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For the performance enthusiast, GMW offers an extensive product line and upgrades through APR for Audi and Volkswagen owners. APR (Audi Performance Racing) is the leading performance tuner and performance products company. If you want the ultimate driving experience, APR is the right choice for your Audi or VW.

GMW is pleased to announce we are your #1 Monterey Peninsula APR dealer. APR has made performance software upgrades thru direct port programming so we can flash more power to your Volkswagen or Audi's engine computer.


With APR's unique program switching the user is able to go from stock to performance software tunes via the cruise control stock (when applicable). If you’d like to have an upgrade installed, or would like a quote for installation, please feel free to contact us. For more info about your specific vehicle check out

We honor all prices and sales that APR advertises and lists on their website. Please note some vehicles require the ECU to be removed from your vehicle and will have a labor fee to do so, please call or email us for exact pricing.

*program updates, warranty transfers and tuning changes are subject to additional charges


Make Your Car Faster and More Exciting!

Looking for a way to reliably make more power? Upgrading your engine software is the way to go. Software Upgrades like those provided by APR offer the best dollar-per-horsepower value of any modification. Our customers often tell us that their vehicle is more exciting to drive and exceptionally quicker after upgrading.  As Monterey's premier APR dealer, we have performed countless ECU (engine control unit) and TCU (transmission control unit) upgrades on Volkswagens, Audis. Most importantly, software upgrades are a safe reliable way to increase power without modifying or changing hardware.

Software Upgrade Benefits

  • Substantial Increases in Horsepower and Torque

  • Faster Throttle Response

  • Better Fuel Economy

  • Quick and Easy install Via the OBD-II Port & the ability to revert to stock


APR Tuning 101

From the factory, Volkswagen and Audi vehicles offer solid performance, comfort, and quality. For some owners, there comes a time when the stock performance of their vehicle is no longer enough. Luckily the aftermarket support for Volkswagen and Audi models is extensive. Owners can make a few basic modifications for increased power and improved handling, or completely transform their car into a track machine.

At German Motorwerks, we can assist you in the process of modifying your Volkswagen or Audi. Our performance specialists can recommend parts and upgrade paths to achieve the performance goals you have set for your vehicle.


Starting with Stage Tuning

When talking about vehicle upgrades, you may hear people refer to different “stages” of performance modifications. Primarily used when discussing turbocharged or supercharged vehicles, understanding what exactly each stage entails can be confusing. Different tuning companies and vehicle platforms have different upgrade paths that vary greatly in the potential for power gains. We are going to dive into what stage tuning is through the lens of Volkswagen and Audi platforms.

What Does “Stage Tuning” Mean?

When people use the term “stage”, they are generally referring to modifications that are done together to achieve a specific level of performance. The real answer to this question is it depends. There is no blanket description of what each stage is, and different vehicles have vastly different upgrade paths, and often cannot be compared to one another.

That being said, there are general modifications that occur on these upgrade paths that are associated with various stages. Generally, the earlier the “stage” the less involved the modification is, with later stages requiring a significant amount of work.

Read on to learn about the typical upgrades seen along the stage path, and learn how we define stages here at German Motorwerks.

Stage 1 (most common tune choice)

Stage 1 is the ground floor of the modification process. From the factory, most vehicles are not making the maximum possible power they can on the stock hardware. Modern vehicles are controlled by complex Engine Control Units or ECU. The ECU is essentially responsible for controling how the engine should run. ECU’s can be remapped, allowing the software to make better use of the hardware from the factory. A typical Stage 1 tune comprises of just an ECU remap with no upgrades to hardware, although some vehicles do require a spark plug upgrade.

The power output for a vehicle can also vary depending on the fuel grades available. Customers bringing their car to us in California are limited to 91 octane at the pump, but those in other areas of the country where 93 octane pump gas is available will see even bigger power increases. Further more, track vehicles have the option for higher octane ratings like 97 or 100 race fuel. Audi and VW vehicles with forced induction like turbo chargers and super chargers can see large power gains on stock hardware and we can APR tune your vehicle with your choice.

Stage 1+

Stage 1+ is more ambiguous, and what it entails will vary greatly depending on your vehicle. Stage 1+ tunes are typically a fuel hardware add-on (high pressure fuel pump) accompanied with the APR Stage 1 tune.


With Audi and VW this upgrade involves the installation of an intake system. Smoothing the flow of air into the turbocharger/supercharger will allow for faster spool and better throttle response. Intakes can further enhance the driving experience by allowing cooler air to reach the engine.

