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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I know a lot of you are interested in seeing how the cars look when lowered, so here are some preliminary pics of my lowered S5 (using a BBerry Storm camera... meh). This is the STaSIS SL coilover kit with Ohlins dampers and Eibach springs. Spring rates are 700lbs in the front and 400lbs in the rear; with the rear bar, the effective rate in the rear is nearly 700lbs. STaSIS allows you to pick your spring rates, and I went with 400lbs in the rear for practicality's sake (hey, I have a baby in the back, so this can't be a go-kart).

This drop is so aggressive - almost 2" in the front. This is too low for me and I'll be raising the ride height this weekend. Apparently, I didn't set the ride heights properly (despite excellent instructions from STaSIS) and ended up with a dumped look that isn't practical - my fault. It rubs like a belt sander and I easily hit the bump stops. I have H&R spacers on the stock wheels; 20mm front, 25mm rear. I'll do a performance review once I get it dialed-in properly, but my initial impressions are that it's awesome. Better feel, much faster turn-in and responsiveness, far less understeer, better balance, and easier throttle steering.



^^Stock 4x4 ride height for comparison^^




The tuck is awesome:




You can't see the negative camber issues in this pic, but it's a function of the too-low ride height (again, that's my fault). You can also see how the tire just crawls up into the fender. Cool, but just too aggressive:


All the goodies:
 

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Very Nice....You do the install yourself? I'm on the verge of tackling coilovers at some point here in the next few months...just figuring out what I want as far as height and ride quality (will be more on the moderate end)...then find the right product from there, probably the V2's...got a few questions to ask about the Stassis setup...will PM you once compiled. The S5's definetly needs some suspension mods to take it from feeling heavy to feel more in tune with the road and to get rid of the 4X4 look.

You will probably have to height adjust a few times til they get settle over the next month or so.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
How much comfort in the ride have you lost as a result....is it much harsher?
The ride quality is actually far more supple than I'd expected. I'm pleased - not harsh at all. You definitely lose some comfort, but in my opinion, it's not a huge amount, and is a worthy trade-off.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Very Nice....You do the install yourself? I'm on the verge of tackling coilovers at some point here in the next few months...just figuring out what I want as far as height and ride quality (will be more on the moderate end)...then find the right product from there, probably the V2's...got a few questions to ask about the Stassis setup...will PM you once compiled. The S5's definetly needs some suspension mods to take it from feeling heavy to feel more in tune with the road and to get rid of the 4X4 look.

You will probably have to height adjust a few times til they get settle over the next month or so.
Thanks. The ride quality in this setup is great - better than expected. Am happy to answer questions about the kit and the install. Feel is definitely improved. I've only put around 150 miles on it, so I'll put a few more on before I adjust ride height and re-torque the bolts.

Yes, I did the install myself, in my garage, using air tools and jack stands. I love wrenching. It's not easy from a physical standpoint (the front sucks), but it's not a complicated install by any means. You also need a few specialty tools, so be prepared.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
man that looks killer!

mind me asking how much it set you back...give me a range...trying to decide between h&r or this...
Search around for dealers, but list is $2,795 + $279 for the ARB, with other retailers selling it for $2,599 (see Achtuning.com). It's definitely not the cheapest, but the amount of time STaSIS puts into testing and optimization (and the Ohlins quality) make the difference.
 

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Europa:
Thanks for the insight. Sounds like I better start saving a lot more!
That's quite a bit more than I was expecting to spend.
Having a V6, I probably can drop the fronts to 600lbs. and keep the 400lbs. out back.

My original plan was to have the dealer install them. I can actually do it myself (I've done about a dozen VW B5 Passats, and a couple of A4's in the past) but the incentive to have it serviced and warrantied by Audi has driven me to have Stevens Creek Audi do it instead. Depending upon a possible sale in the future, I can hold off for another year to save for this. This is a "want to have" rather than need to have.

Waiting to see your final adjustments and hopefully you'll either track it or take it to the twisties for a serious eval.
 

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You will probably have to height adjust a few times til they get settle over the next month or so.
That is for sure.

Europa, did you get a 4-wheel alignment done yet? If not, I assume you're planning on it?
 

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Europa:
Thanks for the insight. Sounds like I better start saving a lot more!
That's quite a bit more than I was expecting to spend.
Having a V6, I probably can drop the fronts to 600lbs. and keep the 400lbs. out back.
Can someone explain this 400lbs and 600lbs stuff, what is it and how do you decide what you need to set it at?
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Europa:
Thanks for the insight. Sounds like I better start saving a lot more!
That's quite a bit more than I was expecting to spend.
Having a V6, I probably can drop the fronts to 600lbs. and keep the 400lbs. out back.

My original plan was to have the dealer install them. I can actually do it myself (I've done about a dozen VW B5 Passats, and a couple of A4's in the past) but the incentive to have it serviced and warrantied by Audi has driven me to have Stevens Creek Audi do it instead. Depending upon a possible sale in the future, I can hold off for another year to save for this. This is a "want to have" rather than need to have.

