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2006 Volkswagen Jetta GLI - Better Jetta

Meet Sean Sajecki and his show-winning Jetta GLI

Don Winchester
Jan 20, 2009
Photographer: Josh Brown

So you've built a project car. Great. Most of us have. Well, to be technical, most of us have started a project, but the truth is that fewer than 50% of us ever finish it. More often than not, it's a lack of funds, changed priorities or a significant-other flat-out of patience that decided when we were officially done. In other words, few of us get the opportunity to tell ourselves the car looks great and there's nothing more we want to do to it. Yeah, those words sound funny to us as well.

Eurp_0901_01_z+2006_volkswagen_jetta_gli+front_side_view Photo 1/6   |   2006 Volkswagen Jetta GLI - Better Jetta

A resident of Staten Island, NY, Sean Sajecki is one of the few people who not only recognizes the above words, but also speaks them regularly and with a straight face.

According to Sean, the photographs of his '06 Jetta GLI are the culmination of almost two years of work. And not only is he happy with how the car looks, he's officially finished the project. Only time will tell if he's a 50-percenter, or if he winds up falling to earth with the rest of us and the car looks completely different next year.

Purchased in 9/06, the GLI went through several looks along the way, resulting in many different sets of wheels and three body kits, including what's currently on the car.

Sean likes to mod cars to keep busy and entertained, but admits he begins with specific goals in mind. "I built this car because it's my hobby, but I also wanted to turn heads and win trophies," he said.

"I've entered 11 shows with my GLI and come home with ten first-place trophies." Mission accomplished.

When winning shows is the goal from the start, it's important to build a car with a comprehensive mod list and attention to detail. Consider the full spectrum of mods on this Jetta and you come away with an appreciation for just how thoroughly Sean addressed every aspect; from performance to cosmetics to a custom ICE installation, this GLI is missing nothing.

Nailing the proper look for the Jetta's was arguably the toughest part of the build. "I wish I'd settled on the Caractre body pieces from the beginning," Sean says, "but sometimes you need to first get it wrong before you know when you've got it right."

Eurp_0901_05_z+2006_volkswagen_jetta_gli+bbs_ck_wheels Photo 2/6   |   18" BBS CKs, Yokohama tires and StopTech rotors

Incorporating Caractre's full body kit on what was previously a somewhat frumpy Jetta, was definitely getting it right. Adding a Freedom Design three-piece rear spoiler, Eurogear carbon fiber hood and a black roof was icing the cake.

Finally, a nice set of anthracite-colored 18" BBS CK wheels completed the makeover Sean wanted from the beginning. "It's hard to improve on a set of BBS rims on a German car," he asserted.

Those BBS wheels certainly do wonders for the GLI, but when combined with 215/40 Yokohama Avid tires, the resulting increase in performance was just as important.

Working in concert with the rollers are a Koni/Eibach combo - an excellent choice for NYC's less than perfect roads - and a set of slotted StopTech rotors combined with Hawk pads.

Eurp_0901_02_z+2006_volkswagen_jetta_gli+custom_engine Photo 3/6   |   Custom engine cover draws attention to Revo software, AWE exhaust, AEM CAI and Eurojet FMIC

The 200hp delivered by the GLI's stock 2.0T was pretty good off the showroom floor, but good wasn't nearly good enough. To keep ahead of all the local import drivers always itching to race, he added the tried-and-true Revo stage 2 software, AWE downpipe and exhaust plus a Eurojet FMIC. Mated to VW's DSG transmission, Sean's Jetta is officially a very quick car.

In keeping with the concept, Sean addressed the somber interior. "I added red seat inserts for contrast, but used suede to keep the luxury theme going."

Mixing performance with style is a full complement of New South Performance gauges designed to help the driver keep an eye on the engine vitals.

We asked Sean what he thought was his car's defining feature and without hesitation he told us, "It's gotta be the trunk. I added two TVs and finished it in red suede and black leather. It definitely turns heads, especially with the red neon, two subs, illuminated VW symbol and interior speakers that let you hear what's playing on the TVs."

Eurp_0901_04_z+2006_volkswagen_jetta_gli+trunk_audio Photo 4/6   |   2006 Volkswagen Jetta GLI - Better Jetta

While looking superb, the stereo install isn't over the top, yet it's unique and is certainly in keeping with the owner's original goal to build a complete car.

With a finished and show-winning Jetta GLI to drive, is Sean still having fun? "I'm really pleased with the car. It definitely turns heads, and knowing that lots of people appreciate the work that's gone into it lets me know that I, and all the people who helped me, did a great job. That's all I ever wanted to accomplish."

Tech Spec
2006 VW Jetta GLI
Owner: Sean Sajecki
Location: Staten Island, NY
Occupation: Car Sales

Eurp_0901_03_z+2006_volkswagen_jetta_gli+rear_view Photo 5/6   |   2006 Volkswagen Jetta GLI - Better Jetta

Engine: two-liter 16v four cylinder turbo with Revo stage 2 software, AWE downpipe and cat-back exhaust, Autotech Hi-Volume fuel rail pump, Eurocode DV, AEM cold-air intake, Eurojet front-mount intercooler, custom engine cover

Drivetrain: DSG transmission, VF-Engineering dogbone trans mount

Suspension: Koni FSD shocks, Eibach Pro-kit springs

Brakes: StopTech slotted rotors and steel lines, Hawk Performance pads

Wheels & Tires: 18x8" BBS CK wheels, 215/40-18 Yokohama Avid W4S tires

Eurp_0901_06_z+2006_volkswagen_jetta_gli+red_suede_interior Photo 6/6   |   Goodbye dull stock interior, hello sunglasses at night. That red suede is bright!

Exterior: Caractre bumpers, side skirts and rear window spoiler, Freedom Design rear wing, Kamei eyelids, Eurogear carbon hood, black roof, tinted tail lights and mirror turn signals, LaminX yellow foglight film

Interior: seats covered in black leather with red suede inserts, red suede door panels and headliner, New South Performance triple-gauge pod, NSP Indigo boost pressure, EGT and oil pressure gauges, Monster Mats

Audio/Visual: Pioneer 5000 DVD head unit, four 7" monitors in headrests and trunk, eight Concept interior speakers, two in trunk, Voodoo bass cap, two Ultra 12" subs, two Concept amps

Thanks: my family, 4U2ENVY auto club, KMD Tuning (www.kmdtuning.com), Straight Line Collision, NVS Audio, Tri-State Leather, NA Motorsports (www.namotorsports.com), Douglas VW, Tottenville Auto Spa

By Don Winchester
1 Articles

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