I see a lot of threads popping up about HOW DO I MAKE MY MK3 8v faster!?!?. This should keep them down, if those people can read. PS: OBD1 and OBD2 are on board diagnostics. 93-95 was OBD1, 96-99 is OBD2. I will post links at the end of the thread.
First off, your 2.0 8v ABA has 115bhp @ 5400 RPM with around 122lb/ft of torque at just 3200 RPM! It was meant for economy, not power, but don't lose faith in this motor! There are a few things you can do for around 1500 dollars to make it about 130-140bhp. pretty easily depending on your part choices, and make it much more fun to drive. The components necessary to make power cheaply would be an aftermarket camshaft, a chip, and an exhaust.
Keep reading to learn more.
Here is some inspiration: *my old heavily modified All motor 8v*
Your car comes with an airbox from the factory. It is made to breathe enough air to make optimum A/F ratios and to muffle the induction noise..You can do a lot to change that, but the stock airbox flows well for what it is, especially if you swiss-cheese-mod it, which is linked later on, and/or running a fresh-air hose from the front of the airbox where the snorkel is to the mesh vents on the bottom of the bumper. That's direct ram air. The stock airbox flow well for what they are, though! You can also get a K&N panel filter(around 50 bucks), or a USRT high performance panel filter (25 bucks!) and put it in the stock airbox, for about 1whp. Now, that may not seem like much, but HP to the wheels isn't cheap in an ABA. I will post a DIY on swiss-cheesing at the bottom of the page.
As a matter of fact, TT tuning recommends using the stock airbox on MK3 2.0's!
Buying a cone filter from pep boys and placing it on the end of the MAF is going to lower your HP, and TQ, and just add noise..
Now, you can get a "real" intake, which usually consists of a piece of pipe and a conical filter, from various different vendors. You will want one that is away from the hot air of the engine bay, and best case scenario, should have a 90* bend somewhere in it so the MAF gets accurate readings, such as one from Autotech, that goes down into the fenderwell. Or you can go with a conical filter with a heatshield set up. Both styles will increase your MPG slightly, and give you a nice growl when you step on it!
Neuspeed makes a good intake, which is basically a heatshield around a conical filter. They call it the P-Flo. These add pretty good power gains, and give a throaty growl when you step on the go pedal. They add a few whp, but not 5-8 as Neuspeed claims.
Eurosport also sells 2 different intake systems for the MK3 8v. One that is piping that goes down into the fender well, like Autotech's, and one with a heatshield around a conical filter like Neuspeed's P-Flo. (I don't recommend one that goes down into the fender well unless you live somewhere that never rains due to the risk of hydrolocking your engine!!)
The company INJEN makes a nice looking intake, which is a aluminum top section of the airbox and piping from the throttle body to the airbox. It uses a conical filter inside of the airbox. I like this one alot because it incorporates a source of direct cold air which is missing on most conical air intakes, and the metal piping is marginally better for flow.
ABD makes a intake arm out of metal, called the Big Bore intake. Now, it isn't worth the money in my opinion, because all it does is replace the harmonica looking hose with metal (which is marginally better for flow), and costs alot of money, even used (60+ dollars).
If you really want the best looking 2.0 intake set up, go with the ABD intake arm, and a Neuspeed P-flo heatshield (60 bucks on WRD), and get a DRY FLOW K&N filter.
You can also make your own heatshield, with Sallad's DIY, which will be posted at the bottom of this page. Thanks to Sallad for the write up.
The cam from the factory is good for low end TQ, but not for high end power. Your engine will run out of steam at about 5000 rpm, and shifting beyond that is pointless, for power.
There are MULTIPLE options for a performance cam, but it really depends if your car is OBD1 or OBD2, and if you're willing to swap out the valve springs.
If you have an OBD2 cylinder head you are limited by the lift of the cam, unless you swap out the valve springs for HD ones, sold by TT tuning, Autotech, SCHRICK, etc. The highest duration cam I'd recommend without swapping out valvesprings in an OBD2 is 260* (max lift is .432"). Anything higher, you risk valve float aka internal engine damage.
If you have an OBD1, you lucked out, and can run a higher duration/lift cam (.450 max lift)! But don't rev it past 6800 RPM or so for long periods, or you could get valve float.
Now, there are multiple cams, all stating to do different things. I have personally found the TT 272* or 276* cam to be the best all around cams for a daily driven car.
