1981 Volkswagen Rabbit Overview


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2 Dr Base Convertible
2 Dr Base Hatchback
2 Dr L Hatchback
2 Dr LS Hatchback
1 national listing
2 Dr S Hatchback
4 Dr L Hatchback
4 Dr LS Hatchback

Volkswagen Rabbit Experts

#1 Jon Keachie
Jon Keachie
Reputation 50
#2 LouB
Reputation 40
#2 Scott Sr.
Scott Sr.
Reputation 40
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Average User Score

4.25 stars

Based on 11 reviews

Fahrvergnugen.... by George
 — Just like the German word says "driving pleasure". This VW Rabbit diesel was an awesome car, even though I didn't own it for long, it was very exciting driving it, may be because it wasn't allowed on ... Read More
Rally Built Vw Rabbit... Driver Found! by Verna
 — Hmmm.... I've been a VW owner for most of my life; I think it's somehow gotten into my DNA. So while this car is not really everyone's cup of tea, this rally-setup vehicle brings me nothing but smil... Read More
The Rabbit's Still Hopping by Tyler
 — This is a great car. Its 74 hp engine feels as if it's got much more power. The German build quality is solid; after all these years, there are only minor squeaks. It's very fun to drive, especially w... Read More

1981 Volkswagen Rabbit Overview

Overall User Score

4.2 out of 5 stars4.2 out of 5 stars4.2 out of 5 stars4.2 out of 5 stars4.2 out of 5 stars4.25

Based on 11 reviews

1981 Volkswagen Rabbit

For 1981, the Volkswagen Rabbit received a boost in power, for both its gas and its diesel engines. The Rabbit's standard powerplant was a new four cylinder, 1.7-liter single-overhead-cam gas engine that generated 74 horsepower, up from 71 hp the previous year. A new 1.6-liter diesel engine, which was available as an option, generated 52 horsepower, up from 48 hp.

The Rabbit's exterior also received some minor restyling, with the addition of wrap-around turn signals added to the Rabbit's square front headlights. The taillights were redesigned as well.

As in previous years, the Rabbit was available as either a two-door or four-door hatchback, with a number of trim packages available, including the Rabbit L, the Rabbit LX pickup, and the Rabbit convertible. MacPherson struts, large disc brakes, rack and pinion steering, four-wheel independent suspension, and energy-absorbing bumpers were all standard equipment. Other standard features and options included an AM/FM radio, color-coordinated interiors, reclining front seats, a rear window defogger, a wood-grained dash, and air conditioning.

Drivers were generally very positive in their reviews of the 1981 Rabbit, with many praising the Rabbit's reliability, quickness, gas mileage, and durability. Some noted that their Rabbits were still running even though the odometers were showing several hundred thousand miles.


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Volkswagen Rabbit Questions


How Do I Go About Making My 5 Speed Manual Transmission A Higher Gear In Ov...

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Interior Parts For 1981 Vw Rabbit

I just bought a 1981 Rabbit diesel, I would like to restore but I have minimum budget. Does anyone have any idea where can I get interior parts for my rabbit? Thanks

177 views with 5 answers (last answer 11 months ago)

How Much Does It Weigh

could you tell me how much a volkswagon rabbit from the year 1981 would weigh?

355 views with 3 answers (last answer about a year ago)

I Bought An 81 Vw Pick Up That Was Out Of Gas I [ut 3 Gallons In It Burned ...

159 views with 1 answer (last answer 2 years ago)

Testing Of The Alternator For 1981rabbit,procedure


182 views with 4 answers (last answer 6 years ago)