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Suspension & Braking
Have some questions about suspension or brake setups for your E46 BMW? Get all your answers here!

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Old 12-23-2009, 05:09 AM   #121
snortdavis
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Watch this space for a review of the AST 4200s.
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Old 12-23-2009, 08:12 AM   #122
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Originally Posted by mkodama View Post
I think I still have my old H&R shocks and struts lying around somewhere, I will check again for the Bilstein sticker. I'll also take some measurements and pictures showing how very different my bilstein sports and h&r struts are.

I'm really curious to figure out what is going on. Maybe I got some cheap chinese replica H&R cupkit instead.
They are not the same as the Billy Sports. They are a H&R assembled Bilstein strut specially made for the cupkit. Not on the same level at all with the Sports.

They are probably a twin tube like the OEM strut not Gas Pressure Monotube like the newer Bilstein Sports.
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Old 12-23-2009, 08:50 AM   #123
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Originally Posted by arsevader View Post
they are not the same as the billy sports. They are a h&r assembled bilstein strut specially made for the cupkit. Not on the same level at all with the sports.

They are probably a twin tube like the oem strut not gas pressure monotube like the newer bilstein sports.
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Old 12-28-2009, 12:44 PM   #124
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Originally Posted by Arsevader View Post
They are not the same as the Billy Sports. They are a H&R assembled Bilstein strut specially made for the cupkit. Not on the same level at all with the Sports.

They are probably a twin tube like the OEM strut not Gas Pressure Monotube like the newer Bilstein Sports.
According to H&R, the fronts are the reverse mono-tube (not sure about the high pressure) and the rears are the twin-tube design
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Old 12-28-2009, 06:16 PM   #125
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History of the 320i
Bought the car with non-sport suspension.
Upgraded to full Eibach Pro-kit (shocks,springs,sways) - Bouncy rear and didnt really lower the rear.
Switched to H&R Springs - Had a nice tuck, but too much understeer in high speed corners
So i switched to AST Sportline II. Don't really know how they compare to the US AST sets. But these are 45mm inverted monotube shocks and full coilover (front+rear).

year and body style: 2000 320i
setup being rated: AST Sportline II (True Coilover F+R)
possible adjustments: Ride Height, Adjustable Dampening + Adjustable Rebound
additional components: AST Camber Plates v2, AST Solid Rear Topmounts, AST swaybar links, OMP Strutbrace, Meyle HD FCABs, Powerflex 95A-Black RTABs
additional info: switched back to oem non-sport sways.
wheels: ///M Style 135 Staggered Setup. F: Michelin PS2 225/40R18, R: Falken FK452 255/35R18 (will be replaced by PS2s this summer)
[b]wheels (winter): Style 45. F/R continental Wintersport TS790 205/55R16
ride height: 11cm on jack-points.
dampening/rebound: 2 out of 12 clicks. didn't have the time to test. (+snow, +ice...)
alignment: F: -2.00 camber, 0.06 toe / R: -2.00 camber, 0.09 toe
preferred ride style: Daily Driver, German Autobahn and Track Usage.
would you recommend this setup: Yes. Absolutely.
price paid, including installation: Around EUR 2600 incl install and setup.
ride comfort: 8.5/10. No complaints on most roads. Can be hellish on bad roads (cobblestone) but thats to be expected. Highway and motorway is pretty comfy. On most other roads it isn't so different coming from H&R springs.
handling: 10/10. I'm rating it at a 10 because i don't know what can be improved outside of the adjustability of the suspension. Time will only tell. Next season (spring/summer) i need to tweak the suspension and find my personal preferences for certain applications (daily/track).

Even with dampening/rebound set to low 2/12 there is a lot less body roll compared to h&r springs w/ eibach sways. Setting this to a few clicks higher should reduce the roll even further.
I haven't experienced any understeer to this date. Didn't hit the track at this time, because i got my car back just 2 weeks before the snowfall. But driving on some twisty backroads the suspension provided utter confidence, a lot more than previous eibach and h&r setups. Great stability and precise steering.
With the winter setup, drifting around in snow, the suspension feels great. Much more responsive (steering and throttle wise) than previous years and drifts are totaly controlable.

Expensive? Hell yeah... but worth every cent IMO.
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Old 12-28-2009, 08:36 PM   #126
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Originally Posted by Arsevader View Post
They are not the same as the Billy Sports. They are a H&R assembled Bilstein strut specially made for the cupkit. Not on the same level at all with the Sports.

They are probably a twin tube like the OEM strut not Gas Pressure Monotube like the newer Bilstein Sports.
Ahh, that would make much more sense. Thanks.

