Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Michelin Pilot Sport A/S 3 (W- or Y-Speed Rated)

Monday, January 27, 2014 by Tire Rack Consumer Reviews

The following post was created from content submitted via Tire Rack's consumer surveys. Information shown is the opinion of the consumer and meant to be used for comparison shopping purposes.

Michelin Pilot Sport A/S 3 (W- or Y-Speed Rated) Reviewer's Overall Rating: 9.14
 
 

2010 Toyota Corolla
More Tire Reviews for This Vehicle

 
Buy/More Info
Miles driven on tires: 1,000
Location: North Miami Beach, FL
Driving Condition: Spirited

Initial Review, 1,000 Miles on Tires
January 16, 2014

Recently put four of these tires on my 2010 Toyota Corolla S, they were added after several major upgrade to the car, such as: Bilstein B6 HD Shocks, Eibach lowering springs, TRD rear sway bar & Strut strut brace,car definitely rides better, comfort has increased especially with road imperfections when compare with Michelin own MXM4 tires. Not sure if the MXM4 were too soft and the Bilsteins were too stiff but every road imperfection found their way to me while i was driving. wasnt sure if these would help in anyway to smooth out the ride, but thankfully they do.those who are considering lowering springs and stiff shocks, should give these a try for their stiffer side wall which seem to help absorb bumps better than Grand Touring tires.

 

Looking for the Best Coil-Over Kit for the Track or Street? Bilstein is the Answer!

Wednesday, June 5, 2013 by Zig Ziegler

When looking to improve the performance of your vehicle, a coil-over kit can provide the most dramatic effects when it comes to reducing body roll, controlling bounce and adjusting ride height. A coil-over kit is best described as a spring, shock and bump stop incorporated into one assembly with the spring encompassing the shock and bump stop. It often uses an adjustable spring perch to allow different vehicle ride heights without changing the springs.

One of the most recognized and trusted names in the suspension industry is Bilstein. When it's time to upgrade the suspension on your vehicle, take a look at their PSS Coil-Over Kit, PSS9 Coil-Over Kit and PSS10 Coil-Over Kit.

 Bilstein PSS Coil-Over Kit
Bilstein PSS Coil-Over Kit
 Bilstein PSS9 Coil-Over Kit
Bilstein PSS9 Coil-Over Kit
 Bilstein PSS10 Coil-Over Kit
Bilstein PSS10 Coil-Over Kit


Bilstein PSS Coil-Over Kit:

  • Matched performance spring and threaded ride height adjuster
  • Includes application specific, progressive rate coil springs
  • Set your vehicle low and tight for optimized performance or revert to a more stock-like ride

Bilstein PSS9 Coil-Over Kit:

  • Fully adjustable monotube gas shock absorbers offer nine precise compression and rebound settings, from comfort to competition
  • The front and rear progressive rate springs allow for the accurate adjustment of a vehicle's ride height, stance, cornering balance and ride quality to maximize performance
  • Adjuster style differs per vehicle

Bilstein PSS10 Coil-Over Kit:

  • "Click" from comfort to competition with no tools or jacking required
  • The PSS10 Coil-Over System, evolved from the PSS9 system, adds a matched performance spring and threaded ride height adjuster to provide a complete suspension system for your vehicle
  • Ride height adjustable from -1.0" to -1.75" (front) & -1.0" to -1.75" (rear. minimum 1" lowering)
  • Lighter weight reduces wear and tear on suspension components
  • The Bilstein PSS10 Coil-Over System offers ten vehicle adjustment settings and includes numbered adjusters at the base of the shock body so you know exactly what setting you are on without counting clicks

All Bilstein gas pressure struts/inserts and gas pressure shock absorbers operate on the same principle. They're designed with the rod pointing down into the strut tube, thereby utilizing the thicker, stouter body portion of the shock absorber to dissipate side loads. Due to the increased diameter and surface of the pressure tube, the Bilstein gas pressure strut/insert or shock is better suited to take increased side loads when compared with the conventional version.

Additional advantages, based on development strongly influenced by the motorsport industry, include increased stability, improved road handling and accurate steering. And extremely high quality manufacturing and materials as well as a weather resistant coating to resist oxidation, mean Bilsteins will last approximately four times as long as Original Equipment.

For more information on Bilstein products, read "Which Bilstein Replacement Shock or Strut is Best for Your Vehicle?"

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Kumho Ecsta LX Platinum

Tuesday, September 4, 2012 by Tire Rack Consumer Reviews

The following post was created from content submitted via Tire Rack's consumer surveys. Information shown is the opinion of the consumer and meant to be used for comparison shopping purposes.


