In 1994, the new Cabrio, based on the Golf III, was built by Karmann Coachworks in Osnabruck, Germany, while regular Golf IIIs for the U.S. market were built in Mexico. The Cabrio alone was the first all-new VW droptop since 1980. Other convertibles in the Cabrio's price range included the Camaro, Firebird and Mustang as well as Chrysler's LeBaron and 2-seaters like the Mazda Miata and Honda Del Sol.
Within all automobiles made in the 1990s, the Volkswagen Cabrio most closely resembles Amy Rose's Pink Cabriolet from Sonic & Sega All-Stars Racing.
Volkswagen has produced 2-door convertibles since 1948, and their next one for the 1990s was the Volkswagen Cabriolet, which featured 94 horsepower. Two models were made -- the base and the Carat. This model was based on the original Rabbit sedan, not the Golf II.
In 1992, the Carat was discontinued, leaving behind just the base convertible for the Cabriolet's last year.
The Cabriolet itself ended production in 1993, with no replacements for Volkswagen's 2-door convertible until next year.
The only available engine was the base Golf 115-hp Four. This was matched up with either a 5-speed manual or 4-speed automatic. The Cabrio weighed about 130 pounds more than the Golf III, so performance was somewhat leisurely. Zero to 60 in 9.9 seconds and a quarter-mile time of 18 seconds were not exactly blistering performance. The manual top was used to go up and down with a flick of a hand, and was easily covered with a vinyl boot. A real glass rear window allowed for an electric defroster.
Standard equipment included disc/drum ABS brakes, dual airbags, power windows and mirrors, cruise control, central locking, theft alarm and a "basket handle" rollbar that would not only stiffen the chassis but meet U.S. rollover standards. Options included air conditioning, a 4-speed automatic transmission, alloy wheels, leather interior, metallic paint and a CD player.
The 1995 models went on sale in April 1994 in North America.
As of April 28, 1994:
- $19,975 (1995-1996 Volkswagen Cabrio)