Leon’s K-Swapped EK4 Build…Part 1

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It’s been quite some time since our last post on the site; I took some time off to regroup and come up with a plan for the direction in which I would like to take the site. In addition to that, we were then struck with the Covid pandemic and those plans I had needed some reevaluating given the circumstances. Thankfully we are finding a way out from under the pandemic and adapting to a new normal. Given the current circumstances, I figured now would be a good time to revive the site and bring you guys some new content along with wrapping up a few builds which I’ve already started. 

Today I’m bringing you guys Leon’s K-Swapped EK4 build, which I featured on the site a few years ago in the early stages of the build. We lost contact and throughout that time the direction of the build has changed a significant amount. Currently, Leon’s goals are to have a street car that is also capable of holding its own when taken to the Bushy Park Circuit for a track day session. 

I’ll start off with a slight recap of where the car was a few years ago and bring you guys up to when Leon made the decision to rebuild from the ground up…

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In the infant stages of the build, Leon wanted a way into the K Series world and opted to go with a K20A3 motor. He made some minor changes and swapped out the plastic intake manifold for the PRB Type R manifold. This setup was then mated to a 6 speed EP3 Type R gearbox and lifted into the EK4 chassis…  

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While Leon was at it, he swapped out the dated factory headlights for some black housing replacements…

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Previously the car had a 99-00 Type R replica lip, wanting to change the look on the front end… 

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Leon went ahead and picked up a 96-98 Type R replica lip and paired it with Top1 Motors winglets…

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A glimpse of the headlights in place and the bumper fitted…

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While Leon was in the assembly process he picked up a set of Type R cams with hopes of eventually swapping them over and doing the rocker conversion… 

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Given how the car felt with B16A motor, Leon wanted to ensure he wouldn’t have any braking issues going forward with the swap. He opted to pick up a set of Wilwood 4 pot calipers…

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With the swap completed, Leon was able to hit the streets…

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But not before he paid a visit to his painter and had him lay down a fresh coat of yellow on the Wilwood calipers… 

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Having gone through the teething phase, Leon was ready to officially hit the streets and picked up a set of Sparco wheels… 

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Shortly after completing the swap Leon ran into some drivetrain problems and upon further inspection, it revealed he had broken an axle. Taking the news in good spirits Leon decided to replace them with a set of Insane Shafts 500hp units… 

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Fortunately the Sparco wheels didn’t last very long; Leon swapped them out for a set of JNC 006 wheels in a 15×8 +18 sizing wrapped in 195/50 Hankook Ventus V2 rubber…

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Giving the car a significantly more aggressive appearance… 

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This would go on to be the most favorable appearance the car had… 

 

Things were going in the right direction until one fateful evening driving around the city Leon hit a manhole cover damaging the sump in a serious way…  

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After getting the car back at home, the teardown began… 

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A view of the damaged sump pan alongside a new one as reference. Those familiar with K series would know, after experiencing an impact on that level the likelihood of the motor surviving is slim to none. And unfortunately the A3 wouldn’t be lucky enough to make it through…  

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In the process of pulling the motor, Leon would come to notice a few other areas in which required serious attention… 

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A closer look at the header would reveal a series of structurally damaging cracks… 

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While removing the shifter cables Leon noticed that those too have seen better days and would be added to the list of things to be replaced… 

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After the motor was pulled, Leon went ahead and removed the subframe pending his next move… 

With the motor pulled Leon started to look at his options, which were either to find another A3 motor or repair the damaged parts from his. Neither of which proved to be favorable and Leon decided it would be best to speed up his timeline and source a K24A… 

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On that note, that’s it for today’s post, thanks for taking a look at Leon’s K-Swapped EK4 build. Stay tuned for more to come on this build as it progresses.

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