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    Thread: mk3 stock height suspension refresh

    1. 08-15-2012 09:04 AM #1
      Hi... New here... Great write ups on this site that have helped a lot in planning and product recommendations. Thanks in advance!

      1998 TDI w/ 225K miles on stock suspension and stock steelies. New to me. I'm new to VW in general. So far love the mileage... handling sucks.


      Stock Height or slightly plus. I live on gravel road, have steep long unpaved driveway. I carry a heavy load in the trunk regularly and would like to pull a 500lb trailer at some point without sag. I want to be able to travel at highway speed ++ w/o roll when I need to. I live where winter snow gets nasty. Looking for widest stance w/o rubbing. I don't want wide wheels/tires because I don't want it to effect my awesome mpg and I need the snow traction of a narrower tire. I want to do my upgrade once so I can align / spin balance once. I most likely will bring it to a local garage that I have a good relationship w/. (I have no garage, gravel drive, no torque wrench, no spring compressor, etc. etc.) Looking for critique of plans and "you should do this too while you're there", or "wrong part number... that won't fit"

      Parts in hand:

      Honda FIT rims: 16 x 6J x E53 machined from 56.1 to 57.1
      hub/wheel centric Rear spacers 38mm x 57.1 bolt on w/ new studs and lug nuts (et 15 final)
      hub/wheel centric Front spacers 12mm x 57.1 w/ longer lug bolts (et 41 final)
      195-50-ZR16 Continental Extreme DWS x 4 (0.5cm over stock radius)
      Koni Yellow Sport Adjustable Shocks / Struts for 4 corners
      Retain stock front springs
      Eibach Front and Rear Sway bars

      And this stuff from Germanautoparts.com

      Suplex cargo control rear springs from
      Rear spring, heavy duty

      Rubber spring pad, upper rear

      VR6 strut mount kit, HD

      Nut, strut bearing retaining

      A2/A3 upper rear shock mount

      Bump stop, VR6, front, exc Pas

      Front Dust boot, early VR6, front

      Bump stop, rear, VR6

      Rear shock dust boot

      Control arm bush kit, hybrid

      I don't have the front sway bar yet because I bought a "kit" thinking it was a f&r kit but actually just a "rear kit". I also don't have the 12mm spacers because my loser mail lady delivered it to the wrong address. Post master told me to report it to the police as stolen. ARRRRRRR!!! I also didn't buy front sway bar links because they look fine... should I?

      Next thread... brakes.


      transport mode
      Last edited by transport mode; 08-15-2012 at 09:17 AM.

    2. Banned Hurt's Avatar
      Join Date
      May 3rd, 2011
      Boston, MA
      1998 Jetta GT, 1998 GTI 2.0, 2012 GLI, 2012 GTI
      08-18-2012 06:55 PM #2
      Uh.. If you want to raise it over the stock suspension, get Passat VR6 struts/springs, and use VR6 strut mounts. They fit without any modification and they will raise the car pretty high. Here's a picture of a Golf with said mods. That's a regulation size basketball!

    3. 08-22-2012 10:56 PM #3
      Actually I had been considering the passat spring swap... I was looking at passat b3/4 wagon springs to be specific. But I got turned off on needing to custom readjust/calibrate my forward/back brake balance. Brakes are next year. I just did rotors and pads to get by. I also didn't like the highway stance at that height. Seems tip over friendly unless you space out your wheels. I also wanted 1 inch not 3 so I was thinking of cutting the springs... It just seemed more hassle than I was in for at the moment. I need the ride.

      Anyway. Refresh complete. Wow. Can't wait to get behind the wheel again. Total difference. I did not do the front sway bar but I've turned the koni yellows up one full turn (two turns is max) in the front and left them oem in the rear. I did do the eibach rear sway and the cargo control rear springs... Hence the need to dial up the front to match. Before dialing I was able to get the inside front to chirp on a tight turn. I also ended up not doing the control arm bushings... they looked recently done by the previous owner.

      Sweet ride. Tall, but flat as can be through the corners. Shift lanes to the inside of a curve, at speed, at will. In my short test ride I couldn't get her to wobble the way she used to no matter how hard I danced.

      Still stock height... actually lifted 0.5 cm on 195-50-16-6J tires. Over my old struts and worn springs, I probably picked up 25mm of (return to stock) lift in the rear. The front came up just a few mm but is 3x stiff as what I had dialed up one turn and at least 2x as stiff as what I had out of the box. The rear end doesn't move when I load my tools and I haven't even touched the dial on the rear struts.

      Props to eibach's bar. Huge props to the koni yellows. The continental DWS's stick like glue. Thanks to Germanautoparts.com for all the little odds and ends of a good suspension job.

      All in all I'm out 1300 in parts, 300 in install, 600 on used rims and 2 new tires. 2200... A little more than I paid for her. I love this car already. Dreaming 02m and Girling 60's...

      Switchbacks here I come.
      Last edited by transport mode; 08-22-2012 at 11:11 PM.

    4. 10-30-2014 10:17 AM #4
      A little over two years ago you posted a list of mods you made to your Mk3 suspension.

      If you still have the car, how have you been satisfied with your new suspension?


      Without a doubt kick ass. Yes I still have the car its approaching 250k miles.

      The short and skinny of what I did:

      Koni Yellow Adjustable on 4 points
      Cargo Control Rear Springs
      Rear Eibach Sway Bar


      Every little rubber bushing I could afford to change out in the process; part numbers were listed:


      The car went from being a rocking bouncing boat with a sagging rear end... to rock solid and stuck to the road

      The rear koni's can be adjusted from the trunk without removing anything except the dust caps; it just takes some arm yoga. The adjustability is really helpful for carrying a heavy load in the trunk; two full turns drives like a dump truck (ability to carry bags of concrete in the trunk if I want ).

      Looking back I would not have done the Honda FIT rims. They look great, the continental DWS are awesome tires... but I'd definately prefer not to have spacers on my rims if I could do it again. I do like the 16x6J size. Great traction in 4 seasons, yes I live in snow country.

      I have since changed my rotors (front) and drums (rear); I didn't go girling big brake as it would have created legal issues in my state. I've also done the front ball joints and the wheel bearings on 4 corners.

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