I followed 911_fan's advice, and set an Adjustable camgear to +4 advance, and it adds a significant amount of low end TQ without sacrificing HP with the TT 276*!
For an Automatic, I'd recommend getting a TT 260*, or if you feel like pushing your luck with the trans, a TT 266* or Autotech 270*, if you're OBD1 or want to upgrade valve springs on a OBD2 head.
I'll go over some performance camshafts quickly.
TT eco grind: Useless in your MK3. It says it'll give you better fuel economy, but it really is meant for a MK1 caddy truck. That's a 1000lb weight difference! Don't bother getting this unless you're using an ABA in a mk1
Autotech uses a 260 intake side, but a 256 exhaust side. The 256 exhaust side is actually worse than stock in terms of lift, this cam is useful if you just want a cam to give your car a little more power to rev to redline, not much else. They were originally meant for G60 engines. Decent for low boost applications!
TT 260: Decent power gains, maybe 5whp, great first cam for a OBD2 engine. More pep. Pulls to 6200 RPM way harder than stock.
TT 268/260: Used mainly for FI (forced induction) setups. Decent in N/A cars if you want to go one step above the 260* and you're OBD2 with stock valve springs, or planning on going FI later down the road.
Autotech 270: Great overall cam, no idle issues, 8-10HP gained with a mildly modded 2.0 (HD valvesprings are needed to run this in a OBD2, this cam is around .449" of lift, the max lift for OBD1 stock springs is .450!) Autotech sells a whole kit including the cam, new lifters, retainers, HD springs; for around 450 bucks, out of MJM autohaus's shop. Good if you want to use it in a OBD2 engine and do it the right way the first time!
TT 266(aka270):Good power across the powerband, a good choice for a first cam if you're going to upgrade valvesprings(needed in OBD2 engines!) Pulls from 2500 to around 6500.
TT 268: high performance cam from VW. It was used in certain 8v's (not in the USA.) Good mid to high end, good for OBD1 and a good over all cam. Good for high boost applications, too.
Neuspeed 268: GREAT OBD1 camshaft. Great powerband. Has a 113* lobe center, which means better low and mid end power than the TT 268*! Hard to come by, as Neuspeed doesn't make new ones anymore.
TT 272: TT just recently restocked these. They're a high performance cam VW designed and had SCHRICK make for them, but they never got to production vehicles.. They are a very happy medium in-between a 270* and a 276*. They pull hard to ~6800 RPM. They're great for a first cam for a OBD1 engine, and OBD2 engines if you update the valve springs! Great idle quality for such a high duration camshaft.
TT 276: Best overall cam for these engines IMO. Great top-end without sacrificing much low end power. Pulls hard from 3000 to 7000 RPM. Lopey idle.
TT 276 WLCA: This cam is a wide lobe center angle cam. It is meant for high boost applications. Makes great power, pulls hard from 3000RPM to 7200+, choppy idle, but nothing too bad if your idle is above 950 RPM's.
TT 288: This is a very high duration camshaft. Sure, it'll give you alot of power, but I ran one for a while and shifting at 4k is annoying and your MPG will go down to like 20.
TT 298: Best power for an ABA but you'll sacrifice driveability., best used for a ITB or carb set up. I ran one in my MK2 track coupe, it had no problem pulling to 8000rpm.. but it was a strictly track use vehicle.
These are used to adjust the cam's powerband. You set it to advance to lower the cams powerband, IE: 3-6k, or retard it to bring it higher IE: 4-7. Of course, this isn't an exact art, and the best way to do this is to dynotune it, retard/advance, and go another run. Not everyone has the money to spend a few hours on a dyno, so they use the "seat of the pants" dyno. Stay away from any with aluminum teeth, as they can shred through your timing belt after a while because they get sharp edges on the teeth! TT makes the best one in my opinion. It's basically a OEM camgear with the center cut out and replaced. Neuspeed makes a great piece, too, but the teeth can get sharp!
No, not potato chips, or french fries if you're blut ee british bloke. A chip is basically telling the brain of your car to do different things with the air, fuel, timing, gets rid of speed limiters, raises rev limit, etc. There are alot of options when it comes to chips. It is first based on whether you have OBD1 or OBD2. OBD1 requires soldering, and OBD2 is plug and play, like a N64 cartridge. Second, it varies if you have a aftermarket camshaft or not. If you don't, a chip will add a few ponies (TT's chip adds 7whp at around 3k RPM!), and make the car more drivable for daily driving. Most cam file chips raise the idle to around 1000 so you don't have to worry about stalling while in neutral at a light.
