Car Feature>> Dahlback Golf Turbo

Not too long ago Golf came out with a prototype called the Golf GTI W12, it featured a twelve cylinder six liter engine with 650bhp capable of 325km/h. But long before that, a Swedish tuner called Dahlback made something even more spectacular. Their basis was a Golf Mk4 which they completely stripped so they could start with a blank canvas.

The car started life in 1998 and has progressed ever since. Let’s start at the most obvious, the exterior. Dahlback went to VW motorsport for a complete widebody kit. The kit was needed because Dahlback wanted to use bigger rims and tyres. The frontbumper has been modified to house a bigger front mount intercooler.

The rear is pretty much standard except for the vented trunk. Behind those vents you can find a radiator and water coolers. The new engine didn’t leave any room in the front so they had to move to the back.

The car is capable of spitting enormous flames through its side exist exhaust on downshifts. Just search for some footage on youtube I’m sure you guys will be able to find something. The exhaust is made from a 4,5″ stainless steel pipe that runs directly from the turbo and exists on the side.

The underside of the frontbumper has been made from dry carbon to keep the weight down. I have seen this car run on one occasion and it totally shredded the lower half when it went over the curb stones.

Power is extremely important when building a race car, but the stopping power is just as important. Dahlback didn’t cut corners and fitted Alcon brakes with 375mm rotors in the front and 355mm rotors in the rear. The wheels say BBS but I can’t find which type they are, I do know that they come in size 10 x 19″. Dahlback is also able to squeeze 12 x 20″ under the car’s arches but they only use those wheels for car shows.

The interior is all business with lots of carbon and a extensive rollcage. The rollcage extends to the entire car even into the engine compartment. The race seats are made by Recaro for that much needed support when driving. While seated the driver can check all the vitals on a pair of Stack meters right in front of him.

The shifter connects to an ‘old’ Audi IMSA transmission with a custom final drive for better top speed

The engine itself, Dahlback went shopping at Audi and found a 2.1 liter 5 cylinder turbo engine. The engine is capable of producing more than a 1000bhp depending on the setup. It has some nice trick parts like a twin intercooler setup. There’s one that is mounted in a traditional way but there’s also on that is placed alongside the engine from top to bottom. You can see it on the right.

Another nice feature is the dry sump oil system with an oil filter that they got out of a Volvo truck. Dahlback also managed to make an Audi all wheel drive system compatible with the car. They achieved this by modifying a RS2 audi subframe in the rear and custom made subframe in the front. The entire chassis consists of titanium and magnesium components for extra strength.

There you have it, an amazing Golf that has been on the cover of many magazines in Europe and elsewhere. This car has been on the fore front of custom engineering and Dahlback has done it in a spectacular fashion. I haven’t seen a Golf this extreme ever since.

-Jeroen Willemsen

Dahlback Racing



Comments are closed.


by Oldest
by Best by Newest by Oldest

i think those are BBS RGR's


never seen this before! this car looks dope!! especially the first photo! great find jeroen! (and btw the composition on the photos you took at essen were nice!) great work dude.


whoops, i meant RK.


wheels are BBS RK's


Dahlback golf been around for so long, it was massively ahead of its time in 98 and still amazes people now, you should post a picture of the underside it is a work of art, top car.


That has to be the wildest Mk. IV ever! It's nice to finally see some VW representation on SH.


Yeah, that's how we do it in my hometown ;)


Seen it.. :-P He got i RWD Polo too. Live 30min away for Hans, garage. Swedish Power!


I remember seen this Dalhback few years back, along with this Tommy Schonberg's Audi A3:

(, ripping around the tracks in Norway....simply stunning !

Thanks for the post Jeroen, some nostalgia....


!WOW! this is my kind of car! all business! no fancy details! i would paint it in a flat black, and go to the ring everyday!


Anything Dahlback gets his hands on turns to pure horsepower, especially this RSI and the Polo that SpeedSweden mentioned (video


while Jeroen is right that the power can be over 1000hp, the reason there's no precise number is because they were only able to measure up to around 900hp before the car broke the chassis dyno it was on :O they still had plenty more boost to give it too. madness! (probably has to do with the violently sudden increase in power when the turbos kick in)

here's a shot of the dyno setup


here's the offical site's media section along with some of their other projects:


^^^ what luis said ^^^

I've never been a VW dude, but THAT's a proper car.


I can't believe anone hasn'rt see this car before! Youtube has a few vids. as mentioned before.

Fast as s**t but the engine makes so much hp it overpowers the tires and makes it hard to handle. It was came to the T/A at BW a few years ago but I dunno' how it did. Amazing engineering considering it uses the drivetrain from an Audi S4. I read that Mr. Dahlback used to work for Audi racing in the 80's


i <3 BBS RK'S

that is a bad ass car


and i would change the rear spoiler, for more downforce...


i want to see this thing's lap time around Tsukuba...i wish a time attack competition where world famous tuners attend, US vs UK vs Ger vs Jap vs etc.


Aah The infamous Golf. Haven't seen this car at any track in many years now.

Its a pretty awsome piece of engineering. To bad it almost never lasted more then 5-10 laps before something went wrong :P The power has been quoted to 830, 900, 1000+ and 1200bhp, but they never bothered to back it up. Myth definitely sells well :)

This video from a Swedish TV show gives you a good view of the underside of the car (He also quotes 830hp in this video)...


Hmm, I don't like it as much now that I've read some specs.

2.1L and 830+ HP for about 10rpm? What a way to ruin a great car.


Those wheels look like some i saw on NFS Pro Street!


yes one of my favourite wheels yaw



the car never put down any more than 650Hp. Its an amazing example of engineering, but the car never ran properly, nor did it ever perform (it ran 13s). Let's be honest, it has absolutely nothing in common with a mk4 golf, other than the silhoette.

It should be noted that Hahns has recently sold the company as he's facing a huge health crisis, and only has a short amount of time left to live. Best wishes to him and his family.


Erm. In Norway, this car is a running joke. It's a straight rallycross car in asphalt trim. Dahlback is well known as "mytoman" - more interested in good stories than what actually happened. If you watch coverage from Norwegian "Gatebil" track events (youtube it, worth your time), you will see it at the tail end of the field - outrun by cars of half the claimed power. Looks good but nowhere as potent as it looks...


Sad to hear of the health issues, Hans may be mytoman but he is a good guy and a lot of fun to be around, as he thrives on controversy and is able to raise a good-natured quarrel with anyone in two seconds flat.

The only power claim to actually have backing was 650ish at the hubs. There were a lot of claims going back and forth, but Rototest isn't the kind of company that needs controversy. Nor is their equipment likely to break at 900, as there have been done repeated runs at 1200 plus right here in my home town in Norway.

Engine is not Audi Sport (possibly except for the block, if you are to believe the claims) - it's straight 1990s hardcore Audi five 2.2 20V iron block. Today, this engine is mid-range, there are several of these with dyno proven 1k plus hp here now.


i need help please contact me +244923823330


I was amazed by this car back in the late 90s when I first read about it and I am still amazed by it today.


Wheels look like WEDSport