The reason I suspect the H&Rs are low pressure twin-tube is that they can be compressed with my arms, while the Bilsteins require a little less than my body weight to compress them, probably around 120 pounds of force.
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Old 12-29-2009, 08:17 PM   #127
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gewse View Post
History of the 320i
Bought the car with non-sport suspension.
Upgraded to full Eibach Pro-kit (shocks,springs,sways) - Bouncy rear and didnt really lower the rear.
Switched to H&R Springs - Had a nice tuck, but too much understeer in high speed corners
So i switched to AST Sportline II. Don't really know how they compare to the US AST sets. But these are 45mm inverted monotube shocks and full coilover (front+rear).

year and body style: 2000 320i
setup being rated: AST Sportline II (True Coilover F+R)
possible adjustments: Ride Height, Adjustable Dampening + Adjustable Rebound
additional components: AST Camber Plates v2, AST Solid Rear Topmounts, AST swaybar links, OMP Strutbrace, Meyle HD FCABs, Powerflex 95A-Black RTABs
additional info: switched back to oem non-sport sways.
wheels: ///M Style 135 Staggered Setup. F: Michelin PS2 225/40R18, R: Falken FK452 255/35R18 (will be replaced by PS2s this summer)
[b]wheels (winter): Style 45. F/R continental Wintersport TS790 205/55R16
ride height: 11cm on jack-points.
dampening/rebound: 2 out of 12 clicks. didn't have the time to test. (+snow, +ice...)
alignment: F: -2.00 camber, 0.06 toe / R: -2.00 camber, 0.09 toe
preferred ride style: Daily Driver, German Autobahn and Track Usage.
would you recommend this setup: Yes. Absolutely.
price paid, including installation: Around EUR 2600 incl install and setup.
ride comfort: 8.5/10. No complaints on most roads. Can be hellish on bad roads (cobblestone) but thats to be expected. Highway and motorway is pretty comfy. On most other roads it isn't so different coming from H&R springs.
handling: 10/10. I'm rating it at a 10 because i don't know what can be improved outside of the adjustability of the suspension. Time will only tell. Next season (spring/summer) i need to tweak the suspension and find my personal preferences for certain applications (daily/track).

Even with dampening/rebound set to low 2/12 there is a lot less body roll compared to h&r springs w/ eibach sways. Setting this to a few clicks higher should reduce the roll even further.
I haven't experienced any understeer to this date. Didn't hit the track at this time, because i got my car back just 2 weeks before the snowfall. But driving on some twisty backroads the suspension provided utter confidence, a lot more than previous eibach and h&r setups. Great stability and precise steering.
With the winter setup, drifting around in snow, the suspension feels great. Much more responsive (steering and throttle wise) than previous years and drifts are totaly controlable.

Expensive? Hell yeah... but worth every cent IMO.
Great review man. Thanks heaps!
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Old 01-04-2010, 11:04 AM   #128
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mkodama View Post
Ahh, that would make much more sense. Thanks.

The reason I suspect the H&Rs are low pressure twin-tube is that they can be compressed with my arms, while the Bilsteins require a little less than my body weight to compress them, probably around 120 pounds of force.
Best way to tell is the diameter of the piston. A twin tube design has a smaller piston to accommodate the inner tube. Bilstein and other monotube struts have a piston that is significantly larger.
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Old 01-24-2010, 12:55 PM   #129
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Lets not forget about this thread! I'm in the market for a suspension set up!
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Old 01-25-2010, 06:24 AM   #130
snortdavis
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Still waiting for my ASTs.

Still think it'll be worth it, though.
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Old 01-27-2010, 06:37 PM   #131
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year and body style: 1999 323i.
setup being rated: H&R Race Springs, Tokico Blue Shocks.
adjustments: -2 degree rear camber, -1.8 up front
additional aftermarket components: in sig, nothing suspension related
additional info: car has about 96K, about 2K on suspension
preferred ride style: low enough to have a very firm ride providing lots of feedback and control, not just for looks.
would you recommend this setup? yes,
price paid, including installation (if applicable): 260 springs new, 300 shocks, and struts used w/ less then 1K on them (shipped prices)
ride comfort: 8, less comfortable then stock sport, but better then my buddies kv2.
handling: 9 where 7 is stock sport.


i love the setup, getting a set of hotchkiss sways in the feature. When i went autocrossing it was a night and day difference, the tight suspension allows you to cut corners closer, keeps you in your seat better, and offers more of a driver feedback. However i recently drove 8 hours in one day and was not fatigued like i used to get in my mustang. the car requires more input now and can bump you pretty hard if your not paying attention to the road dips, but the faster you go the smoother the suspension gets, i can only imagine how this would feel cruising on an autobahn at 120+
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Old 01-27-2010, 07:41 PM   #132
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Still waiting for my ASTs.

