2005 Audi HPA TT 550

When you think of great tuning companies for German cars, most of them reside in the motherland – AMG (pre-Daimler takeover), Alpina, AC Schnitzer, Abt, Ruf, and Techart. Over the past two decades, a few U.S. based tuners have raised their game to match some of the German offerings, such as Dinan, Turner, Active Autowerke and Renntech. But around 2004, a new kid popped into the tuning scene in a major way, and he was from Canada. HPA stunned the tuning world at SEMA in that year with its twin-turbo R32, a car that would go on to be featured and much loved in Gran Turismo 4. What was so shocking? How about 450 horsepower, 0-60 in under 4 seconds, and a sticker price of $80,000. Car and Driver proclaimed the conversion was good enough to look like it came from the factory. HPA has since gained notoriety for building some monstrously powerful Volkswagen and Audi products, but because they’re not in the Ivy League of tuners and are somewhat obscure, you can get some pretty outlandish performance for not much money. Today’s HPA TT 550 is a good example of this performance bargain:


Year: 2005
Model: TT
Engine: 3.2 liter twin-turbocharged V6
Transmission: 6-speed manual
Mileage: 49,500 mi
Price: $22,000

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2005 Audi HPA TT 550 on Quattroworld

Relocating across the country and ready to let the car go. Need it happen in three weeks so it’s priced at 22k. For a 550hp, 550lbft, 4 wheel drive german coupe that does not have any issues what so ever, it’s a steal. Car is a beast and absolutely solid. Please contact me ONLY if you are serious and have the funds. See below for detailed specs. For current photos, and video follow the link provided here and click on the album:


Car Specifications:

Base Car: 2005 Audi TT 3.2L V6.
Exterior / Interior: Lake silver / Black
Current mileage: 49,500
Overall exterior condition: 9/10
Overall interior condition: 9/10

Performance Figures:
HPA Custom FT-550
540hp @5700rpm
560 ft-lbs torque @3500rpm

Engine specs:
8.5:1 Compression Ratio
KKK K04 ball bearing turbos
1.2 bar Boost
Race Grade Connecting Rod Bearings
Cast aluminum short runner intake manifold
Dual air-to-air side mount Competition intercoolers
HPA Proprietary silicone boost plumbing
High flow fuel supply system

Twin 60mm Downpipes
Stainless Steel 88mm exhaust with dual bypass valves

6-speed transmission:
OEM R32 O2M 6spd gearbox with:
Lengthened Ring and Pinion
Hardened 3 through 6th gear set
Peloquin Pos Differential and Bolt kit
Spec Stage3R based clutch and Flywheel

Quattro AWD Drivetrain:
Orange Haldex Sport Controller

Sport Suspension:
KW Variant 2 coilover suspension
H&R Rear Anti-swaybar
Defcon 1 front control arm stiffening kit

Alcon 4-piston calipers with 14″ Stasis rotors
12″ Stasis rear rotors

Stable Energy roll cage
Recaro Pole Position leather racing seats
Custom Sliders
Euro RS4 Steering wheel
Digital boost pressure, voltage meters

Maintenance & Upgrade History:
Before 18,000 all maintenances were performed per Audi’s recommended schedule at the dealership where the car was purchased new in Normal Bloomington, IL.

@ 18,000 miles
1. Engine oil changed (Castrol 5W-50)
2. Brake fluid changed (Motul RBF600)
3. Fuel filter
4. New plugs
5. New MAF sensor
6. HPA FT 400

@ 20,000 mile:
1. DSG Transmission oil changed (OEM) / 6qt( 5.5L ) / from ECS tuning
2. Haldex Oil changed (OEM) /

@21,000 miles
1. Motor Oil changed (Castrol 5W-50) / 6 qt(5.5L) / from Advanced autoparts
2. Rear differential Oil changed (Synthetic Man. Trans. & Transaxle Gear Lube (75W-90) API GL-4 ) / 1 qt / from AMSOIL
3. Intake air filter (Absolute Efficiency Air Filter, EAA208) / from AMSOIL
4. Cabin filter (WIX 24822 Cabin Air Filter) / from AMSOIL

