jrg77 New Reader
Feb. 14, 2010 8:01 a.m.

'Sup,

 I gotta but some struts and shocks for my 05 Corolla Xrs. I don't race the thing, but I don't wanna end up with something that rides like a marshmallow either. Any suggestions for some sportish dampers?

 And while you're at it, any ideas on a car that would be a fun replacement? I've become hooked on 8k rpm and 6-speeds with 4 doors. I tried the new Xrs and it just don't get it for me...

Appreciate the help, Jason

digdug18 Reader
Feb. 14, 2010 10:14 a.m.

what did you do?? I can't read your post

jrg77 New Reader
Feb. 14, 2010 10:36 a.m.

'Sup,

I gotta but some struts and shocks for my 05 Corolla Xrs. I don't race the thing, but I don't wanna end up with something that rides like a marshmallow either. Any suggestions for some sportish dampers?

And while you're at it, any ideas on a car that would be a fun replacement? I've become hooked on 8k rpm and 6-speeds with 4 doors. I tried the new Xrs and it just don't get it for me...

Appreciate the help,

Jason

pres589 Reader
Feb. 14, 2010 11:15 a.m.

Why put struts on a car you want to sell? They won't add anything to the resale value of the car, sad to say.

If you're looking for something fun with four doors I'd look at BMW 3-series cars.

4cylndrfury SuperDork
Feb. 14, 2010 11:50 a.m.

IS300 - 4 doors of fun, and just a few bolt ons away from boost-inspired childlike giggling!

Feb. 14, 2010 11:59 a.m.

'05 still has the 2ZZ, right? I wouldn't mind one of those for a DD. I'm really not sure why they replaced that with the tC's 2.4L for the new XRS.

What about an RX8? They're not true 4-doors, but they do have decent access to the back seat and would certianly get you the rpm you like.

Why do you want to replace your Corolla?

For the shocks, I generally throw Monroe/Napa Sensatracs under anything I'm not racing.

jrg77 New Reader
Feb. 14, 2010 12:44 p.m.

Yeah, it's got the 2ZZ. I'm workin the suspension because I want to keep it. I'm looking at other cars because it has 153k on it and I don't want to go looking in a hurry cause it put me down. I really dig the RX-8. Can it handle 30k per year? A co-worker says he's known at least 3 to hand-grenade the engine around 50k. That would be a year and a half into ownership and would SUCK. A BMW would be cool as long as I can afford the maintenance, and I've heard that those german cars put lots of dealers' and mechanics' kids through college with a check.

93celicaGT2 SuperDork
Feb. 14, 2010 2:18 p.m.

I'd just keep rolling with the rolla, personally... That's on my short list of ultimate commuters.

4cylndrfury SuperDork
Feb. 14, 2010 2:57 p.m.

I will say my AE101 was super fun - slow yes, but it responded well to little add ons, and it was surprisingly responsive and super easy on maintenance. Add a healthy dose of 5 speed manual and a decent clutch, and it was a GREAT commuter!

Feb. 14, 2010 3:32 p.m.

153k on a Toyota really isn't bad at all, especially if you keep up on the maintenance. I would expect to get another 100k out of that.

For the RX8s, if the motor DID blow up at 50k, it'd be covered under warranty, but honestly, that's the first I've heard of any engine issues like that. The worst I've heard prior to your comment was that they're finnicky when it's cold out.

I don't see any reason an RX-8 wouldn't be perfectly happy going 30k miles/year, but I've only ridden in one short term, so I'd ask people that actually own one.

billy3esq SuperDork
Feb. 14, 2010 3:45 p.m.

I love my RX-8, and have plenty of confidence in the engine, but fuel consumption is a good reason not to drive an RX-8 30k/yr. Even at 24mpg, which apparently nobody on the planet but me can get out of one, that adds up to nearly 300gal more than the Corolla (assuming 31mpg).

If it were me, I'd keep the Corolla, put new shocks on it, and keep driving it until the wheels fall off. Then buy new wheels. There's no reason to put that kind of mileage on something other than an appliance car, and there are few vehicles better suited to that kind of mileage than a Toyota.

