Karls 3.0 TDI build thread


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Nov 21, 2013
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Heath Hayes
Thought I would start a bit of a build thread to document some of the mods made to the car. Maybe somebody might find something useful :) .

After owning a Passat for 7.5 years and making so many mods to it I wanted to get something a bit newer, And a new challenge. Looking at the new shape Passats I didn't really need a car as big as a new shape B6 / B7. I wanted to stick to a diesel estate but wanted something that I could tweak to some bigger numbers.
My 1.9 Passat TDI was making 207 bhp and 345 Lb/ft of torque.
The B8 Audi A4 seemed more like the size of car I was looking for being pretty much the same size as A B5.5 Passat with several Quattro options. As I found with the Passat that getting the power down was an issue with only just over 200bhp.
So after much looking bought an Audi A4 3.0 TDI Avant Quattro Avant . Its an 08 plate so one of the first B8 models.

Went for a manual as on the B7 they had a 240mm clutch on the B8 it has a twin plate 228mm clutch arrangement so hopefully no issues when tweaking it.The engines in these have the latest 3rd gen 2260 Garret turbo's which means better performance and fuel economy. It's an SE with S-line leather/alcantara interior and the optional S line 18 inch 5 spoke alloys. Also came with a factory fit removeable tow bar.

VAG-COM showed a duff glow plug on number 2 so changed that, and the fuel cap solenoid which is a common problem was changed. Fuel cap was permanently open before. Also showed up on a VAG-COM check of the car.
IMG 1378

IMG 1379

IMG 1380

IMG 1382

IMG 1385

Pictures aren't very good and the car needed a clean but you get the idea.
It's pretty much the same size as the Passat, the mat I used to have in the boot of the Passat fitted almost exactly on the boot in the A4.Where the screen slopes at the back is where you lose space but I rarely ever loaded the boot that high.

Made a few mods with VCDS / vag-com

Enabled driving school mode so speed appears in main display, you can turn this on and off in a menu option now.
IMG 1432

Enabled the battery monitor
IMG 1431

The lap timer functionality
IMG 1428

Altered the splash screen on the stereo, Normally has no logo, You can have an S logo or RS. Decided to go RS.
IMG 1427

Enabled the dial sweep, click on the picture.

Bought an oil dipstick as the car doesn't come with one. Has the tube with a bung in it. It has a sensor and displays oil level on the display in the car but I wanted a dipstick just to check, Only £8 from the stealers. Fitted the R8 oil filler cap from the Passat.
IMG 1433

Enabled the dipping rear view mirrors when you select reverse, flashing brake lights when you brake heavily and a few other bits and pieces.

Ordered a set of Team dynamics Pro race 1.2 in silver 17 * 7.5 Wheel Range . Wanted some lightweight wheels and couldn't find anything OE in17 that I liked.

I know most people would fit 18's or 19's but I like to stop with smaller wheel sizes as tyre prices for quality tyres are so much cheaper. Will be getting 235 /45 /17 Goodyear Eagle F1 Assymetric 2's about £110 each fitted.
Thats plenty of rubber on the road and a 45 tyre sidewall will help the ride quality.

Spare wheel has gone and replaced it with a compressor and bootle of gloop,Bought off Ebay for £20.
Will be selling the spare wheel as these seem to be in demand and going for £90-100
Removing the spare wheel, jack , and the part of the tow bar that is removeable that was sitting in the boot has lost nearly 40Kg off the weight in the car.Also made quite a bit of space for stuff when we go away in the car. Spare wheel well houses the battery and sub for the stereo.
IMG 1434

Picked up a bargain off Ebay with some uprated brakes.
The car currently has 320 *30mm vented discs at the front and 300 * 12mm solid discs at the back. The calipers on my car are the same as an S4 but the caliper carriers are a silly price something like £170 each so to buy 4 S4 carriers would be nearly £700.
Bought this lot off Ebay, complete brake set off an S5.
IMG 1450

They are off an S5 but are identical to whats fitted to an S4.
These are 345 * 30 vented front and 330 * 22mm vented rear and luckily enough fit under 17 inch wheels with a few mm to spare.
Before I bought them had a look around at the price of brake parts and couldn't believe some of the prices :D .
Ordered some new Pagid front discs at a silly £28.19 each, they weigh 10.5Kg each so £5 of that must be postage.

