Widebody Panzer: VW Jetta 1.8T (Widebody)


Words & Photos: Giancarlo Pawelec

Swooping like a vulture from the car show circuit, this 2001 Volkswagen Jetta returns to its stomping grounds with a new disguise. Hailing from Toronto, Canada, owner Jay Jimenez and his R-Squadron crew are ready to take home another fistful of first-place trophies. Donning everything from authentic aero parts out of Autobahn country and California flash with LCD screens and lights, this widebody Panzer is fit to crush anything in its path.

Armour plating on the Jetta consists of a full Oettinger aero package including front bumper, side skirts and rear valence that have been custom molded and massaged to match the widebody fenders. Removing and shaving all badges, turn signals and factory moldings achieve the glass-like smooth finish of the exterior. Jimenez added a Rieger rear wing, Character roof wing, FK front grill and M3-style power mirrors, Audi TT gas cap, BMW 7-series shark-fin antenna and FK smoked taillights, making this VW an intimidating competitor. Adding extra show-appeal, the windows are tinted to 35% along with a sun strip on the front windshield. Plasmaglow underbody and wheel well LED light kit and two-tone flat black graphic by the masterful hands at Shinzowerks Graphics make this Jetta the tastiest eye-candy at every show.

The cockpit treatment has an array of driver-conscious amenities and audio / visual goodies. While cruising the streets, Jimenez and his front passenger sit in pair of FK race bucket seats neatly finished in two-tone red / black cloth and guided by Sparco base sliders. Accenting details consist of four Ignited switches and din panel, PICI five-piece pedal set, Euro switch, Autobraun doorsills, W8 center console and an FK fire extinguisher. Equipped for night cruising, Jimenez installed a set of Vision bulbs into the headlight assembly while an assortment of Plasmaglow red neon LED lights and strobes located under dash, seats, air vents, trunk and engine bay area giving the Jetta its mean appeal. Engine monitoring is provided by an Autometer dual a-pillar gauge pod housing a set of Faze gauges – boost, air / fuel, voltmeter, EGT, oil pressure, water and oil temperature. In order not to miss a shift, a Neuspeed short shifter was added to complete the package.

Jimenez fires up his tunes with an extensive in car system thanks to Clarion. Up front, a Clarion VRX745VD flip-screen head unit manages the entire audio / visual setup including a drop down 7-inch screen and DVD player (OHMD74), video source switchers (MSS430) and three sets of 7-inch LCD monitors (VMA7194). Power punching sound blasts through two sets of Clarion’s 6.5-inch co-axial speakers (SRR1685) while the bass pulses through three Clarion 10-inch subwoofers (PXW1042). The power source of this mega sound system is a Clarion APX640.4 four-channel amplifier for the co-axial sets and a Clarion DPX1001.1 amp for the subwoofers. All these audio goodies are enclosed in a custom fiberglass case along with the dash and rear deck. Other tech-gadgets include an ATI x800XT computer complete with DVD burner, HDTV tuner, wireless operation, Bluetooth technology and a Logitech camera. The last added touch is a Sega Dream Cast video game system while a Compustar 2WSS alarm and turbo timer keep unwanted hands off this showpiece.

Far from what came out of the German factory, this power plant has been tweaked for ultimate response and yet able to keep drivability in check. Forcing cold air from the outside is an EVO intake system while an NX sprayer helps drop the air temperature sucked in through the Eurojet front mount intercooler. A combination of parts including a set of Unorthodox Racing pullies, Neuspeed turbo inlet pipe, APR Tuning 1-bar chip and an HKS Super Sequential blow-off valve keep the power stable while releasing extra ponies from the 1.8-litre turbo engine. For assurance purposes, Jimenez had a VagCom diagnostic tool program installed, two Optima batteries (yellow and red) for proper voltage, KW custom grounding wire kit and a custom Brullen 2.5-inch dual cat-back exhaust system making this German roar on the streets.

Jimenez recognized that the Jetta’s handling must equal its beauty – so, he called on a few sponsors to deliver the best gear in their catalogues. Providing the lowered stance is a KW Variant 1 coilover suspension system, while a set of Neuspeed goods tighten things up, laterally. Up front, a 25mm front sway bar keeps the nose from diving in the wrong places while a 28mm rear sway bar controls the rear. Drivability improvement can be attributed to Neuspeed upper tie bars, polyurethane control arm bushings, Energy Suspension motor mount inserts, stage 2 Raxels drive axels and Hawk Performance brake pads. As for the cars stunning wheel combo, the front treatment gets FK 20mm spacers tucked behind 19 by 8-inch AXIS Matrix wrapped in Fuzion ZRi 235/35 tires while the rears get FK 25mm spacers and 19 by 9.5-inch wheels with 275/30 rubber.

