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· Registered
4,967 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
This is a quick how-to guide on fitting a TRS Tow Loop to an Evo 8.

The procedure is likely to be similar on the 7 and 9, but you will need check carefully the clearance of the tow loop and the bumper mouldings, as these are slightly different from the 8. That's not to say it will/will not work, but just that I've only got an 8, so have not tested it on a 7 or 9.

Note that there is a minor interference between the tow loop and the bumper moulding which will cause the bumper moulding to flex by 5mm to 10mm if being towed with an offside bias. This is due to the length of the metal tag on the tow loop versus the positioning of the threaded hole and the bumper moulding. I have decided I'm happy with this fit for the followng reasons:

1. The tow loop is good value at £15.95 delivered.
2. The fitting method does not require welding of brackets or cutting of the bumper.
3. The tow look is easily hidden by the numberplate for day to day use. (FQ plates, not 260 plates)
4. The amount of the flex is minimal at 5-10mm
5. The flex will only occur when being towed with an offside bias to the direction
6. The bumper is flexible and no signs of damage were visible during my manual testing (pulling strap in a slightly offside direction)
7. The tow loop will only be used if I have a big enough off that I can't drive away, so there's going to be other damage and a sligh flex on the bumper (which appears to cause no damage) will be the least of my concerns!
8. The known damage which would be incurred by towing from the OEM point (on rail up behind intercooler) is to damage the intercooler, splitter and bumper (ask Raj_UK). The small flex on the bumper seen with my solution is virtually nil.

So whilst I have not tested this tow point, and I can't quantify whether there would be any damage from towing using a strap installed in this way I must say that my initial testing shows no ill effects as the 5-10mm deflection in the bumper moulding is taken up by the flexibility of the plastic and does not appear to cause damage. I'm happy with it. If you try the test fit instructed a Step 3 then continue, if not then don't.

I accept that my solution is somewhat of a compromise, and that a full on metal tow eye with a bumper cut-out to match is a "better" solution, but it's a lot more hassle and more costly. I believe my solution does what I need to do and for the right price. It is, however, as yet un tested. (I kind of hope it stays that way!)

Keywords: front tow towing loop towloop tow-loop eye toweye tow-eye strap towstrap tow-strap fit fitting install installing louder loud faq how-to guide how to evo 7 8 9 vii viii ix

Parts required
- TRS Tow Loop pack. Buy from Pro-Tec Motorsport HERE
- 2x Screws (optional)
- Masking tape (optional)

Tools required
- Pliers
- Philips screwdriver
- Spanner set
- Hex drive set
- Long wide screwdriver/lever (optional)
- Drill and drill bits (just smaller than the 2 screws) (optional)

Step 1 - Remove front bumper
**Will post link**

Note it had been suggested by someone else in another thread that the captive bolt in Pic 1 could be used. I tried the strap here but I don't think this bracket is strong enough. See Pic 1 to 5. It turns out that this bracket is mirrored on the other side, where it is used to hold the horn! See Pic 6. The red circle is the mirror of the suggested hole. Instead I've used the hole circled in green.

Step 2 - Install the tow loop
- Locate the horn on the nearsideSee where this is fixed to the main chassis rail. Go down a bit and you'll see two holes with tapped threads. I used the lower of the two. Green circle in Pic 6
- Place the metal plate of the tow loop over the hole so that the strap extends horizontally towards the nearside - i.e. to your right as you stand infront of the car. Then put the wide washer over the plate and the spring washer on last. Then bolt all the way through. (You may need to re-tap the hole, but I found it was fine, just used a hex drive on a socket set driver to screw in carefully.) Pic 7

Step 3 - Check bumper clearance
- First remove the screws which hold the mesh and plastic mask to the back of the meshed hole in the lower nearside of the bumper.
- Refit the bumper (dont screw it in) and pull the tow loop through the hole in the lower nearside of the bumper.
- Check the clearance of the strap past the vertical bumper moulding which seperates the centre hole and the nearside hole in the bumper.
- It will interfere very slightly, particularly if you were being towed slightly to the offside. However I deemed the level of interference to be acceptable on the basis that I do not expect to have to use the tow loop, and if I did then the chance of damage to the bumper would be very low as it flexes by only about 5-10mm or so.
- If you are happy with this fit, continue, if not then don't.

Step 4 - Modify numberplate fitting (optional)
- The tow loop will be positioned behind the numberplate, so you need easy access to this so you can get the tow loop out before going on track. This optional modification is to convert a stuck on plate to a screw on plate.
- If your numberplate is stuck onto the black backing plate then you'll need to carefully level this off using the flat screw driver or a scraper or something. Be carefull not to "twist" the screwdriver as this can damage the reflective material on the back of the numberplate and this damage will be visible from the front.
- The backing plate attaches to the support frame with one bolt. Check this comes out ok. Pic 8
- Refit the backing plate and then hold up the numberplate centrally to the backing plate. May be a good idea to tape it in place now.
- Put a strip of masking tape over the front of the number plate. Check that it is clear behind the holder and then drill through the numberplate and holder together and then carefully fit the screw.
- Now your numberplate is held by screws. This means that when you want access to the tow loop you only need to undo the two screws holding the numberplate to the backing plate and the one bolt which holds the backing plate to the support frame. (The support frame is small and unobtusive enough that the tow loop can pass through it easily.)

Step 5 - Modify bumper mesh
- The mesh that covered the lower nearside hole in the bumper needs to be modified to allow the strap to pass through.
- Refit the mesh using the original screws but leave off the mask. Pic 9
- Use the pliers to bend the edge of the mesh to create a c10mm gap next to the bumper moulding. Pic 10
- Then test-fit the bumper being careful to pass the tow loop through the gap you've created between the mesh and the bumper moulding. Re-check you're happy with the clearance of the loop on the mesh and the bumper moulding when being towed, particularly if there's an offside bias to the direction of pull. Pic 11

Step 6 - Finally reinstall the bumper
**Will add link**
- You can see that the loop is easily accessed when the number plate is off. Pic 12
- But hidden when the plate is back on. Pic 13 and 14

PS - If you're thinking of installing a horn or cold air feed, then these are good things to do while the bumper is off:
Horn replacement guide
Cold air feed fitting guide

That's it. Hope this was useful. Cheers.


· Registered
4 wheels normally dirty
26,577 Posts
Hate to be a dick, but if the car was stuck properly somewhere when u pulled the loop it would shear off at the bolt.

I mounted mine in line with the pull as opposed to at a 90degree angle to it
i agree you shoul pull it in line not opposed to it

· Registered
4,967 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I agree that it would be better to have it pull inline, but I couldn't find anywhere suitable. That red X in pic 4 would not work, I tried investigating that. The width of the metal triangle that the tow loop's attached to is too wide, so it can't fit down inside that chassis leg to bolt through where the X is.

(Also, just for people who didn't read the OP, pic 4 shows how 'not to do it'. But I can see you've used it to show where the X is.)

If you can recommend a suitable location for this tow loop to fit without modifying the E8 bumper then let me know. In the mean time I'll let you know if it comes off.


· Registered
4,967 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Can a awd even be towed?
Yup. :smthumbup

If you're stuck in the gravel, then they're gonna tow you out. Best to use a proper tow point, else they'll just hook onto basically anything to get you out and get the session re-started.
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