Jump to content
Grumpy

Japanese LUPO GTI's

Recommended Posts

I have been looking for several months for a mint, low mileage, standard GTI and needless to say I haven't found one yet. Initially I discounted the Japanese imports however I have started to consider these as an option. Is there any obvious downside to buying an import and has anyone had dealings with either Locate A Car in Lichfield or Performance Point in Bristol.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you want a particular colour. This will be a problem and blue and anthracite never where sold in Japan. Red, Silver or black only.

The Radio is not as a standard unit as this is swapped before sale. (I have seen pics of Japanese lupos and they come with mini disc players)

If you want a sunroof or leather interior I don't think this was an option (unless I am proved wrong)

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Many thanks for the info - much appreciated. I was aware of the colour limitations and slightly better spec i.e. side airbags, aircon and kick plates. I was originally looking for one of the extremely rare anthracite UK cars, however, I think I have more chance of winning the lottery. I know the Japanese don't salt their roads so rust wise there shouldn't be a problem. I am however concerned about buying an import and am looking for any thoughts in this respect as well as anybody's experience of Locate A Car or Performance Point.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Grumpy said:

I was originally looking for one of the extremely rare anthracite UK cars

Best colour for a Lupo GTi ;)

Why are you concerned about an imported car? Just take a good look at it (as you would do with any second hand car) and if all is good just buy and enjoy!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I guess I am being cautious particularly from a resale perspective. I plan to keep the car for a while, however, its good to know if you are potentially going to take a hit should you wish to sell it.

If anyone does have a mint unmolested low mileage Anthracite GTI they are thinking of parting with then please let me know.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

surely the time in Japan not getting rusty is a good selling point and not reason for a hit?

gimme an actual detrimental point for it being an import.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I agree with Rich, it's actually good for resale value.

Only "downside" is that you won't find a blue or anthracite one. And as you say, it's really complicated to find a good one in a rare colour these days...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I would say that due to the rarity and desirabilty of GTI's, the fact it's an import wouldn't really have any kind of detrimental effect on the value. I don't see it as a negative and I was actually looking at getting one before the blue one I ended up getting popped up!

Edited by Skajme

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks all for your input. I couldn't think of any downsides to an import, however, I guess I was looking for reassurance from those in the know. However, as mentioned a little earlier, if anyone is thinking of parting with their Anthracite GTI then please let me know.:D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

those who know, know.

those who don't know think they know and that makes them dangerous.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

One of the problems with Japanese branded import cars back in the 90's was body protection, for there domestic market cars they didnt need as much protection

when imports got to the UK they just started to return to the earth dissolving under the salt barrage of winter

Did VW give the same protection euro standard of body protection to the cars heading to japan? or did they lower their standards?

-I suspect they were all on the same production line so all got the same.. 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
22 hours ago, Grumpy said:

I have been looking for several months for a mint, low mileage, standard GTI and needless to say I haven't found one yet. Initially I discounted the Japanese imports however I have started to consider these as an option. Is there any obvious downside to buying an import and has anyone had dealings with either Locate A Car in Lichfield or Performance Point in Bristol.

Hi mate,

I bought my Lupo GTi from Locate a Car, Lichfield. They pretty much only sell Japanese imports! As mentioned above, you'll need to look at protection for the underbelly as the salt from the roads will start to corrode it quick. I had mine done it cost £90 so just budget that into your search, especially this time of year! 

*edit* as an added point, as the car will have only been registered to one person (the importer) the history will only show 1 previous owner, bonus on resale. But, please be aware that the Japanese like to fiddle with wiring a lot, this was noticeable for me when switching out the head unit... something to bare in mind!

Edited by Jacamo97
addition information

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

i once had a Johannesburg built mk2 and that was seriously lacking protection from factory, seam sealer, underseal etc..

factory dependant, not where the car gets shipped dependant.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have been studying pictures of the Japanese imports advertised by Locate A Car on Autotrader. Does any one know what the red canister type thing is which is mounted in the passenger footwell on the left hand side and appears on each of the 5 cars they have.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's one of those things to break the windscreen if you're involved in an accident, isn't it?

Never seen it in a European Lupo GTi before.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think by law they have to carry a fire extinguisher, though I've also seen 'flare' mounts mentioned on ETKA.

The wiring may have been messed with as they run a payment-card system for motorway tolls, I'd imagine most will have been wired in from the radio loom as most seem to be mounted in that area in ones I've seen online.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Looks on the small side for an extinguisher so could well be a flare as you mention. I assume if there is an issue with the wiring it shouldn't be an issue for a competent auto electrician? If I buy one then I would like to change the radio back to a VW Gamma unit with a VW CD below in line with the UK cars.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Having owned a couple of imported cars I'd say go for it :)

Their non salted roads usually ensure wonderfully rust free undersides/bodywork and the Japanese MOT system known as the 'Shaken' is actually pretty tough/strict so cars are often in good knick too when compared to UK examples of the same age.