If you do have a aftermarket cam, you should get a matching chip. Companies usually go by the INTAKE side of the cam, so if you have a 260 intake and 256 exhaust side, you'll want a 260 chip.
TT makes good chips for cammed 8v's. GIAC does as well, and they make good products. So does C2, which vends out of BFI. C2 software costs a little more than TT's chip, but is worth it, because the software is newer and it has many additional quirks. The C2 chip won't throw a CEL if you get rid of the CAT, along with many other nice things.
Both of those companies make non-cam chips, as does Autotech, BBM, Neuspeed, and GIAC. They all add HP throughout the rev range, and add TQ, too. They make the car much easier to drive because peak gains are around 3k RPM, raise the rev limiter (not really that big of a deal), and most require 91+ octane gas, but the ABA will pull enough timing if you had to run 89 or 87, even.
The stock exhaust diameter chokes the engine. It is less than 2" in some areas! Now, almost every VW aftermarket company makes an exhaust system. First off, MAKE SURE IT IS MANDREL BENT!! Crush bent exhaust systems can actually make you lose power, and just gain noise. Mandrel bending is shown to flow 30%+ better than crush bent tubing. A good system will cost between 200-600 dollars, depending on what you want for muffler choices and what the piping is made of.
If you're running an intake and a chip, and that is it, you'll want a 2.25" system. If you're running an aftermarket camshaft, you'll want a 2.5" system for the increased power at high RPM (6k+). The reduced restriction from bigger tubing will also increase your MPG 1 or 2 points.
TT sells a good system for cheap, but goes up in price due to the different muffler options. Some of the muffler options ARE NOT WORTH THE EXTRA MONEY! If you bought the base 2.25" system with the dynomax muffler for 255, and wanted a Borla Muffler, TT wants 390 dollars for the system! That's 135 dollars for a Borla Muffler. You can get a Borla 2.25" 14" long case, 2.25" centre/centre outlet/inlet, for under 100 dollars, easy.
Pacesetter sells a nice system, too, but I have heard they rust out kind of fast.
Magnaflow makes a 2.25" system that sounds great, and is stainless steel.
Eurosport makes a 2.25" system, which sounds pretty nice, but for the money.. You can do better in my opinion.
Flowmaster makes a 2.25" system, too, and it sounds nice. The cheapest 2.25" Stainless steel exhaust I've found is by OBX, but it sounds like crap.
Neuspeed makes a 60mm (2.4") System. It is the quietest aftermarket exhaust I've heard on a MK3. It uses 2 high flow mufflers and 1 resonator to provide low exhaust restriction and excellent sound. It has a "DTM" style tip. I really like this exhaust system, they're polished up like chrome, and they're stainless steel. They're on clearance on Neuspeed's website for 499.99!
Your options for 2.5" systems are sort of limited. 2.5" piping has been shown to increase high end power with no decrease to low end TQ on the dyno. You won't really need a 2.5" system with just a intake, because you'll want to shift before 6k anyway.
Autotech sells a great 2.5" system with a Magnaflow muffler.
TT sells 2.5" systems, but they list them under VR6 exhaust. The VR6 exhaust WILL work on a 2.0. They start cheap, and go up in price as you add another resonator, or change the muffler brand (sometimes a rip off for the muffler price!). They offer stainless steel or aluminumized. Stainless systems last longer, obviously, and have a better warranty.
There are a few header options for your engine. The stock log type manifold does not do a good job of flowing exhaust.
There are 2 major designs of headers: 4-2-1 and 4-1, 4-1 will move the powerband up a bit, 4-2-1 is better for mid-range. Raceland sells a header, as does OBX.
If you want a 4-1, your options are a pacesetter header or a TT race header. TT tuning sells two different "race headers". Both are 4-1, and one has 1 1/2" Primaries and a provision for a CAT. The other one is "better" because the primaries are bigger (1 5/8"), and it deletes the CAT. Now, they are expensive (450 and 425, respectively!) and they don't have warranties .. but TT makes good products.
Now, if you're a bit tech-savvy, and you can find a mk4 exhaust manifold (flows 8% better than stock!) and get a TT race downpipe, and call it a day. It will require either leaving a o2 sensor in the mk4 manifold, or bolting the hole off, because you only need 1 of the bungs. The TT race downpipe deletes your CAT, which adds maybe 1-3 HP, but you'll probably fail emissions.
