VW Golf Bow Straps???

We (lovely wife and I) are transitioning from my '85 VW Vanagon to her 2004 VW Golf as our primary paddling vehicle. The Vanagon has ample space on the roof and plenty of good places to hook the bow and stern straps but the 21 year old cylinder heads are beginning to fail. The Golf however has a short span between bars and a whole lot of plastic underneath the front bumper. Just when the bow and stern straps become critical, VW offers nothing on the front end. Until I convince her that we really NEED to drop $7k on a new TDI engine for my trusty Vince, does anyone have any good ideas for locating the bow straps to the front end of the Golf?



p.s. Any good reasoning regarding the new engine for the old van would be appreciated. I’ll need some help on this one, too.

Owners manual
I faced the same problem with my vw Polo-00, and I assume it is similar to the Golf in this aspect. After reading the manual I found out that there is a small plastic cover (held in place by a tiny screw) in the lower right front of the car. After removing the cover you will see a large treaded hole. Located in the small toolbox in the spare tire at the trunk of the car you’ll find a threaded metal hook that will attach to threaded hole in the front. -Problem solved!

If the above fails you, try searching for “towing” in your manual.

Another option
I have an '04 Jetta Wagon, and what I do is to tie some flat webbing to a pair of billets in the front fender just under the hood, close the hood with the webbing sticking out the sides, and attach bow lines to those. Works great.

The towing lug works very well, too.


Come on you guys…
Who really reads the owners manual?

I’m glad somebody does. Great tips. Thanks.

Mines a 98
I have a 98 GTI so its a MK3 rather than a MK4, and i just go through the front air dam, and i have two holes perfect for metal tie down hooks that are part of the metal bumper.

In the back, I have two holes in the unibody, about the size of golf balls that work well, No idea why they are there in reality, but they work great for securing my kayak :slight_smile:

Top Ties



Hood hinges
I’m not sure if it would work in your car, but I loop my straps around the hood’s hinges. This may work depending on how far your boat overhangs the hood.

The two members that hold your bumper to
the frame work fine. Copper picture wire makes a great tool for fishing through the right route, just thread it through the top hole in the lower grill, over the top of that strut than holds the bumper and out thought the top hole (since you will be pulling up on this if you do not come out through the top you will break the grill. Do this then use the wire to pull through some tubular webbing. Tie in a followed figure eight leaving a loop to tie to. Leave it dangling If you replace the webbing every three years you will never need the copper wire, just tape the new webbing firmly to the old and pull it through.

I’ve done the same

– Last Updated: Nov-18-06 9:00 PM EST –

thing as Wayne with my 1998 Jetta. I had a pair of straps made into loops with grommets for attaching to the underhood bolts nearest the windshield. I only used them for long distance driving on turnpikes.