If you want something more sporty, I'd get a second car.

jrg77 New Reader
Feb. 17, 2010 2:42 p.m.

Looking at new struts at Tire Rack. They have a sport cartridge from Koni that is cheaper than the Bilsteins which are a strut housing. Is special work required to use sport cartridges? Does anyone have info on what makes Bilsteins so special?

Matt B Reader
Feb. 17, 2010 3:41 p.m.

I would look into the Koni Reds or possibly the new FSD. The reds are proven, while I'm still waiting on some kind of review of the FSD. Thinking about buying the FSD for my integra commuter/road trip car.

Travis_K Dork
Feb. 17, 2010 3:49 p.m.

Bilstiens last longer and are more durable, IMO the ride and handling is slightly better than konis, but either is decent.

Matt B Reader
Feb. 17, 2010 4:55 p.m.

In reply to Travis_K:

I've heard stories (on this forum) with exactly the opposite opinion on Bilstien durability. I'd take it with a grain of salt of course.

Travis_K Dork
Feb. 17, 2010 5:51 p.m.

Someone i know has talked to this guy a few times, and if i remember correctly he has been running the same bilstien shocks (that he got from the junkyard) for years of that kind of driving and they havent failed yet)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hsOul7ippdk

jrg77 New Reader
April 11, 2010 2:43 a.m.

Koni only offer the yellow ones for my car. What makes the red ones better? Also I saw this,

"For 49mm OE KYB only. Special strut insert bolted into OE housing after cutting top and removing old internal parts."

Does this mean they are not a direct fit and I have to see a specialist to get them installed?

WilberM3 Reader
April 11, 2010 2:02 p.m.
jrg77 wrote: Koni only offer the yellow ones for my car. What makes the red ones better? Also I saw this, "For 49mm OE KYB only. Special strut insert bolted into OE housing after cutting top and removing old internal parts." Does this mean they are not a direct fit and I have to see a specialist to get them installed?

sounds like on a bmw e36 M3 where you take the stock strut, cut the top off and and slide all the seals and guts and oil out, drill a hole in the bottom and the new koni slides inside the shell of the old stock part, retained by a bolt through the new hole in the bottom.

Matt B Reader
April 11, 2010 4:28 p.m.
jrg77 wrote: Koni only offer the yellow ones for my car. What makes the red ones better?

They yellows are actually the better damper for most applications as they're valved stiffer and are externally adjustable. I suggested the reds because they are less expensive and will still work great with stock springs. However, they are valved softer and can only be adjusted off the car. I've run yellows with stock springs on an early MR2 and really liked it though.

jrg77 New Reader
April 11, 2010 4:39 p.m.

I went to shox.com and they showed a package where you get the struts/shocks and eibach springs. Could probably do the same at tirerack.com as they are a GRM advertiser...

gunner New Reader
April 11, 2010 5:03 p.m.

I have koni yellow inserts on my 01 corolla and I installed them myself. there are several sources that explain the procedure in detail just google koni strut install. While it can be done with a hacksaw, its much better with power tools.

jrg77 New Reader
April 23, 2010 11:19 p.m.

Would love to do this myself, but I don't have a spare car to drive while I overthink this in the process of doing it. So far the local guy says he can do it, but won't know the cost until he sees the struts and the car. I'll be ordering them next week.

jrg77 New Reader
April 27, 2010 9:16 a.m.

Ordered the struts and talked to a Tire Rack recommended Installer. He said I should replace the strut mounts also?

I am thinking that if I can go to the junk yard and get front strut assemblies I could probably do it myself and reduce the down time. Then just have the mechanic swap out assemblies.

Let me know what you think...

VWguyBruce HalfDork
April 27, 2010 10:08 a.m.

My 540i came with Koni FSD's and Eibach Sport springs. I'm a big fan. The wife can ride in the car and not get motion sick or get jiggled to death. Car is driven daily and been autocrossed with pleasant results.

jrg77 New Reader
May 28, 2010 11:00 a.m.

Did the strut cut myself. Got them installed at Pat's Frame & Axle. Increased my best mph on an off ramp by about 2 mph first try. Glad I spent the wad to get them. Thank you all for the advice.

Jason

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