As a highly successful member of Team R-Squadron and to be a part of the only full sponsored show team in Canada by Bridgestone Tires, Jay Jimenez has done it again. Jimenez’ winnings have taken him around North America to the multitude of car shows and made him a recognized figure in the sport compact scene. The actualization of his dreams would not be possible without the assistance of many supportive sponsors, whom he would like to thank. They include: Bridgestone Tires, ATI Technologies, Clarion Audio, Meguiars, AXIS Wheels, Optima Battery, Unorthodox Racing, Shinzowerks, Ignited, FK Automotive, Hawk Performance, Illusion Lighting, Nitrous Express (NX), Contemporary Motorsports, Faze Gauges, Classic Autobody and New Image Interiors. From past champion car to a new disguise fit for another winning streak, Jimenez and his ’01 widebody Jetta are ready to tackle all in its path – show or street.



– Custom wide body (fender flares, rocker panel, front and rear bumpers)
– Shaved Trunk
– Custom Boser hood
– Shaved door moldings
– Custom one piece front bumper
– Molded Oeittinger rear valence w/ shaved bumper strip
– Audi TT gas cap
– Character roof wing
– Oeittinger rear valence
– Oettinger side skirts
– Rieger rear wing
– FK crystal clear smoked tail lights
– 35% Tiny w/ Sun strip
– Shinzowerks Graphics (two tone flat black)
– Plasmaglow underbody with Plasmaglow wheel-well LED kit
– FK Badgless grill
– FK M3 molded powered mirrors
– BWM 7-series Shark Fin antenna
– FK projector angel eye headlights w/ fog lights


– Compustar 2WSS alarm w/ turbo timer
– ATI x800XT computer with DVD Burner, HDTV Tuner, Wireless, Bluetooth, Logitech Camera
– Clarion VRX745VD – Flip-screen head unit
– Clarion OHMD74 – overhead 7” with DVD
– Clarion MSS430 – Video source switcher
– Clarion VMA7194 – (3 Sets) 7” LCD Monitors
– Clarion APX640.4 – Four-channel amplifier
– Clarion DPX1001.1 – Subwoofer amplifier
– Clarion PXW1042 – (3 Sets) 10-inch subwoofers
– Clarion SRR1685 – (2 Sets) 6.5-inch co-axial speakers
– Custom fiberglass enclosure, fiberglass dash and rear deck
– Sega Dream Cast system
– 4 x Ignited switches and din panel
– PICI 5 piece pedal set
– Plasmaglow neon’s, LED’s and strobes located under dash, under seats, air vents, trunk and engine bay
– OEM 3 spoke leather steering wheel
– Euro Switch
– W8 center console
– Autobraun door sills
– Autometer dual a-pillar gauge pod
– Faze Gauges: Boost, Air Fuel, Volt meter, EGT, Water Temp, Oil Temp, Oil Pressure
– Custom painted interior dash
– FK (Black/Red) sport seats
– Sparco seat bases and sliders
– Custom two-tone (Black/Red) seats and door inserts
– New Beetle look doors with shaved door pins (Natis1 mod)
– FK fire extinguisher
– Vision headlight bulbs


– APR Tuning 1-bar chip
– Eurojet front mount intercooler
– Neuspeed turbo inlet pipe
– EVO cold air intake
– HKS Super Sequential Blow Off Valve
– Neuspeed short shifter
– Polished intake manifold
– Custom Brullen 2.5” dual cat back exhaust
– KW custom grounding kit
– Optima Red top battery, Optima Yellow top battery
– Unorthodox Pullies
– NX FMIC sprayer
– VagCom (Diagnostics tool)

Suspension / Wheels

– KW Variant 1 Coilovers
– Neuspeed 25mm front sway bar
– Neuspeed 28mm rear sway bar
– Neuspeed upper tie bar
– Polyurethane control arm bushings
– Energy Suspension motor mount inserts
– Stage 2 Raxles drive axles
– Hawk Performance break pads
– FK 20mm spacers (front)
– FK 25mm spacers (rear)
– 19×8.0 Axis Matrix (front)
– 19×9.5 Axis Matrix (rear)
– Fuzion ZRi 235/35/19 (front) tires
– Fuzion ZRi 275/30/19 (rear) tires

Team / Sponsors

Team: R-Squadron (Toronto, Ontario, Canada) sponsored by Bridgestone Tires

– ATI Technologies
– Clarion Audio
– Meguiars
– Bridgestone Tires
– AXIS Wheels
– Optima Battery
– Unorthodox Racing
– Shinzoweks
– Ignited
– FK Automotive
– Hawk Performance
– Illusion Lighting
– Nitrous Express
– Contemporary Motorsports
– Faze
– Classic Autobody
– New Image Interiors

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  4. hey i was doin the same thing to my car but in blue and i saw ur pics last week. im glad i found it cus i can see wat mine will look like when im done. urs looks great. i am doin all the work myself with the help of my car club president. this is just very inspiring. thanks!!!!

  5. oh and i was also wondering if u got ur headliner rewraped cus mine is tan now and i know it is goin to be a pain in the butt to redo.