Noe Garcia has been around the car scene in Salt Lake City for years. Everyone knows the white 2014 GTI from local European Facebook groups, meet and greets, and even the Rocky Mountain Raceway drag strip. He’s one of the founding members of High West Euro and actively attends several NUVW (Northern Utah VW) meets, regularly attends Car and Coffee by Sweet Country and is always active on BurnAllTheMK6s Facebook group.
Noe wasn’t always a VW fan though. We were surprised to learn that he came from the JDM world with his first car being a 1996 Acura Integra GSR (which had a few bolts on and nitrous). Later down the road he had 2002 WRX and then a 9th generation civic. Noe explained, “I love Hondas, especially older ones because it’s like Legos. There are so many mix and match options that give you a lot of freedom to modify your car”.
When asked Noe he got into cars his response was one that is bound to resonate with many automotive enthusiasts. Noe Said “What got me into cars was the rush of going fast, freedom of the road, and seeing the fruits of labor after hours of wrenching with friends. We spent A LOT of our free time working on each others rides”.
It wasn’t until 2014 when he purchased his first VW. He purchased the MK6 GTI due to it’s combination of overall performance, DSG transmission, and upscale interior. Within 1 week of being new it was already starting to receive bolt-ons and stylizing upgrades.
The IE team had a chance to meet Noe at a company BBQ during the summer. He expressed his love for his GTI but wanted more power. After speaking with our sales team and engineers we had narrowed it down to either our up and coming TSI big turbo kit or a K04.
Noe added at the BBQ, “I really want something that offers a great power upgrade without the huge price tag of a big turbo kit”.
The IE K04 Build
Enter the K04 turbo upgrade. The K04 is genuine turbo manufactured by Borg Warner. It’s known in the VW scene as offering a nice upgrade over the stock K03 turbo, while still offering OEM reliability.
It is worth mentioning that one cannot simply buy a K04 from Borg Warner and Install it on MK6 GTI. To make the turbo plug-and-play like the IE kit, machine work and custom hoses are required. IE machines the compressor housing in our CNC machine shop to accept the diverter valve on the turbo.
Noe Agreed that the K04 based turbo kit, while putting out less power than IE’s big turbo kit, was still going to be a very quick car. It would also be far more affordable. For about $2800 in parts and IE K04 software the car should produce a nice bump in both horsepower and torque. A few other parts are also required such as an efficient intercooler and turbo back exhaust system. In Noe’s case he already them so that wasn’t a big deal.
Months later we got his car into the shop and started the install on his IE K04 kit. It also happened to be the first production IE K04 kit, serial number 001, if you will. The install was quick on the hardware side and took about 4 hours or so.
With the hardware all buttoned up we transferred his GTI from the lift to our chassis dyno. One perk of being a local customer to IE is that you get a custom dyno tune. Peter Blais, our lead engineer and software guru, spent the better parts of couple days dialing things in on the software side. Afterall, the software was going to be released in the near future as part of the IE K04 kit; so it had it be perfect. The end results were quite impressive from a relatively small turbo: 386 WHP @ 5542 RPM, 411 FT/LBS @ 4480 RPM on GT 260 PLUS 104 Octane
381 WHP @ 5250 RPM, 407 FT/LBS @ 4250 RPM on GT 260 100 Octane
362 WHP @ 5560 RPM , 392 FT/LBS @ 4450 RPM on 91 Octane Pump Fuel
The new K04 tune is as smooth as factory tune and can be driven aggressively or to the grocery store without issue. Power comes on smooth and then rips the tires off when you’re least expecting it (Keep in mind it’s winter in Utah, so the car currently has snow tires equipped). There’s no throttle hesitation or any sort of weirdness of any kind. We expect our future customers to be extremely satisfied and we are proud to stand behind the product.
If we had any recommendations it would be to considering purchasing a sticky set of street tires and possibly a set of slicks or drag radials for the drag strip or race track. The addition of a limited slip differential would also help dramatically in putting the power down. Those items will make a big difference at the track and will help put the power down. While burnouts may look cool the downside is you aren’t actually going anywhere fast!
Now it’s up to Noe to see what kind of times he can put down at the track!
- IE K04 Kit
- IE Custom K04 Tune
- IE Cold Air Intake
- R8 Coil Packs
- NGK Plugs
- APR Boost Tap
- Spulen Catch Can Kit
- Go Fast Bits DV+ (Diverter Valve)
- SPM 3" Catless Turboback Exhaust with only 1 muffler and a resonator
- BSH Throttle Pipe
- Unitronic Intercooler
- Euro Golf R Front Bumper Conversion
- Badgeless R Grille
- Hood Notch Fill
- Votex Sideskirts
- 4D Carbon Fiber Wrap on Roof & Mirror Caps
- Ziza Euro R LED Tails
- Tinted Rear Side Markers
- IE Door Skirt Vinyl Decals
- Koni STR.T Struts
- H&R Super Sport Springs
- 034 Motorsport Rear Sway Bar
- HPA Core Interlock Performance Motor Mount
- 18x8 ET48 Sparco Assetto Gara in Graphite Gray weighing 20.00lbs (winter)
- 225/45 18 Falken EuroWinter HS499 Tires (winter)
- 17x8 ET45 Advanti DST Storm S1 in Matte Black weighing 16.75lbs (summer)
- 235/45 17 Michelin PSS Tires (summer)
- ECS Crossed & Drilled Rotors & OE Calipers
- New South Boost Gauge
- JL Audio StealthBox
- Alpine PDX-M6 Amplifier with custom setup (Photo Attached)