Like an expectant father, you keep checking at the front desk for deliveries. You’re making excuses to go down to the mail room. You’re looking out the window to see if a delivery driver is snaking their way down your street. That’s right…it’s new parts delivery day!
This time, it’s our turn. Today, we’re unpacking an Air Lift Performance (ALP) performance series kit for Volkswagen’s MK1 platform. This kit in particular is going to be fitted up to an ultra-rare MK1 Jetta 2 door coupè in the UK. Before it’s fitted, we’ll show you exactly what to expect when you get your ALP kit delivered.
So once your friendly delivery driver has dropped off your kit and waved his goodbye… it’s time for the main event.
Air Lift Performance kits are packed into specific boxes, each one tailored to keep your kit safe. There’s no confusing what’s inside, what with the huge ALP print on the exterior. There’s also a reminder that Air Lift Performance is an official partner of the Speedhunters crew.
Most recently, Speedhunters used ALP products on Vaughn Gittin Jr’s Mustang RTR build. Check out the story here; it gives a great insight into installing your ALP kit.
Once inside the box, you will be greeted by your vehicle-specific Air Lift Performance installation guide.
The guide will take you step-by-step through the installation process on your particular vehicle.
Everyone loves stickers, right? Each sticker pack is sealed in with the installation guide to ensure they reach you safely. Stick them on your car, your toolbox or your fridge. ALP offers a selection for all occasions!
Take a look through the installation manual. There is a kit contents page, which shows you exactly what should be in your kit. It’s a good opportunity to familiarize yourself with the correct way to install the kit. It’s particularly important to read thoroughly when working with compressed air, and the installation manual gives you a heads-up on the potential pitfalls.
In the manual, you will find vehicle-specific, step-by step installation instructions to make your ALP installation a piece of cake! When we develop an Air Lift Performance kit, the install steps are captured in pinpoint detail. It is important that your installation should be as simple as possible, so you can enjoy your Air Lift Performance products to the fullest. Working on your car should be a joy; the more fun we can make it, the better!
But what about the hardware? It’s all packaged with the same ALP attention to detail to ensure that your product reaches you in perfect condition – no matter how far we ship.
All the small parts needed for installation are checked against a list of kit contents at the factory, and it’s all group-bagged so you know exactly where your parts are, come install time. We even include PTFE sealing paste so you don’t get caught without what you need, mid-installation.
Each strut and bag is packed into its own sectioned area, individually bagged and protected.
This means the famous Air Lift Performance red anodized parts reach your door without damage. Here, you can see the camber adjustable front strut top mounts. These are equipped with mounting hardware ready for installation.
Each ALP bag is sealed at the factory and is pressure-tested to make sure your ALP product is dependable for years to come.
Bags and struts are clearly marked with the part number and front or rear markings. The threaded body design of ALP air ride kits allows you completely customize the drop and rise of your air ride kit. This allows you to perfect your stance for your particular wheel setup or taste.
The MK1 Golf kit uses steel-braided leader lines to connect the front bags to the air lines that run for the length of the body. This ensures that the lines are safe inside the wheel arch, and provides a dependable, durable air line that can cope with the harsh environment inside the wheel well.
Each ALP vehicle-specific air ride kit is designed to be installed to the factory mounting points on the body. This gives a straight swap for the original dampers and springs. Here, you can see the machined body of the rear MK1 golf strut, incorporating a factory-style lower bushing.
Air Lift Performance struts also incorporate 30-point damper adjustment to fine-tune the ride quality of your kit to your liking. This is achieved by the adjustment points on the damper, which can be turned by the ALP adjustment wheel.
Air Lift Performance air tanks are finished in natural aluminium, which allows you to see the ALP craftsmanship in its purest form.
We pack the air tank separately from the rest of your ALP air ride kit to ensure it reaches you without dents or damage. Let’s open it up to see what we’ve got!
Air Lift Performance uses aluminum air tanks to reduce the weight of the kit. It’s more difficult to produce aluminium tanks than their steel counterparts, but it lifts the air tank to the same quality of the machined ALP struts, and its a pretty-looking component in its own right.
Each tank is precision-welded and pressure-tested before it meets you. The tanks are plugged for shipping to ensure they are clean inside, and the threads are protected – ready for you to install.
We’re strict about quality control. Only the best components make the grade and make it to your door, so you can be sure your ALP product is of the highest quality.
In case you missed the kit contents in the Installation Manual, we also provide a pictorial, part-numbered kit list.
With the majority of the kit unpacked, it’s time to move on to the components that will drive your air ride system.
The compressors and management!
Packaging is important to us at Air Lift Performance. That’s why your management is packaged away in its own presentation box. This means you can keep it safe and set it aside while you work on the rest of your installation.
Included in your AutoPilot V2 box is another installation guide. This guide will walk you though the steps to get your management installed perfectly – the first time around.
But what does the V2 management system look like?
Lifting the lid, you’ll be greeted with an extra layer of protection. We did say packaging was important!
Underneath, you will find the AutoPilot V2 control panel and air manifold. These will work together to make sure you are riding level at all times, and will allow you to control and adjust your settings to your liking.
A less glamorous, but hugely important, part of your kit is the set of air lines and the wiring loom. Without these, the bags won’t inflate and your system won’t have any power.
Everything is included in your Air Lift Performance wiring and line kit, and the wiring harness is labelled for ease of use.
Air Lift Performance uses VIAIR compressors to provide the compressed air that allows the air bags to lift your car.
Your Autopilot V2 control panel will become a familiar sight in your cabin. The eight buttons allow for eight individually definable presets, and also allow you to inflate and deflate each bag individually.
So that’s your Air Lift Performance kit unwrapped – all components present and correct, and now it’s time for the installation. We will be covering the installation in detail on this particular MK1 Jetta Coupè, so check back to see how this build develops.