Avatar photo

By Mark Jones

Road Test Editor


WATCH: Turbo upgrade transforms Golf GTI into supercar killer

You don't have to break the bank to give your hot hatch up to 400kW of power.


The VW Golf GTI has always been the king of hot hatches in South Africa. There is only one thing better than a GTI, and that is a TurboDirect 400kW GTI.

TurboDirectSA are offering 450HP (330kW) and 550HP (400kW) dual silicon nitride ball bearing turbocharger upgrade kits for the seventh generation VW Golf GTI and Golf R.

Watch Golf GTI turbo upgrade

The test mule turbocharger fitted to their inhouse development Volkswagen Golf 7 R has completed 58 000 km of spirited driving over 18 months. This included regular changes, tuning updates and power runs. With three maps (multi map capable) from the best tuner in the world on these engines, Thanos from GT innovation in Germany, loaded onto the ECU at the same time, the turbocharger was put through its paces. It proved to be the most powerful, fastest spooling, and reliable bolt-on upgrade for this VW platform for its money.

ALSO READ: Turbo upgrade helps Toyota Hilux GR-S overtake V6 Ford Ranger

Talking of money, the 450 turbo with hardware installation pack retails for R20 800 excluding VAT. The 550 turbo comes in at R21 800 excluding VAT. It includes the mounting hardware, gaskets, a Billet BOV, spare springs for the BOV etc.

Approved installers in Gauteng include The Machining Man in Kyalami, SSS Performance on the East Rand, GWB Auto in Parkhurst, Rosebank and surrounding. In KwaZulu-Natal, it’s No Sweat Racing.

ALSO READ: Kona N the new Golf GTI killer – 2022 Motoring Newsmaker No 8

Supercar killer

“Simply remove your existing turbocharger on your seventh-generation VW Golf GTI or Golf R, transfer your electronic actuator onto the IS38-550 from TurboDirect SA and re-install the turbocharger with the supplied gaskets. Dyno tune, and you transform your vehicle into an everyday 550HP capable monster ready to take on most supercars”, says Chris Kambouris, founder and CEO of TurboDirectSA.

ALSO READ: Bolt-on kit the Viagra putting lead into Ford Ranger’s pencil

For those wanting even more, a 650HP (480kW) kit is on the way. The 450HP and 550HP upgrade kits can be safely used on the stock fuel system. But for the 659, you will need to upgrade to injectors. The low pressure and high pressure fuel pumps if you want the big boy upgrade.

For more info on this new locally manufactured performance VW Golf GTI and Golf R turbo upgrades, call TurboDirect SA on 011 392 5195. Send them an e-mail on info@turbodirect.co.za or visit their website.

Read more on these topics

golf gti Motoring News Volkswagen(VW)

Access premium news and stories

Access to the top content, vouchers and other member only benefits