AUDI A4 S4 QUATTRO 2.0 TFSI 07-13 Pagid 54602 Front 345mm Vented Brake Disc | eBay

And a set of Mintex pads FOR £40


The rears discs and pads I got are good so will be going on the car as is.
Weight wise the front setup is about 1.5Kg heavier than what I have now , at the rear it's more like 2.5 kg each side.
I will sell the original front calipers/ carriers discs and pads off my car but think I will keep my original rear calipers just in case I have issues with the silly electromechanical handbrake mechanism.

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Fitted the brakes to the car now.
Fitted the rear brakes first.Thoughtfully Audi have decided on these cars to fit larger disc splash shields so the same part is used across a lot of models.Original rusty brakes.
IMG 1465

Difference in the discs 300 x 12 compared to 330 x 22
IMG 1466

New disc fitted, First time I have ever used a laptop to change brakes.
IMG 1468

And what it looks like with the wheel on. At least 5mm clearance between the caliper and the rim
IMG 1479

Then onto the front, Fitting the new discs and pads. Again the disc shield didn't need modifying or changing.
IMG 1476

The caliper is really close to the rim, just a few mm. I had to reposition the balance weights on the outside of the rim as the were slightly catching on the caliper.
IMG 1474

Amazing how you can cram such big brakes under a 17 inch wheel.
Tried one of the new alloys on just to make sure it fits Ok. And there is more room than the OE 17 inch alloys so won't have any clearance issues at all.
IMG 1472

Brakes have broken in now and I am very impressed with the performance.

Debadged the rear of the car. Instead of a 3.0 TDI Quattro badge on the back just has TDI.

Next on the list is some Exhaust mods maybe do them tomorrow. Eibach Pro 30mm springs on order so they will be fitted over Xmas as long as it's not snowing. Looking at an intercooler upgrade then DPF delete and remap.

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You call that close, you should see my TD 18's with TTRS brakes, closer than a barber shave lol.
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Good stuff! Impressive brake clearance!
Lovely car and great write up! .. Similar VCDS mods as myself, am interested in the Splash Screen you changed, how did you do this if you don't mind me asking?

Looking good so far. Interesting choice to remove the 3.0 and Quattro badges but leave the TDi
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My car is an early 08 so doesn't have the MMI system hence no hidden menu. It's coded in VAG-COM.


My car is a late '57 and has mmi 2g, but I think that's only because it was a press demonstrator.

I'm not sure on the hidden menu without Nav I'm sure Karl could help with that
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I am not an expert on these things. Just had a look on Google,

Hidden menu MMI 2G

It seems on the Non Nav cars it's not possible to access this hidden menu. Probably need to make changes with Vag-Com.
Thanks for the link Karl, I funny enough came across that myself but didn't work unfortunately!:( .. I did notice I think in the radio settings I could change the splash screen, but upon clicking Do It I got an error! Humm guess I will need to keep looking! But thank you again Karl.
Mine is an 09 with 2g with nav and I couldn't seem to get the hidden menu up
Mine is an 09 with 2g with nav and I couldn't seem to get the hidden menu up

With vcds..... Control head, think it's module 07. Change the new value to 1, test, then save.

Then turn off the ignition etc, then back on and wait for all systems to load. Then gold car and setup at the same time until the green hidden menu appears. Good luck
Could you please let me know how to change the codes or rather the procedure to do so in the VAG-COM. My garage has one so could get it done over there?

I'm quite impressed with all the changes done, especially the battery, speed and dial sweep.
​Nice progress so far Karl. Keep up the good work. :) x
I have been after some sensibly priced S4 calliper carriers so I can go up to 345mm discs. Im just waiting for someone to list some on ebay who does not know what they are lol
I have been after some sensibly priced S4 calliper carriers so I can go up to 345mm discs. Im just waiting for someone to list some on ebay who does not know what they are lol

Funny that, I'm doing the same! Haha.
They look to be the same? The first picture makes the passenger seat look like a suede finish but the second shows both the same cloth finish
I can assure you they are the same colour, which is not even the colour thats they appear in the photo.
I noticed it when I took the picture and actually took a few other pictures and the material seems to be a bit like pearlescent paint in that when taking a photo of it the colour seems to change. It's actually a very dark grey colour almost black with small silver dots.
Theres a thread here with photo's and people have made the same remarks about how the colour looks washed out.

