EVENT | Edition38

Just two weekends back I spent a little time down in the south of England in Northampton, after eagerly awaiting the second instalment this year from the guys at Edition38. This is the 14th year of the Edition38 show and shine and it’s known the world over as one of the premier shows in the VAG calendar. With that in mind, it attracts the best, strangest and most off the wall VAG cars around. Edition38 is one of the very few remaining, true all VAG car shows and if that’s what you are into then this is the show for you.
I arrived on the Friday after 2 long traffic jams on the M6. Relieved to actually be at the show, I was greeted by some of the most friendly and helpful staff at any show I have ever been too. The day was overcast and the cars rolled in slowly, it almost seemed like a challenge of who can scrape the most when pulling into the show. I watched as the early birds began prepping their cars for the next day, peeling off the ‘scene tape’ and applying layers of detailer. For anyone who has never experienced Edition38 Main event, the way I think best describes it would be like camping at a concert. The camp area was filled with friends laughing and joking, the air had been filled with the smell of barbecues, perfect.
Saturday rolled in and the shows car rolled out, the smell of barbecues had been masked with the sweet fragrance of cleaning products. The crowds built fast in the show and shine area, especially now that the weather had cleaned up.





The show field filled quickly with stunning cars, each one more unique than the last. Yes those are some shiny trumpets! – This Mk1 Golf Swallow tail stood out for me among the rows upon rows of cars. The engine in its entirety was polished to a gleaming finish, I can’t imagine this car gets driven much at all. If you’ve never heard of a swallowtail, like me up until about an hour ago, then take a look at the rear of a standard Golf MkI and a swallowtail it’s a small subtle difference. Apparently finding a good condition swallowtail is nearly impossible these days and a perfect example like this one is more than likely to be worth a good bit of money to the right group of people.


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What I loved about Edition38 Main event is that people travelled far and wide to turn up to it, and with that it brought some amazing creations. I’d say the current trend is the OEM+ look, well this Jetta isn’t really an OEM+, more of the ‘over-grown’ variety, love it or hate it, it stands out!


This car took my eye, a MkI Jetta. The owner assured me that this hardened rat-esque VW was not the child of a long garage build but rather a cheap run-about that has been very slowly built when bits have broken or fallen off. In the owners words “when bits have become broken I have sprayed it with matte black paint”, so this car isn’t as such a labour of love but rather a creation of functionality.



In-line with the theme of ‘things a little different at Edition38’ what about this Scirocco? If you ever wanted to show that you were fully into the VW lifestyle, matching your interior with your suitcase and umbrella will do that pretty well, nothing wrong with it of course, I’d happily walk through Manchester airport pulling that suitcase!



When this car turns up to a show, it’s pretty difficult to get any clean shots of it. It draws such a crowd that in the 5 or more times I have seen it, these are the two only shots I have got of it. This is Route32’s stunning MkI Golf, there is quite a few cars that get by with minimal modifications and claim to be a show car, but not this one. Route32 has built this car to the highest quality and the whole build is as comprehensive as anything I have ever seen before, it’s not everyday you see a R32 powered Mk1.


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On the quiet I am really into old cars and in some strange mixed up way, I really like a good old fashioned Beetle. That being said, I wouldn’t own one, technology has come too far and the cars are too advanced for me to think about one as my daily driver, but I don’t believe cars can be, or ever will be designed to look as beautiful as some of the classics, and here are the two Beetles from Edition38 that really caught my eye.




It would be wrong to not throw in some pictures of the Audi’s. Edition38 has them in abundance and these are 3 that took my fancy.



Although there isn’t too many gracing the fields of car shows, the Audi A1 is quickly becoming a favourite, and it wouldn’t surprise me if they become quite popular at shows. Here is two of the A1’s from Edition38, both have been built in very different ways. Beau Cowlin and James Harper have pulled it off to their own style with perfection. Beau Cowlin’s blue A1 has a clean, euro-esque look. Whilst James Harper’s A1 looks gritty and evil in matte black, with that RS inspired grill and S Line body kit.


This is a car that gets better every time I see it. Henry Gilbert’s stunning A4 not only is it very clean on the outside but the work by Edge Automotive has given this car one very sexy looking interior. Henry is very quickly becoming known for his air installs, and his A4 is no exception, it’s another part of the car that has been perfectly executed.


The steering wheel being on the wrong side of the car is a big clue here, the owners have travelled a large distance to come to this show and I have to thank them for that. This was the car that I looked at most over the weekend, I’d love to know who the owner is so I can tell him how much I love it.


Remember Dan Bentley? – The one who got pulled over on Police Interceptors? – The one with ‘automatic adjustable coil overs’ on his ‘Golf’? Well here is the new look for that said “Golf” and it looks as good as it did on TV, I don’t know of any other Polo that has such perfect fitment.


Like carbon? How about this Mk1 which I’d say had so much carbon fibre in it the car could float away if a small child attaches a party balloon to it. If you’re not into carbon fibre this car would be the centre of your nightmare, but for the few that don’t believe the only interior component should be alcantara, this Carbon Fibre filled Golf is a breath of fresh air and seriously cool at that.



I have no idea what this is, and over hearing everyone else’s conversations, neither did anyone else…but I want it. I’ll refer to it as the ‘bread van’… a W12 powered ‘bread van’, capable of scaring your nans long deceased pet budgie and making it fly again. The interior stripped, the the whole car re-built to the highest quality. Not a single spec of dust could be found on this car and I’d go £100 in to say you won’t find a cleaner or better built car. True show car quality and nothing less, I wouldn’t even raise an eyebrow if this never sees tarmac.
The vibe I got from Edition38: Main Event was that half of the show was about the camping leading up to the big finale on the sunday, don’t get me wrong the Sunday show and shine is unreal, but the special thing about this show is being able to camp with thousands of other people, all there to enjoy cars, and it’s perfect. No wonder this show is one of the biggest around, it encourages a whole sense of “friendship” within the car community and it’s a great experience.
Words & Photos: Alex Gregory