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Fitting an S3 Turbo Rear Spoiler to a S3 N/A - Interior/Exterior/Lights/Glass/Alarms/ICE/HVAC - The Lotus Forums #ForTheOwners Jump to content

Fitting an S3 Turbo Rear Spoiler to a S3 N/A

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My old S3 had turbo sills and tailgate.


There is a reason why most 'turbo look aliked' S3 cars have everything (spoilers, sills, louvres) done apart from the rear spoiler.

The reason is: It's a nightmare.


Park alongside a turbo and look. It does not just bolt onto an S3, the back of the Turbo body is not as long and you need to chop about 1" off the back off an S3, graft a panel on, get it finished and painted and then fit the turbo section. TBH the price difference between an S3 and a Turbo car is less than this job alone.


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It is funny though as some of the S3 owners want their cars to have the louvres and add them and there are Turbo owners who want the glass back. l


The reason why most want to get rid of the glass is because over the years the demister strips peal or bubble which looks bloody awful and as far as I know you can't buy the glass new any more. So the louvre is a great solution! The best of both worlds would be to have a louvre that fits over the glass!

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The turbo spoiler should help create a bit more down force, so help the road grip at speed, so besides looks there's a good reason to do it. My S3 has a turbo-esque kit fitted. It's not an original turbo spoiler etc, but it looks similar, enough that from a distance it's the same, and to somebody who doesn't know how the turbo cars look, it could be mistaken for being how they are done.

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The louvre goes in place of the glass and protudes into the area the glass would be.

On the real turbo it has a cowling below it that mates to the turbo cars engine lid.

On S3's the louvre vents are open to the luggage area unless you block them with bits of perspex or you go the whole hog and fit a turbo engine bay lining and engine lid. In short the louvre is not just a panel, it's part of a ducting system that continiues underneath the louvre and into the engine bay of the turbo car. Fitteed cosmetically to the S3 if left open to air (as mine was, and done before i got it BTW) then it will let some engine heat out, but at the same time rendering your luggage space useless if it rains. Mine had all the carpet out.

To merely pass as a turbo visually the S3 needs:

new front spolier.

new bonnet (turbo vents are different).

Side sills.

New engine bay lining.

New engine lid.

Under tailgate cowl duct with heated screen.

Tailgate louvre.

Rear end cutting and turbo section fitted.

Rear valance.

New quarterlight side ear intakes.


And them some weight saving excersises like binning the spare tyre, jack etc to make up for all the extra you have stuck on without having a turbo engine.

As the rear section is a big job, and doing the louvre properly so there is a point to it being there is a big job, they are usually never done. I'm not trying to put the guy off and appreciate the easier stuff is already done. It would however not be fair if i did not point out that from scratch, if you were buying all the bits and doing it to a good standard then the conversion alone could actually cost as much as just going out and buying a Turbo esprit.

My tip would be to find a front end smashed turbo car. That way the louvre and everything you need to do it properly will already be bonded to a tailgate (colour does not matter as you will need paint anyhow). You'll get the 'ears', all the engine lids etc, and you get the rear panel too. Then you just have to bite the bullet and saw a big slice off the arse of a Lotus Esprit.

It's a brave project.


[EDIT:] i just went through the breakers to try and you find one, there are a few S3 Turbos but sadly it seens they all have burnt out rear ends...


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Dont think Ian will have to worry about pulling the extra weight! Hes packing 300+bhp :animier: Having only seen a couple of rear spoilers on ebay, as parts would it not be possible to cut the rear spoiler down in width and then bond/ pop rivet etc it to the back of the s3!

Regards danny


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Share on other sites's true the rear spoiler caused too much drag so the top spoiler was added. I bought my S3 with all the Turbo parts already fitted so just to finish the job need to fit the rear spoiler! I'd have mush prefered if the boot still had the glass window then i could show off the 4.2 V8 engine.

Getting back to the question someone on the forum must have done a conversion!?!

Edited by ian4455
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Believe it's the turbo valance, matches the side skirts. After cutting a second hole and enlarging the standard outlet I sunk two Bass Port Speaker Tubes into either side to get the right result i wanted and had it resprayed.

Edited by ian4455
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Not sure what the valence is on mine but its similar so may have to look at doing the same. Also any more pictures of your car, the engine etc?

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Hi, After buying my car and seeing Hillys conversion - Audi 4.2 V8, 6 Speed Audi Transaxle etc I had a little spare cash from selling my Elan so decided to go about the same project after seeking Hillys help. Here's a pic of the Engine Bay, still have a few things to sort out but time and weather permitting I'm going to get everything finish for Summer.





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Looks great i have to say and i think its made my mind up for the colour i will be painting mine as well. Great conversion. Not seen a thread on it. Did you start one? Sorry for going off topic.

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you may be best buying the panel and getting a decent body shop to cut off the spoiler and bond it on to your existing body, blend it in and paint it. looking at the job you've done on the valance, shouldn't be a big issue for you!!

car looks awesome by the way!!

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Haven't done a thread as everything i've done has been with the help and support from Hilly, if you haven't already look up his post on the same engine conversion then you should !! Brakes have been upgrade also to BMW front calipers running peugeot 405 Mi16 vented disks thanks to Jeff on the forum and rears are Audi TT 225 using TT front vented disks mounted outboard thanks to Danny (Silverfrost).

If you're on with a project then the support and advice on the forum is all you need ! (+ good weather when you've only a single garage)smile.gif

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The car looks great mate, have to say the white wheels with white writing and the body colur looks fantastic, glad you have kept the original wheels as they look super cool, As for your rear tailgate i love the black lourves , its a bit crap that it hides your hard work on the engine, but if you lost the 4.2 stickers you would suprise a lot of other supercars on the track!

Hope you get it on the road soon when the weather gets a bit better :)

As for your rear spoiler there is a rear end on ebay been sold by lancia 4wd aka nick warren, may be worth buying to cut down and bond on, its at


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I too love the rear valance with dual exhausts - any pictures of that being done?

I have the rear spoiler and I will probably put it on the car in the summer/spring - depending. It looks like cutting and bonding are required, not sure which route I will go yet - it is almost worth going to a good fiberglass guy and telling him to make a "duck tail" spoiler for the car. It would probably look better and cost less.

Love all the pictures here by the way - I think the changes that have been done on all the cars here are in good taste.

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