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    Thread: Is it worth upgrading my B5 wagon?

    1. 05-07-2012 08:14 PM #1
      I have a 2003 passat wagon 1.8t that I have had since I started driving. It was my first car. I am now 23 and was looking at other cars, but I was thinking.... Is it worth to start upgrading my wagon? Sure it's allot heavier than the sedan but is it worth it? Right now the car looks like garbage. I plan on getting it detailed, tinted, and get some used Audi rims off Craigslist.

      Now for the engine...
      I am not satisfied with the performance at all. I want this car to me more responsive and be a little more fun. I was going to get an APR stage one chip. What's a good setting option? After my chip what are some other mods that would boost performance? (on a budget, no new turbo)

      All in all I want a car that I can go to meets with and have fun with. That is my goal.

    2. Member passatv6AF's Avatar
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      05-07-2012 09:48 PM #2
      Sure It's worth it if your up for it. What do you mean by 'garbage'? How many miles you got? I'd take care of any maintenance that needs to be done first before you do any mods...

    3. 05-07-2012 09:55 PM #3
      I meant that the exterior looks like garbage. It really needs to be detailed. It has had basic maintenance and I replaced the axle once. It has a little less than 60k on it. I'll post some before pics tomorrow.

    4. Member passatv6AF's Avatar
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      05-07-2012 10:10 PM #4
      Try chip first. But like I said if you have any maintenance to be done do that first. You can try a cold air intake. Some say It's worthless and some say It's good but up to you.

    5. Member
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      05-08-2012 08:10 AM #5
      Quote Originally Posted by Drewwonu View Post
      Now for the engine...
      I am not satisfied with the performance at all. I want this car to me more responsive and be a little more fun. I was going to get an APR stage one chip. What's a good setting option? After my chip what are some other mods that would boost performance? (on a budget, no new turbo)

      All in all I want a car that I can go to meets with and have fun with. That is my goal.

      Do any all all maintenance before proceeding to do modifications to the motor.

      IF you do not want to touch your stock k03 turbo, I would suggest going stage 2.

      That being a stage 2 chip tune, which also calls for an exhaust.

      Your choice of chip tuning (most of the different companies all provide damn near the same results, apr, giac, etc). And techtonic tuning makes a fantastic exhaust for our passats, using borla mufflers etc, and its fairly affordable.

      Those two minor modifications should see a huge difference in your driving experience!

    6. Member koidragon1980's Avatar
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      05-08-2012 08:29 AM #6
      if you're gonna keep her and upgrade things, then don't forget to save a bit on the side for the timing belt & water pump job that will be due around the 75k mile point... unless you've already done it due to the age of the car.

      i've got 115k on mine and just started doing some performance mods, so it's definitely worth it. just make sure you stay on top of any maintenance items as well.
      God bless the homicidal maniacs... they make life worthwhile. - George Carlin

    7. 05-08-2012 02:25 PM #7
      What kind of basic maintenance should get done? And exhaust would defiantly be one of my upgrades so a stage 2 sounds good. Ied like to be able to take my car to the track.

    8. 05-08-2012 05:26 PM #8
      Where can i see the stage 2 kit? I don't see anything on the APR website.

      What are the specs for stage 2?

      Does anybody recommend any other types of chip packages?

    9. Junior Member
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      05-09-2012 09:57 AM #9
      A buddy of mine had an APR tune, i beleive it was stage 2 on his golf. That thing was a rocket. I know its not a passat but its a very similar engine. All he had was a CAI and 3" turbo back straights.
      Unitronic seems to promise some good gains from their stage 1+ and stage 2 with limited recommended upgrades. Im not chipped as of yet, but hopefully will be soon.

    10. Member
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      05-09-2012 11:10 AM #10
      Quote Originally Posted by Drewwonu View Post
      Where can i see the stage 2 kit? I don't see anything on the APR website.

      What are the specs for stage 2?

      Does anybody recommend any other types of chip packages?
      Hello sir, the difference between stage 1 and stage 2 is the exhaust. The stage 2 flash accounts for the aftermarket exhaust better flow etc.

    11. Member koidragon1980's Avatar
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      05-09-2012 12:12 PM #11
      Quote Originally Posted by Drewwonu View Post
      What kind of basic maintenance should get done? And exhaust would defiantly be one of my upgrades so a stage 2 sounds good. Ied like to be able to take my car to the track.
      timing belt & water pump is a MAJOR item that should not be skipped or delayed. if your timing belt snaps, then you can kiss either your engine and/or your $ goodbye, as you'll need to do some internal rebuilding to get the engine back.

      other items to watch out for are pcv related leaks (valve cover gaskets, cam chain tensioner gaskets, cam caps, hoses, etc.), if you don't have a boost gauge and oil pressure gauge, then i'd install those before any other mods. once you start increase power, you'll want to keep a good eye on psi and oil pressure ranges in order to keep up on possible vaccuum/boost leaks.

      other 1.8t related items would be coolant lines, intercooler, piping/hoses, diverter valve and the turbo.

      making sure all of these items are operating properly and/or not worn/leaking will help your mods be successful.

      suspension components may need attention as you cross the 100k mile threshold. shocks/springs, control arms, tie rods and axles are things to keep an eye on.

      if you start to really get rolling with performance mods, then you might want to think about doing a big brake kit as well. with all of that added go, you might want some extra stop.
      God bless the homicidal maniacs... they make life worthwhile. - George Carlin

    12. n00b
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      05-09-2012 04:42 PM #12
      This is exactly where I am with my Passat . I know I am pushing the limits of the t-belt at 90k, but I am doing that next week.
      After that I am going to do a K04 with 2.5" downpipe and exhaust with the Unitronic Stage 2+.

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      05-09-2012 05:12 PM #13
      Quote Originally Posted by EndlesSmr View Post
      This is exactly where I am with my Passat . I know I am pushing the limits of the t-belt at 90k, but I am doing that next week.
      After that I am going to do a K04 with 2.5" downpipe and exhaust with the Unitronic Stage 2+.

      k04 is stage 3.

    14. n00b
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      05-09-2012 10:24 PM #14
      Quote Originally Posted by DB_VW View Post
      k04 is stage 3.
      I was just quoting the Unitronic website, it said stage 2+, semantics I guess. I'll double check what they call it.

    15. n00b
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      05 Passat 1.8t 4motion
      05-17-2012 07:11 PM #15
      Timing belt had slight fray... 85k miles, found when they were replacing the chain tentioner and some other misc issues.
      Big shout out to Patrick VW for getting it done and hooking us up with a 2012 Passat as a loaner.

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