I apologize up front, but this is going to be a picture-free review. I just didn't bother to take pictures when doing the install.
At about 15k, my Gen 3 GLI's clutch started to slip. It had APR's Stage 1 installed at about 1k, so I was anticipating it. I messaged BFI and after discussing the plans for the car (DD, Stage 2) and my preferences (I like a heavy, fairly aggressive clutch), they recommended their Stage 3 kit. I waited a bit and bought it on Black Friday for just over $800. For reasons uninteresting, it took me a while to install it and I've just finished the 500 mile break-in, so I wanted to give my impressions (plus I haven't seen anyone do a review on this kit yet).
- The kit components feel and look very high quality, and all the needed flywheel and pressure plate bolts are included. The kit also includes a new OE plastic throwout bearing, with the option to upgrade to a metal one (I skipped that because it's just a DD).
- I didn't have a scale handy when I did the install, but I'd guess the new parts are close to half the weight of the OE versions.
- The install is super straightforward, but the instructions BFI provides are generic and not really of any use. Dropping the subframe made the whole job way easier. I also took the opportunity to swap to the Passat aluminum subframe.
- The pedal is noticeably heavier than stock. For the first 100-200 miles, it felt like a 60%+ increase in pedal effort. Since then, I've either gotten used to it or the pressure plate broke in a bit; it's still a good bit heavier, but it's really nice. The pressure plate is a 2500 lb plate, compared to the stock 1600 (if I remember correctly). I daily drove my 20th with a similar clutch for about three years, so it feels natural to me.
- The engagement was pretty harsh and grabby in the first 100 miles or so, but it has settled down noticeably. It's only a bit more difficult to modulate than my totally stock A4 now. The engagement point is a couple inches lower in the pedal travel though, because of the SMF's shorter height, so that takes some getting used to. All that said, if you are not used to a fairly grabby clutch or are not planning for over 400 lb-ft., you're probably better off sticking with the Stage 2 clutch.
- The clutch chatter is substantial. You don't hear it much in the car, but it's very noticeable from outside. Like I said, I daily drove my 20th with a similar setup for three years, so clutch chatter doesn't bother me, but I know some people object to it. Heavier trans oil would probably help quiet it a bit. I can record a video if anyone cares.
Overall, I couldn't be happier with the clutch. It's capable of way more torque than I'll ever make, so I don't have to worry about that as I upgrade, and it has the heavy pedal and semi-aggressive bite that I'm used to and prefer.
Side note: I also ordered a dogbone insert with the clutch kit. Two months later when I went to do the install, I realized that the Passat subframe I was swapping in used a different insert and BFI was super accommodating in getting me the right one and getting it to me quickly. I've been buying parts from them for years and one of the main reasons I keep coming back is the excellent service.
EDIT: Up to 7,500 or so on this kit and it's still awesome. I had someone hit me up in PMs about how bad the chatter was, so I took a quick (crappy) video and figured I'd link it here. I'm going to swap to heavier gear oil eventually and I'll update on how that helps.