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Old 12-19-2013, 05:38 AM   #1
9V7W3
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Golf R - My 60K Mile Story..



So the MK6 Golf RÖ It looked and sounded like a dream come true when I walked into the dealership that sunny June afternoon in 2012, and when I sat in that seat for the first time I knew I just had to have it. Well, it has turned out to be slightly less than a dream so far. Donít get me wrong, I am still impressed by the car every time I pull out of the driveway and I donít think Iíll ever part with it. Itís a blast to drive and I love everything about it, but I wasnít prepared for the money I was going to have to sink into it so soon, especially after dropping 40K on it.

This is my first VW, and it was my friendís MK5 Jetta Wolfsburg that got me interested, along with the 4WD and massive power capabilities. I drive much more than the average person for work and I realize that some of the things Iíve experienced are probably due to the combination of the high miles and modifications Iíve installed, but from pulling the car off the lot July 1, 2012 I just hit 60,000 miles and thought I would share my pain with you all. Partly because it will make me feel a little better to vent a little bit, but also maybe to help some of you head off future problems in advance so you donít waste even more money than you have to being a proud owner of one of these! So here goesÖ

Off the lot:

Passenger side door wouldnít close properly because the chrome plate with the ďRĒ emblem that was mounted on the step was mounted sooo crooked that it was sticking up into the corner where the body met the door and it looked so bad. Dealer ordered a new one and replaced it that same week.

2,500 Miles:

I decided after some research to install the ďAPR Stage 2+Ē kit.. You all know what that involves so I donít need to go into it, but this experience kicked off the downhill slide that Iím writing about. I had the surgery done by a shop in PA that was an authorized dealer of APR parts called APTuning. I donít know if it was just a bad day for them or they gave my car to one of their rookies but this was a BIG mistake. After getting the car back as the shop closed and the guys sped off for dinner, aside from the front bumper literally hanging off the car crooked, exhaust mounted crooked, and check engine light coming on halfway home, my new shop later found tons of bolts missing from various parts including the APR intercooler, a few boost leaks (yes, a few), broken (snapped) headlight and radiator support brackets, and the exhaust mounted completely incorrect. Unfortunately this place was 2 hours away from my house so I couldnít hang around. To their defense, I called them the next day and they cut me a check immediately for the cost of the repair to the body work at least which was about $750.00 which I had done at my VW body shop and told me the ďProblem had been resolved with the staff.Ē The rest of the re-adjustments and repairs were done by the shop I should have gone to in the first place, Eurotech Motorsports. Let me just say, I donít work for them or get paid by them in any way to say this Iím just so happy with their work I have to tell everyone. If youíre in the NJ/NY area looking for a shop you can trust, these guys are by far the BEST tuning/repair shop Iíve ever come across, and having had 13 cars Iíve been through a lot. Been taking care of my R since this happened and I couldnít be happier with them.

5,200 Miles:

O2 Sensor went bye bye.. Yea kinda early right? Started shaking and not accelerating very well on the way to work one day, check engine light, and BAM new sensor did the trick.. PROBABLY could have got it fixed under warranty, but I didnít trust VW enough to do work on the car being modified like it was if I didnít have to so I paid for it.

7,000 Miles:

Passenger side daytime running light died. Yep, the LED strip in the bumper that seemingly should last forever is already gone. Just another trip back to VW and more lost time at work..

10,000 Miles:

Found pretty significant oil leak down left side of engine. Turns out was coming from camshaft position sensor. Apparently factory assembly was not too careful and pinched the rubber O-ring sealing it to the block, ended up replacing the sensor since the electrical connector was soaked in oil and cleaned up the engine.

16,500 Miles:

Water pump literally self-destructed. I had read somewhere that water pumps were a problem with VW but I didnít expect it to go that fast. At least it was covered under warranty since they couldnít find a way to pin that one on the APR goodies..

36,400 Miles:

Horn died.. Yes, I said the HORNÖ Iíve had many cars and know lots of enthusiasts and I donít think Iíve EVER lost a horn or heard it from anyone else, especially at only 36K miles. Turns out our horns are actually two separate modules, a low tone module and a high tone module that work together. I found out AFTER they were replaced that my low tone module was dead from the factory because the sound changed drastically. The kicker is that since I was 400 miles over the factory warranty period VW refused to cover the repair. It ended up costing me $560 for both horn modules installed. Yeah, I was pulling my hair out at this point..

