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Volkswagon GTI 1.8t vs VR6



  • judasjudas Posts: 217
    Um, if you're going to recommend something (VR6 over the 1.8T) why don't you try backing it up or making an argument for or against one of the two. As far as I'm concerned the 1.8T is the way to go. It's cheaper, better gas mileage, lighter, better balanced (Front to rear) and with about 500 bucks in mods will blow the doors off the VR6.
  • jmorrissjmorriss Posts: 10
    I just bought a new Golf, so I have been spending lots of time at dealerships lately. The overall environment seems to be that since the turbo came out, not many VR6's or 2.0's are being sold. Even the salesmen agree that the lighter engine in the turbo provides for better handling and less tendency for understeer. I drove the tubo, and it is quick and pulls hard pretty much all the time. The VR6 is (slightly) faster, but worth the money? That is doubtful. As judas points out, a chip gives the turbo 180-200 HP, add an exhaust and you have 220-240 HP for less than $1,000. Enthusiasts will do better with the turbo because it allows big power for cheap money(modification-wise.) To start tweaking the VR6, you're looking at big money for a supercharger, turbo, or (kiss your differential goodbye) nitrous.

    (If I might be allowed to make a brief case for nitrous, I have no problem with nitrous, and have used it in 4 different cars. The reason it has a bad rep is that most people get too heavy using it and start breaking things. Nitrous is like a fine spice; just enough, and you are in heaven, too much, and you ruin the meal.)

    Anyway, I'd go with the turbo. The only down side of it is that you have to rev a little high at the start because its low spinning mass, which helps it rev quickly during acceleration but increases the likelihood of stalling off the line. but once it catches, bu-bye.
  • regrow1regrow1 Posts: 1
    I just bought a new 2000 gti 1.8t and with 235 miles on it, it broke down. I was extremely upset because I fell in love with the car. They are so nice. I had an 83 gti and I haven't driven such a fun car since, until I took the 2000 out for a drive. Anyway, The dealer has been doing all they can to try and resolve the problem. I heard this afternoon that it was a problem with a sensor in the throttle body that went bad. I'm just wondering if anyone has had a similar problem. I can't wait to get it back, but it is bothering me a lot that this happened at 235miles.
  • ramonramon Posts: 825
    Get used to it buddy. =)
  • judasjudas Posts: 217
    Don't pay any attention to Ramon, he doesn't like anything german, including bratwurst, kindergarten and Claudia Schiffer. Ramon, why don't you go berate people in the Cavalier topic, or do you think those are more reliable than VW's too? Snicker.
  • ramonramon Posts: 825
    Don't forget to add schnitzel, edelweis, staedtler pens, Oktoberfest and Schumacher.
    Oh judas.... what can I expect from that name after all? I'm so hurt. If you could only go to the sports car forum where they compare the vr6 against the celica GTS.....
    Cavalier? Don'e VW make Cavaliers? hehehe.... Ok I am gonna get in trouble with this one. But u gotta admit if the car is good then why are they so many forums dedicated to problematic VWs? Like Are Volkswagen Reliable? Jetta breakdowns, Golf breakdowns to name a few.
    Having said that, I am still marvel the 1.8T engine. Oohhh babie!!!
  • jmorrissjmorriss Posts: 10
    At some point can we talk about cars?!?
  • judasjudas Posts: 217
    Alright, as long as you acknowledge that the 1.8T is a great engine, I'll concede that VW's in general aren't the *most* reliable cars in the world, although I think they get better every year, and they're much more reliable than a lot of American autos, plus all the swill the Koreans keep shoving over the border.
  • ramonramon Posts: 825
    Any news of a 4motion golf yet? Saw a Passat 4motion yesterdee. 1.8t with 4 motion would be nice on a golf. But I doubt the price is gonna be cheap tho. =(
    Just picture this : 1.8t chipped to 220hp with intake + exhaust and ditch the stupid ASR and add 4motion AWD = no wheelspin = joy.
  • judasjudas Posts: 217
    That would be a hell of a ride, I wouldn't hold your breath for a 4motion golf coming to the US though. I think it'd push the price of a 1.8T up into the mid 20's, not to many people want to pay that much dough for a 4 banger hatch, and it's too bad, their loss.
  • sivtecsivtec Posts: 8

