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MK7 Golf R: A Used Car Journey

by

I know what you’re thinking, what is a used car journey? Well, the journey is in the detail process and it is surrounded around restoring your pre-owned vehicle back to its former glory. The goal of this detail is to fix any existing issues and make it feel like a brand new car. Unlike purchasing a new car and protecting it, this journey in transforming the finish creates a special bond between you and your vehicle.

This article is all about my personal experience transforming a 2015 Golf R and the journey in making it my own. I have always had a soft spot for performance Volkswagens. GLIs, GTIs, Rs, you name it, I have spent some serious google search time looking at these cars. One night after hours of car searching, I stumbled across a 2015 Lapiz Blue MK7 Golf R in upstate New York.

I purchased the car on a beautiful sunny day and had an absolute blast driving it back down to Boston. The vehicle had 4,500 miles on it and had been a Volkswagen corporate car to showcase their OEM accessories.  Once I got it back to the shop, I parked it and gave it a thorough inspection. Here’s what I found.

Exterior Issues:

  • Severe paint texture on the roof (significant orange peel)
  • Heavy scratches around door handles, rear VW emblem, rocker panels and roof
  • Factory sanding marks on the doors and roof
  • Swirl marks throughout all the paintwork
  • Heavy dirt and grime
  • Wheel wells covered in dirt and sand
  • Various paint chips on front bumper, hood, and front fenders

Once I pinpointed the areas of concern, I drew up a project game plan. The goal was to remove as many paint defects as possible using a variety of polishing and sanding techniques. Once the Lapiz Blue paint was restored the plan was to install various nanocoatings and extensive clear bra coverage to make this a truly ultimate daily driver.

Project Guideline:

  • Wash & Decontaminate
  • Color Sanding
  • Compounding / Polishing Steps
  • Ultra Fine Polishing Steps
  • Ceramic Coating Application (Paint, Trim, Glass, Wheels, Door Jams, Exhaust Tips, Engine Plastics)
  • Clear Bra installation (Full Front End, Rockers, Leading Edge of Roof, A-Pillars, Top of Rear Bumper, B-Pillars)

Now on to the journey…

MK7 Golf R Transformation

MK7 Golf R Transformation

MK7 Golf R Transformation

MK7 Golf R Transformation

MK7 Golf R Transformation

MK7 Golf R Transformation

MK7 Golf R Transformation

Wash & Decontamination Process/Products:

MK7 Golf R Transformation

MK7 Golf R Transformation

MK7 Golf R Transformation

MK7 Golf R Transformation

MK7 Golf R Transformation

MK7 Golf R Transformation

MK7 Golf R Transformation

MK7 Golf R Transformation

MK7 Golf R Transformation

MK7 Golf R Transformation

MK7 Golf R Transformation

MK7 Golf R Transformation

MK7 Golf R Transformation

MK7 Golf R Transformation

MK7 Golf R Transformation

Paint Correction Procedure/Products:

MK7 Golf R Transformation

MK7 Golf R Transformation

MK7 Golf R Transformation

MK7 Golf R Transformation

MK7 Golf R Transformation

MK7 Golf R Transformation

MK7 Golf R Transformation

MK7 Golf R Transformation

MK7 Golf R Transformation

MK7 Golf R Transformation

MK7 Golf R Transformation

Vehicle Protection Process/Products:

MK7 Golf R Transformation

MK7 Golf R Transformation

MK7 Golf R Transformation

MK7 Golf R Transformation

MK7 Golf R Transformation

MK7 Golf R Transformation

MK7 Golf R Transformation

This project really made me appreciate the car to its fullest. The process that it underwent just built up the hype for the day I would finally take her out again. There’s nothing better than the feeling of driving a clean car for the first time after you just finished detailing it.

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James Melfi
James Melfi
AutoNuvo
Holliston, MA
AutoNuvo.com
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8 comments on MK7 Golf R: A Used Car Journey

  1. Paul says:

    Very impressive work and awesome vehicle. Can’t believe the car had that many imperfections and swirls for 4,500 miles. Must have seen way too many car washes. I’m a big fan of almost all the products you selected and used. Great work James and excellent write up!

  2. Leo E Gonzalez says:

    I recently did a paint correction on a friends 2012 GTI in Tornado Red which he is selling and people who look at say its a 2015 or 2016.
    I am surprised your R needed so much correction given the mileage but indeed people have no clue how to properly care for cars.
    Tremendous work James and hope your R gives you good years of service. Looks great!

  3. tom newman says:

    Melfi,car looks great,nice job explaining your process

  4. Jim says:

    Very impressive results. I’d like to understand better where you used the 1500 grit sandpaper, and how the sanding process works. I have used aggressive compounds with my rotary polisher, but have not yet had a job that would require wet sanding.

    • James Melfi james melfi says:

      Thanks Jim,

      I used a variety of texture leveling tools to remove some slight orange peel on the roof and doors. I used a combination of Meguiars 1500-3000 grit sanding discs and CarPro Velvet pads. My goal was to gain some clarity and flatten the clear in certain areas to achieve a more uniform texture across all panels. I would love to get an article together soon highlighting sanding techniques. Thanks again for reading!

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