We’ve procrastinated long enough; with no more excuses it’s time to add some power products to the 200hp, 207 lb-ft 2.0T FSI 16v turbo engine in our ’07 Audi A3 project car to discover what we can unleash.
Perhaps predictably we chose to start with a software upgrade from Revo Technik, followed by a cat-back exhaust from Euro Sport Accessories before adding a number of parts from Neuspeed. The latter would include its Power Pulley, P-Flo intake, air charge pipe and turbo discharge pipe. The parts would be fitted by both Euro Sport and Supreme Power Parts in Anaheim, CA, and we’d use Euro Sport’s Dynojet 248C 2WD dynamometer for all our testing.
As with the majority of modern turbo engines, the biggest and easiest gains can usually be found by manipulating the manufacturer’s own software. A number of companies are able to rewrite the internal codes, unleashing additional power and torque from within the boost, fuel and timing maps.
We previously tested Revo software on a number of cars and have been impressed by the ease of installation, trouble-free running and overall reliability. Therefore, we contacted Gary Cogis, Revo’s General Manager to install the new program into our ECU.
Before we could proceed, however, we needed baseline figures for the engine, so Vic Kazanjian at Euro Sport strapped the car to their very consistent dyno and ran some numbers.
After five runs we were seeing reliable results but discarded the highest and lowest, settling on 188.7hp at the wheels and 203.5 lb-ft. To be honest, these are high, even for the 2.0T that notoriously gives good results. It proved our 85000-mile 2.0T was in good condition. We could also thank the 62˚F ambient temperature and 20% humidity for the strong showing. However, it could make it harder for the tuning equipment to make a difference…
That said, Gary flashed the ECU with stage one software, which took about 30min. We then drove the car for 5-10 miles to help the ECU adapt to the new software. We instantly felt an improvement, particularly in mid-range torque, which helped acceleration and overtaking on the freeway especially.
What’s nice about Revo’s FSI program is it allows the dealer to adjust timing, boost and fuel for a specific car or modifications. This means that we can alter the setting as more parts are fitted, or simply move up to stage 2 if we add a downpipe, or stage 2+ for cars with an uprated fuel pump, etc.
Back on the dyno, the Audi hit 202.6whp and 242.7 lb-ft as an average. And while these numbers are good, they only tell half the story. If you look at the dyno graphs, you’ll see there’s more under the curves. In fact, our best increase was 29.4whp and 44.2 lb-ft at 3500rpm. With noticeable gains throughout the rev range we were very happy with the results.
Euro Sport Exhaust
To remain emissions compliant, we opted to only fit a cat-back exhaust rather than liberating downpipes as well. Euro Sport Accessories had its own range of stainless steel systems in stock, including this one for the Mk5 VW GTI and Audi A3 2.0T.
The system replaces the center and rear suitcase mufflers on the stock system with a single muffler. The mandrel-bent, 2.5" diameter exhaust is made from T304 stainless and features polished dual tips. It uses slip-on joints and T-clamps for ease of installation that took less than an hour. It’s also backed by a five-year warranty.
We weighed the new system, which tipped the scales at just 19.5 lb against 35.8 lb for the stock exhaust. This is a respectable saving, and when combined with power, sound and aesthetic improvements, makes it an attractive addition.
Remove the stock system by raising the car and loosening the two 13mm bolts on the center clamp ahead of the muffler. You then drop the pipes from five hangers: two by the clamp, one in front of the rear beam and one of either side of the rear muffler.
Returning to the dyno, we held our breath until the number appeared. To our amazement, we were seeing large gains – something the almost-identical Mk5 GTI can struggle to achieve from a cat-back.
Again taking an average, our numbers had climbed to 211.4whp and 253.7 lb-ft. These are impressive results, especially considering the ambient had risen to 68˚F, which was a slight disadvantage.
Under the curve we had best gains of 14.2whp at 4750rpm and 13.8 lb-ft at 3750rpm, which is practically unheard of from exhaust systems these days. We can only assume that either our stock exhaust was clogged (although the high numbers dispute that), or the A3 has an inefficient design. Either way, we were pleased with the improvement.
Following our success, we headed over to Supreme Power Parts to have the Neuspeed equipment fitted. We intended to fit everything and dyno as a package rather than test individual components. If the claimed gains were accumulative, we were expecting more great results…
We started with the Hi-Flo Turbo Discharge Conversion. It’s designed to replace the stock plastic pipe that fits
between the turbo and intercooler, removing airflow restrictions to reduce turbulence and lag. It also maintains a constant 57mm diameter, rather than the stock part that starts at 38mm and increases to 57mm.
It’s beautifully designed, with a billet adapter, wrinkle-finished aluminum pipe, silicone hose and OE connectors. It fits like factory and equally high quality. And being black, won’t attract attention.
To begin, raise the car and remove the bellypan and passenger-side fender liner for access.
All Neuspeed parts are supplied with hardware and color instructions to show the steps, list tools and highlight any potential hazards.
While you’re under the car, it’s the perfect opportunity to fit a Power Pulley. We did it with the discharge pipe removed to gain extra clearance.
The pulley is designed to reduce the parasitic power loss from spinning a heavy pulley on your crank to run the A/C and alternator. It’s made from 6061 T6 hard-anodized aluminum for durability and is supplied with a shorter drive belt. It’s said to offer 5-7hp on its own.
