So I have a 2019 Golf R DSG. I put 4,000 miles on it stock. I then got the APR Stage 1 ECU and TCU tune and 2 weeks later I got the APR Stage 2 ECU Tune with the APR downpipe, intercooler, and intake. I’ll go over my thoughts on each tune.
Stock: I absolutely loved the stock Golf R. It is nice and quick and I registered a 4.6 second 0-60 mph time @ 2,000 ft elevation with launch control and 5.2 second 0-60 time @ 2,000 ft elevation without launch control (stopping and mashing the gas pedal). The DSG gearbox shifted quickly and generally I had no problems with it. The big downside to the stock TCU is that it goes into 7th gear at like 35 mph. It always shifts too quickly and makes daily driving not in sport mode kind of hard as there is no acceleration unless you mash the gas pedal. As for acceleration, the Golf R stock is pretty quick. Once it gets into boost, the acceleration is very linear. The one downside I saw was that in 4th, 5th, 6th, and 7th, the acceleration was pretty bad (compared to the subsequent tunes). Although the Golf R is very fast compared to other cars, passing people at 70 mph was still comparatively slow in terms of tunes.
APR Stage 1 ECU and TCU: First, the TCU tune is amazing. It makes daily driving 100% better. Stock TCU would always go to too high of a gear in D mode and so if you tried to accelerate you had to deal with a slow turbo spool from 1.5k rpm unless you hit the kickdown switch. The new TCU tune does not shift up nearly as aggressively. As for performance, the shifts feel noticeably faster. It is nice to have the gear number in the virtual cockpit. Launch control also feels optimized. I wish I could have gotten better 0-60 times, but I didn’t have much time and got a 0-60 time of 3.9 seconds @2,000 ft elevation with launch control and a 0-60 time of 4.6 seconds @2,000 ft elevation without launch control. Now for the ECU tune. APR says that Stage 1 will give you a bump of 80 horsepower and 90 lb ft of torque. You 100% feel this. Everything just pulls harder. I would say that stock does not really put you into the back of your seat (feel the G Force), but stage 1 really puts you into the back of your seat and feels really fast. In gear acceleration is where you really feel the difference. To better describe stage 2, stage 1 feels like it has a peak of power.
APR Stage 2 ECU, intercooler, intake, and downpipe: At first, the peak horsepower and torque is not a massive bump. I think it is +20 over stage 1. While you do notice the bump in power, the biggest difference is in gear acceleration and the hp and torque curves. While stage 1 felt like it built up to higher power and that power had a definite peak, stage 2 feels like it has the max power and torque all throughout the rpm band after 3,200 rpm. Stage 1 builds up to max power, stage 2 feels like you have max power and torque the whole time. 4th, 5th, and 6th gears feel like the finally have good acceleration, so there is less of a reason to downshift when trying to pass. I have not gotten a good 0-60 time yet, but at 1,000 ft elevation with 3 people in the car, I managed to get a 3.9 second 0-60 with launch control. I’ll update this thread once I get a good 0-60 run with stage 2.
1. It seems that unlike previous APR Stage 2 files, this stage 2 file does not disable the O2 sensors. In fact, I am showing that all but the catalyst readiness sensors are passing. I originally put an O2 spacer on and this caused an O2 lean sensor code. I was always under the impression that APR disables the rear O2 sensor on stage 2. Once I took the O2 spacer off, I no longer got any codes and the O2 sensor passed readiness.
2. I am experiencing occasional misfires. I made a thread about this, but the summary is that on long drives (300+miles), when I am using cruise control around 70 to 77 miles per hour at 2,000 rpm and 0% load, I will get 1 or 2 misfires in cylinders 1 and 4. This only happens once or twice per long drive. I have changed spark plugs and ignition coils, but it still persists. I am trying different solutions.
Over-all, Stage 2 makes the Golf R a BEAST. This car is now so fast and fun to drive and the acceleration is crazy.