GolNat's Build Thread - 13' GTI 6MT Coupe K04


Autocross Champion
Decided to make a build thread because why not. I bought my GTI back in November 2018 after my Fit was totaled by a drunk driver running a red light. I have always owned Honda's and have been scared to own a German car from a reliability fear. Most of these fears are based off stories and not from actual ownership so I figured I would try it out for myself. So far she has been doing great but only time will tell. It is a lot more of a pain in the ass to work on and you need so many more tools but regular maintenance has been pretty straight forward. This car is a blast to drive and is a great balance of gentleman and hooligan. This is my first “enthusiast” car besides a short ownership with a Nissan Sentra SER Spec-V in college.

For the most part I let the used parts market decide what mods I get next. I do have a general plan for the car but am not set on anything in particular.

Black 2013 GTI 6MT Coupe Base

Bought it with about 35k miles on the odometer in Nov 2018 Current mileage is 55,661 on 10-30-2020

Heidi is her name.


Redline 5W-40 Oil and Mann Filter
Unitronic Stage 1+ (@ 37,403 for 12k miles)
Unitronic Stage 2 Tune (@ 49,529k for 6200 miles)
Unitronic Stage 2+ K04 (@ 55,704k)
Borg Warner K04
Integrated Engineering CAI
CTS 3" Downpipe
Unitronic Intercooler
Throttle Pipe
R8 coil packs
Resonator Delete
APR Pendulum Mount
BFI Stage 1 Mounts
Neuspeed Dog bone Insert
RSR DIY Clutch Kit
HPA Short Shifter


Plaid Shift Boot from StitchBoots
Slammer Shift Knob
New South Boost gauge w/ air vent mount
Klii Plaid Steering Wheel Inlay
Seat Lever Inlays
Rennline Phone mount
Side markers (thanks Torga). Vinyl wrapped currently.
4" Slant cut exhaust tips
Valentine One Radar/Laser Detector
DEPO LED Tail Lights


10mm and 15mm spacers
17" OZ Racing Wheels with General G-Max summer tires
18" Detroit wheels for the winter
ST-X Coilovers
CTS Deadset Kit
SuperPro ALK
SuperPro LCA Bushings
Passat Aluminum LCA

Waiting to be installed:

Neuspeed Turbo Outlet Pipe
Euro Switch
Aux/USB Ports
Kill All Wipers rear wiper delete

First my 2009 Fit Sport which was a great car just slow (RIP Delilah):

Damn drunk drivers:

The GTI at time of purchase:

It's the base model so no bells and whistles but it's a low mileage 6 speed which was the most important thing. Oh and plaid seats, it had to have that!

As it sits now:

Timeline of progression with pictures

Verified updated tensioner before flashing to stage 1+

DV+ installed to prepare for tune.

O.Z.’s acquired cause I need more traction and a dedicated set of summer tires.

Tips and res delete cause I’m a cheap ass

New plugs and Coilpacks because maintenance and red is cool.

New South Boost Gauge for that racecar touch and I always wanted one.

IE Intake. Looks and sounds awesome.

Klii Inlay and seat lever inlays

Shift boot and Euro Impulse Knob (knob has been removed)

Stock knob is the best.

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Autocross Champion
HPA Short Shifter

Took some pictures of my intake valves @48k miles

Phone Mount

Monster Mats (thanks csumt76)

Black caps cause why not

APR Pendulum Mount

Downpipe Installed for that stage 2 life (thanks for the tips Jay)

DEI Soft Chirp Horn


Clutch Parts and RMS


Next plans are up in the air but currently on the lookout for LED tail's, intercooler, meth system and headunit with Carplay.
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Autocross Champion
Subbed! Love new build threads.


Autocross Champion
Installed the BFI mounts Friday night. Instal went super smooth with no issues. They are so purdy it’s a shame the one is covered by the battery box and intake.



Before even moving the car I could feel a difference on start up. Car didn’t shake at all when it fired up. Once the idle settled I noticed very little added NVH. I got a whole lot more when I had the stock mounts and added the dog bone insert. The car transitions from reverse to forward so much smoother now. More power is getting to the ground which is awesome. With the new clutch and now the mounts I finally feel like I am getting the full Stage 2 experience 🤘.

There are some new noises that I hear at idle now that have me worried. I’m sure they are normal but I’ll keep monitoring them for now.


Autocross Champion
Did a hard wire install of my radar detector over the weekend. Very straight forward job that Uglybastard has a nice write up about here. The only bitch part is the stupid A pillar trim which does not have be removed as Ugly demonstrates in his thread. It is a real PITA to get it put back on but once you get it, all future A pillar installations will go a lot smoother. Struggled with it for like an hour one night and left it until the next day out of frustration. Came back the next day and got it in a few minutes 🤷‍♂️. I tapped into the fuse box with a fuse tap and cut all crimp connectors off and soldered everything. Also added an on/off switch in my cubby because this detector does get chatty which I will go into further explanation below.

Stupid J clip is at the bottom of the picture. You basically have to push the clip into the hole with a long object from the side/bottom while the A pillar is up against the dash and windshield.


The mirror mount is very solid. $36 on Amazon. I was hoping to be able to get it closer to the mirror but that's about as high as I can get it. Mount it as high as you can for best results. I have seen 2 other detectors people had that were mounted down by the dash which is not as effective.