Liking your progress Karl
You're putting together a very nice all round improved car

I may have to hunt out some new stoppers for my A6

ref VCDS tweaks - I've added the lap timer to my DIS, on mine it come with boost gauge (sadly I can't for the life of me get this to read anything other than full all the time) but more importantly oil temp
I'm a fan of knowing when things are upto temp and what they're doing so this was a useful little addition
Springs just arrived all the way from Germany.
IMG 1520

£141.50 delivered instead of £188 of Ebay UK.

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I attacked my exhaust on Monday.Didn't have time to do both sides so will do the other side tomorrow. Doesn't take very long to get the exhaust off. It did take me a while to get the baffles and existing pipework out of the silencer due to the restrictions on space with the angle grinder. I am going with keeping the car on the quiet side, boring I know, but I will take the performance benefits. I know it will get louder when the DPF comes out.
So in keeping with this I have turned the restrictive reflection silencer into a nice straight through absorbtion silencer.
I did a before Video and will do an after one and post them when I have done both sides.
IMG 1496

Nice and clean, DPF does a great job but oh so restrictive
IMG 1497

IMG 1498

After removing the gubbins and cleaning up the pipe entry and exits, cut a 250mm length of perforated 57mm stainless pipe and a short length of 60mm pipe to join it to the outlet pipe.
IMG 1501

Wrap 1m stainless wire woolaround the pipe and secure with wire.
IMG 1502

Then wrap rockwool insulation tightly round the pipe and fill the silencer with finest quality Wickes Rockwool insulation.
IMG 1503

IMG 1504

Weld back up and refit to the car.
IMG 1508

I am seeing and getting the same benefits as other people who have done this. The car requires less throttle when pulling away and seems to be a little better on fuel on the trips I have made that I regularly make the trip is looking better. I anticipate the car will be doing more mpg.
I did some logging of the DPF differntial pressure, RPM, speed , throttle etc before and will be interesting to see if there is any noticeable difference.
The DPF pressure reading includes the DPF itself and the hole of the exhaust system.

Another thing I have noticed is that after a five mile trip the exhaust tip on the silencer that has been done was too hot too touch where as the unmodified one was barely warm. I am not sure if this is because a lot more exhaust gas is taking the easy way out or whether it's because the exhaust gas cools a lot when it's bouncing around in the rear silencer. It's probabaly a bit of each.

I got the bits to do this from MIJ exhausts in Walsall. They have a store on Ebay if anybody fancies tackling this.Fortunately I live just down the road so popped in and picked up the stuff. If you were just bridging the gap with a solid pipe you would need a piece about 300mm long for each silencer.

57mm perforated tube 500mm

2.25" 57mm 0.5m Half Metre Stainless Steel T304 Exhaust Perforated Tube Pipe | eBay

250mm 60mm stainless tube

Universal 2 3/8" 60mm T304 Stainless Steel Exhaust Repair Pipe 250mm 10" Tube | eBay

And 2m of stainless wire wool

Stainless Steel Wire Wool Packing Heat Wrapping Kit Car Bike Exhaust x 1 Metre | eBay

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Good exhaust work, any fire hazards with the fibreglass and the exhaust heat?
I don't understand why you use perforated tuning and the wool? What does that do? Could you not just use a solid pipe?

Edit: I get it because you want it quite :banghead:
There are no issues with the exhaust filling that is why I have used Rockwool. I have both rockwool and glass fibre insulation in the loft.
Got the blowlamp out and tried it on both. The Glass fibre resists for a few seconds then just turns to a white puddle of molten glass.
The Rockwool seems to resist a whole lot better and after 30 seconds or so there isn't much change.


I want a straight through silencer but without excessive noise. When the DPF comes out it will be noisier.Having a perforated pipe like this doesn't make any difference to the performance.

I did a quick movie when I had the exhaust off. So this is just with the DPF and downpipe on. The high pitched shrill noise is the pipe that I put in the end of the downpipe to support it as it was hanging down under the car.

It didn't sound too loud at all really but the DPF and turbo take a lot of the noise out of a diesel.

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Yes it will throw a code when the DPF is removed. The DPF will be removed and mapped out at the same time as the car is mapped.
Probably some time early next year.
Still not 100% sure narrowed it down to AMD, Sedox possibly Darkside but they don't have a 4WD dyno where as the first two do.
TBH at the moment it's looking like AMD.