42,500 Miles:

Cam follower worn through, camshaft destroys APR HPFP and fills engine with metal shavings and bits.. Now being that this was my first VW, I was not aware of the known issue with these things. I learned quickly, with help from the wonderful staff at VW. First of all, if the head of a service department tells you ďOh yea you can put whatever you want in the car and as long as you tell us whatís in there it wonít void the warranty at all,Ē they are FULL of CRAP. When brown stuff hits the fan, they and the corporate office at VW will find any way possible to NOT cover the repair, and in my case, seemingly SABATOGE the car by omission to do just thatÖ
Let me explain. A week before the camshaft finally popped all the way through the follower and into my fuel pump I got a check engine light and engine seemed like it lacked power once and a while. I didnít have the time to go to my performance shop because it happened on the way to an important job, so I stopped into VW since I was nearby. They had the car for about a half hour and gave it back to me telling me that everything checked out fine and they reset the computer and it must have been a glitch or something. Well it wasnít good, because less than a week later the cam follower popped and my bank account was squeezed of another $3,000.00 to replace the camshaft, APR HPFP, and to have the engine cleaned out and rebuilt.. Fought for weeks with VW corporate office and ultimately they blamed extra stress from the APR fuel pump for the cause of the excessive wear and denied me of warranty coverage. I also noticed at that point that the code they pulled from the computer on the paperwork was some kind of fuel pressure warning, so wouldnít you think they would know what to look for since this was a problem with this engine for years??! I canít help think they knew what they were doing by letting me drive away knowing I would be back with a blown engine in a week.. NEVER went back to VW again from this point on except for tires since I bought the warranty, but even then Iím biting my nails whenever I have to go back to that place.

60,000 Miles:

Breather valve bad, SECOND cam follower damaged, and stock clutch retired.

Well here we are. Brought the car to my shop for a full tune up a few days ago and to take care of a few loose ends that needed attention but put off by the cost of all the other crap Iíve dealt with. Lately at stoplights and sometimes while coasting down in low gears the engine RPMís would climb to sometimes as high as 3K without me touching the gas. Breather valve was sticking causing high idle, apparently another common issue with these cars according to the shop.

Decided to check the cam follower just as a precaution following what happened about 18K miles ago and sure enough it showed advanced signs of wear already. Not messing around with this again, swapped it out for a new one. So with this pattern that means I have to change the damn follower every TWO oil changes?!? Come on VW, are you serious? My jaw is still on the floor. For 40K they really should have redesigned this part of the FSI, I really canít believe Iím going to have to change that part every 20K for the life of the car..

Lastly, the stock clutch has been slipping badly ever since I installed the stage 2+ kit. Makes sense since it was only rated for 300ft/lb torque and the car pushes 400+ now at full boost, but for some reason I was told it would be fine by original shop that did the install. Well it finally got so bad I almost couldnít tell when it was engaged anymore and anything above 40% throttle and it would just fly wide open. Iíve unfortunately been driving the car like a baby for last 6 months.

So on this visit I Installed a Southbend Stage 2 Endurance Clutch/Flywheel kit, new breather valve, new cam follower, cleaned VWR intake element, oil service, alignment, and just to make myself feel a LITTLE better I treated myself to a nice color matched vent pod boost gauge from Newsouth Performance. It looks great and has no lag at all, I love it.

So this is my Golf R story so far.. Car is running like new now and just started breaking in new clutch If youíre not asleep already, let me know if some of you are experiencing similar issues and I REALLY want to know if anyone has me beat in mileage so far! The only other thing I have to say is thank GOD I bought the tire warranty from VWÖ In my area the highways are like Swiss cheese in the winter, so far Iíve replaced 7 front tires since I bought the car. Bubbles every time!

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Old 12-19-2013, 06:34 AM   #2
wbean
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i'm sorry to hear what you've been through.

you're a champ for sticking with the car after all these problems.
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Old 12-19-2013, 09:51 AM   #3
rupertpupkin
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I love my R. Worried about things like this. Sounds like some of the issues you had were caused by bad techs.

-oring on Cam pos sensor, door sill, etc.
-APTuning sounds like they canned someone after that, heard only good things.


