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Congratulations, Gareth!

Gareth Frith (g60dubster)
Manchester, UK


Back in 2003, a change in employment meant I had to give up my company car and return to the car owning fraternity. Having owned many hot hatches over the years, my favourite was a mk2 Golf G60. My experience of this over other marques meant a VW. Deciding my budget wouldn't cover what I wished for in terms of a golf or Audi, I test drove a couple of Passats. One of those was a silver passat 1.8T sel. To cut a story short, a week later it was mine :)
3 yrs old, 50k FSH, Satin silver, factory 1BE suspension and Votex rear spoiler. Plus lovely 'bling' 15" alloys....

I've always modded my cars to some degree so started searching the 'net for advice and inspiration. I quickly found that the passat was very poorly served in the UK, both by the 'scene' and also by the aftermarket. Then I found 2 great things: ClubB5 and subsequently ebay!!!

ClubB5 opened my eyes to the possibilities that were out there. So many great cars and loads of really helpful people, always willing to put up with a 'noobies' daft questions! I found that the B5 passat was very similar mechanically to the Audi A4 & A6 so began thinking about using some OEM parts to make my 'B5' unique. A kind member from mainland europe pointed me in the direction of ebay.de as the passat is almost as well supported in Germany as in the USA, that was the boost I required in my quest.
It all started quite innocently with some genuine 17" alloys from an S4 and a Bonrath badgeless grille, and for a while I was more than happy with that.


Then the major mods started, I began to think of ways to make the car really different but also look factory original. Many guys on CB5 were following the OEM+ route and I loved the look, painted lowers, factory style wheels, subtle and classy!!
A leather & alcantara sport interior was fitted along with stripped net-optik door trims and I was over the moon with the look. Then some really rare 18" Audi B6 S4 alloys followed along with the beginning of the colour coding. The classifieds on CB5 provided the Porsche boxster brakes, which have changed colour twice since they were fitted. Lots of other little things kept me busy and perpetually broke!

Then I found my Holy Grail! After much research as to whether it was possible, I took the plunge and purchased a Recaro interior from an Audi S6. It was far from an easy (or cheap!) job but once it was fitted I knew all the time and effort was justified. This spurred me on to go for yet more changes and along came some 18" Audi parabols, a set of coilovers for the right stance and many, many other little things to make the finishing touches.
I'm really pleased with how my B5 now looks although I don't think I'll ever stop tweaking here & there, there's always new things coming out to part me from my hard earned!










I have to admit that I'm not the most prolific poster, I only tend to post if I fell I have a valid contribution. But without the help and inspiration from everybody on PassatWorld, I'd probably never have got started and traded the passat for a golf! Although the site has grown and evolved, the feeling of being welcome has never changed. There are many other VAG sites out there but none have the general friendliness and welcoming attitude that everyone here has.
Many Uk members frequent a site I help moderate ( www.UkPassats.co.uk ) and we're trying to emulate not only the success of PassatWorld but the essence of the site. Feel free to look it up sometime, I only hope that we can welcome you all half as much as I have been welcomed here over the years
MODS:

Exterior
Fully colour coded
18" Audi A8 Parabols
Coilovers
Badgeless grille
Hella HID projectors
OEM rear spoiler
Porsche 4-pot calipers

Interior
Audi S6 Recaro electric heated leather/alcantara interior
Door inserts and console lid trimmed in matching OEM leather
Euro spec W8 duo-leather 3-spoke wheel
OEM Audi B7 RS4 pedalset
Toerag torch
Phatbox

Engine Bay
Painted engine covers
Upsolute remap
N75 'j'
Relocated Bailey diverter valve
Silicone boost hoses
PureMS strut tower bar

plus much more I've forgotten......

And finally: many, many thanks to everyone who's ever assisted me during my quest. To avoid the risk of missing someone out, I'll just say a big you know who you are
Special thanks to ClarkSJ, for helping me out when no-one else could. That act of generosity is precisely what make this place so special!

And of course, big thanks to whoever nominated me for POTM. So unexpected was it, that I didn't even realise I'd been nominated until Jay gave me a gentle reminder! I'm genuinely surprised that my B5's considered good enough and I'm very proud to accept.

Keep you eyes out for the next set of changes, coming soon
 

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Looks great, nice clean upgrades.
 

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Thanks guys, I really appreciate the positive comments. Makes it all worthwhile :)
 
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