View Full Version : advice for buying a caddy

08-11-2005, 11:28 AM
hi guys,
im looking at buying a caddy so that i can start my own project and have loadsa questions if anyone out there has some time i would really appreciate some advice...

firstly what should i be looking for, where do they rust, what are the typical problems that i might come across or what should i steer away from?

what is the best engine option to start with if an immediate engine transplant is not possible? do golf gti engines drop straight in? could i fit throttle bodies?

and finally i am a bit of a windsurfing freak, if i was to put a roofrack on how far apart could i get the bars on the cab? in other words would it be far enough to support 2/3 boards and a load of other bits and pieces?

suppose the obvious question would be does anyone out there have somthing i could start off with?


08-11-2005, 12:15 PM
Watch out for rusted b pillar seems - some is effident on most caddy's, but can be a sign of a bigger problem. Buggered bulkheads around clutch cable are common, and fixable. Also watch out for wobbley throttle peddles where water has rusted mount.
Engines; 1.6 diesel and 1.6 carb. Sport had 92bhp 1.8i, but are rare.
Mk1 gti engine will fit easily, as will 16v (1.8 cis and 2.0 digifant) with a bit more work.
Webber 45's work quite well (do they suffer from over heating ?), not sure about throttle bodies on the cis or carb engines though.

08-11-2005, 06:50 PM
Ali, welcome to the forum-
Here is some advice that I gave on a similar question regarding what to look/ lookout for when going to get that caddy. I guess this was specifically diesel but-

The only thing that you might want to do (extra caution) besides looking at the normal pre buy stuff is have a local shop that has the equip do a compression test. If you are getting the pickup for dirt cheap then you might not care so much about this. The other common diesel rabbit stuff to go bad/ to look for-
glow plugs
CV boots/ joints (not as much as the boots)
strut bearings
wheel bearings (make noise when bad)
back up light switch on tranny (no back up lights)
shift linkage bushings (sloppy/hard shifting)
thermostat -mine has gotten stuck open, not a big deal
passenger side engine mount (rubber) I guess this is driver side UK
windshield wash pump/relay
I never had much issue with the bosch CIS- if the o2 sensor is good then usually there isn't too much to worry about. Depending on the age of the caddy/ what country you're in the points, condesor etc, but you'll probably be looking at Electronic ignition.

I'd say get a 1.6td but I don't think that's the direction you're going. :D

Unfortunately the top of the pickup is so short that you'd be hard pressed to get enough room between rack bars to adequately support something light like alpine skiis (but you can get 205's in the bed diagonally so why bother :p ). If you have a canopy you could mount the rear rack to the back of that and be much better set up for a windsurfer. In my case myself and a buddy with some welding skills put together a windsurfer rack in an afternoon of work. (Kinda inspired by the above picture)

Here's a pic of the rack installed on my pickup (before it was repainted)


Hope this helps.

08-11-2005, 09:01 PM
thanks for all your help folks, all good stuff! just need to get my hands on one now!