1. New MAF sensor

1. New engine oil
2. Front differential oil changed – Synthetic Man. Trans. & Transaxle Gear Lube (75W-90) API GL-4 ) / 1.5 qt / from AMSOIL

@30,000 (everything performed at HPA)
1.Conversion: Twin turbo, DSG (Clutch pack, Mechatronics), custom full exhaust. Done at HPA
2. Engine oil (Mobile 1 0W-40)
3. Haldex oil
4. Water pump
5. DSG oil
6. Thermostat
7. Power steering fluid
8. Coolant
9. Spark Plugs
10. Fuel filter
11. New suspension (KW V2)
12. Strut bearing, strut mount
13. See main specs above for details

@32,800 on August 11, 2008
1. Engine oil (Mobile 1 0W-40), 5.5 quarts

@36,000 on April 3rd, 2009
1. Engine oil (Mobile 1 0W-40), 5.5 quarts
2. DSG oil (OEM) 5.5 quarts
3. Engine oil temp sender, gauge
4. DSG oil temp sender, gauge
5. O2 sensor (Bank 2, sensor 1)
6. Driver side front CV boot (8N0498201D)

@37,750 on August 9th, 2009
1. Haldex oil and filter change
2. Break Fluid change
3. Fuel level sender cleaning
4. New brake pad: all 4 corners

@39,000 miles on Oct. 18th, 2009
1. Engine oil change (Mobile 1 0W-40)

@40,000 miles
1. 6-speed manual conversion
2. Exhaust upgrade (resonator removal)
3. Turbo rebuild
4. Engine side plate seal
5. Transmission main seal, release bearing

@42,600 miles on Mar. 19, 2011
1. Engine oil: Mobile 1 0W-40 5.5L

@45,000 miles on Apr. 1, 2012
1. Engine oil: Mobile 1 0W-40 6L

@47,000 miles on Dec. 5, 2012
1. New MAF sensor

@48,500 miles on April 20th, 2013
1. Engine oil: Mobile 1 0W-40 5.5L
2. New serpentine belt
3. New belt tensioner
4. New post-cat O2 sensors


No, you’re not reading the advertisement incorrectly. That’s 540 horsepower. Want an R8 V10 but $100,000 shy of the asking price for a used one? Here’s your car. The performance produced by these cars is simply staggering, and the ask price for the car is only about half of what the price of the twin turbo conversion runs. At $22,000, this car sure looks like a ton of performance for the money. Without a doubt, that performance comes at a price – it’s not very surprising that the first DSG transmission only lasted 10,000 miles. Still, though, with a 6 speed conversion, some inviting looking Recaros, and enough torque to light up all 4 sticky tires, it’s not surprising this car has gotten some use. I would expect some large repair bills looming in the not-too-distant future. I’m not a huge fan of either the RS6 wheels or the headlight treatment on this car, but both of those are pretty easily remedied. Throw the OEM lights back in and a set of BBS LMs on there and call it a day!

Would I buy this car? Well, that’s a very interesting question. There was point when the early Callaway and Dinan turbo cars weren’t worth much more than a stock car; but over the past few years appreciation for them has grown and good examples now command a premium. Go back and look at those cars, and the fit and finish of the twin turbo conversion on this car is significantly better. Those cars also required some serious maintenance to go along with their raised performance. Will the future hold a similar fate for the HPA cars? Only time will tell and it may be an expensive journey. But you may get in on the bottom floor of one of the best kept performance secrets out there, and you’d be on the express elevator for sure.


2005 Mercedes-Benz SLK55 AMG

Montana is well known by car enthusiasts for being the state with some of the most lax speed limit laws in any part of the US. Back in 1998, as a result of a Montana Supreme Court decision, the speed limit was changed “reasonable and proper.” This new speed limit became an issue because it violated the Due Process Clause of the state constitution for being too vague of a law. So back to defined limits with a 75 mph ceiling, then.

