Opinions wanted on new suspension set up

Discussion in 'Mazdaspeed 3 Suspension & Brakes' started by SupersixEVO, May 2, 2019.

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  1. SupersixEVO

    SupersixEVO Silver Member

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    Hey everyone,

    I posted a thread a little while back asking for opinions/suggestions for new wheels. That thread went so well that here I am again asking for more, only this time about possible suspension setups.

    My original plan was to get a set of Swift Spring and some Konis or Bilstein Struts and be done with it... but I got to thinking... for a few hundred bucks more... I could get a good set of Coilovers.

    Now I'm no Auto X'er or anything and I DO NOT want to slam/stance the car but the adjustable ride height might come in handy. I also enjoy going on twisty canyon runs and perhaps the coilovers would be more fun in this area. I've also read that coilovers are easier to install, which is a big plus since I want to do the install myself.

    So here's the options I picked out thus far.

    1) Swift Springs plus Koni Sport Yellows or Bilstein B8's

    2) H&R Street Performance Coilovers

    3) Bilstein B14 Coilovers (apparently out of stock everywhere)

    4) Ksport Kontrol Pro Coilovers (I've read mixed reviews on this set up but found it for SUPER cheap...)

    5) JBR Coilover Kit (As you can tell by my sig I'm a JBR whore but these coilover seem to be discontinued)

    And those are my picks for possible suspension setups. Just an FYI to everyone, I also bought some SPC adjustable rear camber arms. I might buy some replacement front endlinks too while I'm at it.

    So yeah, any and all opinions/suggestions/questions welcome.

    Thanks MSO!!!
     
  2. Mauro_Penguin

    Mauro_Penguin Punk in Drublic Motorhead Platinum Member

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    Hold off on the endlinks until you make your decision, as you may need a different length for your setup.

    Ksports ride stiff. I dont remember which trim the guy had, but one of our SoFL Nator fam had them. Kind of cheap damper valving... but there are others that have them and liked them.

    I am personally a fan of both swift springs and bilsteins. I am not a fan of Koni, because they tend to fail and leak more than bilstein.

    H&R use bilstein dampers on their coilovers, which is a plus.

    The big thing that I want to point out is, how much time do you want to spend on adjustment AFTER the installation? Springs and struts, you install and done. With coilovers you will be adjusting height, and possibly rebound if they are adjustable. If you are not prepared to spend a lot of time adjusting them and possibly sorting out gremlins, then go simple and stick with lowering springs.
     
    Last edited: May 2, 2019
    Mauro_Penguin, via a mobile device, May 2, 2019
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  3. gotovato

    gotovato Silver Member

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    Of what you've listed there, id go for the bilsteins, they are a high quality coilover and very good dampers.

    another option for a good price would be a set of ST coilovers. made by KW, with KW valving (so you know its good) and they only have height adjustment so you dont need to worry about playing with dampening.

    im currently on a set of ST which are a great street/back road ripping type of coil over. i will be upgrading soon but thats due to my track use.
     
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  4. SupersixEVO

    SupersixEVO Silver Member

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    Yeah I've read mixed reviews on the Ksports. The only reason I'm even considering them is because I found them for like $495 which isn't bad. I could save a little money and get a TMIC or something.

    I'm still leaning toward the H&R CO. The fact that they use Bilsteins dampers and are only like $1100 is really the reason why they are ahead in my book.

    I don't mind having to adjust every now and then but I don't want to have to be constantly having to chase down any gremlins. My friend has a set of Tein CO on his EVO 8 and he's always complaining about having to readjust the height. For some reason his CO will lower themselves over time. I chalk this up to cheap CO but I don't really know. One of his dampers blew on him as well.

    Thanks for the tip to wait on the endlinks. I was almost about to order some.

    The issue with the Bilstein CO is that I can't seem to find them for sale anywhere. All the usual places (Edge Autosport, Tire Rack, etc...) have them listed as unavailable or not listed at all. :nusenuse:

    The ST Coilovers are very interesting though. I didn't know they were made by KW. I've seen them on Tire Rack but didn't play much attention to them because they looked generic and I haven't heard of ST Coilovers and have not read any reviews on them. Please tell me how you like them? They're pretty well priced too so yeah, very interesting.
     
