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    MK1 TT
    1.8T with 353bhp

    WIDE BOY With big arches and 10.5x18in alloys, this 352hp TT has some serious road presence…


    The original TT still ranks as one of the most significant Audis ever made. When this curvaceous, bold design was unveiled back in the late 90s, it made a huge impact. Here was a production car that looked very much like the original concept, and it was available to buy. Not only did it look fantastic, its performance credentials were strong, too.

    The venerable 1.8 20v turbo found in the S3 8L saw some upgrades, which took it to 225PS (221bhp). This gave the cool coupe lively performance, matched to a slick 6-speed manual box. With quattro drive, it hooked up the power and was quick off the mark, as well as surefooted when the going got slippery.

    With heated leather seats, a very cool looking dash and xenon lights it was a very nice thing to own. Back in 1999, a new TT would have set you back almost £30k. Today, you can pick one up for under £2,000, making them a bit of a bargain.

    Laszlo, the owner of the TT pictured saw the potential with a TT immediately.

    Having owned a big old Mercedes, he wanted something, small and sporty that was also fun to drive. A TT made sense – it was the right money and offered lots of tuning potential. “I wanted to switch from the yacht like feel of the Benz, to a stiffer, lighter sports coupe,” he says.

    Things began slowly with a simple air filter upgrade and ECU remap. But having seen lots of big power Audis around, it wasn’t long before the silver TT was sent to respected local tuning firm, Turbotuning.

    Here, the 1.8T was stripped down and rebuilt with fully forged internals including Mahle pistons and race spec bearings. The plan was to make the car as reliable as possible, so boost was held back to a relatively modest 1.5bar. Even so, with a Garrett GT2871 turbo, plus supporting upgrades, the TT made a very handy 352hp and 531Nm. Although we hear about plenty of 400+bhp models with large turbos, I have to say around the 350bhp mark seems to offer a great balance of performance and drivability for the road. I’ve been out in lots of TTs with this sort of power and they’re great fun. Plus, there’s less stress on the relatively small capacity 1.8-litre engine – something to take into account unless you liken spending time getting things fixed all the time.

    But there’s more to this TT than a decent bit of poke under the bonnet.


    Up front, Laszlo has fitted a set of six-pots from a Porsche 996. These big brakes required adapting to fit, but do an admirable job of stopping the little TT. With four pots at the rear and Ferodo DS pads, this thing scrubs off speed with aplomb.

    One area that any TT will benefit from upgrades is the chassis. In stock trim they’re quite soft feeling and set up for a neutral handling – as you’d expect. But with some tweaks, you can transform them. With a full complement of Powerflex bushes, the chassis and steering components now feel reassuringly tight, which translates into a much more positive feel to the steering and general handling. Bushes may not be the sexiest of upgrades, but they really do make a huge difference – especially on an older car, where the stock items are likely to be worn. With uprated anti-roll bars, the chassis is well set for hard use.

    One thing you can’t miss is the rather wide wheels. The 18in Japan Racing alloys are a huge 10.5 wide, which is why a set of, what the Americans like to call “overfenders” have been fitted. Some will love them others not so much, but you can’t deny they give this little TT serious road presence.

    A V6 TT front bumper has also been fitted together with the rear bumper insert, which looks much fresher. There’s also a V6 rear wing.

    Inside, Laszlo has really gone to town. The bucket seats have been trimmed in leather with yellow stitching with cheeky R8 logos. The R8 theme continues with the steering wheel and gearknob, complete with open gate.

    So there we have it. A Mk1 TT with an aggressive, OEM+ look, that’s also packing a nice punch thanks to the engine tuning – with the potential for a lot more should he wish to increase the boost and maybe fit a larger turbo.

    Top: Rear seats have been removed Below: 1.8T is forged and runs a GT2871.