That speed limit is still quite better than in some venues and what better to exploit the wide open spaces of Big Sky country than this: a 2005 Mercedes-Benz SLK55 AMG. The SLK has always had a bit of reputation as a hair dressers’ car, favoring style of substance and speed. Mercedes decided to add some fire to the mix in 2001 with the SLK32 AMG, which had a 3.2 liter, supercharged V6 producing 349 horsepower. Along came the second generation and Mercedes-Benz went mad, stuffing a 5.5 liter V8 tuned by AMG into this little roadster, capable of 0-60 times of under five seconds with 355 horsepower on tap.

Year: 2005
Model: SLK55 AMG
Engine: 5.5 liter V8
Transmission: 7-speed automatic
Mileage: 21,600
Price: $30,000 Buy It Now

2005 Mercedes-Benz SLK55 on eBay

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2005 Mercedes Benz SLK 55 AMG Roadster. This is the one you want! One Owner – 21,600 original miles. Never seen snow – only driven in the summer! Purchased in Salt Lake City, UT in April 2005. Tires have less than 1500 miles on them.

5.5 liter naturally aspirated AMG V-8. 355 horsepower with 376 lb ft of torque. 7-speed automatic transmission with AMG speedshift. AMG Sport Suspension; AMG Aerodynamic Bodywork; AMG High Performance Braking System; AMG 18″ Multi-Spoke Alloy Wheels; steering wheel paddle shifters. Zero to 60mph in 4.3 seconds! Validated by Car and Driver magazine in their June 2005 issue! The same model and same color AMG as the one we have was on the cover and road tested by Car and Driver that month. We have included two copies of the magazine for your records.

Safety – built in roll bars; knee, throat thorax air bags, normal driver/passenger air bags; Mercedes ESP traction control system; Xenon headlamps; Teleaide Emergency Calling System; Night Security Illumination System.

Read all the options listed above and read the picture of the original window price sticker for all the information on this car! Included at no extra charge: Mercedes car cover, Mercedes trickle charger (to keep the battery charged while in storage), original window price sticker, two copies of the June 2005 Car and Driver magazine, Mercedes 360 pamphlet (shows all options available) and Mercedes merchandise pamphlet.

Shipping – paid by buyer and discussed prior to completion of sale. We do have a local auto shipping company in town.

We’ve featured a few open roofed BMWs with the M badge here lately, but the SLK55 AMG is a good choice for someone who wants speed with a bit more luxury and smoother edges. While it is a Montana car, the seller states it is fair weather ride, and from the looks of things and the low mileage, it’s hard not to believe that. The asking price of $30,000 seems like a deal considering the power levels, but in all honesty, somewhere a little south, say between $25,000 and $27,000 is a bit more realistic.


Theme Week: 2005 Porsche Carrera GT for sale

No one-percenter’s garage is complete without a stock of some serious rare. When it comes to German rare, it doesn’t get much better than the Carrera GT. Sure, the new Turbo S is now a full second faster to 60 mph, but look at this thing. It has proportions the Mercedes SLR can only dream of. From the buttresses over the screaming V10 to the high exhaust outlets begging to shoot flames, the Carrera GT will never be mistaken for anything other than an exotic hypercar.

2005 Porsche Carrera GT for sale on eBay

A brief overview from the seller:

From 2004 to May 6th of 2006, Porsche built 1,270 examples of the Carrera GT at their new facility in Leipzig, Germany. Of those, 604 examples were sent to the United States. Mounted midship in the Carrera GT was a 5.7-liter V10 engine developing 605 horsepower. Zero-to-sixty took just 3.8 seconds with the 100-mph mark shattered in under seven seconds. Top speed was in the neighborhood of 205 mph. Mated to the race-bred engine is a six-speed manual gearbox. This 2005 Porsche Carrera GT Supercar is the rare Black with Black interior combination and is a two owner car that has been very well maintained and has a complete service history. The clutch was just replaced 9/30/11 with 5110 miles and there are no open recalls or campaigns. This car comes with all books, covers, keys and luggage.

