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  1. #1
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    anyone have a tow hitch on a VW PASSAT B5.5 (1998-2006)? Experience?

    Hi guys,
    I've been using a trunk mounted bike carrier for a while and I have decided to see about getting a rear trailer hitch but am having difficulty settling on a suitable one for my car. I have the FWD V6 sedan (glx) and have found a few (Curt, draw-tight, hidden-hitch) that have models that all seem to require cutting away part of the facia (I'm presuming he rear/underside of the bumper) in order to fit.

    I was wondering (hoping) if anyone here had gotten or know of a hitch that is well thought out yet does not require this cutting.

    Just upon deciding to do this I got exciting about the available possibilities I will have that previously had me borrowing a cousins truck or needed someone to accompany me when taking the motorcycle in for service, picking up home supplies that would otherwise demand a truck bed or trailer..nothing huge but enough stuff that will be really helpful, in addition to being able to haul the bikes about with some more good solutions.

    I had made a choice to myself that my next vehicle choice would be a truck but with the shaky economy and all I had decided it is best not to get into any new debt at the moment so I could be with this car for a little bit more time.

    any assistance and info will be much appreciated.

  2. #2
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    well..I guess its appropriate to deep six this thread!

  3. #3
    Mantis, Paramount, Campy
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    Yes

    I've got an Audi A6 that is basically the same platform.

    No cutting was required to fit a trailer hitch, just drilling 2 holes through the bottom of the trunk.

    The bumper was not modified in anyway. The bumper cover is 3 seperate parts and I just had to leave the lowest portion of it off when I puit it all back together.

    Warning: due to the already low ground clearance you will bottom out anything you attatch to the hitch going up/down drivewat aprons.
    *** --- *** --- ***

  4. #4
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    I had a 5.5 Tdi wagon and used the Curt hitch. The fascia trimming is minor- I used a tin snips then a dremel to clean up the edges.

  5. #5
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    Nice! Thought I was out of luck on this one, thank you guys! The hitch I have is a Curt also, I was thinking about installing it myself, I searched about the net for a bit and found instances of others that have done this and they expressed that it wasn't too much bother to set up, just measure twice, drill once sorta deal.

    Thanks again for verification.

  6. #6
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    There is (was?) a B5.5 forum out there, so you might get some pictures or information there as well. FWIW, I towed a trailer that weighed an easy 1000 pounds with a 100 pound or so tongue weight with no problems.

  7. #7
    ballbuster
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shayne View Post
    I've got an Audi A6 that is basically the same platform.

    No cutting was required to fit a trailer hitch, just drilling 2 holes through the bottom of the trunk.

    The bumper was not modified in anyway. The bumper cover is 3 seperate parts and I just had to leave the lowest portion of it off when I puit it all back together.

    Warning: due to the already low ground clearance you will bottom out anything you attatch to the hitch going up/down drivewat aprons.
    The A6 is the 'C' platform. I don't think VW makes a C platform car. The Phaeton was the D platform.

    The Passat and A4 are the 'B' platform.

    My wife has a 99 A4 Avant wagon, which is sorta the same platform.... at least up front. The Passat is actually a few inches longer and a bit bigger inside. The B5 Passat was based on the A4, but with some mods.

    We bought the car used with the hitch already on it (actually, that was a selling point to us). Her rear facia/bumper cover/whatever you want to call it, was not cut. I'll take a look as to how it was mounted and report back, but I'm guessing it is like my A4 Sedan, which I installed myself.

    On my my A4 sedan, the hitch basically bolts to the spare tire well, and through the rear tow hook eye. It was actually a pretty easy install. It took me all of about half an hour to bolt it on and get it lined up. No facia cutting needed.

  8. #8
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    Ah, sweet. The hitch I have is a Curt Mfg 11071, the unit with the semi-circular brace that gets bolted onto the spare tire well. This supposedly is a no-cut unit, but in my scouring of the internetz I've seen few but unclear reports on the minor dremeling or not that owners had to do. I'm just trying to get as much info as I can so that I can do it right. In honesty I'm already wary about drilling into the car and getting it wrong.

    I first checked about at U-haul and the like and they seemed only to have models available that involved cutting the fascia somewhat, when I found this one they seemed not much interested in installing something not in their catalog. Honestly, I get the impression that they will be improvising on the installation just as much as I suspect I would. Either way, i've had this long enough, the trunk mounted rack I currently use is marring the tubes on all the bikes I haul about although it has been a solid soldier and works well, I'm ready to step up and also have to added utility that a hitch gives you for other tasks.

  9. #9
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    I just installed one on 2006 Jetta TDI and had to cut the fascia which wasn't a big deal at all. It was the Curt and not hard but it did take 2 sets of hands. If you can put it up on a rack it would be much easier.
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