Take care not to hold the pulley or belt in position with pliers or anything that could damage the components. Some models use 6mm stretch bolts that can be soft, so take care when removing.
For cars with these 6mm bolts Neuspeed supplies replacements; unless it came with 10mm bolts, in which case you re-use the originals.
The Neuspeed Hi-Flo Air Charge Pipe replaces the stock piece between the intercooler and throttle body. The factory part is kinked and flattened, whereas Neuspeed’s replacement uses a constant diameter aluminum pipe for less restriction and better airflow. It also eliminates the factory sound amplifier on cars fitted with it.
Installation is fairly tricky because it sits at the front of the engine bay between the radiator and engine block. Fortunately, there’s more clearance on our Audi than a GTI, but it can be a fiddly process to reach the brackets. Our car didn’t have a sound amplifier, but where fitted this is a more complicated procedure that is covered in Neuspeed’s instructions.
Start by disconnecting the map sensor plug. Then release the wire clip on the hose from the throttle body to the stock charge pipe. At the bottom, the charge pipe is connected to the intercooler hose with a metal clamp. The pipe is secured to the car on brackets that bolt to the engine block at the top with a 6mm nut, and oil pan near the filter with a T30 torx. Once these are undone, wriggle the charge pipe free.
Several companies, including Euro Sport Accessories, offer cold-air intakes for the 2.0T. What’s more, several are cheaper than Neuspeed’s. However, they don’t offer the CARB compliance of the P-Flo, which makes it 50-state legal and has a sticker and paperwork to support it.
The P-Flo replaces the large factory air box that sits over the engine, muffling mechanical sound from the fuel pump in particular, while also giving good low-speed response. However, it creates a restriction at higher engine speeds, limiting output. A cold-air intake (CAI) removes that restriction, possibly at the expense of some low-speed torque, and allows you to hear the induction noise. While it sounds great, it can be a problem since it also introduces blow-off noise that might attract police attention, which is where the CARB compliance comes in handy…
Removing the stock air box exposes the top of the engine, again making it hard to hide its presence, but also necessitating an engine cover such as Neuspeed’s carbon fiber part if you wish to dress it up.
The intake kit is supplied with a heat shield for the exhaust, as well as a washable K&N filter. The large-diameter pipe helps airflow and houses the MAF sensor. The pipe is available with either a black or red wrinkle-finish as well as the fitting hardware.
Start by removing the stock airbox. To do this, first disconnect the air intake duct at the front of the engine bay. It unscrews from the front panel and then unclamps from the engine cover. Then disconnect the mass air flow (MAF) sensor and remove the screws to release the sensor from its housing. Now disconnect the turbo intake hose from the back of the cover. You then lift the cover from each corner to release the rubber grommets. These can be stubborn so take your time but apply force.
Remove the air intake hose from the top of the turbo by squeezing the spring clamp. Take care not to let anything fall into the turbo!
With everything in place we drove to the Euro Sport dyno and our 2.0T felt great. You get pronounced induction noise and can hear the blow-off valve operating. There’s also a rather annoying screech at full-throttle as the air whistles through the tubes but you can avoid it by closing the throttle slightly.
Thanks to this induction noise and the moderately louder exhaust, Project A3 was finally sounding like it looked. So it just remained to see what numbers we’d get on the dyno.
We again conducted five dyno pulls. Since it was the following morning, the ambient temperature was back to 62˚F, so we had high hopes.
After more consistent runs, our average numbers were 215.2whp and 256.1 lb-ft, which were relatively modest gains at peak. We also noticed a slightly loss of torque from 2500-3500rpm. Beyond that, the engine started to breathe better, seeing a considerable peak increase of 13.3whp and 11.3 lb-ft at 6250rpm compared to the software and exhaust.
And while the low-speed pick up is mildly compromised, the top-end improvement actually gives us a really nice curve that manages to sustain the mid-range increases from the software and exhaust further into the power band. So we’re still gaining power up to 7000rpm where Vic would lift-off.
Comparing stock to the final results, we saw a best increase of 35whp and 52 lb-ft at 3500rpm. As you’d expect, the car feels very strong on the road, revving hard and clean all the way through the power band. But it’s the mid-range shove that’s addicting. We’re certainly happy with the results that exceeded our expectations given our previous experience with the 2.0T FSI.
|Ultra-low coilovers||H&R Springs||6/11|
|19x8.5” Nurburgring wheels||TSW Wheels||6/11|
|Wheel stud kit||Raven Motorsport||6/11|
|235/35 R19 ExtremeContact DW||Continental Tires||6/11|
|JOM S3-style grille||Black Forest Industries||7/11|
|RS3 interior trim||OEMplus||8/11|
|Paint restoration and wax||Meguiar’s||11/11|
|Fiscon Bluetooth module||OEMplus||2/12|
|Taller rear springs||H&R Springs||2/12|
|225/35 R19 ExtremeContact DW||Continental Tires||2/12|
|engine software||Revo Technick||3/12|
|cat-back exhaust||Euro Sport Accessories||3/12|
|Air Charge Pipe||Neuspeed||3/12|
|P-Flo Intake Kit||Neuspeed||3/12|
|Turbo Discharge Kit||Neuspeed||3/12|