Mods to make a golf tdi handle like a gti?

ColeCoryell

New member
Joined
Jun 22, 2022
Location
Iowa City, IA
TDI
2015 VW Golf
Hi all, This is my First post as I just got my 2015 VW golf TDI a few weeks ago. I used to have a gen 7 GTI and I’d like to get the tdi to handle more like it. I’m guessing I will need to change the shocks, springs, sway bars, and wheels. If you’ve done this, I would really appreciate it if you could summarize your project and results. Thanks
 
Joined
Jun 9, 2022
Location
Tulsa
TDI
BEW 1.9 TDI
You nailed the entire list! I mean the cars are a little different in size and weights but with those upgrades you’ll get there. Make sure to not go cheap on the front suspension.
 

Mongler98

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Mar 23, 2011
Location
COLORADO (SE of Denver)
TDI
98 Jetta TDI AHU 1.9L (944 TDI swap in progress) I moved so now i got nothing but an AHU in a garage on a pallet.
Sell your car... buy a gti. Or spend more than the value of your car to pretend it is one.
 

ColeCoryell

New member
Joined
Jun 22, 2022
Location
Iowa City, IA
TDI
2015 VW Golf
Sell your car... buy a gti. Or spend more than the value of your car to pretend it is one.
This is snarky and factually incorrect as to my goals and the cost of upgrades. So why even reply? There are some simple mods that can really improve the handling. I know, I’ve done it on other cars. My tdi has 27k miles, and I plan to keep it a while. So now I’ve educated you.
 

turbobrick240

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Nov 18, 2014
Location
maine
TDI
2011 vw golf tdi(gone to greener pastures), 2001 ford f250 powerstroke
You could get a 2014 Golf to handle exactly like a GTI without too much expense, but a 2015 won't quite get there due to the lack of IRS. Should be able to get fairly close with the right springs, shocks, sway bar etc., though.
 

Mongler98

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Mar 23, 2011
Location
COLORADO (SE of Denver)
TDI
98 Jetta TDI AHU 1.9L (944 TDI swap in progress) I moved so now i got nothing but an AHU in a garage on a pallet.
This is snarky and factually incorrect as to my goals and the cost of upgrades. So why even reply? There are some simple mods that can really improve the handling. I know, I’ve done it on other cars. My tdi has 27k miles, and I plan to keep it a while. So now I’ve educated you.
Your goal is to make a car become another car. The cost difference of those 2 cars is less than the modifications to do so.
If you want to get the most of your ride... for whatever reason is unknown to us..... autocross? Track? Ralley? Daily driver..... idiot at car meetups and backroads....
My guess is idiot on the backroads and whoopdydoos in school zones

Just get sticky tires...
You dont poses the skills to use the suspention of one car vs the next to its potential.

#1 upgrade for you is to learn how to drive a car. Go to a few events of autocross. You will learn that you have no clue how to handle one car over another.
My mk3 with a all the epic suspention and tires got destroyed by a forester with all season tires by a full second. Why.. I was green. I had no idea.
Want to go the fastest in autocross... miatta, tesla, Carrera, reliably top 3 every time.
Everyone else is hashing out for between 5th and 20th within 1 second. Your gti dreams are only for one reason.. what you think you need it for.
Is your time worthless? Otherwise just buy what you want. Or keep pretending
 
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turbobrick240

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Nov 18, 2014
Location
maine
TDI
2011 vw golf tdi(gone to greener pastures), 2001 ford f250 powerstroke
I just put a set of Vogtland sport springs and Bilstein sport shocks/struts/mounts on my mk6. Handles like a mk6 GTI now, maybe a bit better. Also 17x8" rims with a bit more outboard offset than OE. And inexpensive summer tires with good grip but not great durability. Thought about coilovers but the sport springs and Bilsteins fit my budget better.
 

Mozambiquer

Vendor , w/Business number
Joined
Mar 21, 2015
Location
Versailles Missouri
TDI
1998 VW Jetta TDI. 1982 VW Rabbit pickup, 2001 VW Jetta TDI, 2005 VW Passat wagon TDI X3, 2001 VW golf TDI, 1980 VW rabbit pickup,
This is snarky and factually incorrect as to my goals and the cost of upgrades. So why even reply? There are some simple mods that can really improve the handling. I know, I’ve done it on other cars. My tdi has 27k miles, and I plan to keep it a while. So now I’ve educated you.
You have met mongler... he's got his opinions which may or may not be right, and he loves to share them. 🙄
 

ColeCoryell

New member
Joined
Jun 22, 2022
Location
Iowa City, IA
TDI
2015 VW Golf
Your goal is to make a car become another car. The cost difference of those 2 cars is less than the modifications to do so.
If you want to get the most of your ride... for whatever reason is unknown to us..... autocross? Track? Ralley? Daily driver..... idiot at car meetups and backroads....
My guess is idiot on the backroads and whoopdydoos in school zones

Just get sticky tires...
You dont poses the skills to use the suspention of one car vs the next to its potential.

