Is this most anticipated detail in the history of AF? Well, we don't know about that, but it has to be up there. In fact, the guys have been dying to get this one in the bay for some time now.
Still, it doesn't matter that the "new' AF Caddy has taken a little longer than we're used to, because it's now finished and was recently unveiled at Ultimate Stance to rapturous applause. We have to say that we're pretty damn proud of the crowd reaction for this awesome VW workhorse, too.
But, of course, before we could even think about pulling off the cover at the season finale, we had to put it all together and detail the "V2' to an AF-worthy finish. So, here's what's been cooking in the runup to the main event…
Originally a stock, white Caddy shell, before being fully mocked up and then torn down for a bare metal paintjob (inside and out), this truck was actually prepped and sprayed in Porsche Crayon over the UK lockdown, completed by a friend of ours, out in the country, in his huge shed. So, when you think about it, in a way this project immediately had all of the "built in a barn' ethos of the Original Caddy that's universally known and loved.
Just like the OG Caddy, too, this truck has quite the monster spec. We'll save the full details for an in-depth Project Spotlight feature later but, quite obviously, the wheels alone are what you might call a little on the special side. These custom-built, magnesium BBS E50s are an amazing, not to mention supreme quality touch, they also set the high-end tone of the entire build… although we admit that we waited right until the end to pick out the final spec, these took more than a little head scratching to get spot-on under the arches.
And yes, sure we may have got a little side-lined with Our R32 GT-R, Twingo Challenge cars, and the onslaught of creating the best detailing content on the world wide web, along the way. But, good things always come to those who wait, don't they? And it's safe to say that this one turned out quite a bit better than good!
Anyway, social media followers will remember that this truck was rolled into the bay earlier in the year and there's been plenty of steady work in the background from AF Mechanic, Matt, ever since. In that time the Air Lift Performance P3 air ride system was fitted up, monster Tarox brakes bolted on, a whole load of wiring and plumbing jobs were tackled and a completely rebuilt, custom painted ABF engine slotted into place. This powerful little lump may have all retro looks of course, but it has all the modern performance, too… chiefly because it has all the up to date bells and whistles. The spec includes such 21st Century goodies stand-alone management and some well-chosen Jenvey Heritage ITBs - proper fuel injected throttle bodies cleverly disguised to look like retro twin carbs. What with that little lot plumbed in and the addition of a custom exhaust from RTec, trust us when we say that this thing barks!
The retro theme continues on the outside. All new OEM trim was sourced from Heritage Parts Centre (check them out here, and use the code HERITAGEFINESSE for an exclusive 10% off your order), right down to every last clip, seal and door handle. When it comes to one of the ultimate finishing touches, we also opted for plenty of custom brush work by old skool pinstriping legend Neil Melliard. That's right, those stripes and logos aren't vinyl graphics, they're all 100% hand painted!
Last of all on this mega nut and bolt rebuild, the custom-trimmed, burnt orange leather interior (including super-rare electric Recaro seats) was popped into place… and then immediately removed for the next step - a full round of correction and finishing, inside and out…
It goes without saying that we practice what we preach here at AF, even James our MD loves nothing more than breaking out the machine polishers and getting stuck into a big detail. Along with our Senior Production Manager, Simon, and Daran, one of our Detailing Academy Pro Instructors, it's safe to safe to say that the Caddy was in good hands for a few days of wet sanding, compounding and polishing. Every last inch was tackled, from the engine bay to the interior, and with the entire Auto Finesse arsenal to choose from along the way, the results really do speak for themselves.
Of course, it goes without saying too that with the custom interior refitted, the guys had it ready for a reveal in all its glory on Halloween weekend at Ultimate Stance, and for all those dying to know the full spec in all its intricacies, a full feature shoot will be coming very soon.
In the meantime though, we're all about the full, and rather epic, detailing process on this one. So, check out this awesome video of the AF crew in action…