Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Japan only German model

‘They don’t make them like they used to’ series

For VW, the Japanese market it seems is an important one. I guess it confirms my brother-in-law’s (my wife’s youngest sibling) observation that there exists an enthusiast base for VW cars. Let alone that he also owns a VW Golf IV now in Japan, and is part of that fan base.

Back in the late 70’s, VW introduced the highly successful Golf I in Japan. The Golf was badged a GLE. It is an ‘only in Japan’ model, as the Mark 1 Golf GLE exist nowhere but in the Land of the Rising Sun. Everybody would expect a GTI badged hot hatch 2-door Golf, and the acronym is known worldwide. Well, this makes the GLE very special then.

Somehow I was hoping to find the meaning of GLE, to understand why it was a Japan only model, but to no avail. Rather I’ll try to guess what it stood for. Normally car plates with GL, would mean “Grand Luxury”. GLI, then is “Grand Luxury Injection”. In early German cars, E stood for Einspritzung or fuel injection. Alas, GLE can then be simply a GLI in another form.

Here in small scale, Tomica captured the Japanese special VW Golf GLE.

Kudos to Tomy for modeling this one of a kind Golf.

It is a special version made by no one but Tomy?

I’m a Golf lover myself and this casting is a favorite. Thrice that much…

...and got to get them in our national flag colors (hahaha)


BRIAN VESPA of Diecast Japan! said...

I haven't encountered that Tomica Golf yet here in Japan, good for you you have all three colors.


danielh said...

very interesting facts on this VW Golf series.Infact, its also make by tomica. Thanks for sharing.

komenda said...

Hi Brian,
The F-series Tomicas are pretty cool vintage stuff, which the Golf belong. I'm sure in time you'll find these Japan made little cars :-)

komenda said...

Hello Danielh,
I'm happy to share this with you :-)
Always a pleasure to hear from you as well!