I guess all those reports of tricky clutches on these weren’t kidding, as a new clutch after 5k miles seems extreme. Seven years in, Carrera GTs are holding strong at just over $300k, and $335,000 seems fair enough for a very low-mileage example. If you can come up with the capital it will probably be a decent investment as minimal depreciation and limited numbers indicate a strong future collector’s market. If you’re really in the 1% though, your other investments can do better; get out there and let this amazing car scream to its 8400rpm redline as often as possible.


George Foreman’s 2005 BMW 760Li Hits The Market

Boy oh boy, you have to sell a lot of grills to afford a car like this.

The 7 Series cars have never been my bag, too big and too soft for my liking.  But, after driving a ’10 750Li X Drive this week I am starting to appreciate them more.  It may be that I am getting older with my creaking bones appreciating the plush ride the 7 Series provides.  While that may be I am certain I would run into something, or worse yet someone while I fuss with the plethora of gadgets laid out in the most un-ergonomic of ways.

Here we have the biggest of the lot driven by the big man himself for a scant 12k miles.

2005 BMW 760Li:

From the seller –

“Your looking at a vehicle previously owned by the professional boxer George Foreman. This 2005 BMW 760Li is extremely clean inside and out and was rarely driven and always kept in an air conditioned warehouse. On a scale from 1-10 I give this bad boy a 9.8!! Not only does it look great it’s loaded out with Navigation, Rear-Entertainment, Comfort Access, heated & cooled seats, Park distance control, Soft-Close doors, 19 wheels, heated steering wheel and a ton of more upgrades.”

Great looking car, if you are looking for a newer 7 Series but don’t want to fork over $100k for a new one this could be a nice option.  I prefer the 12cyl car to the twin turbo charged 8cyl cars but you really can’t go wrong with either.

The previous ownership does not really do much for the value for this BMW, unless you are a boxing buff.  In which case I have a used ’85 Eldorado that was once owned by Buster Douglas that I can sell you.

With that the $42k buy it now is ambitious, but I have to think a price in the $37k range would be more than fair.  Currently bidding is up to $25.6k with four days left in the auction.


2005 E46 BMW M3 GTR

Here is an interesting opportunity for those with deep pockets. Factory BMW race cars don’t show up for sale on eBay all that often or even in the duPont Registry for that matter. This 2005 factory car was one of the rule benders that fitted a V8 in place of the inline 6, this got BMW in some trouble with the ALMS folks.

The seller, Scottsdale Motorsports, doesn’t list any of the car’s race history. Their website, which looks like it definitely isn’t a priority for them, also doesn’t provide any more info. The auction states that the factory V8 has been sold off and in its place sits a P54B32 inline six in race ready form. If you really wanted the V8 though the seller is including a P65B40 V8 as a spare.

The ask price is $220,000 with a Buy-It-Now of $379,000. You can get as fast a car for less than that, but factory race cars bring big bucks. I suspect the seller is more testing the waters with this listing rather than actually thinking someone is going to bite at that price. The seller has no eBay feedback and they listed the car under collectibles rather than on eBay Motors, but again I suspect the person that buys this will do it directly from the seller, not over eBay.

2005 E46 BMW M3 GTR on eBay



2005 BMW 330i with ZHP Performance Package

Face it. The BMW 3 series are a dime a dozen these days. With reasonable lease deals and free maintenance for 4 years/50,000 miles, drivers that want a taste of the good life are snapping these Bavarian machines up as fast as they can. Which brings me to my next point. Since the BMW 3 series is such a great driving machine, how can an enthusiast who wants to revel in its performance do so without blending into the woodwork? Of course, you could always go the M3 route. But towards the end of the E46 generation, BMW offered something a little bit more interesting in sedan, coupe and convertible flavor: the ZHP Performance Package.

Available from 2003 through 2005, the ZHP Package upped the horsepower with a hotter cams and software to up horsepower by 10 to 235 bhp. Also included were the M-Tech II bodykit, 18″ staggered size wheels, anthracite window trim and a mix of leather and alcantara on interior surfaces. With a shorter final drive ratio, the ZHP could rip off 0-60 times of 5.6 seconds.

