With 1,000kms and a good hard thrash down some awesome B-roads under my belt since installation, it’s timely to share impressions of the Whiteline Anti-lift Kit (WALK) and BFI “Stage 1” engine & transmission mounts. I’m providing feedback jointly as they were installed jointly – and as vibration can be a key negative byproduct of both products.
My motivations in installing these were:
- Mounts: With more than 400Nm, I could feel the relatively soft OEM mounts allowing the drivetrain to cant under power; I also could feel it shifting around during cornering/braking. I’d installed a torque arm insert earlier in an effort to quell this “sloppy” feeling, but it didn’t deliver the result I was after.
- Arms: I'm very particular about handling – I’d much rather weave through corners than drive flat-out in a straight line – so anything that promised to improve responses while dialing out understeer was going to be of interest; and WALK has received rave reviews elsewhere. These replaced some S3 control arms which frankly were pretty underwhelming.
Vibration is the big worry for anyone installing things like this – and everyone is different, so reading reviews really doesn’t help. One guy’s “OK vibes” is another's nightmare. So it was a relief when upon initial start-up after install I felt less vibes than expected. Aircon on… and still not atrocious (though certainly more noticeable than stock). Moving off, no huge shudders. Revving, a much more “earthy” thrum; same at steady presence during cruising. Not objectionable, but noticeable.
And over the next 1,000kms it pretty much stayed that way, gradually reducing with time to the point that it now feels barely any different (vibe-wise) from stock. Though to be clear, there were vibes – in fact, things I didn’t even know existed were vibrating. And when they’d stop… other things took over. It was a symphony of vibration – but eventually it settled. Given I'm particular about NVH, for me to be OK with it says a lot. I still feel/hear the more guttural thrum of the car under acceleration – and I like it.
The feeling of the car is fantastic – very dialed-in and “planted” thanks to a combination of less engine movement and more precise front steering/suspension control + geometry (caster) change. Turn-in feels razor-sharp, with minimal lost movement, after which the car tracks straight & true with no feeling of the nose washing wide. Power can be applied earlier & harder when pushing out of bends, with less wheel scrabble.
Given the very reasonable pricing on these products, and the benefit they deliver, I can absolutely recommend them to fellow enthusiasts. Re. WALK, I can totally see what the hype is about. Re. the BFI mounts, I’m pleased I selected their “Stage 1” set-up, which at 65 duro is harder than their “Stealth” product (50 duro) but not so hard as VF, BSH, etc. (80-90 duro) For comparison, stock is 45 duro.
Install of both can be done by a capable mechanic, though you will need replacement OEM bolts (as these are one-time-use “stretch” bolts) and the correct torque specs. If you don’t want your old control arms, it’s possible to whack them off without needing to loosen the subframe. A post-install alignment is required either way.