The radar detector as been working great but I can understand why some people have issues with it. Due to it not having GPS you can't tell it to ignore certain areas that may have other radar sources like automatic doors and traffic signals. I didn't realize how many new traffic signals around me use a newer form of radar to trip red lights rather then the plates in the road. I always wondered what the little black things above the traffic lights were and now I know. So every time you come up to a light with one of these the detector will go off. With a GPS enabled unit you can tell the detector to ignore these areas however Valentine offers a bluetooth module that you can get to add to a Gen 1 as long as your unit has had the software/hardware update. I may add this later. Valentines website is not up so I can't get all the info on the bluetooth adapter but this article outlines it pretty well. Still does not look to be location based but radar type based. This would be a great help as most police radar is Ka and the false alarms I am getting from doors and traffic lights are X and K band. So overall I am pleased with the Valentine One Gen 1 and am glad that they have adapted with the times and offer software and hardware upgrades to people with older units. For someone looking to buy a used unit I would consider the areas that you travel and when you will want to use the detector. The cost of a used unit plus updating and adding bluetooth might not be worth it compared to a new Gen 2 or other detector brand.

**Edit** There are ways to change settings with an older one by diving into the menu. So for example I could turn off X band since it is not used in my state.

Also at night you need to remember which location the different radar bands are as the letters are not illuminated. As you can see in this picture the Ka and X band are active but the letters do not illuminate so you just need to remember where they are. If the top 2 (L and Ka) are active LOOK OUT is what I go with.


These are what the traffic light radar things look like. I have read that they also allow emergency vehicles to change the light from red to green when they need to get through an intersection quickly.


It did save my ass the other day when I wanted to do a little highway pull on a section of road I don't frequent much. My K band alarm was going off from the light that I had just passed but once the Ka alarm sounded I took it easy and sure enough there was an officer scanning the road about 3/4 of a mile up.

**Edit 05/09/20** - I bought the bluetooth dongle so that I could connect my phone to the detector and run a custom setup. This has significantly reduced the amount of false alerts that I receive. Around me the police use Ka band so I am able to shut of K and X band which is what most traffic system and cars use. So far I have been impressed with the free V1connection App but I might purchase a 3rd party app called V1Driver that cost $10 to get GPS lockouts and some other features. I am looking at adding laser jammers to the car as well.
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Drag Racing Champion
In. It's looking really good!


Autocross Champion
I have been looking into the bluetooth dongle that is available for V1's and have ordered one to try out. I will update my previous post with my impressions. Using an app available on iTunes or Play my detector will be able to have GPS lockout feature along with speed lockout and additional frequency range lockouts. I did not realize there was so much involved in this but it's been fun learning about it.


Autocross Champion
Did some small things over the last few nights.

My hardwired radar connection has been doing great but had one issue that really bothered me. It would come on when you turned the key to accessory and then when you turned the key to ignition to start the car it would turn it off and on again (which is what I would expect). Well it bothered me due to the start up noise it would make and the fact that I don’t like power cycling electronic stuff more then I have too. So I started digging through my old electronics stuff from school looking for a 555 timer to make a delay to start circuit when I thought I could probably just order one. Yep sure enough I could get 5 mini delay boards for $14 From eBay. So I wired that into the radar detector and it now waits about 10 seconds before powering on, perfect 👌. It’s got a surface mount 555 timer and a nice 10A relay with adjustable time delay


A few weeks ago I discovered one of my OZ center caps had flew off somewhere. Okay I’ll order a new/used one. A single cap was $25 (cause carbon fiber bro). I then saw a set of 4 OZ non painted center caps for $26 and thought I‘ll just get them and then I can paint match them to the car. Instead of paint I decided to go with vinyl wrap and used the same stuff that Tony had used to wrap his side markers. Oh great I can do my side markers at the same time. So I vinyl wrapped my center caps and side markers.

The vinyl wrap is 3M 1080 and was super easy to work with

I also downloaded an app to compliment my Valentine radar detector and it has been an excellent addition to po-po detection. It’s called V1Driver and gives you all the features of more modern radar detectors but done better. I’m still playing around with it but I am enjoying it so far.


Autocross Champion
Very clever with the delay-start. Nice.


Autocross Champion
Vinyl wrap turned out great! Glad I was able to plant the idea in your head. And nice use of the 555 timer. Isn't it nice to fix little things that always bothered you?

Yeah the vinyl wrap worked out great and now I just want to wrap more stuff!!! Thanks, yes it is very nice. Went to leave for work this afternoon and it worked perfect 😊. The only thing I am worried about is how long the China parts will last but it's not controlling anything that critical.

Very clever with the delay-start. Nice.

Thank you. I have been itching to do some electrical stuff on the car and this was too easy so the itch is still there. Was looking at water/meth, laser jammers, head unit w/ sub.

Some LED tails just popped up for sale so now I'm thinking those instead of adding Carplay 🤔.


Autocross Champion
Great build form man.

Also, how was the fitment on the CTS Downpipe?

Thanks. Fitment was perfect BUT I bought it used so I don’t know if the previous owner struggled with it. I asked him when I bought it how it fit and he said fine but I also got the feeling he didn’t install it.