Here’s a relatively low mileage example for sale in Minnesota.

2005 BMW 330i ZHP on eBay

The seller states:

This 330I is flat out exceptional in every way. The interior is perfect. The exterior is exceptional (save a few very small rock chips on the front). Mechanically, this car is in great shape, and it rides and drives like The Ultimate Driving Machine. Figure this is an M3, just not as high insurance premiums, and not as harsh. Unlike and M3, this is a perfect daily driver; fun and sporty, but still comfortable and well mannered.

This car is super clean. It has no accident history. It was absolutely not smoked in. It has no paintwork. It has a clean title. It has a clean carfax. You can bid with utter confidence-this 330i is awesome!

This 330i is loaded with features including:

-Leather interior with Alcantara inserts

-Sport Package
-Premium Package
-Xenon Headlamps
-Harman Kardon Stereo
-Power Moonroof
-Adaptive lights that turn when you turn
-Heated Seats
-Exclusive M Performance Package interior Trim
-dual power seats
-fold down rear seats

This 330i rides and drives perfect. It is fast and the engine is very strong. The transmission shifts precisely and smoothly.

The mileage is very reasonable for a car of this vintage, but given this is a dealer who is selling it, this particular 330i ZHP is about $3,000 to $5,000 to dear. There are forums dedicated to this version of the 3 series, such as ZHP Mafia, and from the classified listings, one can tell these are highly desirable models. Another demerit with this particular car is the automatic transmission. Since these cars generally attract enthusiasts, the 6 speed manual would make this vehicle that much more lustworthy. Still, this is an attractive piece and one of the very few sedans I’d ever consider buying with such a bright hue of red (in this case, Imolarot).

Of course, I can hear the echoes, “why not just buy an M3.” Well, the ZHP is a lot more scarce and you could not get a sedan version of the E46 M3. So a 330i ZHP sedan is about as close as you are going to get to a factory E46 M3 sedan. On top of this, the previous generation M3s have become almost commonplace and play a little too much to the “Fast and Furious” set for my tastes. I like the ZHP so much, in fact, that I’m persuading my father to seek out a clean, low mileage example to replace my mother’s 2000 C280 sedan. It will be a little more hard edged than the C280, but with few new vehicles of interest out there on the landscape, unique sport sedans like the ZHP play well to the family Henriques.


2005 Mercedes-Benz C55

Beginning in the mid 1990s, the AMG C classes from Mercedes-Benz have proved to be quite popular over the years, with a range of breathed on six-cylinder and V8 models appearing in the lineup. Here we have a clean, two owner, C55 for sale in Pennsylvania.

The seller states:

This auction is for a 2005 Mercedes Benz C55 Sport Sedan. I am the second owner of this vehicle. The vehicle is in immaculate condtion. It has been professionally maintained at a Mercedes Benz dealership since new. It has had all its regular maintence performed (Transmission service, coolant service, brake fluid service, oil changes, etc.). It has brand new rear tires with less than 200 miles on them. Front tires at 50%, front and rear brakes at 50%. The vehicle needs nothing. Runs excellent, looks great. Only reason I am selling is due to the fact I have too many vehicles and its time to get rid of a few. This car is very enjoyable to drive. I will definately miss it!

I sold my 2007 C230 Sport with 27k miles for $20,500 two months ago. Even though this is two years older, prices on the last of the W203 AMGs have finally reached somewhat attainable levels. Anything with 300 or more horsepower in a car this size is a riot to drive. I know this first hand, as I’ve driven several of these over the years. Even considering rising gas prices, a C55 in this kind of condition would be a smart investment in the coming years. I mean, where else were you going to put your money, the stock market?


2005 Mercedes-Benz C320 6 speed Sportcoupe

Like the BMW 3 series Compact that preceded it in the 1990s, the W203 C class hatchback was one of those experiments by an upmarket German marque to test the waters and see whether the American public would accept a smaller, cheaper offering. Not many folks took notice of the C class Sportcoupe, but much like GM does with its product lineup, Mercedes got it right at the end, offering the 3.2 V6 with a 6 speed manual. Here’s a clean example for sale in Pennsylvania.

