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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey all-
Here's the dilemna. Time to replace the bump stops on the front shocks, so I'm doing the suspension at the same time. My question is: Do I go with H&R OE Sport or Sport shocks?

I WAS supposed to get the FK Hightec 35-40 kit (~1.25"), but they're out of stock in the US so looks like it's H&R Springs. I'm a VERY aggressive driver, but live in a city with really bad roads (potholes, continual resurfacing and line work, very uneven surfaces). Any thoughts? H&R OE Sports are on order (~.8" all-around), but I COULD change to the Sport springs if I wanted to (1.75" front 1.5" rear).
 

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Awww man, my friend Keith and I were in the same boat with a 99 V6 Passat. I was helping my buddy fix up a 99 he bought at an auction and after getting everything fixed up and through inspection he wanted to tune the suspension. Price was a major issue, so after some searching he decided on the Hightec Kit as well but our local vendor couldn't get his hands on them for about a month, so we ended up going with KWSuspensions' Sport Package. I knew KW offered spring/damper combo's so we decided to give it a try on my friend's Passat. The specs are close to the Hightec Kit's and everyone knows that KW does a solid job with damper tuning.. Just ask folks running Variant 1's!!! Now that everything has settled, the car is riding great and handles like a winner. This kit is priced great when compared to the Eibach Pro System..

Now you can't go wrong with H&R springs! The OE Springs give a barely noticeable drop, and the Sports are a little more aggressive. You know how driving in D.C. can be, so you just have to watch out for road repairs and hazards. Now if you are replacing the shocks as well, you might want to consider Koni Sport Adjustables or Bilsteins.

Here's the KW Part Numbers for your ride: 250-80-042 (Springs) and 201-80-042 (Damper/Shocks). This is only for 98-01 FWD Passats. B5.5's FWD's only have springs available and 4 Motions have to step up to coilovers.

I hope this helps, PM me for some vendors.

Will aka The Swami
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Swami-
I'm actually locked into FK shocks. I was the organizer of the original FK GB, but knowing I needed new control arms caused a budget priority shift. Since they're pulling the front suspension apart anyway this time, I decided to bite the bullet. I WAS getting the FK Hightec 35-40, but there are none in the US. NGP Racing is FK's primary US distributor, and it will be at least early July for the kits. So its FK shocks and H&R Springs. So back to Q1. Are the H&R Sports too low for DC's streets? I was hesitant on the FK kit, and the H&R Sports are a little lower in the front. BUt I really want a much tighter suspension. Just not at the expense of a trashed front end.
 

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I see!!! I didn't know you already had shocks.. The H&R Sports should be fine for running in DC. Watch out for areas that are doing the lead-pipe construction because I tore an oil and transmission pan on my W8 running KW V3's. ( Hit an open manhole on First & S Street N.W.)

Are you running any sways??
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
wst said:
I don't like the oe's mainly because the drop is hardly noticable. I have very few problems (scrapes) with my sports so I've never regretted my decision.
True, but her in Washington DC we fight with Boston for worst streets.

Also, I can care less about looks. I only want better handling. I'm thinking BMW.
 

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I would worry more about the size of your wheels than the height of your car when it comes to bad streets. I have never had a problem with my suspension bottoming out or scraping while driving. It would take a monster pot hole to scrape even with the sports.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
wst said:
I would worry more about the size of your wheels than the height of your car when it comes to bad streets. I have never had a problem with my suspension bottoming out or scraping while driving. It would take a monster pot hole to scrape even with the sports.
Well believe it or not, with teh stock suspension I've hit the front more than a few times. As I said, the streets here REALLY suck. So the question is how much tighter the car will ride with the Sport, vs. the OE Sport.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
wst said:
Did you scrap while bottoming out or just because of clearance? If clearance, then you made the right choice.
Clearance never, always bottoming out. Hoping the shock will help here. Part of my fear also is due to my old BMW 330i, which had occasional clearance problems and often bottomed out in town. So I have a natural fear of going too low, but then I really want better handling.
 

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I had H&R OEs and bilstein struts put on 2 weeks ago and the handling is increadible compared to stock. I live in Central PA so I am sure the roads here are worse than D.C.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
03AnthraciteGLS said:
I had H&R OEs and bilstein struts put on 2 weeks ago and the handling is increadible compared to stock. I live in Central PA so I am sure the roads here are worse than D.C.
Would you mind giving me some additional detail? I'd be very interested. I'm supposedly getting a similar setup, but I understand the FK shocks are the equivalent to an upgrade from the Bilstein Sports. Also, just curious - how much installed?
 

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I had the OEs and Koni adjustables on my 2002. If you just want to get better handling and get rid of the squat then that is the way to go. They feel very stiff at first but you get used to them.
 

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I have the H&R OE springs and Bilstein sport shocks on a 2000 V6. The handling is perfect for me. The actual measured drop is only 1/2" with this combo. I am in chicagoland with horrible road conditions and snow.

If I had to do it over again though, I would go with the H&R sports and Bilstein sports.
 

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I actaully upgraded to Bilstein HDs, I got it done for $200. The handling is tight, but not bone jaring. The highway float and the lean on corners is gone but the ride is still comfortable.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Thanks all. I'm much more comfortable with the H&R OE Sport shocks. As I said, I care much more about handling than the lower look. Also, I figure a car that isn't dropped too much will be easier to sell in a few years.
 
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