Today we are going to talk suspension. What are lowering springs? Are coilovers a good choice? Do I want to get air ride? Feel a little in over your head? Well, you’re in luck! We are here to bounce some information off of you and make sure you don’t bottom out. Unless that’s what you’re into.
The Best Ways to Lower your Car!
What does a suspension do?
A car’s suspension system consists of springs, shocks, control arms, sway bars, and many other parts that connect a vehicle to its wheels and allows movement between the two. So when you accelerate, brake, and corner, the suspension is putting in that work to keep things in order and prevent you from scraping the underside and causing a lot of damage. Yeah, there are a bunch of things that you may feel are more important like engine performance or aesthetic mods. But suspension is arguably the most important aspect as it will help you put that power down where it belongs. Its super important not just in racing applications but daily driving also. All roads aren’t created equal, so when you daily drive who knows what you may come across.
Why do people mod their suspension?
Well, that’s a complicated thing to answer since there are a lot of different reasons, and everyone has their own goals regarding their vehicle. Depending on who you ask, the most common reasons are to be more aesthetically pleasing or for performance. Lowering a car lowers its center of gravity, SO, in addition to looking better it also means less body roll which results in better cornering and more precise steering control. Let's look at the 3 most common ways people mod their suspension.
Lowering springs are often looked at when people are considering lowering their car. Let’s take a look at what this entails and why it’s even considered. Lowering springs aren’t very complex in the grand scheme of things. They’re a shorter spring that’s used to replace the OEM ones your car comes with. Oftentimes people will install lowering springs with their stock shocks and just send it from there. While this can work, depending on the state of your current shocks, this could speed up their end of life. So, if you want to rock some lowering springs, then it’s probably a smart idea to get some stiffer shocks, like Koni or Bilstein, to pair with them.
It’s a solid way to reduce wheel hop and improve overall traction, of course the trade off will be a stiffer ride. Most lowering springs don’t really allow for much adjustability, although there are some exceptions to this, such as KW, H&R and MSS with their height adjustable springs. This is done with an adjuster that has been added to the spring and is threaded.
The beauty in going this route is that they are a fairly simple installation. Replace the factory springs and you’re done! Lowering springs are also great as they will work with cars equipped with OEM adaptive damping shocks. There are a ton of great brands to go with, such as H&R, Eibach, Vogtland, and so many more.
The great thing about coilovers is that they allow adjustability. Unlike with lowering springs, coilovers are sold as kits to completely replace the factory spring and shock assembly. Don’t like your current ride height? Need more ground clearance? Not a problem, it’s adjustable. Some coilover kits even allow you to dial in the rebound and compression damping to fine tune the suspension setup even beyond just ride height.
They may seem a little more involved, but they do have their advantages. Adjustability is the biggest advantage hands down. When it comes to racing applications, coilovers are the go-to due to the tuneability. Ground clearance is the number one, but on some of the higher end models you’re able to fine tune the damping and camber. Coilovers will also generally offer better handling than that of lowering springs, since the Spring and damper are a completely matched pair engineered to work together as a unit. KW, H&R, and Bilstein are a few names that come to mind amongst the many that fit the bill regarding tons of tuneability.
What is air ride? It’s a suspension system designed to be a self leveling system to allow continuous regulation of height from within a vehicle. This is done by replacing the springs with air bellows, also known as bags, within a system composed of an air compressor, an air tank, a manifold, air lines, and air struts.
So why would you want to do this? Air ride is great because you literally get the best of both worlds! Pull up to the car show and air it out to lay frame and turn all the heads. It’s also great to be able to deal with obstacles on the fly. These reasons are why Air Ride is so great, literally raise or lower your car at the push of a button in seconds.
Something for everyone
And that’s a high level overview regarding different suspension setups when modifying your car. Whether you just want a lower and more appealing look, or the ability to dial everything in to attack the track, there is literally something for everyone.
If you have any other questions, don’t hesitate to reach out as we are always willing to help! Looking for more mod products? Check out our collections of mod products that include GTi mods Mk7, Volkswagen Golf R mods, BMW F80 M3 mods, and F8X M4 mods. Take it easy and happy modding.