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ABT front panel - opinions if you fitted one please?

Discussion in 'A3/S3/Sportback (8P Chassis)' started by munchkincoupe, Oct 15, 2010.

  1. munchkincoupe
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    munchkincoupe Member

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    [Oct 15, 2010]
    I've found a UK stockist who still has the ABT front panel for the 2 part grill 8P1 model A3. Before I part with my cash I just wanted to know a few things from members who have fitted them to their cars please......

    Were you happy with the quality of the finish?
    Did you think it looked OEM?
    Has it tarnished at all with time?
    Is the black plastic and trim an exact match to the OEM grills?

    and any other comments about them are welcome

    I won't have time or the cash to do a full front end conversion hence looking at this part

    Thanks for comments
    #1
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  3. sub39h
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    sub39h Active Member

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    [Oct 15, 2010]
    i've not fitted one (bought an 8P2 instead) but the only thing that would put me off it is that the silver bit doesn't sit flush with the grille. it's stuck on top of the plastic bit so in effect it has two silver ridges. from a distance it looks fine, but up close it won't look 100% as a temporary mod or a budget option it's definitely worth a look in tho
    #2
  4. munchkincoupe
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    munchkincoupe Member

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  5. Ash B
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    Ash B Well-Known Member

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    [Oct 18, 2010]
    Sarah done something similar to the ABT bit - User name Sarah's A3 have a look at her threads
    #4
  6. Von Maximo
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    Von Maximo The Damned

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    [Oct 18, 2010]
    I've fitted one. Agree with what sub39 wrote but on the other hand I think it looks better with it than without it.

    I'm happy with the finish and it is a good quality item that has lasted 4 years and 80,000 miles on the car. The only negative that I can comment on is that the sun has slightly bleached the black plastic, but not that noticeable compared to the OEM grille. And a quick squirt of tyre black is all it needs to bring the original finish back. That said considering how long it has been on the car I'm happy with the investment and would definitely recommend buying if you want a low cost solution to updating the grille

    Hope this helps!

    Von Max
    #5
  7. munchkincoupe
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    munchkincoupe Member

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    [Oct 20, 2010]
    Thanks for the reply Von Max - try this if you want to restore the black trim it comes well recommended on Detailing World
    Exterior Coatings // G|Techniq
    #6
  8. munchkincoupe
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    munchkincoupe Member

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    [Oct 22, 2010]
    Von - could you post a pic of your panel on a diagonal angle please?

    Plenty of pics like the one below but none form the sides

    Thanks

    [​IMG]
    #7
  9. Lee_R
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    Lee_R Active Member

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    [Oct 22, 2010]
    Truly awful looking lump of plastic, in fact all of the Abt kit looks like stick on tat for the 8P which is a shame as Abt always made some tidy stuff.

    If you want to do it cheap, paint the section black or get black vinyl then add some ebay chrome trim on the sides, should only cost £20 max.
    #8
  10. Lee78
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    Lee78 Member

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    [Oct 22, 2010]
    [​IMG]

    Here's mine - Painted between the split grille and added chrome strips. Really please with the look. Not bad for less than £20...
    #9
  11. Hellz
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    Hellz Geordie Racer

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    [Oct 22, 2010]
    I may be wrong but Im sure they were trying to charge ~£70 for the ABT peice of plastic... I looked into it myself and after assessing a few pictures I wasnt convinced (no offence to those that have gone with it) and bought an S-Line bumper for £50 on ebay and the FK-Grille - the end product is far superior (in my opinion)...

    The one thing that narked me with the ABT grille was the look of it from the side, whilst it never looked quite right to me from the front, from the side it protrudes out and you can tell it is a sheet of plastic stuck to the bumper...

    Just my 2 cents...
    #10
  12. munchkincoupe
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    munchkincoupe Member

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    [Oct 22, 2010]
    I thought all of this was needed for front end conversion:
    - 2005+ bonnet
    - 2005+ bumper (2006+ for s line)
    - grill of choice
    - fog lights (for s line - Im not sure if 03/04 fogs and grills will fit 2005+ non s line bumper)
    - fog light grills (for s line - as above)
    - fog light plugs (for s line - as above)
    - fog light wire repair kit (for s line - as above)
    - possibly a side reinforcement bar (not 100% sure whether this is needed as there seems to be conflicting views on this - my car is going in next week so will let you know how I get on)

    If so that's quite a lot of work and cash that I can just save and get a later model in 18 months.

