Watch: The Least Spooky Ghost Car this Side of Wolfsburg
It being October, we were anticipating something more along the lines of Lazerhawk’s seminal album, Redline. A car driven by the angry ghost of a jilted lover. But this Caddy is pretty cool, too.
The Caddy is Jamie Orr’s and it is likely the only late model Caddy in the USA. That’s because despite being instrumental in the creation of the Caddy, Volkswagen USA stopped selling them after one generation thanks to the chicken tax.
But Jamie Orr–and I say this with love–is a deeply depraved man with a powerful fetish for Volkswagen esoterica. Knowing that Volkswagen shares chassis around the world, and being uniquely talented at shipping cars across the Atlantic, he started thinking about building his own Europe-only vehicle.
Unfortunately, Volkswagen refuses to sell chassis unless they’re for motorsports. But after asking and asking and then asking some more, he got his hands on a completely bare Caddy shell (with fuel door) that he shipped it back to the US.
Unfortunately, although Wolfsburg produces about 3,500 vehicles per day, Orr’s shop is smaller and he doesn’t have a million parts lying around and his staff is considerably smaller. So even though he had a shell, he still needed to build a car.
Luckily, there’s a lot of plug and play. The front end is largely made up of the same parts as a Mk5 Golf (mind you, it’s sitting on Airlift suspension and forged brakes). Still, though, everything had to be purchased for this car. Every single bolt is brand new, the engine had 0 miles, the glass, the doors, the mirrors, the mirror caps, the wiring that goes into that, and literally every other little thing had to be bought, installed, and programmed by Orr.
It all might be best summed up by the genuine pride on his face when he says that the little light on top of the door panel lights up when the door is locked. Because he had to program that. There may no single person with a wider breadth of experience building a Caddy on earth.
And that’s to say nothing of all the problems that arise when you’re trying to build a whole car yourself. So there’s still a lot of work to do.
Fortunately, when you do all your own work, it means that you can get a VIN and call your car a “kit car.” It remains to be seen if Orr can finish the project before the car it’s emulating becomes 25 years old.
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