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2019 GTI 6MT Performance Issues I'd Like to Correct

dosjockey

Go Kart Champion
Location
South
I'll play. It's a hot hatch, like it's always been (ok the Mk3 with the 115 hp "2.slow" motor was barely lukewarm, but I digress). With 228 hp to the front wheels (or whatever the figure is today), and the quick 0-60 times, it definitely fits that description IMHO. Time gives us more safety features, a more rigid platform, more technology (good things) but also counters with more weight, less driver involvement (fly-by-wire throttles, electric-assist PS racks, etc) and those are negatives to some degree.

So does that make it a "driver's car" of any kind? In my mind, yes. Stuff like rev hang, turbo lag off the line that can be tuned away, and other "modern" issues that come up with all the advancements today's cars have (don't get me started about electric power steering) do take away some of the fun. But overall, hot hatches have never been better.

What I don't understand, as a guy old enough to have bought a Mk1 GTI new back in the day, is the desire to turn a FWD hot hatch into a 12-second dragster with a voided warranty and no real way to properly put big power numbers to the ground. That boggles my mind, but hey, whatever floats one's boat.
Eh. The whole reason I rolled for a GTI was I figured I wouldn't have to mod or tune it at all. Apparently, this car requires more correction than any other I've driven in order to make it work properly.

Normally, you mod a car and make it worse; or at least purpose-built like my Rover. I feel like I have to mod/tune this car to make it what it was advertised to be out of the box.

As it is, the Mk7.5 GTI is about as involving as a Cadillac DTS... Unless that recall wasn't performed and casts some ancient voodoo spells on every system with which I interact, all at once.

We'll see if Uncle Sam is right. He says there are no recalls that haven't been done.
 

Corprin

Drag Racing Champion
Location
Twin Cities
It’s not a recall, but rather a “service campaign” NHTSA will not show any record of it.

You can check your VIN HERE to find out if the 24FD campaign is open.
 

dosjockey

Go Kart Champion
Location
South
It’s not a recall, but rather a “service campaign” NHTSA will not show any record of it.

You can check your VIN HERE to find out if the 24FD campaign is open.
Thanks. I'm not entirely sure what they mean by that with the wording they chose:

"There are currently no Service Campaigns listed for your vehicle."

I'll check with the customer care people when they're open, and then have the dealership look specifically for the update, just to be certain.
 

GTIfan99

Autocross Champion
Location
FL
How experienced are you at driving a manual car?? Sounds to me like you may be slipping the clutch, and for a prolonged period at that!!

this is not a dig at your driving ability,, but merely a genuine theory.
Yep, my wife has driven manual her whole life and has a hard time with the GTI clutch, so have experienced autocrossers that have run my car. The clutches in these cars are garbage.
 

gti925

Passed Driver's Ed
Location
SF Bay Area
OP: It almost sounds like you bought the car without test driving it.
 

Carlosfandang0

Drag Racing Champion
Location
UK
Car(s)
2016 3Dr GTi DSG CSG
I’m curious to see a video of the OP driving the car, whole thing sounds weird, the car may also need to be returned to the dealer for inspection as there may be fault codes! However all manual cars these days have a little rev hang for emission purposes, plus most have an anti stall feature, sounds like this is what the OP is experiencing and perhaps having a hard time adjusting to! the way this makes the car feel to drive can be unsettling!
 
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dosjockey

Go Kart Champion
Location
South
Yep, my wife has driven manual her whole life and has a hard time with the GTI clutch, so have experienced autocrossers that have run my car. The clutches in these cars are garbage.
The clutch itself isn't great, but it's passable. That's a place where I expect a compromise in a car meant for a wide range of conditions, uses, and skill-sets; as well as simply for lazy driving.

The throttle issues and power delivery aren't giving it a chance to show what it's truly made of, and make it feel inconsistent.

That's my hypothesis, anyway. I can't really give it a fair shot until I get the rest behaving properly which, hopefully, won't be too difficult. The dealer will check it over as planned. After that, I'll fire up all those tabs and start pouring over threads while looking through the VCDS program. If I find a solution there, great. If not, I'll see if one of the tuning companies can solve the problem.

One way or another a computer is behind this nonsense, and there's bound to be a way to make it stop, because it's going through a lot of trouble to make things happen that aren't required for normal operation. Economy, stupid-proofing, safety... Doesn't really matter. There's no way they built a chassis like this without an "off switch". I just need to find it or cause it to be found.

I think they did a great job with the shift linkage for a production car; certainly at the price.

The car is great. It just needs to relax and be a car. I want that butterfly doing what my foot tells it to do. If that happens, the problem is solved.

