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EcoHitch Hidden Trailer Hitch Installation - 2017 Volkswagen Golf

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How to Install the EcoHitch Hidden Trailer Hitch on a 2017 Volkswagen Golf

Speaker 1: Today on our 2017 Volkswagen Golf, we're going to be taking a look at and showing you how install the EcoHitch Class 3 Custom Fit Trailer Hitch Receiver, part number 306-X7309. The unique thing about this one is that it's going to be the only class 3 hitch available for our Golf. It's going to give us that 2" x 2" receiver tube opening, opening up a lot more options when it comes to accessories. Another nice thing about our hitch is the fact that the cross tube is going to be completely hidden behind the bumper, and all we're going to see is the receiver tube right below.Now, the way we're going to mount any of our accessories is to through hitch pin hole here on the side, and it is going to accept a standard 5/8" pin and clip. Now, these are not included in the kit, but you can pick them up here at As far as the safety chain connection points go, they're going to be a plate style welded to the bottom.

As you can see, we're going to have plenty of room to get most size hooks on or off, and the slight offset from the hitch pin hole means we're not going to have to worry about any kind of interference.Our hitch is going to have a 200 lbs tongue weight, which is the maximum downward force of the receiver tube, and a 2,000 lbs gross trailer weight reading, which is the amount it can pull, including the trailer and everything we have loaded on it. Now, with those numbers in mind, you should always double check your Volkswagen's owner's manual and never exceed the manufacturer's recommended weight. Now, what's going to make our EcoHitch eco-friendly is that it is going to be made out of recycled materials. It's also going to have a black powder coat finish that's going to resist rust and corrosion.Now I'd like to give you a few measurements that's going to help you out when you're looking at accessories for your new hitch, such as a ball mount, a bike rack, or even a cargo carrier. From the center of the hitch pin hole to the outermost edge of the bumper, it's going to be right about 3.5".

Now, that measurement is going to come in handy when you're looking at folding accessories to make sure you have adequate clearance and it doesn't come in contact with the rear bumper. From the ground to the inside top edge of the receiver tube opening, it's going to be right about 11". Not only is that measurement going to come in handy when looking at ball mounts to find the appropriate rise or drop to match up to your trailer, but at that height, I would recommend a bike rack or a cargo carrier with a raised shank to give you a little bit more ground clearance.So now that we've seen what our hitch looks like and gone over some of the features, let's show you how to get it installed. To begin our installation, we're going to want to come underneath the back of our Golf. Ours is a GTI model, so we do have the dual exhaust, and right on the outside of the exhaust there's going to be a bolt holding this under body panel in place.

So we'll grab a T25 torx bit, and we'll pull it out. We're going to remove the other one on the other side as well.In the center of the fascia here on the bottom, we're going to have two more fasteners holding it in place. This time we're going to grab a T15 torx bit, and we'll pull that center section out. Once we have the threaded section out, if we pull down gently on the fascia, the rest of the clip will come out. On the back side of our wheel well, we're going to have three screws holding this liner in place just like this one.

