Wheels & Low – It’s That Simple

At last month’s Jogja Volkswagen Festival held in Yogyakarta, Indonesia, I had the honour of choosing two cars to be recognized as recipients of a ‘Speedhunters Choice’ award. One of those cars was to be selected from the small but quality contingent of front-engined, water-cooled VWs.

Typically, I would hunt down something performance-based; a car that has seen track time or at least has been modified in a way that has substantially increased its ability to go fast. And although there were some purely functional builds among the ‘new timer’ ranks, I found myself repeatedly drawn to a Tornado Red MkVII Golf GTI that had rolled in from the nearby city of Solo with a crew known as the NuVolks Solo Chapter.

NuVolks Mk7-5829

The reason was straightforward – aesthetics. Volkswagen’s designers have refined the Golf’s shape close to the point of hot hatch perfection, continuously evolving from the MkV as opposed to a complete redesign.

JVWF NuVolks Mk7-5850

Dropped to the Expo Center floor on Rotiform wheels, it was impossible to find a bad angle of the GTI.

JVWF NuVolks Mk7-5794

It’s easy to write-off this build as being basic, but to me it represents the universal appeal that a simple drop and wheels can add in any corner of the world.

NuVolks Mk7-5843

After all, getting cars as close to the ground as possible has been a part of the VW scene since, well, forever. The Jogja VW Festival was full of old Beetles, Kombis and Type 3s in various stages of low, all undeniably cool.  What the owner, Fandy, and the team at Drivetech Auto Garage have created here is a modern interpretation of that age-old approach to building a cool cruiser, and it looked right at home amongst the eclectic classics of JVWF.

JVWF NuVolks Mk7-5836

This MkVII also makes a lot of sense considering its context. For the most part, Indonesia’s roads are a mix of congested urban labyrinth and sketchily surfaced arterial links, so building a car for outright street performance is mostly an exercise in futility. Air suspension allows Fandy to cruise around the potholes and chaos at a safe height, then drop the chassis to the floor at a touch of his iPhone. Sure, Drivetech could’ve gone for more power, stiff conventional suspension and a rorty exhaust, but that’s a recipe for frustration and headaches in a daily driven car.

NuVolks Mk7-5823

Drivetech is building a strong reputation in Solo and further afield for its performance-oriented work with late model European and Japanese cars, the latest creation being this MkVII. It was fresh for the show, and the guys at the workshop have plenty more planned for this little GTI, although the overall look and feel won’t be upset.

NuVolks Mk7-

Inside, things have stayed as the factory intended, which is understandable considering that VW pretty much nails the mix between quality, comfort and performance.

NuVolks Mk7-5895

The same can be said for under the hood, where the GTI’s 2.0-litre turbo engine remains mostly stock.

NuVolks Mk7-5877

The exceptions are an upgraded intercooler and the gorgeous Gruppe M carbon fibre ‘Ram Air System’, which will soon be joined by a full Armytrix exhaust system and a stage 2 Revo flash tune that altogether will raise output to around 320hp.

NuVolks Mk7-5904

Responsible for the other kind of air is an off-the-shelf air ride system from Air Force, with the compressor and tank cleanly installed in the rear hatch compartment.

NuVolks Mk7--2

At a complete drop, the stock fenders kiss the lips of the 19×10-inch forged Rotiform CCVs ever so lightly, and the same goes for the 19×11-inch rears.

JVWF NuVolks Mk7-5856

During my short stay in Indonesia I saw some questionably modified cars, but this was not one of them. A great base car, a selection of top-shelf parts and getting that stance spot-on is a recipe for success anywhere in the world.

Blake Jones
Instagram: blaketjones



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Melbourne is filled with bagged golfs. Pretty tired of seeing them tbh, but still think they look good just like this one does.


Speedhunters where were the cars like this when we used to play footy on the street? Would have saved a few scuffed knees climbing under!


First: This is a nice looking car.
Second: If "the stock fenders kiss the lips of the 19×10-inch forged Rotiform CCVs ever so lightly" when stopped then any vertical movement of the wheel from a bump or undulation in the road will make the wheel hit the fender. Only harder.
Third: Having the wheels contact the body by choice makes this a questionably modified car.


NicholasMaher You left out the most important part of that sentence: : "At a complete drop" i.e. when aired out.

If you weren't in such a hurry to find flaws in things and you probably would have noticed the photo with the complete air install too.


Paddy McGrath NicholasMaher  You're right I missed that important detail. Possibly.


@RZA "The same can be said for under the hood, where the GTI’s 2.0-litre turbo engine remains mostly stock."


Does it look good? Or is it just another Golf on air ride and rotiforms with silly rear camber. I've almost become immune to cars like this now.. they all look the same.

I'd rather see it a decent ride height, with a slightly smaller wheel that fits properly.