#1 upgrade for you is to learn how to drive a car. Go to a few events of autocross. You will learn that you have no clue how to handle one car over another.
My mk3 with a all the epic suspention and tires got destroyed by a forester with all season tires by a full second. Why.. I was green. I had no idea.
Want to go the fastest in autocross... miatta, tesla, Carrera, reliably top 3 every time.
Everyone else is hashing out for between 5th and 20th within 1 second. Your gti dreams are only for one reason.. what you think you need it for.
Is your time worthless? Otherwise just buy what you want. Or keep pretending
What’s with the attitude? I have no gti dreams. I had a gti. It was great fun, and the same generation so I know more or less what my tdi can handle like. It’s not a different car. I have a different car that I would take to a track day or for HPDE. I just would like my daily to handle a little better.
 

gearheadgrrrl

Veteran Member
Joined
Dec 15, 2002
Location
Buffalo Ridge (southwest Minnesota)
TDI
'15 Golf DSG, '13 JSW DSG surrendered to VW, '03 Golf 2 door manual
No reason you can't give a TDI at least 90% of a GTI's performance, they share at least 90% of the same parts for a start. While the Golf7 TDI didn't get the IRS like the GTI, on smooth roads they'll be little difference. Front end is the same, and most any better bits the GTI got can be retrofitted to a TDI. As for power, the GTI has us beat in peak power, but we got the torque!
 

ColeCoryell

New member
Joined
Jun 22, 2022
Location
Iowa City, IA
TDI
2015 VW Golf
I just put a set of Vogtland sport springs and Bilstein sport shocks/struts/mounts on my mk6. Handles like a mk6 GTI now, maybe a bit better. Also 17x8" rims with a bit more outboard offset than OE. And inexpensive summer tires with good grip but not great durability. Thought about coilovers but the sport springs and Bilsteins fit my budget better.
Thank you for this appropriate:) response. It’s appreciated. Coil overs are overkill for my thinking. But shocks, springs, and maybe a thicker rear sway bar…
 

gearheadgrrrl

Veteran Member
Joined
Dec 15, 2002
Location
Buffalo Ridge (southwest Minnesota)
TDI
'15 Golf DSG, '13 JSW DSG surrendered to VW, '03 Golf 2 door manual
No problem, I've got the same car and tempted to AutoX it, so I'm looking for low $$$ upgrades that will still keep me in stock class. TDIs fall into SCCA's slowest class, H stock, and it doesn't seem super competitive so the TDI has a chance. I live in southwest Minnesota so the Lincoln airport where SCCA has a lot of national competitions is within day trip range, drove down Memorial Day weekend and saw the GTIs doing well one class up in G Stock so the TDI should be competitive enough.
 

Golf Wang

Member
Joined
Nov 28, 2018
Location
NJ
TDI
MK7 GTI, looking to own first TDI
Sell your car... buy a gti. Or spend more than the value of your car to pretend it is one.
it’s a 2015 MK7/MQB platform Golf - he can make his car into a faux GTI with just as much / torque and just as good of handling for as little as $2-3K all-in
 

Golf Wang

Member
Joined
Nov 28, 2018
Location
NJ
TDI
MK7 GTI, looking to own first TDI
Your goal is to make a car become another car. The cost difference of those 2 cars is less than the modifications to do so.
If you want to get the most of your ride... for whatever reason is unknown to us..... autocross? Track? Ralley? Daily driver..... idiot at car meetups and backroads....
My guess is idiot on the backroads and whoopdydoos in school zones

Just get sticky tires...
You dont poses the skills to use the suspention of one car vs the next to its potential.