    I took my 2 week old 2000 GTI VR6 in for a wheel
    alignment to the VW dealer where I purchased the
    car. When I came home, there were numerous
    scratches and nicks on all four wheels.
    Immediately, I took it back to the dealership, and
    showed the damage to the service advisor. He said
    to bring it back for the mechanic and service
    manager to have a look since they weren't there at
    the time. I told the advisor that the damage was
    from the alignment clamps that attach to the
    wheels. The advisor said, they would have to match
    the areas of damage with the alignment clamps.
    Then the dealership will decide what is
    appropriate, he said.

    Please help! What will the dealer most likely do
    to get out of this one? I am going to ask the
    dealership to do whatever it takes to get the
    wheels the way it was prior to the alignment clamp
    damage. The car is only 2 weeks new!

    Also, does anyone have a gear grinding issue when going into Reverse gear?

    Any advice is appreciated. Thank you.
  • ramonramon Posts: 825
    yeah have that fix fast. Cus it will not compare favourbly to the GTS now that your wheel is out of wack. hehehe.... how come your name is sivtec but u own a golf?
  • sivtecsivtec Posts: 8

    It's because I used to drive a 1999 civic si. I sold the SI and bought a new VR6.
  • ramonramon Posts: 825
    Oh man just reread my post. This is a totally different topic. I was spending way too much time at the vr6 vs GTS topic. ;P
  • alfaromeoalfaromeo Posts: 210
    I am considering a GTI 1.8t. However, my present car, a 'new Jetta' does have a rather mellow suspension to my taste. Is the 1.8t GTI equipped with sport suspension? I read somewhere that this option would only be offered on the 2001 model? Can anyone confirm this???
    Thanks a lot!
  • judasjudas Posts: 217
    To my knowledge no GTi's come standard with the sport suspension, it's an option on all of them. I was thinking it was going to be available on the 2000's, but not positive. Instead of giving VW the dough why don't you get the regular and shell out a couple hundred more and get some Koni adjustable coilovers or something similar? I've seen them starting around 1400 bucks or so and I guarantee they'll make the car handle better than the Sport suspension package, plus they're adjustable for height and rebound/damping.
  • alfaromeoalfaromeo Posts: 210
    Thanks for your tip regarding Koni 'coilovers'.

    Although I LOVE sporty cars, I must admit that my 'technical' knowledge is as ...low as a Formula One car!

    I test drove a Audi A4 quattro with the same engine (1.8t) and that car was factory equipped with sport suspension. The experience? simply amazing! I also test drove a Civic Si which was a lot of fun, though I think the car is seriously overpriced (the velcro attachments in the trunk were simply stapled to the cover carpet: symptomatic, in my opinion of the rest of the car's interior finish...)
    But back to our road test... In comparison, the GTI was 'rolling' all over the place in hard cornering. So should I get, it would definitely need some 'tightening'. Like another person asked, I wonder what differentiates the GTI from the 'regular' Golf from a technical point of view. Maybe we're all victims of clever marketing!

    Anyway, I DO think I'm gonna get the GTI 1.8t. I simply love the car for its looks,convenience and the engine is just fine!

    However, coming back to your answer: I thought that a 'sport suspension package' involved more than just the shock absorbers. If you put stiffer absorbers on the car, would you need to reinforce the points of attachment? (where the absorbers are fixed... probably has a name!) or even reinforce - stiffen - the chassis?
    If anyone has a qualified opinion... I would love to hear from you!
    Thanks in advance!

    ps: coming from Europe, my greatest disappointment was to see that the '4 Motion' was not imported to the US... 4 wheel drive and 208 bhp!!!
  • alfaromeoalfaromeo Posts: 210
    Thanks a lot for your advice. Your experience with the Si is exactly why I shall refrain from purchasing one! I CANNOT believe that Honda actually manages to get 18.000 bucks for the car, given the very mediocre finish. Don't get me wrong... I still think the Si is a cool and fun car!
    I WILL get a GTI... but now I am starting to wonder which one! 1.8t or VR6???? But of course! That's what this 'column' is all about! haha!
  • jberg16jberg16 Posts: 4