    Also my 8P1 has got a full Votex kit so don't really want to remove front bumper
    #11
  13. munchkincoupe
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    munchkincoupe Member

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    [Oct 22, 2010]
    Lee - that looks good. Did you take the parts off or paint in situ and mask up? Where did you get a good match for the chrome strips too?

    I had been thinking of getting a vinyl black block put in there too

    Thanks
    #12
  14. Lee78
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    Lee78 Member

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    [Oct 24, 2010]
    Hey Munchkincoupe,
    I did it in-situ but preperation took a while with masking tape and completely covering the front bumper and bonnet etc with newspaper. Took off reg plate etc and then sanded down to get a rough surface. Got the paints from Halfords. I put on a primer then after it had dried put on the satin black finish. The chrome was also from Halfords, near perfect match. I found aswell that with a sharp knife I was able to skim the ends down to get it to merge well into the chrome already on the car.
    Lee
    #13
  15. sub39h
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    sub39h Active Member

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    [Oct 24, 2010]
    the fogs and fog grilles will work on the non S-Line bumper

    so if you were going from 8P1 Sport to 8P2 Sport for example all you'd need would be a bonnet, bumper and grille.
    #14
  16. FranA3
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    FranA3 events moderator Regional Rep

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    [Oct 25, 2010]
    fair do's lee78 that looks top very good job you have done there matey i was thinking of doing this to my car or the abt grill not too fussed on the abt grill it looks too max power rubbish but thats just my opinion
    #15
  17. ABT UK
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    ABT UK Official ABT UK Distributor

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    [Oct 28, 2010]
    In response to all your comments, all feedback, whether complimentary or constructive criticism is appreciated, however I do feel a £20 do-it-yourself bodge job from Halfords is a completely different option to investing in an ABT product. ABT have over 110 years of racing heritage, investing millions worldwide into research, development and product design; successfully maintaining the status of the global leader for VAG modifications.

    We do understand people are entitled to their own opinion and the bespoke nature of our product it isn't going to be for everyone. ABT's product portfolio does extend far beyond a £130 front grille panel and I'm sure you'll all agree that to enhance a VAG product personally we feel there is no better option in terms of both quality and design, this is confirmed by the volume of enquiries we receive not just in the UK but worldwide.

    Thank you for your support, positive comments only though please :)
    #16
  18. edition
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    edition Active Member

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    [Oct 28, 2010]
    "£20 bodge do-it yourself" might not be a fair comment either.....
    #17
  19. Lee_R
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    Lee_R Active Member

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    [Oct 28, 2010]
    I dont think anyones doubting the quality, ABT products are normally well made and reasonable value however the grille panel is question is a shocker to look at. People on here would rather bodge it with vinyl and some chrome for £20 than make a professional bodge by wasting £130 on a moulded sheet of plastic. The only way not to bodge it is to do the bumper and bonnet conversion which i managed to do for less than £200.
    #18
  20. Von Maximo
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    Von Maximo The Damned

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    [Oct 28, 2010]
    Lee,

    I can see your point about the difference in price. But it bewilders me in you saying that the ABT looks "truly awful" and "A shocker to look at" these are quite strong words when the end result of both versions are practically the same?

    Its obvious to see your proud of your version and at a good price but some people to like an off the shelf version?
    #19
  21. Lee_R
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    Lee_R Active Member

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    [Oct 28, 2010]
    It is though, just stick on plastic tat!

    I dont have a "version" at all, I've done the proper facelift from a later car, bonnet and bumper for £200
    #20
  22. Ash B
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    Ash B Well-Known Member

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    [Oct 28, 2010]
    I'd just say if you can't do the s-line or s3 front conversion do the sport one. Alot better than any "£20 bodge do-it yourself" or any front panel. Got all my parts off eBay besides foglights/grill surround.
    #21
  23. sub39h
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    sub39h Active Member

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    [Oct 28, 2010]
    i didn't think you could get more "off the shelf" than undoing a couple of bolts and fitting on OEM Audi parts.

    i think Lee's sentiment is a bit strong, but i don't entirely disagree with it.

