I had a very low miles 2.0 8v engine ready for treatment and installation but never got round to it before the kids came along.. the standard 1.8 8v digi was in good shape, though a little lacking in top end grunt on the A roads, but your set up sounds like a subtle beast! 121 at the wheels sounds plenty impressive, thats a touch more than the 16v but with all the low end pull of the 8v =
I've only owned VWs for quite a while now, had 71 T2 all standard with empi 5s, the '90 Golf GTI 8v and a few more modern ones.. My mate had a lovely cal look '64 or '66 beetle (can't remember) that would happily take out the chavs in their XR3is and some RS turbos if you caught them by surprise! i drove it a few times, loads of fun, if a little tail happy, it looked like a sleepy beige beetle with the big moon hub caps but it was stupid fast!
I like your plans for the mk2 and thats a nice sus set up, I had sport gas shocks (can't remember the make) -35mm H&R springs and some deep dish 15s on mine, it only had about 80k miles on when i sold it.. went to a guy in nottingham actually, grey big bumper model on a H, H879SSO iirc..