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How to retro-fit skid trays, aerodynamic under trays, & stone guards to a MK7 Golf

golfdave

Drag Racing Champion
Location
Scotland (U.K.)
Ride
MK7 Golf GT Estate
I had the OEM aero-bits installed on my 2017 Golf Sportscombi/Variant/Estate/Sportswagen upon delivery in August 2016. (Most recently posted here: https://golfmk7.com/forums/index.php?threads/how-to-retro-fit-skid-trays-aerodynamic-under-trays-stone-guards-to-a-mk7-golf.320687/post-6659942)
My car is a Swedish-spec GT with DCC, so the suspension, brakes, and ride height match the non-PP GTI. The engine is the 1.4l TSI, 150hp, with a 6-speed manual. I fill it with the highest octane fuel that is available locally (Shell V-Power, aka Nitro in other places, >98 octane) to get a bit of extra power without the need for mechanical or electronic enhancement.

Since taking delivery we have driven just over 70 000 km (43 500 miles) using just over 4521 liters (1194 US gallons, 994 UK gallons) of fuel. Our average fuel economy is 6.48 liters per 100 km (36.3 US MPG, 43.6 UK MPG). I am very pleased with the highway economy in particular. One one day last summer I drove 287 mostly highway km including extended cruising at about 140 km/h (87 MPH) while burning only 16.94 liters of fuel, which worked out to 5.9 liters per 100 km (39.8 US MPG, 47.8 UK MPG).

As the aero-bits have been mounted since day one I can make no A/B comparisons regarding relative fuel economy, noise levels, stability at speed, or top speed, but I would like to think that having them does some good in all of those respects. I can report that everything remains solidly mounted after several snowy winters and a short speed burst that was slightly faster than the one reported by golfdave (but not as fast as the track speeds noted by others!), and nothing has proven to be troublesome through 3 factory service intervals and yearly safety inspections.

I remain very pleased with the car, and I plan to hang on to it for a while yet, at least until VW rolls out the Mk.8 GTE wagon with 242 hp! Hopefully golfdave will have an updated guide for that vehicle by the time I am ready to take delivery!

Very good report!...….

As you know I have the 140PS version of your car, & use the same Shell fuel.

I have seen 52mpg (UK) (5.4lts/100km) on a long motorway journey (320miles/514km).....& now regularly see 46mpg (UK) (6.1lts/100km) on 36mile trips.

As for the Mk8 Golf, VW have been watching my threads I think!. The new 2019-> Polo & Tiguan both have fully covered undersides! I had a new Polo as a courtesy car whilst I had a new timing belt fitted to mine. I jacked the car up & looked underneath!!!..WOW everything is covered, suspension, engine bay, subframe, the whole lot!. Same with the Tiguan that I have seen in pictures.

So I recon the whole underside of the Mk8 Golf will be the same!

Anyway I'll be keeping my Mk7 for hopefully another 10yrs!....
 

Daner

Passed Driver's Ed
Location
Stockholm
Very good report!...….

As you know I have the 140PS version of your car, & use the same Shell fuel.

I have seen 52mpg (UK) (5.4lts/100km) on a long motorway journey (320miles/514km).....& now regularly see 46mpg (UK) (6.1lts/100km) on 36mile trips.

As for the Mk8 Golf, VW have been watching my threads I think!. The new 2019-> Polo & Tiguan both have fully covered undersides! I had a new Polo as a courtesy car whilst I had a new timing belt fitted to mine. I jacked the car up & looked underneath!!!..WOW everything is covered, suspension, engine bay, subframe, the whole lot!. Same with the Tiguan that I have seen in pictures.

So I recon the whole underside of the Mk8 Golf will be the same!

Anyway I'll be keeping my Mk7 for hopefully another 10yrs!....
There are a few things that I neglected to mention that have reduced my overall fuel economy.

Every summer we put a Thule rack on the car whenever we need to take my SUP and my wife's sea kayak to get out on the water. This probably only adds up to 1000-3000 km per season, and I am good about taking the rack off between trips, but it does increase the fuel burn.

Because we live in Sweden, I ordered the car with the OEM auxiliary gasoline-fired heater (from Webasto, I believe). It includes an app which enables us to program when we would like the car to be warm, and how warm we would like it to be. It is integrated with the car's heater/defroster, and it works by pre-heating the coolant. I LOVE getting into a warm car without having to scrape ice from the windows, and the oil comes up to working temperature considerably faster as well. I use it pretty much whenever the temperature is near or below freezing. This burns a tiny bit of extra gasoline, but in addition to making life much more comfortable, it is also likely to reduce wear on the engine by minimizing the negative effects of cold starts. The car would be lighter, less expensive, less complicated, and more fuel-efficient without it, but it is much more enjoyable with it!
 

southpawboston

Go Kart Champion
Location
Somerville, MA
Because we live in Sweden, I ordered the car with the OEM auxiliary gasoline-fired heater (from Webasto, I believe). It includes an app which enables us to program when we would like the car to be warm, and how warm we would like it to be. It is integrated with the car's heater/defroster, and it works by pre-heating the coolant. I LOVE getting into a warm car without having to scrape ice from the windows, and the oil comes up to working temperature considerably faster as well. I use it pretty much whenever the temperature is near or below freezing. This burns a tiny bit of extra gasoline, but in addition to making life much more comfortable, it is also likely to reduce wear on the engine by minimizing the negative effects of cold starts. The car would be lighter, less expensive, less complicated, and more fuel-efficient without it, but it is much more enjoyable with it!
Oh, I'm jealous. There is no such OEM option in the US, even though we have states that get as cold as (or nearly as cold as) Sweden! I'd be all over that if it were offered in the US.
 

