Acceleration performance from a standstill in first gear depended on whether the GTI's traction control was on or off. Traction control on created interference in the vehicle's momentum and a short pause at 3500 rpm. For the most part, the stock ContiProContact all-season tires held their own. Traction control off made the tires bark and spin, but after quickly recovering and regaining their bite, the GTI pulled all the way to its 6900 rpm before shifting up into second gear. To get the full benefits out of the Neuspeed programming, a tire swap to sportier rubber is recommended (ContiSportContact 2s should do the trick).

With the increased power and torque afforded by the Neuspeed software, the GTI developed a slight tendency to torque steer. Not a real problem though. At part throttle, the noise from the intake was slight and at full throttle it was noticeable but not overly dramatic. Under light throttle shifts, the slight induction psst was only apparent if you listened for it and if the radio was on, you'd never hear it at all. At full throttle and subsequent off throttle, that familiar intake sound that makes the intake experience was audible and enjoyable. After adding the intake, the torque steer problem increased and this time pulled the car to either side. The gains afforded by the chip and intake combo warrants a suspension upgrade and larger tires.

My only real complaint is the need to constantly shut off the GTI's traction control, which then creates a warning light in the instrument cluster. This is yet another complaint I have with VW, since it's a marked change from last model's solid light to a blinking annoyance. The latest Volkswagen adverts tout their vehicles' superior DNA. While the GTI may be higher up on the European food chain, it's kill or be killed in the U.S. Neuspeed has rewritten the genetic code and made the GTI more fit to survive among other vehicles in its class.


MSRP TOTAL $839.90
3300 Corte Malpaso
CA  93012
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