    SPECIFICATION #Audi-TT-225 / #Audi-TT-8N / #Audi-TT / #Audi / #Audi-TT-Quattro / #Audi-TT-Quattro-8N / #Audi / #Quattro / #Garrett / #Garrett-GT2871 /

    Engine 1.8 20v turbo, Turbotuning shop rebuilt with #Eagle rods, #Mahle pistons, stronger bearings, low compression with rebuilt head, #Rothe turbo manifold, GT2871 Garrett turbocharger, 76mm exhaust system, custom exhaust with 90mm tips, custom intake, #Ramair filter, #HG-Motorsport intercooler 12-row #Motec oil cooler, F#orge BOV and boost controller, 630cc injectors, Walbro fuel pump

    Transmission 6-speed manual, stronger clutch with Kevlar disc, #Torsen rear diff
    Power 352hp and 531Nm at 1.5bar
    Brakes Porsche 996 fronts with 6-piston calipers, 4 piston rears, Ferodo DS pads and braided lines

    Suspension Custom rear control arms (GL), #Powerflex bushings all around, GL front strut bearing without damping, custom ARBs, #Eibach spacers, wheel bearings converted to studs, #Sachs dampers, custom air-ride setup with Viair compressor and #Airlift-Autopilot - #Air-Lift-V2 (tuned by #Fakukac )
    Wheels 10.5x18in #Japan-Racing-JR-11 wheels with 255/35 tyres
    Exterior V6 TT front bumper and rear insert, SEAT Cupra front lip, V6 TT rear wing, #EPMAN Racing bumper mount, Porsche green mirror housings, custom arch flares made up from Nissan SX kit
    Interior Bimarco bucket seats with Porsche-style leather upholstery and stitching, custom rear seat delete and crossbar, R8 steering wheel and gear knob, custom open gate, Osir gauge holder, Defi Stepmaster gauges, Porsche green details

    Left: Porsche 6-pots Below: R8 open gate gear lever.

    Right: R8 themed interior Below: R8 wheel and gearknob.

    “The TT made a very handy 352bhp and 531Nm”
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    WOLF WHISTLE #VW-Lupo / #Volkswagen-Lupo / #Volkswagen / #VW / #Volkswagen-Lupo-Turbo


    The word ‘Lupo’ is Latin for ‘wolf’ and this particular example is certainly wild in both its appearance and actions. Words: Louise Woodhams Photos: Matt Woods.

    “I think the most fun moment I’ve had in this Lupo was upsetting a Ferrari F430 driver who thought he could get away. It’s hardly stock-looking in Porsche GT3 green and with a stripped and caged interior, but people are still shocked to hear it has 393bhp, and that’s before the use of the nitrous oxide,” explains Jamie Jackson with a wry grin on his face.

    That wasn’t a misprint by the way; the GTI Lupo’s 1.6-litre engine in standard guise pushes out 125bhp, which means Jamie has managed to triple its power output. If we take the manufacturer’s quoted kerb weight figure of 960kg, this Lupo has an impressive power-to-weight ratio of 409hp per ton. The nearest comparison to that is a Ferrari F50. Interestingly the owner of that aforementioned Fezza has 342hp per tonne at his disposal, and no doubt spent five times as much as Jamie.


    So, whilst the haters are going to hate (supercar owners and the purists who object to the outlandish colour scheme and Mk4 Golf 1.8T engine), they can’t deny it’s one crazy machine. In terms of nutty Lupos, we’ve only featured a few: Richard Baron’s (of Venom Motorsport fame) lime green project with the same conversion in the June 2004 issue, followed by a bright red one with an Edition 30 2.0-litre TFSI engine exactly ten years later. So modified Lupos of this calibre aren’t exactly common. But what made Jamie go for VW’s baby? “I saw this Lupo GTI on an online salvage auction going really cheap it was just too good to turn down,” explains Jamie. “I fancied something different and at that time there weren’t many Lupos with the 1.8T engine. It just made sense to make something with a bit of wow factor,” he continued. The Lupo GTI has often been labelled by press as the true successor to the first generation Golf – one of the first true hot hatches, so it’s easy to see why Jamie fell for it.

    The 2003 silver car, with just 38k on the clock, was bought from Doncaster Motor Spares (now Motorhog) back in 2006 for just £2750. Having been involved in a front end smash, the first job was to get it repaired before Jamie could move onto the exterior styling. “Prior to seeing the GTI I’d already bought a 1.4 8v Lupo as a project car so I had some parts already stockpiled, such as the wide arches. They’re not something that appeals to most GTI owners but modifying is all about being different, right?” Damn right, Jamie.

    In addition, the numberplate and handles were smoothed from the front bumper and door respectively to help it give it a much cleaner look together with an Mk5 Golf boot handle and Cambridge Edition tail-lights. The distinctive Porsche colour is perfect for this car, after all it’s got to have to the show to match the go. The gloss black lips and bronze centres of the 7.5x16” (front) and 9x16” (rear) Klutch SL1 alloy wheels provide the perfect contrast to the bright green. The respray was actually one of the last jobs to be carried out. It was previously white and apparently it got nowhere near as much attention as it does now.