As Rich mentioned rust potection is no different on JDM cars vs European counterparts, this is for the most part a myth banded about in the 90's  as a slew of grey imports flooded the market.

Jap radios operate on a different bandwidth so that's something you'll need to sort, also the flares are standard issue on cars over there ;)

Edited by JoeyEunos

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Grumpy, I've sent you a PM re my UK unmodified  car that has only done 41,500 miles

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Scroat said:

Grumpy, I've sent you a PM re my UK unmodified  car that has only done 41,500 miles

Scroat, just responded to you PM with a list of questions. Cheers

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Grumpy,

I agree with a lot of the points made, but have a couple to add. You must look for sun damage on a Jap import car. Faded seat cover and door card materials, gear knob decals and gaiter cracking and fading. Other then that they have been a good bet till now... However since buying my Jap import I have been to see a few other more recent ones (hoping for a lower milage example). I have concerns that the flow of decent Japanese Lupo GTI cars is drying up, and that in cases unscrupulous (or is that inscrutable?) exporters are being creative to continue to meet the ready UK demand. I saw a car in November that was "officially" registered as 33,000, but from wear and tear to all operating surfaces and door cards was around 100,000 miles higher than that (Also engine had masses of mayonnaise in the oil filler cap). I have seen the aluminium doors replaced with steel (so wrong glass too), and poor fit body panels denoting hasty covered over crash repairs.

Bottom line is that you have to be as careful whatever car you choose. Don't believe that because it comes from Japan and has a high forecourt price from a trusted dealer that it is what it claims to be. Take a magnet to ensure the aluminium is where it should be, check the interior wear is in line with the claimed milage, and check the engine (starting from cold) runs smoothly and quietly. A road test is essential to check gearbox, steering and suspension, as well as whether the engine pulls smoothly through the range. I hope you don't mind me stating what some would see as obvious, but I think the golden age of "perfect" Jap GTI cars is over and we all need to get much more canny not to get caught out...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On ‎25‎/‎12‎/‎2017 at 4:54 PM, Old Timer said:

Hi Grumpy,

I agree with a lot of the points made, but have a couple to add. You must look for sun damage on a Jap import car. Faded seat cover and door card materials, gear knob decals and gaiter cracking and fading. Other then that they have been a good bet till now... However since buying my Jap import I have been to see a few other more recent ones (hoping for a lower milage example). I have concerns that the flow of decent Japanese Lupo GTI cars is drying up, and that in cases unscrupulous (or is that inscrutable?) exporters are being creative to continue to meet the ready UK demand. I saw a car in November that was "officially" registered as 33,000, but from wear and tear to all operating surfaces and door cards was around 100,000 miles higher than that (Also engine had masses of mayonnaise in the oil filler cap). I have seen the aluminium doors replaced with steel (so wrong glass too), and poor fit body panels denoting hasty covered over crash repairs.

Bottom line is that you have to be as careful whatever car you choose. Don't believe that because it comes from Japan and has a high forecourt price from a trusted dealer that it is what it claims to be. Take a magnet to ensure the aluminium is where it should be, check the interior wear is in line with the claimed milage, and check the engine (starting from cold) runs smoothly and quietly. A road test is essential to check gearbox, steering and suspension, as well as whether the engine pulls smoothly through the range. I hope you don't mind me stating what some would see as obvious, but I think the golden age of "perfect" Jap GTI cars is over and we all need to get much more canny not to get caught out...

Many thanks for your response. I do think that I may well have found a UK registered from new car which ticks all the boxes.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That's great news, enjoy the car ;O) In passing (as well as taking the magnet), on a Brit car it's wise to check where the bottom rear of the aluminium front wing meets the steel inner. Worth getting that totally corrosion free for a long and happy life together.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 18/12/2017 at 9:38 AM, Jacamo97 said:

Hi mate,

I bought my Lupo GTi from Locate a Car, Lichfield. They pretty much only sell Japanese imports! As mentioned above, you'll need to look at protection for the underbelly as the salt from the roads will start to corrode it quick. I had mine done it cost £90 so just budget that into your search, especially this time of year! 

*edit* as an added point, as the car will have only been registered to one person (the importer) the history will only show 1 previous owner, bonus on resale. But, please be aware that the Japanese like to fiddle with wiring a lot, this was noticeable for me when switching out the head unit... something to bare in mind!

where did you get that done ? id like to have my underneath, all cleaned and protected at some point

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×