Finally, someone who shares my opinion!! All of these look the same.


"questionably modified cars", lol I know what you mean. It's a pain to see those cars represent Indonesian modified car culture. Hopefully more cars like this Golf will turn up in the country.


Jay_TrackAddict Yeah! All those ubiquitous stanced VAGs and BMWs makes me puke, because all what they do is put some coils, wheels and slam. Oh also some hipster/swagster stickers are present.


Jay_TrackAddict "I'd rather see it a decent ride height, with a slightly smaller wheel that fits properly." 
And, that will help it stand out more?


Nice set and post Blake. Cool to see that wheels and a drop (or rather slam here) is universal.


@open your eyes you never voice an opinion. Rather, you just end up bashing whatever it is you don't like. There's a difference between voicing an opinion and being downright rude.


Jay_TrackAddict You "rather see it a decent ride height, with a slightly smaller wheel that fits properly."??? Don't you mean like an average day to day Golf? Why don't you just close the computer and open the window to watch cars outside on the street? Maybe that's the way you want to satisfy your car passion.


Jay_TrackAddict I agree , I'm a vw fanatic, but they all look the same at the end. If the car is not scraping they bash you. I prefer a nice useful  track stance, and performance. Hell , even a stock well maintained car at the end if you decide to sell it , you'll get most of your money back.


Excellent photography


Jay_TrackAddict I can't believe in 2015, people still aren't aware how air suspension works. That's not its driving height. When it airs up, the camber will come back in line too. 

Everything else is subjective, but remember that it's not your car nor did the owner build it for your approval.


if i dont like something, thats an opinion as well. and after the 1562nd dropped Golf on oversized wheels, anyone will be rude


If the builder doesnt care for the people's opinion than why is it featured on dem interwebz?
Because the owners of these cars are 99% attention hoes.


@open your eyes Probably because he was asked. 

It's not like your comments are for attention, right? What with all the valuable and intelligent contributions you've made here recently.


thanks buddy for visited my town. actually I heard about you in solo. I really want to saw the photoshoot but I still in my campus. here's the gti from a car meet a moth ago or 2 weeks before the photoshoot :D


Welcome to Stance|Hunters.


vw scene =  make for internet cred


roryfjohnston Jay_TrackAddict stand out? who care?  most person think  piano fell on this roof...only internet vw  guy like it


Paddy McGrath i swear man you are the best person here to back a builder up, im not saying every other SH employee is bad, because they arent they all are amazing and im jealous you get to be around top notch builds for a living. Back to the point, we need more of you in the car world today, its either "ewwwwww it isnt my car" or "you got to someone to build it for him, gayyyyy" How is such thing a bad thing to do, My dad has always told me when i build a car, stay in your own budget, and the only thing that matters is that you look and smile at every time you see it. It doesnt matter what others think about the money you spent


Speedhunters the golf rulz! U0001f60d


Wow Blake, awesome shots. I came here just from your header-photo.


RD_godzillaR35 RIP english


Rotiform are making some pretty awesome wheels. My favorite wheel company as of late.


drivetech at least I tried


drivetech *English ;)


NicholasMaher Do people even read the story or look at all the photo's, or just jump straight to the comments to complain about "stanced" cars on SH?


Did you ever stop and think English may not be their first language? Did you ever consider an outside factor for their incorrect syntax and grammar?
The car is in Indonesia, not England.
Do you even think?


90nissanS13@my350z If that's an attack at me, perhaps take the time to realise that I was on the side of RD_godzillaR35 and instead of having a go at him, I was correcting MR Grammar police who while trying to be rude also made a mistake.


No buddy, I'm not addressing you. I got a chuckle out of your remark.


90nissanS13@my350z Thanks for the kind words!


takahashitothetop Thanks!


90nissanS13@my350z All good then. Your reply had no "@ name" next to it and was straight under mine, so I wondered. Bad assumption on my part, although after I posted I saw you had liked my comment so I figured it wasn't.


Jolteon The car scene is still developing so I can forgive the 'questionable' builds for now, and the creativity is still impressive in it's own right!


All good! That's what you call a lazy smartphone comment.


Spaghetti NicholasMaher I have done both, though not on purpose. I have no issue with stance done correctly. This car is good because it's on air which I failed to read.
I do have issues with and will criticize without fail cambered car like The Roadster Gets Slammed Miata. Doing that to a car is senseless.
The same with Raising A Middle Finger: The Freakin Works Z32 though I didn't bother.
At a car show I would not even look at that POS. Without the mentally challenged camber (and other design concept challenges that certainly are problematically executed) I would because that generation of 300ZX are great looking cars that GO, and you never see them anymore.
I will close with this: anybody can build whatever they want but if you use your brain more it generally works out better.