    Inside the colour theme continues with the Audi RS6-style seats retrimmed in green and black leather, together with the doorcards and the SW Motorsport roll-cage painted to match the bodywork. To complete the track-look stripped-out interior, the dash and trim panels have been professionally flocked in black and the standard steering wheel swapped out for an OMP item. Playing a functional part is a Gizzmo Electronic Boost Controller, along with Defi gauges to keep a check on what is happening under the bonnet.


    Talking of which, the 1.8T engine conversion, which is often complimented for looking so factory, was completed in 2008, by which point Jamie was hankering for more than what the GTI could provide. It isn’t hard to make more power from the 1.8T even with a basic ECU remap, which in this case was performed by RS Tuning, but Jamie decided to go more advanced, stretching the engine’s displacement and beefing-up the lower end at the same time with forged Wossner pistons and stronger PEC Rods. To make the most of these mods, he upgraded to a larger Garrett GT2871 turbocharger and Nortech Tubular exhaust manifold. Bigger injectors and a three-inch exhaust system also help to increase power, together with a Nitrous Express front-mounted intercooler kit.

    And how does something with that much power feel? “The first time I took the car on the road straight after the engine had been dropped in I knew once fully mapped it would be an absolute beast! It does feel a little front-end heavy compared to having the stock engine but the way it handles the power is great. The Quaife LSD definitely helps. I also felt a great sense of achievement!”

    To withstand the higher RPM conditions ACL race bearings and Vibratec engine mounts have been employed, whilst transmission-wise the gear ratios have been modified to mirror that of a diesel in third, fourth and fifth, and the aforementioned much-needed differential fitted. With all of that extra power, the chassis needed attending to as well. To that end the brakes have been upgraded to #G60 calipers, EBC discs and pads, whilst the suspension has been swapped out for Spax coilovers with Powerflex bushes.

    By selling the GTI engine and gearbox, together with parts from the donor Golf, 29-yearold Jamie has managed to stick to a fairly reasonable budget and as the owner of Performance Direct he was able to source all of the parts as well as carry out most of the modifications – bar the bodywork, flocking and retrim– himself. “It’s been a bit of an ongoing project but it’s finally near to the way I wanted it to be. The engine conversion is just awesome – it really puts a smile on my face when I upset the owners of really expensive cars!”

    Of course, if he really wants to cause a few tears, he’s always got his 600bhp Mitsubishi Evo 6 to fall back on, but it’s the Lupo that puts a smile on Jamie’s face more. Everything about is this car is just so right; lightweight with a big screaming engine and polarising styling. It may be little but by heck it deserves a big spotlight.
    Huge roll-cage, buckets, gauges, and OMP wheel give some insight in to what this little Lupo is capable of.

    Dub Details

    ENGINE: #AGU-1.8T with #Garrett / #Garrett-GT2871 turbocharger, #Tial wastegate with external screamer pipe, Nortech tubular manifold, three-inch exhaust system, 560cc injectors, #Wössner pistons, #PEC rods, nitrous express front mount intercooler kit, #ACL race bearings, #K&N Cone Filter, #Vibratec engine mounts. #02J five-speed box with diesel third, fourth and fifth gear ratios.

    CHASSIS: 7.5x16” (front) and 9x16” (rear) #Klutch SL1 alloy wheels shod in 195/40 and 215/40 Toyo T1R tyres respectively, #Spax coilovers and #Powerflex bushes, G60 calipers, EBC discs and pads.

    EXTERIOR: Custom wide arches, smoothed front bumper and doors, Mk5 Golf boot handle, Cambridge Edition lights, resprayed in Porsche GT3 green.

    INTERIOR: RS6-style seats and doorcards retrimmed in green and black leather, roll-cage painted in Porsche GT3 green, flocked dash and trim panels, Defi gauges (60mm up to 2bar of boost), Gizzmo boost controller.

    SHOUT: All the guys who work for me at #Performance-Direct especially Matt And Foxy , everyone who’s helped out over the years to put the car back together especially my dad, Andy, Streak, Dean, Mark and Richard at Unique Body and Paint, Paul and Andy at RS Tuning and Yorkshire Flocking.

    AGU 1.8T boasts GT2871 blower, PEC rods, Wossner pistons and a Nortech manifold. The result? 393bhp, and that’s before the NOS is switched on!
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