Daner

Passed Driver's Ed
Location
Stockholm
Oh, I'm jealous. There is no such OEM option in the US, even though we have states that get as cold as (or nearly as cold as) Sweden! I'd be all over that if it were offered in the US.

We lived near Vail, Colorado during most of the 1990s. This would have been very much appreciated there.

(Sorry for hijacking the thread!)
 

anotero

Drag Race Newbie
Location
SoCal
I've been meaning to ask this for a while: I got the aero tray without a rear grille. My oil temps usually hover around 104 degC on extended drives. Is that fine? I may make a few small holes in the aero tray around where the sump is.
 

golfdave

Drag Racing Champion
Location
Scotland (U.K.)
Ride
MK7 Golf GT Estate
I've been meaning to ask this for a while: I got the aero tray without a rear grille. My oil temps usually hover around 104 degC on extended drives. Is that fine? I may make a few small holes in the aero tray around where the sump is.
104C is ok for hot trips....when it goes over 110C & holds... thats when you need to think about more holes...or the GTE aero tray
 

Daner

Passed Driver's Ed
Location
Stockholm
I've been meaning to ask this for a while: I got the aero tray without a rear grille. My oil temps usually hover around 104 degC on extended drives. Is that fine? I may make a few small holes in the aero tray around where the sump is.
My car has the skid tray with the duct (1.4l 150hp 6-speed). Average highway oil temps are in the mid-90sC (Swedish winter) / high-90sC (Swedish summer). I have yet to see higher than 103C in over 71000km.
 

southpawboston

Go Kart Champion
Location
Somerville, MA
I've been meaning to ask this for a while: I got the aero tray without a rear grille. My oil temps usually hover around 104 degC on extended drives. Is that fine? I may make a few small holes in the aero tray around where the sump is.
My car has the skid tray with the duct (1.4l 150hp 6-speed). Average highway oil temps are in the mid-90sC (Swedish winter) / high-90sC (Swedish summer). I have yet to see higher than 103C in over 71000km.
I've been meaning to ask this for a while: I got the aero tray without a rear grille. My oil temps usually hover around 104 degC on extended drives. Is that fine? I may make a few small holes in the aero tray around where the sump is.
Guys, I think it's important to recognize different motors here... it's perfectly normal for the US/Canadian market 1.8TSI and 2.0TSI (our only motor options until 2019 when they replaced the 1.8TSI with the 1.4TSI in non-GTI and non-4-motion models) to reach 107C regardless of weather. My 1.8TSI used to hover around 103C before adding the aero tray (with ducts) + front exhaust tunnel cover, it now has gone up to a max of 107C (on the highway pullign a trailer through mountainous areas) but usually hovers around 104C. This is perfectly acceptable with full synthetic oil. Most of the racing forums and the more techie oil forums (see bobistheoilguy.com for example) all share the consensus that full synth oil can survive sustained 115C temps with no ill effects.

Personally, I like seeing my oil reach 107C for long highway runs because so much of my driving is from cold starts, going 1-2 miles around town on errands, which is the WORST thing for oil since moisture develops inside the bloc and mixes with the oil. Getting the oil above 100C for extended intervals likely rids any moisture building in the oil.
 

anotero

Drag Race Newbie
Location
SoCal
104C is ok for hot trips....when it goes over 110C & holds... thats when you need to think about more holes...or the GTE aero tray
The only time i had temps go over 110 was on a pretty warm drive to Nevada when going uphill for miles on end. I just dropped my speed by about 5mph and the temp stopped rising.
 

anotero

Drag Race Newbie
Location
SoCal
My car has the skid tray with the duct (1.4l 150hp 6-speed). Average highway oil temps are in the mid-90sC (Swedish winter) / high-90sC (Swedish summer). I have yet to see higher than 103C in over 71000km.
I live in Southern California, in a desert. It's a tad bit warmer here than in Sweden. :)
 

anotero

Drag Race Newbie
Location
SoCal
Guys, I think it's important to recognize different motors here... it's perfectly normal for the US/Canadian market 1.8TSI and 2.0TSI (our only motor options until 2019 when they replaced the 1.8TSI with the 1.4TSI in non-GTI and non-4-motion models) to reach 107C regardless of weather. My 1.8TSI used to hover around 103C before adding the aero tray (with ducts) + front exhaust tunnel cover, it now has gone up to a max of 107C (on the highway pullign a trailer through mountainous areas) but usually hovers around 104C. This is perfectly acceptable with full synthetic oil. Most of the racing forums and the more techie oil forums (see bobistheoilguy.com for example) all share the consensus that full synth oil can survive sustained 115C temps with no ill effects.

Personally, I like seeing my oil reach 107C for long highway runs because so much of my driving is from cold starts, going 1-2 miles around town on errands, which is the WORST thing for oil since moisture develops inside the bloc and mixes with the oil. Getting the oil above 100C for extended intervals likely rids any moisture building in the oil.
Very interesting. I'll keeps this in mind.
I wonder if my oil temps will go down a little once i install a turbo blanket, which should help contain turbo heat.
 

Daner

Passed Driver's Ed
Location
Stockholm
I live in Southern California, in a desert. It's a tad bit warmer here than in Sweden. :)
I grew up in the San Joaquin valley and got my degree at Loma Linda University. I managed to get back to California 3x during 2019 and experienced at least one >100F day while we were there in July. That a good job of reminding me why I stayed in school to get out of the construction business!

Back to the subject at hand - I was just providing a reference point, and I certainly didn't mean to imply that oil temps over 100C are bad. Quite the contrary! I would rather that the engine in my car was running 100-105C when fully operational year-round, to regularly vaporize any condensation or other water that might make its way into the lubrication system.
 
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