    £130 for this, or £130 towards a proper 8P2 conversion is a bit of a no brainer, and the "£20 bodge" does do exactly the same thing for far less money so if this is meant to be a budget or stopgap mod i think anyone would agree it's easier to justify spending £20 than £130 when both options have exactly the same final outcome.
    #22
  24. FranA3
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    FranA3 events moderator Regional Rep

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    [Oct 28, 2010]
    i think i would rather spend £20 on some cheap stuff while saving up for the 8p2 conversion i highly doubt you would get your £130 back if you sold the grill on ebay or similar and thats a huge chunk towards the conversion
    #23
  25. ABT UK
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    ABT UK Official ABT UK Distributor

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    [Oct 29, 2010]
    The proper full 8p2 conversion is clearly the best option I'm not disputing that Lee, If you have the time and money to carry it out. All I'm saying is, if you'd rather have a simple, easy-to-fit modification which acheives the facelift look without any hassle then I feel £130 is a reasonable price to pay to acheive this. The fact that it has lasted 4 years and 80,000 miles on one customer's car coupled with the fact that I have had no returns on this product to date is a testament to the quality of it, it's certainly not 'plastic tat' as all of our products meet strict TUV approval and mostly manufactured using PUR-RIM (Polyurethane Reaction Injection Molding) or carbon fibre.
    #24
  26. FranA3
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    FranA3 events moderator Regional Rep

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    [Oct 29, 2010]
    i love some of abt's stuff like there wheels are very nice and other stuff too but the front grill isnt my cup of tea i dont think anybody is saying that abt's quality is not good because abt have been going for a very long time and they prob know how to make a bodykit better than anybody else but everybody has an opinion some people like the front grill some dont
    #25
  27. Lee78
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    Lee78 Member

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    [Oct 30, 2010]
    Hey guys,
    Like you can see from my pic, I did the 'Halfords' job myself and was really pleased with the look. My aim eventually is to do the full face lift. I'm copying Sarah me thinks after seeing her cracking job on her wheels. I just bought my Audi a few weeks back and thought I'd start with seeing how this looked. I started cheap, and then thought if I 'bodged' it up I would just have to grin and bear it before getting the full 'face lift'. Not the case though.
    Watch out ABT though cos I'm looking at spending some pennies with you shortly. I feel a spoiler is on the cards he he!!!!
    #26
  28. Robinson
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    Robinson New Member

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    [Jan 13, 2011]
    Hi, i've just bought my ABT front panel... was there slots in the top, back of the panel for the grill for yours? Mine doesn't have any slots for the panel to fit over the grill at the top, in the leaflet provided, the picture shows small slits to fit over the grill.. However, mine doesn't have any? Just wondering if you have to make them yourself? Which would be very surprising considering the price of the item..
    Thanks, Tanya
    #27
  29. munchkincoupe
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    munchkincoupe Member

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    [Jan 13, 2011]
    Hi Tanya - You do have to cut small slots in the top if you can't slide it under the grill.
    #28
  30. Robinson
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    Robinson New Member

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    [Jan 13, 2011]
    I see, but the picture clearly shows slots in the panel and none of the instructions mention making slots yourself?
    #29
  31. munchkincoupe
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    munchkincoupe Member

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    [Jan 13, 2011]
    Have you tried it against your grill yet? I just tried it in front of mine and it looked as though it would slide under albeit with a tight fit?
    #30
  32. munchkincoupe
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    munchkincoupe Member

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    [Jan 13, 2011]
    Fits over the bottom bar of the chrome grill but under the ends of the black vertical slats. That's the part that it may just fit under with persuasion. It does say on the instructions that you will have to shape the top edge and it has included the emery paper. I think you wrap the paper around the metal key tool included and use that to make the slots as I couldn't see what the key tool was for otherwise. Hope this helps
    #31
  33. Robinson
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    Robinson New Member

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    [Jan 15, 2011]
    Thank you! I've made the slots and it fits great now.. The adhesive provided had dried out so I'll get some more today and then that's it done :D
    #32

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