Lot 121

1981 Volkswagen Golf GTi

Lot details

Registration No: PAJ 37X
Chassis No: 17BW655730
MOT: August 2024

  • Modest mileage of c.92,000 miles on the odometer
  • Pleasingly early and unmodified example
  • Just four former keepers and a resident of the vendor's private collection since 2021
  • Offered with a large history file

Now in its eighth generation, the Golf GTi remains the hot hatch by which all rival products are judged. The inaugural version was made available to a delighted German public in June 1976 and, while it wasn't until July 1979 that right-hand drive versions landed on British shores, a special order of 22 left-hand drive examples were imported by Volkswagen the year before to whet the appetite of an already salivating UK enthusiast fraternity still further. The ploy worked perfectly as the car's unique combination of handling, performance, packaging, and affordability was an instant hit. Suddenly, there was the perfect solution for the enthusiast who'd forsaken his sports car to transport a young family - the GTi was what you might call a 'cake and eat it' car. Models have a habit of growing over the years and today's Polo is in fact larger than the original Golf, never mind the current generation of Golf itself, which is way bigger. So, although naturally not as quick as the current offering, the first generation GTi is actually more nimble and still great fun to drive - small wonder then that collectors have long since latched on to the good ones.

Manufactured in 1981 and destined for the United Kingdom, the Mk1 GTi offered was registered new on 5th August that year. Finished in the attractive and popular colour combination of Mars Red with Red and Black cloth interior upholstery and Black carpeting, ‘PAJ 37X’ is a pleasingly unmodified and early example, featuring windows etched with the registration number, standard interior (save for a modern radio system), standard wheels and unchanged exterior appearance. Having approximately 92,000 miles recorded on the odometer, the Golf was acquired by the vendor as an addition to his private collection in 2021 and has had a mere four former keepers from new.

Benefitting from much improvement in 2020, the Mk1 GTi received uprated front brake discs and pads, rear brake shoes, a new exhaust, front grille, and rear light cluster, and additionally, last received a timing belt change at 89,800 miles. Supplied with a history file that contains a very large collection of previous invoices (dating back to the 1980s), a large selection of previous MOTs certificates, past tax discs, and current V5C document, ‘PAJ 37X’ is due to be offered with a fresh MOT certificate in time for sale. Unmolested examples of the iconic Golf GTi are getting fewer and this example with modest mileage and low owner numbers, surely represents a great example to get into Mk1 GTi ownership.

For more information, please contact:
Paul Cheetham
07538 667452


All successful bids must be paid in full by midday the day after the auction at the latest.

You can collect your new pride and joy from our venue until 1pm the day following the sale or our partners are on hand to help arrange safe transportation:


Auction: 30th Anniversary Sale at The Imperial War Museum | Duxford, Cambridgeshire, 20th Sep, 2023

Established in 1993, H&H has sold some of the world's most significant motorcars and motorcycles over the past 30 years. Now owned by its employees and trusted by over 75,000 clients worldwide, we are the longest established auction house of our kind in Europe.


Buyers, bidders and attendees will enjoy a special day in the prestigious Imperial War Museum with some fantastic treats including.
Drinks Reception   |   Music   |   Guest Speakers

With each successful bidder receiving a specially selected hamper.

Watch the website for more details.


To take part in the bidding action please click 'Register to Bid | Sign In' at the top of the page



Tuesday 19th September 2023 from 1pm to 8pm
Wednesday 20th September 2023 from 9am


View all lots in this sale

Do you have an item to sell?

If so, contact one of our friendly specialists for your free valuation by completing the form below and someone will get back to you as quickly as possible.

If you prefer to speak to humans, don't hesitate to call our office on +44 (0)1925 210035

Contact Us Today!



Drag and drop .jpg images here to upload, or click here to select images.

Goon, Goon, Gone: Unique Peter Sellers 1960 Bentley heads to auction
Eclectic 150-plus classic car auction helps round out H&H’s milestone 30th year celebrations
One of the UK’s best driving Aston Martin DB5s heads to auction
Mid-century sports car icons race to Buxton auction
Former front cover ‘star’ heads to auction
Classic British motorcycles shine as 230 lots head to the National Motorcycle Museum auction
Racing legend Patsy Burt's Jaguar XK120 speeds to Buxton auction
22-strong single owner classic motorcycle collection heads to auction
Norton's racing heritage set to ignite the auction stage
Rare Frazer-Nash BMW with rich racing history to be auctioned
“The Rolls-Royce” of the motorcycle world, heads to      auction
Martini inspired Porsche 911 ‘RSR’ Tribute to head under the hammer
Rare ‘Car on Two Wheels’ heads to auction for the first time in 30 years
More than 100 classics sold in H&H’s 30th anniversary sale
Stunning classics worth more than £9 million offered in 30th anniversary auction
Rare Aston Martin DB1 heads to anniversary auction from long-term ownership
Rare Bentleys to star in 30th celebration auction
H&H Classics 30th Anniversary Auction
H&H unveils details of its 30th anniversary celebrations
Classic car owners handed ULEZ lifeline
H&H Classics auction Hurricane X-75 Prototype to National Motorcycle Museum
Vintage and modern classics lead the way at latest H&H sale
H&H offers exceptional range of vehicles spanning 11 individual decades
Pavilion Gardens. Wednesday 26th July 2023
A whimsical blast from the past: Chitty Chitty Bang Bang recreation heads to auction
From Italy with love: auction showcasing the essence of Italian design and sprezzatura
250 Motorcycles & Vintage Scooters Set To Go Under The Hammer!
March of the Mods: Lambretta owned by Paul Weller heads to auction
Lawbreakers to law enforcers: historic scooters with infamous connections up for sale
Jaguar SS100 among £2¼  million worth of classics sold at the Imperial War Museum
British classics to shine at H&H Classics’ sale
Historic Guinness Collection heads to auction
Browse The Catalogue Now! 135 Classic & Performance Cars To Go Under The Hammer.
Robbie Savage’s Ferrari F430 to be sold at H&H Classics
RAC Rally winning ‘Jaguar’ to be sold at auction
Former MP’s Bentley and Facel Vega ‘garage find’ among £1.3m worth of classics hammered away by H&H
Pavilion Gardens, Buxton Auction Preview Video
Genuine ‘matching numbers’ 1967 Shelby GT500 Fastback among 89 strong classic car auction
Rare Facel Vega ‘garage find’ heads to auction
Indian 4 and Lambretta DL200
Golden opportunity to acquire famous limited edition Italjet scooter
H&H Classics commences landmark year with sale of 121 cars
‘Brand new’ Porsche 911 heading to auction after 21 years
Brooklands race winning Bentley to go under the hammer
Actor, Sir Michael Caine’s first car, heads to auction. £100,000 - £150,000
A Very Rare Survivor. A 1936 Indian Four. £50,000 - £60,000
A Car that will Unite Romantics and Cynics Alike. A 1937 Rolls-Royce 25/30 Limousine
If you Fancy a Crack at the London to Cape Town Record - How About this 'Wolf in Sheep's Clothing'?