The blipping thing is too much of a tacked-on feature to believe difficult to disable. If I have to live with it, I guess it will be nice in idle traffic and take-out lines.
 

dosjockey

Go Kart Champion
Location
South
I’m curious to see a video of the OP driving the car, whole thing sounds weird, the car may also need to be returned to the dealer for inspection as there may be fault codes! However all manual cars these days have a little rev hang for emission purposes, plus most have an anti stall feature, sounds like this is what the OP is experiencing and perhaps having a hard time adjusting to! the way this makes the car feel to drive can be unsettling!
There wouldn't be anything to see. It's all tiny stuff adding up to annoyance and a more disconnected feeling than I believe should be present.

The rev hang is irritating, yes. Hopefully I can do something about that, as someone mentioned in a previous post. I've encountered it before (and have never liked it in the slightest), but never this pronounced; at least not in recent memory.

I do believe the blipping is related to some manner of anti-stall feature, as you suggest.

As for the throttle and response, we'll see. I think the correct estimations have been posted here, such as reduced output in lower gears. That smells tunable, at the very least.

I'm starting to wonder if they deliberately fitted that annoyance to get people tinkering and typing... If so, much respect to their marketing/engineering collaboration arrangement. Eleven out of ten. :ROFLMAO:
 
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dosjockey

Go Kart Champion
Location
South
OP: It almost sounds like you bought the car without test driving it.
For a number of reasons, that is indeed the case. I'm not entirely unfamiliar with the Golf GTI in general, and I've driven older models, but I went into this essentially blind. Never even saw the color in person.

Indeed, I ordered the car from an out of state dealership, and had it delivered to my house. Well... In the general vicinity of my house, as it turns out...

My first drive started by lazily wandering over to a Post Office and pulling the key out of the tailpipe, and ended 200 feet later in my driveway followed by a very long nap. :ROFLMAO:
 

dr_mat

Go Kart Champion
Location
Berkshire
I recognise your observations totally and believe it's an inherent "TSi" thing. It's tricky to maintain acceleration during a 1st->2nd gear change as the turbo spins down so rapidly, and there's a delay (I won't say lag) when getting back on the throttle to getting the turbo back up and spinning. Weirdly I've found the three-cylinder engines easier to drive in this respect, they seem to have more predictable low-rpm, low-throttle-opening torque delivery.

We've had our TSi for several years now and I find there's two sensible ways to drive it. Granny, and it's slow slow slow all the time and smooth and predictable, or you've got to grab it by the scruff of the neck, get the throttle down and drive it like you're late for work. There's not really anything in between that can avoid the choppy torque delivery from the on/off turbo profile. I don't drive it every day so I'm not fully adapted to it and my other car is a naturally aspirated Corrado VR6, so no such unpredictability in throttle response.

I would say there's nothing wrong with your car, but if you can't live with it how about an e-Golf .. ? Linear 200lbft propulsion from 0-93 mph with no gear changes...

The truth is that a modern direct injection, electric-power steering, NCAP safety rated, emissions-capped worldwide production car is never going to be what most of us call "a driver's car". Fuel engines have had their day, and NVH chassis tuning has dialled out any feel, and the computers have taken away driver control (well, they had to, because drivers can't feel anything any more). The modern GTi is not what the mk1 was all about and that's always going to be the case while there's barely a handful of global car manufacturers producing 15 variants on the exact same platform to suit different personal styling tastes. You need to look elsewhere for driver involvement and enjoyment, elsewhere than the mainstream.
 
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GTIfan99

Autocross Champion
Location
FL
The clutch itself isn't great, but it's passable. That's a place where I expect a compromise in a car meant for a wide range of conditions, uses, and skill-sets; as well as simply for lazy driving.

The throttle issues and power delivery aren't giving it a chance to show what it's truly made of, and make it feel inconsistent.

That's my hypothesis, anyway. I can't really give it a fair shot until I get the rest behaving properly which, hopefully, won't be too difficult. The dealer will check it over as planned. After that, I'll fire up all those tabs and start pouring over threads while looking through the VCDS program. If I find a solution there, great. If not, I'll see if one of the tuning companies can solve the problem.

One way or another a computer is behind this nonsense, and there's bound to be a way to make it stop, because it's going through a lot of trouble to make things happen that aren't required for normal operation. Economy, stupid-proofing, safety... Doesn't really matter. There's no way they built a chassis like this without an "off switch". I just need to find it or cause it to be found.

I think they did a great job with the shift linkage for a production car; certainly at the price.

The car is great. It just needs to relax and be a car. I want that butterfly doing what my foot tells it to do. If that happens, the problem is solved.

The blipping thing is too much of a tacked-on feature to believe difficult to disable. If I have to live with it, I guess it will be nice in idle traffic and take-out lines.
That's an interesting thought, but ultimately wrong. The clutch is geared towards beginners to save VW money on drivetrain claims, period. The weak pressure plate and hydraulic diverter make it very inconsistent.

Add in the multiple layers of ABS nannies and it takes some real time to get used to it.
 

dosjockey

Go Kart Champion
Location
South
That's an interesting thought, but ultimately wrong. The clutch is geared towards beginners to save VW money on drivetrain claims, period. The weak pressure plate and hydraulic diverter make it very inconsistent.

