If we had a dollar for every owner who started out telling us, “I never intended to go this far – I just wanted a chip, intake and exhaust… ,” we’d be rich by now! The truth is, modifying can become addictive. And, since you’re reading this magazine, chances are you already know the need for more and more mods.
Of course, the owner of this ’07 Audi A3 2.0T S-Line is no different from the rest of us. Jason Maglinao from Santa Clarita, CA bought the car in late ‘06 and told us: “I only planned on doing a few small things, like a chip, intake and exhaust…”
Right on schedule, Jason admitted, “You get a little bug when you start modding, so once I started I couldn’t stop!” We know, Jason; we know.
“I blame my father for all my trouble,” Jason chuckled, “because he got me into the Euro scene in the first place.”
“He’s always been into VW and Audi, and he took me with him to car meets almost every week. At these meets I met the Pure Euro guys and we’ve been pretty tight ever since, feeding off each other, sharing ideas and feedback.”
Even with a mod addiction, there’s only so much a struggling student can achieve by diverting funds from part-time jobs and skipping dates with the girlfriend, so it’s been a long road from stock A3 to the beautifully massaged vision you see here.
Jason’s road was a bit more challenging than most, since he had all kinds of mechanical issues to resolve (replacing an engine, among others) before the fun stuff could begin.
Without a doubt, the hallmark of Jason’s Audi hatchback is the air-ride system. Comprising Bagyard, Koni and AccuAir components, he admits he still gets a kick out people’s reactions to his car’s theatrics.
Sure, those of us in the scene are pretty familiar with how air suspension kits work, and when we see a stationary car tucking all four wheels we’re likely to just assume it’s on air… but after seeing it air-up and drive away, the average person is usually amazed when they realize a car like Jason’s Audi wasn’t broken or stranded.
Aired-up or aired-out, this A3 is all about being smooth. A simple two-color exterior scheme and a mind toward removing anything that wasn’t necessary (badging, emblem, rear wiper, etc) produced very effective results. The red paint looks miles deep, and the contrasting black accents enhance the effect ten-fold.
Jason’s A3 came with the desirable Titanium Package factory front grille, so simply painting the Audi rings was all he needed to match the grille to the overall theme.
Looking closer, you’ll see the exterior has more going on than just black paint and tinted windows – a Seat Leon Cupra R lip looks like it belongs under the front bumper, and Lamin-X tinted headlight film keeps the lights in line with the rest of the car. For extra front-end pop, Jason chose Lamin-X yellow foglight film.
At the sides he went OEM with a pair of dealer-supplied skirts, but even those were painted and massaged to fit better. At the rear, the stock valance was cut on the right side to fit an extra pair of tips (black ceramic-dipped, of course). Finally, tinted tail lights were an obvious but effective touch.
Although the air-ride system is Jason’s favorite mod, he has to admit it’s still a thrill to see 18x9" and 18x10" BBS LMs tucked under the arches.
The LMs began life with a 5x114.3 PCD, but he had them re-drilled for his 5x112 hubs. Not content with the original silver centers, Jason found a dark bronze satin metallic powdercoat that tickled his fancy and got them baking. When the wheels went back together, the centers were mounted from behind using gold bolts. A set of 205/40 and 225/40 Nitto tires keep the wheels company.
To add a little flair under the hood, Jason took an evoms engine cover and wrapped it in faux ostrich skin – we told you he was having fun!
Inside, the A3 is more subtle, more OE: Viair gauges monitor air pressure in the suspension, while a false floor covers the five-gallon Accuair tank and dual 400cc compressors.
With leftover ostrich skin, Jason didn’t let it go to waste and wrapped the false floor in the same material.
Predictably, with such an addictive habit, it’s no surprise to learn Jason hasn’t finished with his Audi. “There’s much more to come,” he told us. “I plan to go crazy inside and hopefully respray the exterior. Of course, I want to get into some serious motor work as well, it’s just a matter of time and money!” he said with a smile.
et Tech Spec
2007 Audi A3 2.0T S-Line
Owner: Jason Maglinao
Location: Santa Clarita, CA
Engine: Neuspeed software, P-Flo intake and engine mount insert, custom cat-back exhaust with ceramic-dipped black quad tips, evoms engine cover wrapped in faux ostrich skin
Drivetrain: stock DSG transmission
Suspension: Bagyard Bomber front struts and Supreme rear bags, Koni rear shocks without bumpstops, Accuair VU4 manifold, five-gallon tank, water trap and e-Level, Viair dual 400cc compressors, notched frame
Wheels & Tires: 18x9" front, 18x10" rear BBS LM wheels with reverse-mounted, powdercoated centers, 205/40 R18 front, 225/40 R18 rear Nitto NeoGen tires
Exterior: OEM Titanium Package plate filler and front grille with painted emblem, Audi side skirts, Seat Leon Cupra R front splitter, OEM black mirror caps, modified rear valance for tailpipes, debadged hatch, deleted rear wiper, smoked markers, Lamin-X head- and foglight film, tinted tail lights
Interior: Osir O-Pod, dual Viair air gauges with white LEDs, custom false floor upholstered in faux ostrich skin, custom frame for air-ride controller, OEM ashtray delete
Thanks: Ardee, Candace, Pure Euro, Nik Papoban, Alex Ross, Michel Reynaud, Austin Volpes, Jimmy Woo, Eurowurx, DTM Autohaus, RTW, VR Wheels, Carl at Rusnak Westlake, Brandon Chasin