High Pressure Fuel Pump

Depending on the platform, particularly newer Audi and VW vehicles the introduction of a high-pressure fuel pump will also be done at this stage. Taking care of fueling early on the upgrade path will not only improve performance, but it will tick a box needed when moving toward more substantial upgrades and power levels.


Going back even further, the original 1.8t from the B5/Mk4 era in the late 1990s and early 2000’s need upgraded fuel injectors at this stage. The factory injectors are not able to keep up with the additional airflow from the tune/intake.

Stage 2

The previous stages addressed engine control, fueling, and pre-turbo/supercharger airflow. Moving into Stage 2 will open up the exhaust and address cooling issues often seen when running higher boost levels.  


While air now flows freely before the engine thanks to the modifications made in prior stages, exhaust gases leaving the engine are still restricted by factory pipe diameter and emissions control equipment. Before upgrading to stage 2 software, installing a larger diameter downpipe at minimum is required. The ideal set up for this stage is a full turbo-back exhaust, allowing air to flow freely and giving your car a much more aggressive sound.

An upgraded downpipe will increase airflow post-turbo.


Another hardware upgrade done at the Stage 2 level is a larger, more efficient intercooler. Once the intake air has been pressurized by the turbocharger, the intercooler further condenses the air by reducing its temperature. Charged air will pass through the intercooler before entering the engine. Many vehicles come equipped with an intercooler from the factory, but once higher boost levels are being made, they become inefficient.

A condition known as heat soak can occur when running more power on a factory intercooler. The car will perform well and make full power initially, but once excess heat builds up in the engine bay, the factory intercooler will not be able to cool and condense the charged air as well. Hotter air means less power, but upgrading the intercooler to one with a larger core will help the car continue to make full power under harsh conditions.

Other Platforms

The above description of a Stage 2 upgrade follows what is seen on turbocharged vehicles. However, as discussed earlier, not all platforms have the same hardware upgrades. For example, on Audis equipped with the 3.0TFSI engine, Stage 2 involves installing new crank and/or supercharger pullies.

Stage 2 will entail different hardware upgrades depending on your platform, but in nearly all cases an ECU reflash will be required to take advantage of the changes.

Stage 3

After Stage 2 on turbocharged vehicles, the route to more power typically involves upgrading the turbocharger itself. A larger turbo will allow higher rates of airflow and typically shift the power band to later in the RPM range.

There are a lot of different options at this stage. On modern 1.8-liter and 2.0-liter EA888 Gen 3 motors, a larger turbo from higher output variants of the same engine can be used. 2015+ GTI’s comes factory with an IS20 turbo, but this can be swapped out for an IS38 from the Golf R. Standard Golf’s, Alltrack’s, and Sportwagon’s with the 1.8-liter version of the Gen 3 motor can upgrade to either the IS20 or the IS38. This type of OEM turbo upgrade bolts directly up to the engine and works with the existing modifications from previous stages, providing large power gains with relatively minimal invasive work.

IS38 Turbocharger

Again, different platforms have different requirements. Older vehicles often do not have the same broad range of factory turbo sizes that work as a direct swap. For example, before making the switch to IHI the 2.0t and the early 1.8t engines utilized BorgWarner turbos, and the only direct factory turbo upgrade was from a K03 to a K04. 

Transmission Control Unit Tune (DSG):

Volkswagen and Audi vehicles equipped with DSG/S-Tronic automatic transmissions require the transmission control unit to be remapped to support higher power outputs. In much the same way as the ECU, TCU tunes change what the computer is requesting of the transmission. The TCU tune will allow the clutches within the transmission to clamp harder, supporting much higher torque levels than stock.

A TCU tune will improve performance as well. The tune will change the transmissions shift points to optimize acceleration and allows downshifts to happen at any gear if it can be done safely. Additionally, automatic upshifts can be removed, allowing gears to be held up to redline. and options like launch control are available too.

APR+ Stage 1

APR Plus gives your engine more power and pep! It’s like upgrading your car to the sportier model, but at a fraction of the cost. Use the power to merge and pass effortlessly, or just have more fun! It’s up to you!

Your car is smarter than you may think. When you push the go-pedal, a computer tells it how fast to go. APR Plus is software that tells it to give you more! More power, more capability, more excitement, more smiles-per-gallon.

Oh, and APR Plus is backed by a limited powertrain warranty that offers coverage through the duration of your original limited factory powertrain warranty!

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