Add in the multiple layers of ABS nannies and it takes some real time to get used to it.
Oh, well. I tried. :)

That's partially good news, though, because some of that can be solved by performing certain modifications in the thread about making this transmission work properly.

Somewhere in here, there's a car I really, really enjoy. I've just got to find it. It's an amazing machine.
 

dosjockey

Go Kart Champion
Location
South
I recognise your observations totally and believe it's an inherent "TSi" thing. It's tricky to maintain acceleration during a 1st->2nd gear change as the turbo spins down so rapidly, and there's a delay (I won't say lag) when getting back on the throttle to getting the turbo back up and spinning. Weirdly I've found the three-cylinder engines easier to drive in this respect, they seem to have more predictable low-rpm, low-throttle-opening torque delivery.

We've had our TSi for several years now and I find there's two sensible ways to drive it. Granny, and it's slow slow slow all the time and smooth and predictable, or you've got to grab it by the scruff of the neck, get the throttle down and drive it like you're late for work. There's not really anything in between that can avoid the choppy torque delivery from the on/off turbo profile. I don't drive it every day so I'm not fully adapted to it and my other car is a naturally aspirated Corrado VR6, so no such unpredictability in throttle response.

I would say there's nothing wrong with your car, but if you can't live with it how about an e-Golf .. ? Linear 200lbft propulsion from 0-93 mph with no gear changes...

The truth is that a modern direct injection, electric-power steering, NCAP safety rated, emissions-capped worldwide production car is never going to be what most of us call "a driver's car". Fuel engines have had their day, and NVH chassis tuning has dialled out any feel, and the computers have taken away driver control (well, they had to, because drivers can't feel anything any more). The modern GTi is not what the mk1 was all about and that's always going to be the case while there's barely a handful of global car manufacturers producing 15 variants on the exact same platform to suit different personal styling tastes. You need to look elsewhere for driver involvement and enjoyment, elsewhere than the mainstream.
Oh, I don't believe this car is faulty. I may consider this a design flaw, but I do believe it is by design. I believe it's doing precisely what it's been programmed to do. I just want to change that.

We'll see over the next couple of weeks if I can. I expect it's possible to get rid of most of this annoyance; I'm just being incredibly verbose and explaining it in different ways because the information is sparse and scattered about. The next guy who notices the issues won't have to search as hard for answers, because I'm going to be sure to edit the final analysis and solution into the original post.

In the end, it clearly doesn't bother most people.

You know, the biggest thing I was worried about going in was the steering, but I was pleasantly surprised to find that it's not bad at all, and it's kind of cool being able to adjust it a little bit.
 

Martin398

Ready to race!
Location
MA
as mentioned there's a throttle pedal adjustment that can be made with VCDS/OBDeleven.
there's also a "starting vibration" adjustment that can be made with the same equipment to remove some of that limited feeling in first.
for the 1-2 shift you're not alone. it's a design flaw (for the performance minded) to make the car more friendly to less skilled standard drivers. Removing the clutch delay valve will make a world of difference. The return spring on the clutch pedal can be removed easily and makes a slight improvement in pedal feel. There is also a swirl valve on the clutch line that can be removed (requires new clutch line). the clutch, from the factory, is very vague. A couple simple fixes can drastically change that. it won't be perfect but it makes a marked improvement.
 

dosjockey

Go Kart Champion
Location
South
as mentioned there's a throttle pedal adjustment that can be made with VCDS/OBDeleven.
there's also a "starting vibration" adjustment that can be made with the same equipment to remove some of that limited feeling in first.
for the 1-2 shift you're not alone. it's a design flaw (for the performance minded) to make the car more friendly to less skilled standard drivers. Removing the clutch delay valve will make a world of difference. The return spring on the clutch pedal can be removed easily and makes a slight improvement in pedal feel. There is also a swirl valve on the clutch line that can be removed (requires new clutch line). the clutch, from the factory, is very vague. A couple simple fixes can drastically change that. it won't be perfect but it makes a marked improvement.
I don't really expect perfection, and I actually do want to be a bit lazy nowadays.

This thread has provided quite a bit of good news, as it does sound like I'll be able to sort most of this out without too much headache.

I'm not in a condition right now to do too much detailed mechanical work at all, really, which is why I bought a new car.

So, on one hand, the computers are annoying, but on the other... Well, it sounds like I can have a lot of fun adjusting things without actually breaking a sweat.

Little stuff like the clutch valves and spring shouldn't be a problem.

I'm glad I ordered the VCDS. I almost got something cheaper just to sort the throttle measurements (I gather it's reporting duration rather than angle, and that the setting can be changed to "direct"), but it sounds like I made the right move. It was a hell of a lot cheaper than I thought it would be. I'm used to interfaces that are over a grand. $200 plus shipping? Hell... Sign me up.
 
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