SVI’s new armoured Volkswagen GTI protects against AK47s - here’s how much it costs

Published Jun 11, 2024


Touted as an ideal rapid-response solution for crime-ridden South African cities, SVI’s new “AK47” Volkswagen Golf GTI was designed to offer protection against handguns and rifles up to 7.62x39mm.

The Joburg-based manufacturer revealed its new armoured performance hatch at the Securex 2024 exhibition at Gallagher Convention Centre in Midrand this week.

The armoured conversion costs R649,500, excluding VAT and the purchase price of the donor vehicle, which means you should be in for around R1.55 million once all the bills are settled.

“Hot hatches are well suited to rapid-response duties but are generally available only with level B4 armour, leaving occupants vulnerable to higher ballistic threats,” said SVI Business Development Director Nicol Louw.

“The SVI AK47 Golf 8 GTI is our solution to that problem and may just be the fastest way to reach the scene of an in-progress crime, without compromising on ballistic protection,” Louw added.

This bespoke package was developed specifically for the South African market with the key objective of providing protection against AK47 rounds.

Despite the special ballistic glass, this is a discreet armoured package. Picture: Supplied.

It features discreetly integrated and custom-fabricated B4+ body armour in addition to special lightweight ballistic glass. Despite this the driver’s window can still be opened halfway, although the other panes are fully fixed.

In order to maximise protection, engineers purposefully excluded composite material, instead employing high-grade armoured steel in areas such as the doors, pillars and roof.

A specially designed bulkhead behind the rear seats means the tailgate does not have to be armoured, saving cost and weight, while a camera system restores the driver’s rearward view.

SVI says the conversion adds about 340kg to the GTI’s overall weight, which is an increase of around 23%. Although the effect on performance and handling is said to be minimal, you are surely going to feel some effect. That said, clients can also opt for a similar package for the more powerful, all-wheel drive Golf R.

For the record, the Golf GTI produces 180kW of power and the Golf R is good for 235Nm.

“In South Africa, it’s become patently clear that the round-the-clock fight against crime needs fresh solutions. The SVI AK47 Golf 8 GTI is exactly that and equips rapid responders – in the private security sector and beyond – with both the required speed and the required protection,” Louw added.

The armoured AK47 Golf GTI takes around three-months to build, SVI says.

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