#1 upgrade for you is to learn how to drive a car. Go to a few events of autocross. You will learn that you have no clue how to handle one car over another.
My mk3 with a all the epic suspention and tires got destroyed by a forester with all season tires by a full second. Why.. I was green. I had no idea.
Want to go the fastest in autocross... miatta, tesla, Carrera, reliably top 3 every time.
Everyone else is hashing out for between 5th and 20th within 1 second. Your gti dreams are only for one reason.. what you think you need it for.
Is your time worthless? Otherwise just buy what you want. Or keep pretending
you are incorrect
 

IndigoBlueWagon

TDIClub Enthusiast, Principal IDParts, Vendor , w/
Joined
Aug 16, 2004
Location
South of Boston
TDI
'97 Passat, '99.5 Golf, '02 Jetta Wagon, '15 GSW
I'd start with 18" wheels with good summer tires. And have the car aligned with as much negative camber in front as possible. I think you might be pleasantly surprised by the improvement with those changes alone.
 

hooville

Veteran Member
Joined
Jan 13, 2003
Location
Marietta, GA
TDI
2000 Golf GLS, 2016 GTI, 2015 TDI Sportwagen S
Welcome to the Club!
The only RSB that's available for the MK7 TDI's that I know of is from Neuspeed. We put one on the wife's Sportwagen S and she loves it, but you lose about 1" of ground clearance since it mounts under the axle. We went with 17" wheels and 225/45/17 Michelin AS3+ tires because it's her daily on Atlanta roads, but ditto IBW's comment above: tires are the biggest bang for the buck.
 

Adam35

Member
Joined
Jan 13, 2019
Location
Ottawa
TDI
2015 Golf TDI Manual
Colecoryell, Im in a similar situation as you. Mk7 Golf and im just getting into the track world. It's so so much fun being a novice. Im enjoying every second of it.

My Golf is also my kid carrier. My goal isn't to create a Golf R or even a GTI. Im simply upgrading parts that wear out. Just put on 18x8 19lbs alloys, 225/40 Indy 500 Firehawks. As luck would have it, the rear spring snapped the day after. Lol so now Im looking decent (not cheap, not $$$$) coilovers. Thinkin ST or BC racing. Got a post about it in the MK7 forum.

Someone mentioned it earlier in the thread. We are lucky in that we can scavenge GTI or R parts. For brakes im gonna find a set of used GTI PP calipers and some fat rotors and race pads. Thatll be next year.... Been an expensive summer with tires and coilovers to come.
 

oilhammer

Certified Volkswagen Nut & Vendor
Joined
Dec 11, 2001
Location
outside St Louis, MO
TDI
There are just too many to list....
I'd really be curious to see some good comparisons on some form of standardized test track with the same driver(s) to see and compare, objectively, the differences that the full IRS affords, vs. the twist-beam type that the non-GTI A7s went back to (which, is more akin to what the A2, A3, and A4 used, not what the early NCS cars used).

I'd bet that much of the GTI's improvements are due to stiffer springs, bigger sway bars, larger tires, quicker steering, and of course to some extent better brakes will come into play depending on how you drive and what you are doing.

The standard issue GTI has a 78hp advantage over the CRUA TDI engine, too.
 

IndigoBlueWagon

TDIClub Enthusiast, Principal IDParts, Vendor , w/
Joined
Aug 16, 2004
Location
South of Boston
TDI
'97 Passat, '99.5 Golf, '02 Jetta Wagon, '15 GSW
The GTI is lower, but I bet the springs aren't any firmer. Older GTIs and GLIs were designed to use the bump stops in hard cornering. I bet it's mostly bars and tires.
 

turbobrick240

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Nov 18, 2014
Location
maine
TDI
2011 vw golf tdi(gone to greener pastures), 2001 ford f250 powerstroke
On a smooth track there'd probably be no difference. The rougher/bumpier the surface, the more advantage IRS would have.
 

Dannyboy

Veteran Member
Joined
May 25, 2013
Location
Mb
TDI
2014
Mk7 golf tdis have 50mm shocks vs GTIs 55mm so your going to need hub/steering knuckle assembly complete from a GTI or order 50mm aftermarket shocks. If you want to do it right get the GTI parts. I also believe the control arms are aluminum on the gti while tdis are pressed steel. I'm not sure if GTI axles are different lengths.

Euro GTDs parts are available but importing fees will make costs a bit more prohibitive.

One mod I would love to see on a tdi is the electronic limited slip diff of the GTI. Open diffs and "EDL" don't quite cut it in terms of performance
 

oilhammer

Certified Volkswagen Nut & Vendor
Joined
Dec 11, 2001
Location
outside St Louis, MO
TDI
There are just too many to list....
I don't think that fancy differential/axle setup would physically fit with the CRUA engine just because of how the exhaust downpipe goes. It is PACKED in there as it is with the turbo gas engine. But maybe it can, not sure what they have on offer in Europe.
 

pkhoury

That guy with the goats
Joined
Nov 30, 2010
Location
Medina, TX
TDI
2013 JSW, 2003 Jetta Ute, 2 x 2002 Golf, 2000 Golf
Hi all, This is my First post as I just got my 2015 VW golf TDI a few weeks ago. I used to have a gen 7 GTI and I’d like to get the tdi to handle more like it. I’m guessing I will need to change the shocks, springs, sway bars, and wheels. If you’ve done this, I would really appreciate it if you could summarize your project and results. Thanks
Not sure why I'm seeing this now. Probably because @oilhammer replied and it just showed up.