Fitted the Eibach Pro springs . After having a look on the net and seeing how Audi do it in the workshop repair guide on Elsa Win I thought It wouldn't be too difficult.
This Revo document for installing there Stasis suspension upgrades is quite useful.
http://www.stasisengineering.com/sites/default/files/install_pdfs/Installation Guide_A4 S4 B8.pdf
Started off with some before shots,
IMG 1526

IMG 1527

IMG 1528

My car is an SE with the standard suspension, measuring the height from the wheel centre to the top of the arch lip it was 390mm all round.

Started at the front and removed the front strut with not to much of a problem, Took the spring off and compared it with the Eibach item,
IMG 1529

The Eibach spring is a full 60mm shorter than the standard spring. Same number of coils but the Eibach one is 15.5mm thick and the standard spring 15mm.
The gumph on the Eibach site says that the standard bump stops are used but in my experience when you lower a car to keep some ride comfort you need to shorten the bump stops otherwise the ride can be quite harsh.
There are three lengths fitted as standard


8K0412131E 1BA 81mm

8K0412131F 1BE 72mm

8K0412131G 1BV 66mm

I shortened mine to 72mm the same as the S line suspension set up. Just need to hacksaw 10mm off the top of the bumpstop and it fits back fine.
It was really easy refitting the front spring on the shock as it was so much shorter didn't even need the spring compressor to refit it.
I reset the suspension inboard joints for the new ride height.
By undoing the inboard bolts on the top 2 arms and the bottom 2 arms, then jacking the strut up till it's at the normal laden position.
You can then tighten the inboard bolts, This stops the rubber bushes being permanently preloaded which helps there life.
You need a T55 Torx to hold one of the bottom arm bolts is you decide to undo it.

The rears springs were interesting as I thought they would be, On my old Passat just a matter of undoing the shock absorber lower mounts and the rear axle would drop down enough to remove the springs. Not so easy on a quattro.
The official way of removing the rear spring is with a special spring compressor, normal spring compressors mostly won't fit due to the confined space. By putting the spring compressor I have inside the coil spring rather than on the outside, and using some Pretty sturdy ratchet straps managed to compress the standard spring enough to remove it.
Again the standard springs were 60mm longer than the Eibach springs.
IMG 1530

This proves very useful as the Eibachs slot straight in with no spring compressors.
The rear shock absorber bottom bolt is ridiculously tight 111 Lb/ft and had to use a breaker bar and the jack to undo them. Again there are 3 lengths of rubber buffer.

standard suspension 1BA
8K0512131 140mm long

Sport suspension S-line 1BD, 1BE
8K0512131B 118MM long

Adjustable suspension and 1BV, 1BL -30mm suspension
8K0512131D 110mm long

I took 20mm off my buffers to make them the same as the S line ones.I didn't have time to reset any of the rubber bushes on the rear suspension as it was going to be dark by the time I finished. Will do this at some point in the future. You need to watch what you are undoing on the rear as some bolts are eccentric and adjust camber and toe.

And the end result
IMG 1535
IMG 1537

IMG 1536

Currently seems to have dropped about 40mm at the front and 30mm at the rear, when I reset the bushes at the rear it may drop a few more mm.
Car drives really nice, I wouldn't say it's that much firmer than standard, passed the acid test by getting over all the speed humps in Heath Hayes high street easily, a place I never took the Passat as they are monsters.
Less roll when pushing it around corners, the kind of thing you expect.
When I have finished tweaking it will take it and get a full 4 wheel alignment done.
These have been recommended and get very good feedback on the net.


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Do you feel a lot more stopping power from the upgrade?
The brakes are certainly a lot more positive, you don't have to press the pedal too hard to slow down, Part of that may be that I changed out a lot of the brake fluid while I was changing over the calipers.
The standard 320mm brakes do seem to work quite well but I suspect If I was to go on a track day they would quickly be found wanting, these brakes have more chance of performing without issues.
I am sure somebody with an S4 / S5 will come on here and say much the same about the standard brakes. You have to strike a balance though and for me these are good enough, they will complement the other upgrades.

These are before and after videos of the exhaust. Downloaded an app for the phone which turns it into a poor mans sound pressure level meter. Not calibrated and certainly not properly weighted but gives a good indication of comparative levels.
Click on the photo to play the video.

Not that much difference, other than more of the v6 rumble. In the after video I didn't rev the engine quite as high so the highest recorded level was lower but essentially theres not a lot of difference. Will repeat after it's mapped and the DPF is taken out.

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