We all have a dream car we’d like to build; the money-no-object project that turns heads everywhere, and has other petrolheads looking at their bank balance and crying unreservedly into their shabby second-hand dashboards. It’s something we all aspire to do – except for James Hellewell, who’s already living this mental modified dream.
It’ll probably be quite hard for you to read this feature and not get a tad jealous at James’ bottomless dollar pot, but hang in there, because to be fair he’s got as much balls as he has money, going down a whole different route to build his dream car and, even better, has done it for no other mother funker but himself.
James got his candy white ’Rocco courtesy of Santa Claus after a brief, aborted flirt with an ABT-kitted Mk.5 Golf, which James said he found too under whelming. “It just had no ‘different’ factor, so I took it back and swapped it for the Scirocco,” says the Leeds man, casually.
Once he decided the ‘Roccowas for him, James had Overfinch, who are a main ABT dealer, on the phone to go over his bespoke spec – which included changes to the body, wheels and interior of the brand-new VW. James opted for 19-inch Rotiform BLQ’s with an anthracite finish, plus a carbon wrapped roof and black leather seats with white diamond stitching, as well as that much talked about ABT bodykit.
“I like the kit, not a lot of people have it,” reckons the pro quad-bike racer. “Yes, some people will see this and think, ‘I’ve seen nicer Sciroccos that are Euro style,’ or ‘the spoiler looks like an ironing board’ – I’ve heard it all, but I like to be different, so that’s why I went and got it.”
When the day came to pick up his new car, James was pissed off to learn the Rotiforms hadn’t arrived yet, which meant the 20-year-old took matters into his own hands in search of his perfect wheels. “My mate was selling a set anyway, so I just bought them off him instead,” James explains, “It just meant that when my Rotis arrived, I had a spare set to play with.”
As it goes, those spare Rotis came in mighty handy, as by the time the car was ready to roll home, Blighty’s highways were doused in winter snow – leaving James with little option but to amble home in his shiny new ride and wash and garage it while he waited for the roads to thaw. And, it was while patiently waiting that the northerner realised he needed to add another twist to his one-off ’Rocco.
The man himself explains: “While the Scirocco was kept away from the bad weather, I seemed to see more and more white cars with a black roof and black or anthracite wheels. At this point I was getting mad as I’d got a new car and hadn’t even really driven it, and found everyone had the same colour scheme as me. I then made a choice and took the spare wheels to LSN coatings in Castleford and had them done in the brightest, most metallic green you can think of.”
“The ABT springs handled well, but I came into some more money and all I heard at shows was ‘Plush, Plush, Plush,’ so I gave them a ring and within a couple of weeks, the ’Rocco was on air,” is the explanation from James on the Airlift setup which means he can now deck the car at the mere flick of a switch.
A trip to Revo later gave the TDI unit a power hike to 210bhp courtesy of a cheeky remap, before a chance chat at a show threw up an interesting proposition for the VW’s stoppers. As Mr Hellewell puts it: “I got talking to a lad about Audi R8 brakes and I told him if he can source me a set that will fit, I’ll have ‘em. Not long after, I got the call and decided I just had to have them on my car!”
James isn’t finished yet and plans some slick carbon additions to his ride as well as a few tasty engine tweaks ‘for a bit more poke’.
James accepts his Scirocco is a Marmite car, but it’s certainly fresh and you can’t knock that he’s gone with a dream and built it for himself, and himself only. And that, my friends, is something money can’t buy…
TECH SPEC VW SCIROCCO
ABT body kit; carbon wrapped roof and diffuser.
Stage 1 Revo remap and custom ABT exhaust.
Air-ride by Plush Automotive; Audi R8 discs and calipers; 19-inch Rotiform BLQ’s all round; Toyo Proxes tyres.
Original seats trimmed in black leather with white diamond stitching by ABT.