    I have recently bought the vr6. The only difference you should be concerned about with the turbo is the length of distance you drive your vehicle.
    if you are one that drives over 100,000 miles on a car then get the vr6, if not get the 1.8t and save a little money....that way you dont need to replace a turbo later in the cars life....

    as far as gas vr6 is getting 25+ mpg on the highway doing 80-85. and it only has 2000 miles on the choice is yours...good luck...either way your picking a nice car....
  • ramonramon Posts: 825
    Yeah change to aftermarket stuff. Even the socalled sport suspensions are basically the same stuff. My friend's Jetta VR6 GLS with sports suspension leans all over the place. If I were u just get hte lowest trim Golf with a 1.8T and with the money saved mod the sucker up.
  • mznmzn Posts: 727
    Friends, since a special topic has been created to discuss the SPORT SUSPENSION ON GOLF GTI, let's continue our suspension conversation there. Thanks!

  • jtaimjtaim Posts: 34
    I haven't driven the golf/gti 1.8t, but own a passat 1.8t since last summer. The 1.8t is a powerful enough engine, especially when matched with a manual tranny like in my passat. The 1.8t is also very smooth for a 4 cylinder.

    BUT, you have to be aware of its characteristics. While turbo lag is minimal, it is there, making it less responsive than a normally aspirated engine, like the vr6. In first gear, I have to spool up the engine more than normal or the car kinda sits there for a second waiting for the revs and torque to build up. The golf/gti weighs a little less, so this is less of a "problem", but be sure to drive both to see the difference in throttle response.

    I drove a jetta glx (vr6) w/manual. The vr6 has great throttle response, and is VERY, VERY smooth. Being basically an inline-6 gives it that smooth quality.

    So if you care about the power, torque, and price, and don't mind if the power delivery is a little unlinear, the 1.8t is pretty nice. 0-60 is only slightly slower, and with a chip, it's better than a vr6.

    But if you want a really, really smooth, lovely engine, that gives you more power than you'll ever need, get the vr6.
  • zman57zman57 Posts: 1
    ok, slight digression. I just bought a 1.8T GTI. Awesome highway cruiser, but around town rolls like a boat into my favorite curves. Accelerator and steering feedback is vague. The fit and finish of the new model is excellent, but I miss my old GTI! Any thoughts on A4 1.8 vs. A3 VR6? I feel so suburban in this thing. Should I ditch it for a 2 year old VR6 with 16K on it?
  • tutoo7tutoo7 Posts: 10
    When I had bouht my 1.8T I thought it was also a little weak on turns but that changed when I put some new tires. Im telling you it made a big difference.
  • alfaromeoalfaromeo Posts: 210
    the A3 does not come with the VR6. You can buy an S3, but that car is not sold in the US and is equipped with a 'chipped' 1.8t. It does handle like lightning though..

    If you are considering a non US MODEL, why don't you get the GTI 4 motion? A friend of mine has it, and how... do you say Nirvana in German???
  • cinemafiacinemafia Posts: 57
    I think Zman meant an A3 Chassis VR6, as in a GTi VR6 between the years of 1994 and 1998, not an Audi A3 or an S3, which are only available in Europe.

    Easy to see why you were confused though alfa....
  • alfaromeoalfaromeo Posts: 210
    I just came back from trying the Vr6 and the 1.8t. They WERE Jettas, because I wanted to try the same car with the different engines, and they didn't have any 1.8t GTI for testing.

    FRANKLY, it seems to me that the VR6 blows the 1.8t away. Now I know this may be just an impression, simply because the two engines behave in such different manners.

    The 1.8t was surprisingly smooth, - nearly too smooth in my opinion. Silent (ok, maybe they've insulated it a bit more on the Jetta), very nice at 'my' cruising speed (80mph)... There was a tiny 'lag' which may be attributed to the Turbo, but nothing that really bothered me.
    But darn... that Vr6 engine really flies. It also appeals a lot more to me in the sense that it has to be revved up in order to start talking. The 1.8t gave power and torque over a 'plateau' whereas the Vr6 delivered p and t in a more conventional 'uphill' buildup, accompanied by a nice 'gnarl' when close to redline. That's the way an engine should deliver the goods, in my opinion. But then, I don't belong to those who love to shift 'early'. The 1.8t has quite some torque very early, ideal for 'early shifters'.