A testpipe is basically deleting your catalytic converter. They're good for a few HP, but if you're concerned about emissions, you won't want to get one of these. Plenty of companies sell these, but 42 draft designs sells them the cheapest, at 95 dollars.
MK4 intake manifold:
The MK4 intake manifold flows better than your stock manifold. Much, much better. To do this swap, you'll need the mk4 lower and upper intake manifold, the valve cover, and a few other things. It changes your TB position from the left side of the engine bay to the right, which requires you to make your own intake, extend your MAF wiring, and move your battery to someplace else if you want to make a "Real" COLD air intake. I will post a DIY at the bottom of the page.
Aftermarket intake manifold:
The MK3 ABA intake manifold is terrible for flow. If you want to get the most power out of your ABA, and you don't want to have to get a MK4 manifold set up (which only flows a little better..) get a SRI. A short runner intake or a long runner intake are specially made for your engine (usually) and they flow extremely well (if made correctly).
USRT makes a wonderful piece for the ABA, it's a great billet SRI. It has all of the OEM fittings for the brake booster, IAT sensor, etc. Stock throttle body works perfect, you can order different fittings for a VR or a aftermarket throttle body, though, too!
It will give your car the biggest power gain you'll see N/A aside from a big cam and a tune. It will give you ~10whp on a STOCK engine. It will move the powerband up, and peak power will no longer fall on it's face after the peak. It will pull much harder through the 6k RPM range. The great thing about the USRT piece is you don't lose any low end power. Another great thing is the noise. The SRI makes a great growl under WOT that sounds akin to ITB's. It sounds wonderful, simply wonderful, 1000x better than WOT with a cone filter.
That is about all you can do for N/A, unless you want to spend a ton of money on boost. We're building a reliable, inexpensive motor, remember? No need for boost. With the basic mods (intake, chip, cam, exhaust) your engine will be peppy and will keep up with most cars on the road today.
If you want to boost your motor, keep reading for some options on FI.
Using forced induction on an ABA is pretty popular. The engine comes from the factory with a forged bottom end, and a low compression ratio - great for boost. You can either use a Turbo or a Supercharger. Now, a Turbo is less reliable in certain peoples eyes, but it's all relative to how it's set up. Now, alot of people sell kits, and I'll briefly go over them, but first, know you should run a 2.5" or bigger exhaust system so the engine can breathe with all the extra air from FI.
Kinect motorsports makes a turbo kit for the 2.0 8v ABA engine. It comes with everything you need to turbo it, and make decent power. Now, there are 3 stages for the ABA.
Stage 1: Comes with everything you need to run 160whp on a stock motor at around 6PSI. Problem is, it doesn't include an intercooler, so you're prone to heatsoak and you're basically running hot air. Bad for the engine..
Stage 2: Comes with everything from the stage 1 kit, and adds a front mount air-air intercooler. Now, this is worth the additonal 800 something dollars it costs. You can run much more boost (safely) and you'll be much much less to heatsoak. You'll be at around 200whp at 10PSI. Now, to make these numbers, they used 94 octane and a 2.5" exhaust.
MK4: Of course, they make kits for these, too. You'll have to find them yourself, though, as this thread is for MK3's, mainly.
Ebay turbo kits: A big no-no. Sure, they're cheaper. But the build quality is questionable, and running any boost safely will be next to impossible. I would never buy a generic turbo kit from ebay, but hey, it's your money (and engine).
Supercharger: There are many options for the mk3 8v. Many companies specialize in making a good kit for these cars, including Neuspeed and BahnBrennerMotorsports.
Neuspeed: Neuspeed made superchargers for these cars, but I'm not sure if they STILL make them. They pop up in the classifieds sometimes, for around 1500. New, they're around 2500. The neuspeed S/C kit is good for a 50% increase in hp and tq! Problem is, you have little to no way to add an intercooler to this to make bigger numbers without heatsoak. Neuspeed sells smaller pulleys to add a few more PSI (7.5 peak), but you'll only be able to make around 200whp with supporting modifications (camshaft, exhaust, etc..)
BahnBrennerMotorsports: BBM makes a good lysolm kit for the mk3. It comes in stage 1, and has 2 upgrade kits. Stage 2, and Stage 3. You can't skip 2 if you want 3. You need to buy them in order. They are reliable (in my experience) and make good power.