I am at almost 17k and mine was a march build. I am constantly worrying about the water pump. I guess i will just deal with it if it decides to explode and trash my engine.

At 16,050 miles i got flashed APR stage 1 at AP Tuning believe it or not. The kid at the counter did not instill confidence, but another tech helped him and the flash was successful. On the drive home it was amazing, but my stock clutch slipped instantly. I have had the tune now 700 miles and have been on stock map for all but 100 of those. I have to save for a new clutch.

LED seems like a fluke on yours.

The cam follower is also a concern of mine and after reading many threads I think I will be buying a couple replacements and just doing them every so often to try to avoid that issue. It is hard for me to want to spend out of pocket money while still in warranty, and i have CPO as well, but I am not convinced VWOA will cover things. my experience with warranties and insurance is that they will do whatever they can to not pay up when the time comes.


All that being said, this car is amazing. The grip and power is awesome. All I could ask for would be the exhaust note of the MK4 R32, those get me every time. Would have been sick if the R had been made with that same VR6 but boosted. Would have been the ultimate car.


I plan to keep this R for a long time so hoping to do all this preventative stuff while i can.

Nice thread.
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Old 12-19-2013, 10:05 AM   #4
Zillon
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General rule around here and the MkV forums is to at least check the cam follower every 20k, if not replace it.

It's an expensive lesson to learn.
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Old 12-19-2013, 10:08 AM   #5
eurocars
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zillon View Post
General rule around here and the MkV forums is to at least check the cam follower every 20k, if not replace it.

It's an expensive lesson to learn.
I have to do mine every 10k, but I agree that a good rule of thumb is 15-20k. $40 > $2k +
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Old 12-19-2013, 11:07 AM   #6
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what a story sounds like my journey with my mk5 GLI, except I caught my cam follower right before it went through.

Glad you are sticking with your car after all of these, cause I didn't, maybe because I don't have a golf R
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Old 12-19-2013, 11:16 AM   #7
fr4c
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Damn sorry to hear man.

Based on your username, are you in Central Jersey? Pretty sure I've seen your car around the area.
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Old 12-19-2013, 11:39 AM   #8
Jason3d
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Sorry to hear your troubles. I had the same oil leak caused by the cam position sensor. Only other real issue I've had was a bad Pcv valve.
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Old 12-19-2013, 12:00 PM   #9
DerekKanarek
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Damn I feel some of your pain. I bought a CPO GTI with 40k miles on it and 8k miles later I needed a new engine..
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Old 12-19-2013, 01:48 PM   #10
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Ah VW, nothing like Satan's workshop aka the dealer doing good work.

There is a reason I call my dealer Satan's Workshop. I've never been to such an incompetent line of dealers, and its shameful that their service is below KIA levels on a car costing 40K.
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Old 12-19-2013, 02:25 PM   #11
9V7W3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wbean View Post
i'm sorry to hear what you've been through.

you're a champ for sticking with the car after all these problems.
Thanks, I needed to hear that!!
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Old 12-19-2013, 02:29 PM   #12
9V7W3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zillon View Post
General rule around here and the MkV forums is to at least check the cam follower every 20k, if not replace it.

It's an expensive lesson to learn.
Ugh.. Yea, I realize this now and I learned the hard way.. Trust me I did all I could. I was on this forum from when I first bought the car and unfortunately there was no buzz about the cam follower problem until after it already happened to me. There should be a damn warning sheet given out when you buy this car!
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"That thing goes from 0 to F#ÄK YEA in 3 seconds...." - Rick Harrison
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Old 12-19-2013, 02:45 PM   #13
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Damn sorry to hear man.

Based on your username, are you in Central Jersey? Pretty sure I've seen your car around the area.
Yea I'm all over Jersey, I drive 150-200 miles a day between Jersey and the city, haven't seen too many other Golf R's around myself.. Although, a 60 year old man spotted it in the parking lot of my grocery store the other day and was like "Hey, is that the R spec!?"

Not gonna lie, made me feel good for 5 minutes haha
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"That thing goes from 0 to F#ÄK YEA in 3 seconds...." - Rick Harrison
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Old 12-19-2013, 02:46 PM   #14
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Sorry to hear your troubles. I had the same oil leak caused by the cam position sensor. Only other real issue I've had was a bad Pcv valve.
I envy you...
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