So on my CJAA and ALH - I have aftermarket springs, Bilstein B8 in the front/B6 in the rear (on the ALH) and B8 all around (on the JSW). Both cars have 28mm rear swaybars, Continental DWS06 Plus tires, the ALH has all bushings replaced somewhat recently, including the rear axle bushings. Do they handle good? Yes they do, though the sportwagen is a bit better. Of course, it all comes at a price, and then there's the time to install it.
 

turbobrick240

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Nov 18, 2014
Location
maine
TDI
2011 vw golf tdi(gone to greener pastures), 2001 ford f250 powerstroke
My 2015 GSW 6 spd stick had 27.5K miles when I bought it in 2019 before the COVID sh*tfan splatter. Paid $17.5 K for it. Lowered it using 1) H&R Sport springs and 2) B8 from ECS, 3) 17 inch x 8 wheels. I did a few "more" things to the engine and I've got all the zip I need. My other car is a '99 996 that has RoW springs and some Bilstein dampers, and the Mk7 is as fast on a straight line if not faster AFTER 2nd gear. You can plenty of fun with just the 3 things I mentioned for not too much money. If you are tracking your car that's an entirely different thing. I got the track bug out of my system after 25 hours of DE on the 996. Got certified at VIR and at that point the bug wanted to bite me sooo hard I pulled out.
Have fun.
What have you done to your tdi for power enhancements? Unless it's pushing very close to 300 hp, the Porsche should definitely be faster all the way up to top speed. I've driven my uncle's 2000 986 quite a bit, and it felt slower than my 200 hp golf TDI for sure, but it wasn't. The diesel torque just gave the sensation of more power/speed. And the 986 of that vintage was only like 200 hp as opposed to the 996's 300 hp. Gotta love the symphony of those flat 6's at full song.
 

Paulman

Veteran Member
Joined
Nov 26, 2013
Location
North Carolina
TDI
2013 Jetta TDI (buyback at 109,000miles) 2014 Jetta TDI 59,000miles
That's what's wonderful about MK6 cars is that when the time comes to update brakes and suspension, you can put some very nice hardware on.
After 110,000 miles on my 2014 Jetta TDI, I did the timing belt maintenance and then refreshed the brake system and suspension. I now have Zimmerman rotors with Akebono pads and SS brake lines. Also, this GLD now has Bilstein B4 on all corners with 034 mounting hardware.
An ECS rear sport sway bar really gives it flat cornering now.
Paul
 

justinf

New member
Joined
Apr 22, 2020
Location
Huntington Beach
TDI
2011 JSW TDI
Hey guys, newer to TDIclub. I’m in the same boat with updating suspension right now to get a similar feel to a GTI. I have a 2011 JSW with 96k on it and I’m having Koni Yellows installed today. I’ll let you all know how that feels when I pick it up later this afternoon.

I’ve been on Neuspeed sport springs on OE strut/shocks for the last 30k and the suspension has gotten pretty sloppy! I’m using the same springs with the Konis and I’m also getting new mounts and bearings today as well.

The other upgrades I’ve done to the JSW are 18x8 et 50 wheels off of a Passat and an APR stage 1 tune that was done about 3 months ago.. The APR tune has been pretty great and added a lot of low end torque and get up and go! No adverse effects noted with the DSG. I unfortunately didn’t notice an increase in MPG as advertised by APR, either way, the tune gave the JSW the added power and torque that it needed. Please let me know if you have any questions on my setup or my history with my JSW, happy to answer any questions !!

EDIT: I realize that my car is MK6 but thought that my experience with suspension etc. would be valuable even to those with MK7 Golf!
 
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Andyinchville1

Veteran Member
Joined
Apr 7, 2016
Location
Virginia
TDI
2003 Jetta TDI wagon, 5 sp, 226K miles
Hi,

While not as obvious as springs, struts, bushings, etc ... it appears that the GTI cars also have chassis bracing beyond what jetta and golf cars have ....

This is just one brace that looks factory .... ( I was researching chassis bracing for my car and this was one thing that popped up ).

I think bracing helps "feel" (I probably don't push my car hard enough to really appreciate what it does performance wise but stiffer does feel better (even a braced up skid plate makes the car feel different in a good way).


Andrew

Edit : sorry , I just saw you are working on a different generation car but I think the same principles will apply .... just different parts
 
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