Stage 1: Comes with everything you need for 180BHP (says bbm). They do not have an intercooler, though, so you'll run into heatsoak problems if you drive "spirited" alot.
Stage 2: The stage 2 kit adds a few items to make more power than stage 1; but it still doesn't have a intercooler! So, you'll run into heatsoak faster with this kit because it increases the PSI. It's good for around 200BHP (bbm estimate). It comes with a headgasket kit which drops compression (safer for boost), it includes a 268/260 camshaft, which is made by TT tuning, and is specifically made for FI, it includes a headbolt set (so you don't need to keep replacing the headbolts), a 63mm pulley for higher PSI (11-13), and stage 2 software.
Stage 3: *Requires a mk4 intake manifold swap!*This is the ultimate S/C kit for the MK3, IMO. 250bhp on pump gas, with room for improvement if you get a bigger cam, do porting, exhaust work, etc. It includes an air-air intercooler for safe, cold air going into the engine, a 53mm pulley (for 15-18 PSI), stage 3 software, and everything needed to swap the MK4 intake manifold on(except for the upper/lower intake manifold, and the valve cover)! One thing you may want is a oil-catch can instead of a breather filter on the end of the mk4 PCV.
I currently run a stage 3 BBM kit on my 98 Jetta GT. I can't say enough good about it. It's a great, great product. I am pulling on S/C'd VR6s, ABA-T's, and modded 20v's. I put down 270WHP with many more mods than the BBM kit. Bone stock BBM stage III's put down around 220WHP.
*I also ran this kit on my old MK2 Jetta 2dr for about 12 months, and it was a daily driven car. I still got around 25mpg, and with the stage 3 kit, head porting, 2.75" exhaust, TT race DP, I ran a 13.0 second 1/4! on street tires!*
Neuspeed intake: http://www.neuspeed.com/141/11/0/150...ntake-kit.html
Autotech intake: http://www.autotech.com/category/col...jetta-mkiii-2l
K&N panel filter: http://www.neuspeed.com/141/11/0/401...ir-filter.html
TT exhaust: http://techtonicstuning.com/main/ind...&cPath=2_13_60
Autotech exhaust: http://www.autotech.com/product/stai...jetta-mkiii-2l
Autotech's 270 cam kit: http://www.mjmautohaus.com/catalog/p...oducts_id=2765
TT cams: http://techtonicstuning.com/main/ind...2_13_61_484_92
TT chips: http://techtonicstuning.com/main/ind...cPath=2_13_252
Neuspeed chip: http://www.neuspeed.com/141/11/0/231...ed-p-chip.html
C2 chips: http://store.blackforestindustries.com/enpe.html
GIAC chip: http://www.mjmautohaus.com/catalog/p...oducts_id=2213
Raceland header: http://www.racelandus.com/p-33-exhau...ii-mk3-8v.aspx
OBX header: http://www.obxracingsports.com/products.php?pk=1824
Pacesetter header: http://www.pacesetterexhaust.com/headers_detail.php#vw
TT downpipe: http://techtonicstuning.com/main/ind...roducts_id=185
TT HD valvesprings: http://techtonicstuning.com/main/ind...roducts_id=123
Autotech HD valvesprings: http://www.autotech.com/product/valv...jetta-mkiii-2l
Neuspeed S/C: http://www.mjmautohaus.com/catalog/p...oducts_id=1987
Neuspeed power pulley: http://www.neuspeed.com/141/11/0/792...hp-pulley.html
BBM stage 1: http://www.bahnbrenner.com/vw_audi/p...olm_MKIII_2_0L
BBM stage 2 upgrade kit: http://www.bahnbrenner.com/media/php...g.php?pid=1181
BBM stage 3 upgrade kit: http://www.bahnbrenner.com/media/php...g.php?pid=1183
Cam install: http://faculty.ccp.edu/faculty/dreed...b/camshaft.htm
Mk4 intake manifold: http://forums.vwvortex.com/showthrea...&highlight=DIY
Heatsheild DIY: (courtesy of Sallad) http://forums.vwvortex.com/showthrea...ay-Heat-Shield
Heatshield Template: (courtesy of 911_fan) http://forums.vwvortex.com/showthrea...ield-template.
Info on Camshafts in the 2.0 engine (courtesy of 911_fan) http://forums.vwvortex.com/showthrea...lvespring-info
If you have any questions after reading this thread, you can post here or PM me.
*This Article is Intellectual property of Colm Cullen.*