So you're going to want to grab a T25 torx bit, and we'll pull those out. We'll pull the other two out as well.Once we have those screws pulled out, we're going to grab our wheel well liner, and we're going to pull it away from the car, and if we look up to me, it's going to be kind of hard to see, but right where our fender is going to meet the fascia here, kind of going up into the body, we're going to have another T25 torx bit holding everything together. With all these removed, we're going to do the same thing on the other side.Now we're going to open up our hatch so that we can gain access and remove our taillights. On each corner behind the light, we're going to have this little compartment on the trim here, and if we peel it back, we're going to have this bolt that's holding our light in place. We're going to want to turn that counterclockwise so we can get that out all the way. We'll set this aside, and with that pin removed we can go ahead and grab our taillight assembly, and you're going to want to pull straight back. It will have a little bit of resistance because of the alignment pins in there, and we're going to have just enough room to pull our taillight assembly out, so I'm going to take a screwdriver and I'm going to push that red tab away from the connector to unlock it, and then on the end there we're going to push in on that black tab so we can disconnect the harness. Now, that may be easier if you reach in from the back. We'll set the taillight assembly aside.Now we can get ready to take our fascia off, and it's always a good idea to have an extra set of hands. We're going to start where our fender meets our fascia, and we're going to gently pull away from the vehicle. There's just going to be some clips holding it in place. You just want to pull, working your way up towards the taillight section. Now, once we get to the taillights section, they're going to have these clips that are holding it in place, so you'll want to get a small flathead screwdriver, and we're going to push those tabs in, kind of down and away, pulling that away at the same time. We're just going to work our way over doing one at a time. Once we get to the one that's really close here, we're going to push on this back section, and again, just kind of keep applying pressure away. Whenever you're releasing these clips, you kind of want to take your time because you don't want to break any of them. They can be a little stubborn, though.So now that the clips below the taillight are loose enough, we're going to grab underneath the bottom side of our fascia and kind of lift and pull away at the same time, loosening the clips under here. We'll pull the fascia away just a little bit because it's always a good idea to double check for any kind of electrical connectors. We do have one here on the passenger side, so we're going to want to make sure that it's turned. There's going to be a little tab right there. Just kind of grab that tab, twist the connector sideways, and it'll come out. Then we'll fully remove the fascia and set it aside where it won't get damaged.We're going to go ahead and remove the foam piece that's on the impact bar, and we're going to go ahead and get rid of this. We need to remove the bumper beam itself. On the driver's side, we're going to have three bolts that are holding it in place, and on the passenger side, they'll have the same locations but we're going to have a fourth one as well. I'm going to take a 13 mm socket, and I'm going to pull those bolts out. Then we'll remove the final bolts. Make sure you have a firm grip on it so it doesn't fall. And then you lift up slightly, pull the bumper beam off.With the bumper beam out of the way, if we come to the bottom of the frame right at where the opening is, we're going to have a large oblong hole and a small circular hole. We're going to want to take our pull wire that's in our kit, take the coiled end, and go up through the large hole and then go towards the back. Now, the cable should come out right where we took the bumper beam off. We're going to grab one of our square hole spacer blocks, slide it over the coiled end, feed it into the frame, and then take a 1/2" carriage bolt and thread it onto the end of the wire. And we'll grab the tail end, and we're going to pull all of our hardware until the bolt drops through and engages that block. Now, whenever we remove our pull wire, you want to be careful because we're going to have to repeat this same process on the other side.We're going to grab one of our M8 bolts now, and if we come to where that opening was for our bumper beam, we're going to go to the inside, and we're going to thread the bolt through the inaudible 00:09:48 so that the stud is going to come out towards the back. Now, you just want one bolt on each side to come out just like this.So we can grab our hitch now. The bolts we just put in are going to help us hang the hitch in place, so we don't have to worry about it falling down. Next we're going to put our bumper beam back over our hitch and sandwich it between the body and the bumper beam. So we're going to take one of our M8 bolts. We'll follow it up with a lock washer, and then finally a flat washer, and we're going to be putting it into all the factory locations. And we make sure that everything's lined up and that the bumper beam is going through those bolts to help us hang it, and then we'll get at least one bolt in on each side.Once we have all of our hardware in place, we're going to go around to the backside, and we're going to take the bolt out that we we're using to hang our hitch, and we're going to put the hardware in in the same combination and way we did with all the other ones. We're going to come back with that same 13 mm socket and just snug up our hardware enough so that our hitch and bumper beam sit in the correct spot.Now if we bring our attention to the 1/2" bolt that we dropped through the frame, we can grab our side bracket. We're going to want to use the large end with the oval hole. Slide it around the bolt. We're going to push it tight against the body, and then we're going to secure everything down with a 1/2" flat Washer, lock washer, and a nut. Now, we just want to get this a little snug to where we can still move the bracket around if we need to. If you have the correct side bracket, that tab here should line up with the hitch, and coming from the bracket side going towards the middle, we're going to take one of our 3/8" bolts, and we're going to follow it up with a flat washer, go through the bracket, and then through the backside of the hitch, and we're going to secure it with a 3/8" cerated nut. We'll repeat that entire process over on the other side as well.So with all the hardware in place, I'm going to come back and I'm going to torque it all down to the specified amount in the instructions. Now before we put our fascia back in place, we are going to have to do some trimming to make it fit around the hitch. So I went ahead and marked out the area to be trimmed, and you just want to take your time and go around and make some nice, clean cuts. To help me do that, I'm going to use a rotary tool, but you can use a utility knife or whatever you have available. We always come back, clean up the excess plastic off, and make sure that the opening is going to be big enough.Now with an extra set of hands, we're going to lift our fascia into place. Before we get too far, we're going to make sure that we plug that electrical connector back in. We'll push it in and then turn it, make sure it locks into place. And we'll help guide our fascia in place, making sure it clears the hitch, and then we line all those tabs back up underneath the taillight. We can start working our way from the center moving outward. Now, you want to make sure that the fascia does clear the hitch. Now, you may need to take it back off and do some minor trimming, but as you can see here, we follow the dimensions on the instructions and it fits really nice just going right around the hitch.So now we can reinstall everything that we removed earlier. Finally, we put the trim ring around the area we cut. Now, as you can see, it's not quite big enough to go all the way around, so we just trimmed it off where it's going around our receiver tube. That'll finish up your look at the EcoHitch Class 3 Custom Fit Trailer Hitch, part number 306-X7309 on our 2017 Volkswagen Golf.

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Info for this part was:

Employee Joshua S
Video by:
Joshua S
Employee Chris R
Video Edited:
Chris R
Employee Robert C
Test Fit:
Robert C

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