  5. gotovato

    gotovato Silver Member

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    Ive been happy with the ST on the street and ripping the backroads, ive got about 60,000km on them, lots of hard track use and theyre still going strong. ride is firm for sure, but it wont beat you up much, its a sporty feel but it absorbs bumps well.

    my main issue is for track use theyre way too soft and high speed compression is meh, so for me ill be upgrading to something custom valved and sprung.

    for most the ST will be enough, theyll go low enough, quality is high, built by a real company, and they're actually praised on multiple forums(ive read on BRZ/FRS/86 forums, and ford focus forums that people really like them).
     
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  6. SupersixEVO

    SupersixEVO Silver Member

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    Nice! How was the installation? Do these come with there own top hats and fully assembled, ready for install? I believe you have to reuse the OEM top hats to install the H&R Coilovers.
     
  7. gotovato

    gotovato Silver Member

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    with the ST you have to reuse OEM tops, which is ok, also install was pretty straight forward, nothing special or annoying lol.
     
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  8. SupersixEVO

    SupersixEVO Silver Member

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    Okay, I'd probably buy another set so that I can keep the OEM spring and struts assemble and put away somewhere as a back up. I've read somewhere that the Focus OEM top hats are better than our OEM tops and they fit. I assume the tops are from the current gen Focus. Need to research a bit more.
    Thanks man! Looks like we have a new contender!
     
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  9. gotovato

    gotovato Silver Member

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    no problem!
     
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  10. SupersixEVO

    SupersixEVO Silver Member

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    Oh I forgot to ask... which model ST Coilovers do you have? The X or the XTA?
     
  11. gotovato

    gotovato Silver Member

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    ive just got the X
     
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  12. SupersixEVO

    SupersixEVO Silver Member

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    Sweet, that's the one I was looking at. Thanks bro.
     
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  13. SupersixEVO

    SupersixEVO Silver Member

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    Alright so I pretty much narrowed my choices down to either the H&R coilovers or the ST X Coilovers, with the Swift Springs and Bilstein B8's as a maybe.

    It seems like the ST X Coilovers are by special order only. Everywhere I looked has a 4-6 week lead time before they ship. Which kind of sucks, but they are $300 cheaper than the H&R's... which is good.

    The lead time on the ST's kind of make me lean towards the H&R's. Although I'm not in a hurry, I also don't want to wait a month or more to get them in my hands and installed.

    I do have a questions to all the suspension gurus out there...
    Would the handling characteristics and street manners of Swift Springs paired with Bilstein B8's be on par with the H&R Coilovers? Both setups would cost about the same so that's a wash. The only real difference would be the adjustability that the H&R's offer. On the flip side, I assume the added complexity means more possibilities for things to go wrong.

    Either way, I'll be making my decision soon. Any and all input welcome.

    Thanks, MSO
     
  14. Sho

    Sho Silver Member

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    H&R coilovers, while ride quality is awesome. They're super soft during any aggressive driving. I had em on my Juan and didn't like that they had no adjustment aside from ride height.
     
    Sho, via a mobile device, May 3, 2019
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  15. SupersixEVO

    SupersixEVO Silver Member

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    Interesting, I haven't heard anyone say that the H&R's were too soft. Good to know. I guess the Swift Spring and Bilstien's might be a stiffer setup. What setup did you switch too after the H&R's?
     
  16. Sho

    Sho Silver Member

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    Switched to mazdaspeed accessory coilovers. Night and day difference in performance
     
    Sho, via a mobile device, May 3, 2019
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  17. SupersixEVO

    SupersixEVO Silver Member

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    Dang, I have been looking for those for a while but have not been able to find any for sale. They must be discontinued or something.
     
  18. Sho

    Sho Silver Member

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    Yeah, theyve been discontimued for a while. Grabbed mine in January 2015 haha
     
    Sho, via a mobile device, May 3, 2019
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  19. SupersixEVO

    SupersixEVO Silver Member

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    Aww man... Well you snooze you lose. Thanks for the input.
     
  20. monkey.bones.007

    monkey.bones.007 Chuckin' sausage like a hooker rubs dick Platinum Member

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    Koni Yellow and the GC kit worked for me on my PU. You can also look into the ISC kit, but I've no direct experience with them. I know someone who just got a setup for their PU in the track flavor. I know another individual who had a terrible experience with the track setup on their 6. Take it for what it's worth, but I did drive a Challenger at the Dragon at this year's Mazda Dragon meet.[​IMG]

    Sent from my SM-N960U using Tapatalk
     
    monkey.bones.007, via a mobile device, May 3, 2019
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