    Again, these were Jettas, which are slightly heavier than the GTIs, and way too soft in my opinion. I would nearly say that my Jetta GLS 2.0 gives me more 'fun' because the engine is not 'overpowering' the rest of the car's potential. With the Vr6, the Jetta would definitely need a much tighter suspension, and a MUCH firmer steering.
    But again, those are my opinions on the Jettas, and I realize that the Golf is a different car.
    I just wanted to share my thoughts about the engines. Oh, when are those Alfas arriving? I can't wait. Their 2.0 Twin Spark (155bph) and V6 2.5 (195 bhp) are models of what engines should be... IN MY OPINION!
  • judasjudas Posts: 217
    Just curious, but are you ever going to quit raving about the 2.0 Twin Spark in topics that it as absolutely no relation to? The VR6 won't 'blow away' a 1.8T in the GTI, the 0-60 is going to be very close I think.
  • alfaromeoalfaromeo Posts: 210
    I didn't say the VR6 would 'blow away' the 1.8t. I used the word 'feel'...
    As to my constant referral to other cars and engines, I guess it builds on my frustration about seeing too few cars discussed - for lack of choice. I shall abstain from such public 'day dreaming' in the future.
    However, my reaction is well-founded. While there is absolutely no doubt that the 1.8t is a brilliant engine, it delivers the goods in such a comfy and quiet way, - nearly too civilized. Maybe the GTI 1.8T is the perfect hatch for highway cruising in the US. But I can clearly see why Peugeot and a few others are gaining ground fast in Europe. They have stuck to what a GTI should be (and that is not a highway cruiser).
    I have driven lots of four cylinder engines, (yes, also several Alfas) and THEREFORE have a certain basis for comparison. There are too few capable 4-cylinder engines in the US market, and that limits the scope of discussions of course.
    I hear people discussing the VW-Audi engines and making comparisons to Honda engines. Isn't that the same?
    My lingering for the 2.0lTS is also perfectly subjective. While it is slightly more powerful than the 1.8GTI, it does not have the same torque output, and lags a few ''' behind on the 0-60. But timing acceleration is not everything. The VR6 and 1.8T may have similar performances. It just does not feel that way when I drove them. And to me, the 'feeling' factor is important too.
    And yes, that's why I love Alfas. Sorry. Last time. Promise!

    ps: I wonder why the 1.8t is not sold on GTI's in Europe anymore (replaced by an Audi 5 cylinder). Does anyone know????
  • judasjudas Posts: 217
    I didn't mean to jump all over you, I think it's just because you and I frequent about all the same topics, so Its been seeming like I've been hearing about this twin spark all the time. I don't have any problem with discussing any topic, I just dont want to discuss the same topic in 4 different boards.
    I think there are quite a few capable 4 cylinders in the US right now. Most of them aren't engines that I would buy, because I like a little more meat under the hood. As was demonstrated in the other topic (Where I admit to being wrong about HP and torque, although I will say one thing, physics doesn't always apply itself to the real world perfectly, especially when you're dealing with something as quirky as the IC engine) a lot of horsepower doesn't necessarily mean you have a lot of torque, it could mean you've just got a high redline, which is also good, because it either means A)You can stay in the same gear longer or B)You can gear it lower and get better acceleration. Personally, I'd rather have the torque than the HP, which is why I like V8's or forced induction 4's and 6's over NA VTEC shenannigans. A lot of these VTEC engines I don't see as improvements at all. I'll keep going back to the engine in my MR2 because it's a perfect example. 13 year old engine here. Imagine would it could be putting out now. At the time it had 145 HP @ 6400 and 140 lb/ft @ 4000. Redlines around 7100. Compare that to the Honda Civic Si. Its got the Civic beat by 30 lb/ft in the torque department. It's also got the Civic beat in the acceleration department, even at a curb weight of 2600 lbs, pretty porky for a 2 seater sports car.
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