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Old 01-22-2002, 02:13 PM
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Join Date: Apr 2001
Posts: 146
How stiff is stiff?

I'm trying to make a decision about shocks and springs. I have a '93 300E with about 110,000 miles on it, and it's time to do new shocks. The options I'm considering:

- Keep the stock springs and go with Bilstein comfort shocks
- Sportline springs with Bilstein shocks (sport, I assume)
- Eibach springs and Bilstein sport shocks

My question concerns what each of these will do to the ride; I've searched the forum and it seems the opinions vary pretty greatly. I want to tighten up the handling and am willing to sacrifice a bit of ride comfort but don't want it to ride too harshly. What would each of these options do?

Thanks for your help.

-Mike McLaughlin
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Old 01-22-2002, 02:27 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Saugus, CA USA
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How about stock springs and Bilstein sport shocks?
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Old 01-22-2002, 02:54 PM
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Join Date: Apr 2001
Posts: 146
Thanks for reminding me; I forgot to put that in there as something I'm considering. I was leaning toward Sportline springs, though, for the lowering effect. Would changing the spring pads have the same effect?
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Old 01-22-2002, 04:44 PM
pmizell's Avatar
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Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Houston, Texas
Posts: 838
Yes, moving down a bump in spring pad size will accomplish the lowering.

I suggest you use stock springs with one bump lower spring pads, together with sport Bilsteins.

Or, you can do what I did on my '91 300 E and use comfort Bilstein and stock springs, go down a bump on spring pads and change to a wider and 5% less aspect ratio tire, i.e. from 195/65/15 tires to 205/60/15 -- wider and stiffer tire made a huge difference in handling.

I, however, have Sportline rims which are 7 inches in width as opposed to the 6.5 inch stock 300E rim, so not sure if you can accomplish this.

Good luck!


'91 300E, 207k miles
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Old 01-22-2002, 05:28 PM
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Join Date: Apr 2001
Posts: 146
How much stiffer are the sport Bilsteins, though?

And I should mention I'm planning on upgrading to 16" wheels as soon as the tires on my 15" wheels wear out. :-)
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Old 01-22-2002, 06:06 PM
Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: Tucker, Ga USA
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IF you use lowered springs go with the SPORT shocks!
If not stay with HD or Comfort shocks.
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Old 01-23-2002, 06:25 PM
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OK, so it sounds like sticking with the stock springs is the way to go. Now I just have to decide whether to go with the HD or comfort shocks. How much stiffer of a ride will the HD shocks give?
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Old 01-23-2002, 07:05 PM
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Join Date: Jul 1999
Location: CT, USA
Posts: 2,699
It's not that it's much stiffer, it just cuts motion more quickly, much more controlled of a ride, especially at freeway speeds.

As to around town, it's indeed a slight bit more busy, but not objectionably so. If you want additional control of body roll and to aid high speed stability, then go HD. If these are not a priority, but ride quality is, go comfort-a new set hardly makes for a wallowy ride.
"If everything seems under control, you're simply not going fast enough" --Mario Andretti

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