No disrespect to Rotiform or those that love their wheels....I know the BBS RS/slant lip etc is considered "played out" for the VW/Euro scene but I'd love to see some different wheels out there in Internet'dom. I felt like every late model car had Rotiforms at SEMA and it left me with a sort of bad taste in my mouth...the crowd cheers "we want more real wheels!"


Paddy McGrath I understand how it works I just dont like the way any car looks when its completely on the deck.


greenroadster Yup, I own a day to day Golf, a GTI Edition 30 but my idea of a nicely modified car is different to others. I was just saying that an aired out Golf on Rotiforms its almost the "standard" now. They all just blend into one


This is so sweet! That installation is so clean. For a moment I thought it was Paddy's car lol. Those 19's look so small, i remember when 17's was the sh*t. Really like the rim choice. Rotiform is making really nice wheels lately, especially for Porches


Not feelin it.


960 Jay_TrackAddict All or Some


So Mods include.......... Wheels and Air ride.... (of which a garage did), This does not deserve a feature, next we'll be seeing #thatBoostedgirl getting a feature........-.-


@open your eyes You completely avoided my point. 99% of your comments are completely unnecessary. All you ever do is attack someones work for whatever ridiculous reason you may come up with. I guess I have to quote myself because you must not have noticed the first time. "There's a difference between voicing an opinion and being downright rude." Get it? there a fine line between disagreeing with someones build, and outright attacking it. Give it a week, and you'll probably do exactly what I just explained.


Ujean This could never be Paddy McGrath's car – I spy a speck of dirt/dust on one wing mirror.


... Was that some sneaky "Amazon.com comments" style attempt to push people towards searching for a hashtag?
Cos like, it came across as some sneaky "Amazon.com comments" style attempt to push people towards a website.


Jordan_Butters Ujean Paddy McGrath #awkward


I saw one or two VWs modified like this when I was out Christmas shopping the other day.  They'll never get a blog feature, but for some reason this one did...?


How to start a fight in the Speedhunters comment section:

Mention the word "simple" in the article title...


OscarPais It's a shame none of them fit properly!


Really weak feature, sorry if that's too offensive for you but I'd hate to see SPEEDhunters become mediocrityhunters


I should have added constructive critisism. Nice car, but not worthy of a feature. Maybe speedhunters could start a readers rides type of section where you can show several readers cars a week in one post and save the real articles for truly badass machines like that time attack Subaru, the ford ratrod, and so forth?


Jay_TrackAddict Amen brother!


Therealstig This isn't a feature though. It's a spotlight i.e. a quick look at a cool car. Feature cars will have multiple chapters and a comprehensive spec list at the end. Maybe we could do more to differentiate the two? 

Anyways, it's not like there's only a finite amount of space available on the internet. I'd rather see this than nothing at all.


TarmacTerrorist shes an instafame girl on instagram that got famous for absolutely no reason other than being a ho lol her car is a turd but bum boys go nuts for it because the driver is a girl


Jedi Drift 

... damn dude, so much hate over an internet Z-list celebrity... come on, level with me, did you date her and she didn't put out or something cos like... I'm sensing some issues.


wow. sh viewership hates on everything. wonder what they drive


@Fabrik8 do you live in a developing country? Were those cars representative of a maturing local car modification scene?
I didn't select this car just because of the way it was built, but for what it represents in both Indonesia and further abroad.


hello from jakarta, indonesia. i like this car actually, in indonesia its rare to see someone using Air-suspension or even original Rotiform wheels.. cos in our country its too damn expensive you know..

salute to these guy who own the car hehe *sorry for my bad engilsh :D*


Cool so you're writing about cars that are 'gonna' be modified now? 

I'd see 10 cars like this just driving to work in Sydney. Try raising the bar when it comes to cars you choose to feature.


TarmacTerrorist different country man so it would be rather difficult ,hate is a very strong word, but since your quite focused on keeping the topic on her and not the boring golf that got a feature i will leave it at that.


There should be a new rule here that only allows you to post negative comments if you include a picture of your own car. That would stop 95% of the shite -talkers I would think :)


You were slinging mud for no reason and I called you on it.
Trolling works better when the comment is relevant to the discussion. Yours wasn't, it really did seem like you where trying to rise someone's site traffic, it was shoe horned in at the end was out of place. Besides, her car, her life. Why let it affect yours?
This owners car is his and he can do what he likes. This is the reality of actually owning a car and modifying it in the real world. We can't all afford carbon shells and LS swaps.
can you do better? Do you have better? Yes the recipe is a simple one but it's the high level of the execution of such simple details that makes it worthy of a spotlight IMO. It's a nice car. Simple.

Ikhsan Abdul Aziz

Speedhunters come to Surakarta ! Nice !


The number plate tells me that the car are from surabaya..


Alcyorr Nope. H plate is for central java: Semarang, Salatiga, Demak, and surrounding areas. Surabaya plate has L prefix.


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