When we put William Pitts' MK6 Jetta GLI on display at our booth at the NC Auto Expo last week, we got a lot of questions as to why anyone would do such a thing to a Volkswagen Jetta. Obviously the fact that this latest generation 2.0T engine, when chipped, makes close to 400 ft lbs of torque was not common knowledge. The joke is on them though, because we all know what the power plant is capable of, and from our own experience we are well aware of how rigid a chassis the MK6 Jetta can be. Toss in a set of 295 race rubbers all around with widened flares to loom menacingly over them and you have a recipe for a lot of fun on track. So to answer those who skeptically ask, "Why?"- we simply ask "Why not?" Will's car arrived at our shop already having received a comprehensive makeover, with the majority of the fab work performed by Robinson Racing. The tub had been gutted, a cage and solid roof panel welded in place, and lightweight Lexan installed in place of all of the existing glass, sans the rear window. Further shedding weight, Will stripped the motor of all unnecessary luxuries as well. The stock suspension was ditched in favor of H&R Club Sport RSS Coilovers, Hotchkis swaybars, Audi TTRS aluminum 1 piece subframe, Super pro adjustable ball joints Super pro bushings, VW Racing sway bar end links, Stoptech 355 mm two piece slotted rotors with 4 piston calipers, Hawk pads, and stainless lines.
Under the hood, the GLI came to us already chipped with APR's stage 1 software. APR was first to the game with their impressive software that cranks out serious numbers alone. Coupled with a CTS Turbo FMIC and a custom exhaust with high flow downpipe, this track toy was making enough power to roast the stock clutch after only 7k miles on the odometer. And not only was the clutch not up to the task, but the factory engine mounts were beginning to show their limits too. Fortunately for William we were so taken with his decision to fully commit to his race build that we wanted to step in an offer our support. We were able to prototype our Stage 3 Clutch Kit, as well as a Clean Catch Oil Separator. William had already made the choice to run our Stage 2 Engine Mounts, and we had only but to install our Torque Arm Insert to complete the package.
Stage 2 Transmission Mount installed to help deliver as much power to the ground as possible.
Stage 2 Engine Mount installed on the passenger side.
Transmission out and ready to be disassembled.
Our prototype Black Forest Industries Stage 3 Clutch Kit and Lightweight Flywheel compared to the already worn out stock dual mass clutch kit. You can see the included release bearing, as well as the hardware and alignment tool as well.
Giant 335mm Stoptech anchors the car was already equipped with.
Mocking up our Clean Catch Oil Separator- which works nicely with our engine mounts.
The original vinyl job on this MK6 did not do the rest of the build justice. A race car needs to look menacing and purposeful and it helps to have an actual sponsor logo to give it that look. As soon as the MK6 arrived we quickly went to work stripping the car back to its original silver paint job. Through the magic of photoshop we were able to mock up a design that William was in favor of and from there we set about producing the full size files to be cut on our plotter. Everything about the livery was handled in-house with the exception of outsourcing the rear bumper wrap job to Sarah, our service adviser's girlfriend, who has had experience wrapping several other cars, including her MK1 cabby multiple times.
Reference lines may seem low tech but when translating a 2 dimensional design to a 3 dimensional surface there are no guarantees. Through some trial and error we eventually wound up with a very convincing product that mimicked the concept to a T.
Sarah doing her thing
Peloquin's was generous enough to donate one of their legendary limited slip differentials to this project. We have been a dealer for Peloquin for as long as we have been in business, and we have sold our fair share, as well as installed quite a few in the shop here. We have nothing but great things to say about the product, and you'd be hard pressed to find anything negative regarding Gary and his business.
Old vs New
Drilling out the rivets on the stock ring gear. This process is not terribly difficult but it does require quite a bit of patience, and the right technique... Oh and really good drill bits. REALLY good drill bits.
Installing our Torque Arm Insert for even more performance