Waiting to see your final adjustments and hopefully you'll either track it or take it to the twisties for a serious eval.
How about H&R? I'm sure you'd be happy with that setup, especially if you don't track the car.

As for doing the install yourself, if you've done Passats and A4s in the past, then this will be no problem. You've dealt with the compression fitting for the shock to the spindle (grumble). The only difference with this suspension is that the upper front strut mount, where it goes into the strut tower, is actually a cast piece, and the spring/shock/mount form one unit.

I won't be tracking it for a few months, but you can bet that I'll be pushing it through the mountain roads once the temperatures increase.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
That is for sure.

Europa, did you get a 4-wheel alignment done yet? If not, I assume you're planning on it?
I'm going to do the alignment once I get a few more miles on it. I'll re-torque the bolts, set the ride heights, and then bring it in.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Can someone explain this 400lbs and 600lbs stuff, what is it and how do you decide what you need to set it at?
The spring rate, expressed in pounds, refers to the amount of weight (force in pounds) needed to make the spring compress by one inch. Different spring rates between front and rear will affect the car's balance. By comparison, race cars often have spring rates from around 1000-1200 in the front (depends upon weight, circuit, etc.). Handling improves as you increase spring rates, but it's not a linear gain (and a too-high spring rate for a given car will actually make handling much worse). The dampening rate also plays a big role, and this must be tuned to the spring rates. One of the great things about STaSIS is that they'll help you pick the optimal rates for what you want to do, and these rates are based upon a lot of proper engineering and testing. I chose a setup that would allow the baby and the wife to stay asleep in the car. If you buy a pre-packaged kit like H&R or KW, you basically get the pre-determined spring rates. That's fine, but you have to accept this limitation.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Europa:
Thanks for the insight. Sounds like I better start saving a lot more!
That's quite a bit more than I was expecting to spend.
Having a V6, I probably can drop the fronts to 600lbs. and keep the 400lbs. out back.

My original plan was to have the dealer install them. I can actually do it myself (I've done about a dozen VW B5 Passats, and a couple of A4's in the past) but the incentive to have it serviced and warrantied by Audi has driven me to have Stevens Creek Audi do it instead. Depending upon a possible sale in the future, I can hold off for another year to save for this. This is a "want to have" rather than need to have.

Waiting to see your final adjustments and hopefully you'll either track it or take it to the twisties for a serious eval.
One other thing to consider is thay a key advantage of coilovers is the ride height adjustability. I will be making adjustments to ride height - higher in winter for snow, then lower for summer and if I ever track the thing. If you don't see the need for adustability, perhaps wait for a Bilstein non-coil over setup to be released. It'll be even less expensive.
 

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The spring rate, expressed in pounds, refers to the amount of weight (force in pounds) needed to make the spring compress by one inch. Different spring rates between front and rear will affect the car's balance. By comparison, race cars often have spring rates from around 1000-1200 in the front (depends upon weight, circuit, etc.). Handling improves as you increase spring rates, but it's not a linear gain (and a too-high spring rate for a given car will actually make handling much worse). The dampening rate also plays a big role, and this must be tuned to the spring rates. One of the great things about STaSIS is that they'll help you pick the optimal rates for what you want to do, and these rates are based upon a lot of proper engineering and testing. I chose a setup that would allow the baby and the wife to stay asleep in the car. If you buy a pre-packaged kit like H&R or KW, you basically get the pre-determined spring rates. That's fine, but you have to accept this limitation.
I see, thanks for the explanation, hence the reason I hadn't heard about this when people have installed the KWs and H&R before.

I haven't really heard of Ohlins before, on what sort of level are they with regards to quality parts in comparison to KW version 3 and H&R as the cost of the SL Sport kit is so much more than theirs?
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 · (Edited)
I see, thanks for the explanation, hence the reason I hadn't heard about this when people have installed the KWs and H&R before.

I haven't really heard of Ohlins before, on what sort of level are they with regards to quality parts in comparison to KW version 3 and H&R as the cost of the SL Sport kit is so much more than theirs?
The quality level of Ohlins is much higher than either of the KW or H&R (longevity of the shock, components strength, minimized weight, ability to service/rebuild/re-valve to spec), but that's not the only reason they're pricey. While I'm not sure how KW or H&R create systems for the numerous set of cars for which they offer systems, I can't help but think that they merely measure the mount points, the weight of the cars, and pick up-rated spring/dampening rates and call it done. STaSIS, on the other hand, employs a full engineering and testing process to optimize the suspension to the car. I know they went through a long iterative process when designing this kit. A good number of the guys there are trained, experienced engineers, with competitive racing experience (and their own Speed Challenge team). I'm sure H&R and KW are of fine quality.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
That, my friend, is up to you. I obviously vote for STaSIS. What is right for you depends upon your priorities.
 
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