Still think it'll be worth it, though.
Who did you order from?

My 5100's took 4 months to arrive.. and then without camber plates and the wrong rates. Teach me not to order direct from Vorshlag
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Old 01-28-2010, 05:15 AM   #133
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My Ride: 2006 M3, 6mt TiAg/Bk
Ordered from Vorshlag.

Spoke to Terry on the phone, parts were in customs from Holland, so should be shipping soon. I knew there might be some delay, and as long as I get them in time to install, let them settle, and then go get a corner balance/alignment by the end of March, all is well.
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Old 01-28-2010, 11:32 PM   #134
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My Ride: 2005 zhp coupe
year and body style: 2001 325i sport.
setup being rated: UUC swaybars, Bilstien sport struts/shocks, H&R race springs, SPC camber arms, kmac stg2 caster camber plates
adjustments: caster cambers, rear camber arms, sway bars
additional aftermarket components: sharkinjector, tms underdrives, AA exhuast, ebay header, intake
additional info: car has about 158,000 miles on it.
preferred ride style: I prefer a stiff ride, i try to have as little body roll as possible.
would you recommend this setup? yes,
price paid, including installation (if applicable): i did all the work
ride comfort: 7
handling: 8

a better set of tires will compliment this setup much better as it will also keep the rear end more stable in turns as it likes to kick out at times. i was running sumitomo htrz4's keeping up with most faster vehicles in the turns while beating most of them, imagine what it would do with good tires.
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Old 03-07-2010, 06:08 PM   #135
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Has anyone tried KW street comfort coilovers..??
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Old 03-07-2010, 07:02 PM   #136
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Has anyone tried KW street comfort coilovers..??
I'm not sure how they could make their normal coilovers any cheaper or softer, so I'm kinda curious as well.

EDIT: just looked at the specs and it looks like they seem to be similar to KW Variant 2 coilovers, but with a "comfort" orientation.
-Instead of lowering the vehicle 1.5-2.9 inches front and 1.2-2.3 inches rear, they only lower the vehicle 0.8-1.6 front and 0.6-1.4 rear.
-They have rebound adjustment just like the KW Variant 2.
-They cost roughly the same as KW Variant 2.
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Old 03-07-2010, 07:50 PM   #137
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coilover or sway bar????

Right now i'm riding on bilstein sport and eibach prokit.I've tried H&R race springs with those same bilstein i didn't like it so i switched springs again but that time i installed the B&G S2.That set was too soft and bouncy.I took them off for some vogtland.Again i didn't like them.Among all of these springs,the prokit gives you a ride close to oem sport package if not better in terms of comfort and tighten things up.It doesnt bounce at all but in corner and lane changing on the highway the B&G feels safer with less body roll.My only problem with the prokit is they're too comfortable and produces a bit of body roll.I was thinking of adding a sway bar set to it but at the same time i'm like why not buying a set of coils and tune it to my liking where i can have dampening adjustment.
What you guys think?
PS: i might start autoXing and tracking my car this summer for the first time in my life.
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Old 03-07-2010, 08:01 PM   #138
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I don't think anyone could advise you much if you don't say why you didn't like those various springs.

But in general the jump from springs and shock sets to adjustable damping coil-overs gets expensive.
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Old 03-07-2010, 08:37 PM   #139
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You're right.I didnt like them for being too low(H&R race),too soft and bouncy(B&G S2) but like the drop about a finger gap up front and less than a finger in the rear,With the vogtland i didn't even drive the car seing that they were so low i took them off right away.I like the ride on the prokit but not low enough and feels less corner and lane changing inspired.
I think the GC street/school coilover with a 300+ lbs rate front and 400+ lbs rate rear would fit me best but i can't justify putting close to 2G in coilover.I like Bilstein Pss9 but it seems the spring rates are on the soft side.
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Old 03-07-2010, 08:53 PM   #140
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You're right.I didnt like them for being too low(H&R race),too soft and bouncy(B&G S2) but like the drop about a finger gap up front and less than a finger in the rear,With the vogtland i didn't even drive the car seing that they were so low i took them off right away.I like the ride on the prokit but not low enough and feels less corner and lane changing inspired.
I think the GC street/school coilover with a 300+ lbs rate front and 400+ lbs rate rear would fit me best but i can't justify putting close to 2G in coilover.I like Bilstein Pss9 but it seems the spring rates are on the soft side.
If you are being that specific, I'd say save up for the nicer coil-overs with rebound and compression damping adjustment like from Ground Control or TC Kline.
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