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2000 volkswagen new beetle GLS
13 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello y'all, this is a thread only to inform all of you that yes a cluster swap is possible, pretty much anything you can think of with some
re-wiring and doing custom shells/frames and you're good to go.

First lets talk about the Cluster swap, yes it's possible but you need money to invest on it, roughly around $150-400 depending on what you want and what you currently have,
If your beetle its an early model 98-99, your best bet is an audi tt cluster from 99-2001, because all signals lights are controlled by wires instead of CAN, if you want another newer cluser 2000+ basically have to replace some modules, ecu, wirings, but you'll be looking to spend a good amount of money. My friend @gäs_güzlr can help you guys with it as he did it. Why? Because some ecus didn't have CAN enabled although they have the wires for it.

Now if you have a 2000-2010 then its easier, first the easiest way to do it is doing a immobilizer delete on the ecu so your car can start with any cluster, but if you want to keep the immobilizer, you'll need both skc (secret key codes) of both clusters and you need vcds to program keys which involves more money and time, for me it wasn't worth it.

So once you figure that out, then you need to decide wich cluster you want, i decided to go with a tt cluster because i can easily cut the dash frame from the tt and put it on the beetle dash



Like that and then do some bondo, but you can choose whatever as long as you can do a shell for that cluster. So with the wiring, the tt cluster was unstable with my car's setup being it a 2000 beetle with can and the tt cluster being a non can cluster, i wasn't able to do that much with it, so i decided use the tt cluster shell and use a motherboard from a w8 passat cluster



Because it has the same display and looks good once fitted, but you have modify the w8 cluster because the w8 cluster gas needle wouldn't move and you'll also get an immo active message and abs and brake blinking light, to fix all of that you need to send it to Clusters by Litke so he can reprogram it and remove the immo message and also do some other mods like needle sweep and all of that, after you do it, you just need to add 4 wires to the cluster, 3 are for the wiper stalk buttons and 1 is for the outside temp sensor,
Heres the diagram, on the 32 pin green plug

you'll have a fully working custom cluster on your new beetle, if you need more help, send me a message and I'll gladly respond.

Now with the rns-e audi Navigation radio,
This one is more easy to do, you just need the following things: Bose amp, rns-e with all plugs, GPS antenna, can simulator, VCDS and do the custom shell (you'll also need the Code for the radio) so you may wonder why do we need an amp, well its because the rns-e doesn't have output for the rear speakers only the front ones, so its better to use the amp wich allows you to have 12 speakers on your beetle, 4 dash, 2 on the pilars and the 4 of the doors.
So now you need to to do the custom wiring harness for the radio, if you want to do it, I'll share with you the wiring, but you need the CAN simulator so it doesn't drain your battery and it turns on when you put your key and it lights up on the night, now you need vcds to program the radio to an audi A6 because thats the only audi that has a physical vss (speed sensor wire aka gala) as with our beetles since our beetles aren't capable to send the vss over can only through a wire. This was a shame because i had it progammed so it showed the lambo boot screen but because the redio requires the speed signal i had to configure it to an A6.


Once you do that, you pretty much have almost everything done, you just need to do the custom shell and figure out where you'll put the antenna.

2000 volkswagen new beetle GLS
13 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Here are the pictures for the dash








As you can see it turned out really good and radio works fine, although it currently doesn't have Bluetooth or aux enabled its good to have a navigation with built-in in maps in case you're lost and your phone is discharged you can go back to your house with the nav, and you can load the music on a sd card as a temporary way.

So yeah that's how i did my cluster swap and the Rns-e on the beetle, hopefully y'all find this thread helpful!

2000 volkswagen new beetle GLS
13 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I forgot to put a picture of the Cluster once it's finished and mounted, anyway here's the result.



I'll later upload a video of it working, 100% as it should, and the best thing is that i have navi information on the cluster because originally, in the audi tt you were able to get nav guidance with the rns-e and the cluster, but the w8 cluster is also compatible with rns-e nav guidance.

2000 volkswagen new beetle GLS
13 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Here are Some stuff that i'm going disclose here that i forgot to mention when i first made this post.
Car Speedometer Vehicle Odometer Tachometer

Car Vehicle Speedometer Motor vehicle Steering part

1) codes, problems and cluster set ups.
So the cluster was really difficult to do, i ended up taking 2 months to finish the project, the main problem was finding the correct cluster for the beetle, since for example, 98-99 beetles don't have CAN-Bus data going to cluster (some late 99s did have can bus but not all did), instead for most of the needles and lights, it uses a wire to control every light and needle, and that's why i said its better if you get a know working tt cluster from a 99-01 audi tt as those clusters work the same way as the 98-99 beetle.
And my beetle its a 2000, with CAN-Bus, i had more variety to choose which cluster i should work with, and to be honest either a jetta, golf, or passat cluster before 06 would work with a 2000-2010 beetle.
You also need a wiper stalk to control the lil red display, not hard to install and works just fine.

* The first problem that my cluster currently have is that it doesn't show anymore when the doors are open when it used to, idk what happened and i tested another cluster just to make sure, and it worked so its my cluster that seems to be faulty.
*and the second problem that my cluster has is that the gas miles to empty don't really work as expected, and that's because of my 99 ecu with no imo, supposedly i need an ecu of a 2001+ preferably from a golf for it to work as expected, because the ecu i currently have, doesn't send the trip data to the cluster and that's why it doesn't really work.

The cluster overall works great, accurate rpms, speed, gas and engine temp and all lights work as expected.

The total work for the project ended up being about $337 usd for the parts needed, clusters, sheels, frames, stalk, cluster program, and i did the custom dash for the cluster, if you have no experience doing body work, then you'll have to pay someone to do it and that would cost you more, so you need to have a good budget if you want to do this.

What i asked Clusters By Litke to do with my cluster was to fix the temperature gauge, fix the abs light, remove the immo active message and chime, needle sweep, clock and mileage display back light and needles always on, change in the cluster's memory that has a smaller gas thank.

Cluster is plug and play, it would work plug and play if its already programmed and from that you only need to add the 3 wires from the wiper stalk to the cluster and add the wire from the outside temperature sensor so it shows it on the red display.

2) audi rns-e and steering wheel controls.
So the controls of the steering wheel do work with the audi rns-e, i ended up using the 2010 golf clockspring and steering wheel and i did the connection to the radio and it works fine, although some buttons used to be for the cluster on the golf and i cannot do that much with them, some are there esthetically and have no use.
The rns-e, after all, its a good radio, i love the sound that is very clear and powerful, it's just that it lacks the base that most of us want.

The maps do work great and i have the navigation on the cluster, although for this you need vcds to enable that setting on the cluster, otherwise it won't appear magically.

I currently don't have Bluetooth or aux since the radio supposedly is in a low firmware version and i have to update it to the 250 version with a disk, i can do it but right now i really don't want to do it right now.

The rns-e cost me $50, $25 oem Bose AMP, plus $8 to get the code, $20 CAN-bus simulator that basically turns on the radio when you put the key and also turns the lights on of the radio and $15 bondo body filler to do extend the dashboard for the radio, and i made the wiring harness myself, but you can get a custom harness from ebay that plugs directly to the rns-e with the original beetle wiring.

And that's pretty much everything on this project, now I'm focusing more on the outside looks but i might go back to modify the interior so you might want to stay tuned just in case.
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