Just as the Super Bowl has a pre-show, so too do some of the more prominent Audi and VW enthusiast shows like Waterwagens. In the case of Seattle’s largest enthusiast event, the pre-show is a Barbecue held at Seattle-based Audi and Volkswagen tuner Achtuning. And, unlike the Super Bowl pre-game shows that nobody but the nuttiest football fans watch, plenty of car enthusiasts turn out for the Achtuning pre-game show.
This is no judged show, it’s more a large group of local enthusiasts hanging out in the parking lots around the commercial complex that the Achtuning facility calls home– checking out each others rides, talking cars or downing some hot dogs and burgers.
Vendors were limited to Achtuning and APR, for whom Achtuning is a distributor. Visitors could walk through the Achtuning facility and check out their range of Status seats and Hartmann replica wheels in addition to many other goods the company stocks.
Amongst the replica wheels were three new forged designs, prototypes of wheels that Hartmann and Achtuning should be releasing as you read this. There’s a 9-spoke and 7-spoke that are clean and OEM looking, and though they don’t replicate any specific design by Audi, with stock 4-ringed center caps they look factory. The final, and most interesting set in our minds, is a replica of the wheel that will debut as optional equipment on the upcoming B7 RS 4.
These new forged wheels from Hartmann are both stronger and lighter ( weighing approx. 20 lbs. each) than their standard offering and are sourced from a factory here in the United States. All three designs are available in an ET35 offset and in both 5×100 and 5×112 bolt patterns. They’ll also both be available in 18-inch and 19-inch diameters. Josh from Achtuning told me that 18-inch wheels will cost $550 each and 19-inch versions will cost $595.
Josh’s super clean S4 was on display with a full set of prototype versions of the wheels to give visitors an idea of what they’d actually look like on a car. The result on his B5 was simply stunning.
Achtuning’s been a player on the Audi aftermarket for several years. As such, a get together at the company’s facility is sure to bring out some interesting Audis. We spotted a range, from early B2s and C3s to newer B5s and B6s. Amongst the group, we spotted a super clean 2001 TT quattro roadster. The owner had special ordered the car from Ingolstadt with a Denim Blue exterior and baseball glove interior. As far as he knows, it’s the only one in existence.
Just like Achtuning, their customer base has also expanded into the Volkswagen market. As such, plenty of VWs came out for the event with an equally ranging collection of cars. Both Volkswagen of America and VWvortex brought out examples of the new GTI and GLI models for display. The Jetta GLI will be hitting the market in September, while the new GTI should be available during the first quarter of 2006.
After most had packed up and headed home and as the sun began to set, APR fired up their raucous S3, a car that has been developed to show club racers the potential of the 1.8T engine. Video cameras were attached, and filming commenced for an upcoming video by the DubAudi Gruppe. Stephen Hooks, owner of APR, did a few demonstration runs of the car for the film. Look for an announcement on this soon on both VWvortex and Fourtitude.
In the meantime, if you should find your way to the Pacific Northwest next year for Waterwagens, be sure not to miss the barbacue at Achtuning. It’s a laid back atmosphere that’ll double your pleasure over the show weekend.
Fourtitude Waterwagens Coverage
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