissions legal in all 50 states. It has an Autotech performance exhaust, H&R coilovers, and an upgraded rear sway bar. This GTI 337 also has new headlights and taillights, a B&M short shifter, a separate boost gauge, a Momo steering wheel, and a Pioneer head unit with Bluetooth, Sirius, and Spotify connectivity.

The interior of a 2002 Volkswagen Golf GTI 337 Edition with an aftermarket steering wheel and audio system
2002 Volkswagen Golf GTI 337 Edition modified interior | Cars and Bids

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Cars and Bids notes that this 2002 Volkswagen Golf GTI 337 isn’t perfect cosmetically. There are some interior trim scratches, as well as some scuffs and chips in the paint and on one wheel. Plus, the rear wiper’s been deleted, albeit with the help of an OEM part. But, although the current owner reports it’s been partially repainted, the CarFax report contains no accidents.

As of this writing, the 2002 Volkswagen Golf GTI 337 is listed on Cars and Bids at $3900 with 3 days left of bidding. It has 98,000 miles on it, but the current owner has already replaced the A/C compressor, fuel pump, thermostat, and timing belt. Plus, the purchase includes an uninstalled dual-mass flywheel clutch kit and the factory steering wheel.

What makes it a bargain buy?

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At its current price, this 2002 Volkswagen Golf GTI 337 is significantly below the average price paid on Bring a Trailer. There, Mk4 GTIs tend to go for about $8000. Plus, as of this writing, there’s a 40,000-mile GTI 337 listed on BaT—and the current bid is $9000.

A yellow 2003 Volkswagen Golf GTI 20th Anniversary Edition
2003 Volkswagen Golf GTI 20th Anniversary Edition | Bring a Trailer

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There’s one more Mk4 GTI that went for even more on BaT: a 2003 20th Anniversary Edition. It sold for $16,250 in July 2019. Like the 337, the 20th Anniversary Edition features a body kit, lowered stiffened suspension, red brake calipers, larger brake rotors, and Recaro seats.

However, the GTI 337 is rarer than the 20th Anniversary Edition. Volkswagen sold 4000 of the latter in the US. But it only made 1500 GTI 337 Editions.

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