For not much scratch, this last year Sportcoupe is an interesting and quite rare alternative to a MINI Cooper S or Volkswagen GTI. A good friend of mine just picked up a clean 30k mile example of this same car with the 6 speed manual, and while it doesn’t drive too dissimilar from my ’07 C230 sedan, it certainly can give the usual hot hatches a run for their money.


2005 Mercedes CLK DTM AMG

This week for my post representing what would be awesome to have delivered to my garage by Santa the first thing that came to my mind was CLK DTM. I looked for several days and didn’t see what I wanted, after all they only made 100 of these and I want a silver one.
Then call it a holiday miracle one pops up for sale today on eBay.

This isn’t the most beautiful car in the world, but it is guaranteed to catch people’s eye with its muscular stance. The bulging fenders, deep bumper vents, and big spoiler all speak to the purpose of this machine. The supercharged 5.5 liter puts out almost 600 horsepower, more than its namesake Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters race car. The number is deceiving since many AMG cars these days make so much horsepower, and though not a lightweight the DTM does come in on the scale under most other recent AMG vehicle.

The DTM’s weight is partly due to the retained interior comfort features. It does lose the rear seat in favor of an integrated stiffening strut and typical cushy Mercedes front seats are skipped out for significantly racier models with harnesses. A good amount of carbon fiber also helps with weight reduction. Its 220MPH speedometer might help you impress the parking lot crowd. The paddle shift five speed lets you impress those in the passenger seat as you skip to 60 in under 4 seconds on your way to a 200MPH top speed.

The CLK DTM represents some of the rawest most exclusive Mercedes power to ever hit the streets. Not quite on the same level of outrageousness as the CLK GTR, but with far better usability. You can find this kind of power elsewhere for far less money, for instance
with 6000 miles is pushing 645 horsepower and it costs “only” $98,900. You can even spend $100,000 less and still get a brand new top of line AMG, but it won’t be as special as one of these.

This dealer is asking $374,900 for the 3500 mile car. That is a hefty premium for rarity. Plus some people might mistake it for a “typical” AMG car or one of the few boy racer clone DTMs that are out there. Cars like these don’t change hands all that often so sellers can ask whatever they want. Fortunately a new owner would be able to drive the car around for awhile and then name his own price. If you are a convertible driver you can keep browsing the classifieds as they built 80 topless models too, though they have a limited top speed slightly lower than the hardtop. Seeing a car like this with the top down and the giant spoiler looks very odd. All is forgiven with a blip of the throttle and the awesome exhaust note.

I hope Santa has a big sleigh.


2005 Smart Roadster

After the introduction of the original Smart Car in 1998, Smart diversified their lineup by adding the Roadster and Roadster Coupe in 2003 and the Fourfour in 2004. The first generation Smart Car wasn’t officially imported to the US and neither was the Roadster or Forfour. Powered by a turbocharged, three cylinder engine mounted in the rear, this car was likened to a modern day incarnation of the cheap sports car popularized by UK marques such as MG and Triumph. With a low curb weight of just over 1,700 pounds, this car has a power to weight ratio normally found in many exotics. Sadly, due to warranty claims stemming mainly from leaky tops, the Smart Roadster was a failure for parent company Mercedes-Benz and production halted in 2006.

2005 Smart Roadster for sale in Hemmings

The seller states:

Here’s a rare one. A Smart Roadster with large Michalak wheels, low profile tires and a new tuned exhaust system. This sport roadster gets 50-60 mpg on the highway. Never imported into the U.S. and 1 of only 5,000 produced. Heres your chance to own a sports car that can actually save you money on gas!

This car presents an opportunity to be one of the very few in the US to own one of these. Even so, the $18,000 entry fee seems a bit steep. After sifting through eBay UK, the highest priced Smart Roadster I came across was a 2006 Brabus edition for just shy of £10,000 (about $15,000). Given there are probably zero others on the US market right now, the seller is obviously thinking he can name his price. The only lingering question I have regarding a car like this is how difficult it might be to register it in certain states.