Turbocharging a VW VR6 engine

This page describes the various paths that can be followed in the process of turbocharging a VW VR6 motor, from mild to wild. The information is arranged thematically, with no guarantee of its accuracy.

Engine block

The VR6 motor comes in a limited number of flavours: Since the VR6 was initial destined to be a diesel motor, the stock internals are strong and have been proven to be reliable at high output levels, especially if detonation is avoided. Various options to use for the bottom end are:

Cylinder head

The 12V head can be made to flow well with extensive reworking, but stock for stock  the 24V head is better. Possible additions:

Engine hardware

Intake manifold

Either stock or custom:

Exhaust manifold

Two options:


Use anything suitable for a 2.8-3.2 litre motor running a maximum RPM of 7000. The choices are many:


The engine can be fueled in an infinite number of ways, but the recommended paths are:


Most modern vehicles have very good ignition systems, and the VR6 is no exception. Some recommendations: