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KW Variant 2 Coilovers for S5

26586 Views 91 Replies 27 Participants Last post by  wwhan

S5 - KW Coilovers – Variant 2 Initial Review

A few of you will be aware Doubledoom and I had the KW variant 2 coilovers fitted to our S5s by the guys at APS today, the first to have them fitted in the UK apparently. After a 140 mile trip back home here are my initial thoughts:

Although I had the car lowered 25mm with the H&R springs about a month ago, this was always a temporary measure until the KWs were available for the S5. The H&Rs gave the car that much sought after lowered look and even better handling characteristics but there was always the compromise of a harsh ride when compared to stock. For me this was tolerable but as soon as something came available that could offer the same look but with the ride comfort of the stock set up I would have it. Enter the KWs.

First the look. The ride height is adjustable on the V2s and I opted for a 25mm drop at the front and 20mm at the rear to try and give a dropped front appearance and more aggressive look. The initial set up doesn’t look too different from the 25mm drop all round I had with the H&Rs but over time the springs will bed in and any fine adjustments will be more meaningful, so for the next couple of months this is the ride height I’ll keep. Adjustment of ride height just requires the wheels off to enable access. The rebound was left in the default comfort set up. Adjusting this is a little more involved and requires the units to be detached at the top.

An initial test drive around the industrial estate near to APS took me over a few minor pot holes and bumps and these were despatched without any jolts or thuds in the car at all. The H&Rs definitely reminded you they were a stiffer set up when travelling over such surfaces. The real test, however would be the drive home.

A variety of road conditions were encountered including the following: a series of regular thick lines painted across the road on an approach to roundabouts, cats eyes between lanes, railway crossing, minor pot holes and sleeping policemen. Without exception, the drive over all these surfaces at normal driving speeds was smooth and uncompromised and the default comfort setting of the rebound certainly lived up to its description and all my expectations (and hopes).

Although the trip home was blighted with torrential rain from time to time, the handling characteristics of the car were just as good as with the H&Rs ie the car felt as if it was painted to the road. Cornering at speed offered little detectable body roll.

In summary, the KWs offer exactly what I had hoped for. The aggressive lowered look which can be adjusted to suit relatively easily and the comfort of the stock suspension set up. Don’t get me wrong, the H&Rs are a very cost effective means of getting the desired lowering and the compromise to ride comfort isn’t too bad. However the KWs do give the comfort factor back, albeit at a price.

I’m sure Doubledoom will add his own review when he gets chance. Comparing notes following our respective test drives I’m sure he too will have similarly favourable comments.

I’ll give things a few hundred miles to bed in and then update the review. Hopefully we’ll have some better weather between now and then!

Finally, thanks to Ed and the guys at APS for providing first class service once again.

A few images from the day posted below. It wasn't the weather for outside photos so will post some of the car i) If it ever stops raining in the UK and ii) I've got the car clean (again!).

Suspension part Coil spring Shock absorber Suspension Yellow
Suspension part Auto part Coil spring Suspension Shock absorber

Suspension part Suspension Auto part Yellow Coil spring
Auto part Suspension Suspension part Engine

Auto part Suspension part Suspension Coil spring Vehicle
Land vehicle Alloy wheel Vehicle Tire Wheel

Suspension part Shock absorber Suspension Auto part Tool
Coil spring Suspension part Suspension Auto part Coil
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Great to see you guys again over at APS...

PS. Manor your car looked great today, and really bloody clean compared to mine! ...put me to shame!

Good to see you again too, Ian.

When it doesn't rain on the way to or during a meet you will see my car clean. You ain't seen nothing yet :D:D:D
Good review Ess.

I guess any hopes of selling on my used H&Rs are now well and truly gone :D
Hey Manor, just read your write-up in Audi Driver. Your prose is captivating and don't worry too much about the picture.

Seriously tho', great write-up. One question though - aren't the magazine staff supposed to write the articles? Seems whenever they run a few pages on an APS activities, the punters end up providing all the copy! Hope you were happy with your fee!
Great article... many pages and pictures too... Must have been a slow-news month! ;)

It was good to see a familiar face, car and registration. Nicely written too. I notice too that they couldn't even be bothered to photograph the car and printed your pictures! I can see I'm in the wrong business - I have to actually do my own work!

Another great victory for the A5OC!!!
Had mine fitted today at APS and have to say they are even better than expected :D Was speaking to Ed about the article and he was only expecting a 1/4 page mentioning the fact the variant 2's are now available. So another victory for APS as well as A5OC even if it was Manor's own copy, well done mate !!

:eek: :eek: :eek: :eek:

Thanks for the comments, guys...........only to be expected I suppose :D

Believe it or not there has been some journalistic licence applied by the editor, so I didn't quite do ALL the work. As far as the pics go, you might recall it absolutely pissed down all day and drive by photos were out of the question. Also out of the question were any published photos of my car dirty, although I can spot some dirt on one of the wheel arches in one of the 'action' photos.....then again, that one could have been Doom's car of course, as he had the same work done on the day :D:D

Onto the fee....I've just gone and blown it all on anorexic N2, O2 & C02 (thin air to you non-scientists) :D

Seriously though, it was a bigger article than I expected.

I do still want the drop the front a further 5mm at least and the way the next APS meet planning is going it looks like I'm going to do that myself.

Incidentally, Ess/Spinner what drop did you go for 25F 20R?
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Phew! So the dirty wheel arch must have been on your car then :p

Although, I have been impressed with some of the more recent pics of your car on the forum :). Keep it up :)

My car had a lot of rain stains on it but your car, whilst not to your standards, was far cleaner than mine. You would be impressed with me over the last month. Although the thunderstorms of the last few days have put paid to a lot of my efforts. Cleaning the car is now my excercise regime. Why join a gym to ride a bike going nowhere when you can clean the car with all the bending and elbow grease.

I will get my copy over the weekend and read your article with interest.

I am hoping that the 1st Sept deliveries will see a new batch of people wanting to go to APS.
Was just looking back at it as I came into the office this morning and have to say, if it was female, I'd be straight up one of its exhast pipes..... It looks the dog's.....!

BTW, you still waiting for the V3s or have you forgotten to update your signature? :rolleyes:
Same as Ess for me too. Additionally, I'm not sure the V1s were available for the A/S5 at the time we had ours fitted.
Plus, I still run aground at times and some may prefer the ability to tweak the height a litle just to add a few more mm to the height to avoid that.
:eek: :eek: :eek: :eek: :eek: :eek:

You say it so casually!!!
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