Kumho Ecsta LX PlatinumReviewer's Overall Rating: 8.43

1995 BMW 540i
More Tire Reviews for This Vehicle


Buy/More Info
Miles driven on tires: 10,000
Location: San Diego, CA
Driving Condition: Spirited

Initial Review, 10,000 Miles on Tires
September 01, 2012

The car, a 95 BMW 540. It's a 4 liter V-8.
Southern California, no snow, but can be plenty of rain.
The tire, Kumho Exta Platinum.
Shock: Bilstein.

This is now my 3rd set of Kumho's. Last two sets were on an Audi.

These Platinums are nice! I don't race, but am spirited. They corner, they absorb shock, are not noisy.

First time I had to do an emergency maneuver, I was shocked at how well the Platinums turned in and stayed in the corner.

After that, I had a LOT more confidence in the tires. I can tell how much grip I have left by the sound of the tires. The noise on sharp, aggressive turnin is not intrusive or squeaky. It's not going to freak out the wife. But the tires tell you what is going on with the road and where they are at.

Way better than the tires that were on the BMW before. These tires brought out the BMW in this car.

Confidence inspiring, you know what the car is going to do.

On the highway, they soak up the bumps and give a great ride. The Bilsteins help, but noticeable difference.

Probably one of the better tires I bought.

No doubt, when this car needs tires again, it's getting these exact tires.

Bilstein versus KONI Shocks

Friday, May 25, 2012 by Gary Stanley

As many sports cars have been coming out of storage and back into their summer wheel and tire set-ups, I've been getting a lot of inquiries about replacement performance shocks. Shocks play a vital role in a vehicle's handling characteristics. Replacing worn shocks with a new set of performance shocks not only will increase handling, but also improve the responsiveness and shorten braking distances.

Looking at the options offered by KONI and Bilstein is a good place to start your search. With lifetime warranties offered and decades of producing durable and rugged shocks, you'll be very excited with the performance they bring your vehicle.

While both brands produce great products, KONI's shocks have the added benefit of a product that's adjustable for rebound. Stiffer settings mean more responsive handling, while softer settings give a smoother and more comfortable ride. This allows the enthusiast to tune the shock to their personal preference in regards to this compromise.

And if new tires are also needed, take a look at all our special offers available.

If you're looking to buy shock absorbers online, be sure to shop by vehicle.

 

Coil-Over Suspension: Look Good and Stay in Control on the Street and Track

Monday, May 7, 2012 by Alex Mouroulis

Looking for a coil-over system for your daily driver, but also want it to perform at the track? One of the most attractive features of the following options is their ride height adjustability. They feature an adjustable spring perch and a threaded shock body. You can thread the perch up and down, allowing you to customize how much lowering you prefer for each corner of the vehicle. These coil-over systems will also let you customize the tuck of the vehicle's corners. 
 

Below are my three favorite track-ready coil-overs available at Tire Rack:
 

Bilstein PSS10
Bilstein PSS10
H&R RSS ClubSport
H&R RSS ClubSport
KW Variant 3
KW Variant 3


Utilizing Bilstein's shock absorbers that are designed for heat dissipation and ride control, the PSS10 Coil-Over System adds a matched performance spring and threaded ride height adjuster to provide a complete suspension system for your vehicle. The system offers ten vehicle adjustment settings and includes numbered adjusters at the base of the shock body so you know exactly what setting you are on without counting clicks.

The RSS ClubSport Coil-Over Kit is designed for the committed motorsport enthusiast who's willing to relinquish some ride comfort in return for handling performance. The firmest coil-over in the H&R street line, the RSS is the choice for weekend track and club sport events.

KW Variant 3 Coil-Overs are state-of-the-art motorsport technology for proven performance on the streets. Independently adjustable compression and rebound damping allows for custom driving set-ups. The exclusive KW patented system has dual-level valves to provide the adjustment of the rebound damping (comfort) and the compression damping in the low-speed range. High-speed settings for driving comfort are preset by KW engineers.
 

To find the suspension component that's right for your car, shop by vehicle.

Suspension Shopping for my BMW 740i Part II

Tuesday, April 10, 2012 by Ben Rooney

Having already chosen the Eibach Pro-Kit Spring Set for my 1997 740i, it's time to turn my attention to the the shocks and struts, known collectively as dampers. The available options include the Bilstein Touring Class, Bilstein Sport and KYB GR-2. 
 

The Touring Class and GR-2 are similar to one another in that they're both premium quality replacements for the stock dampers. They are valved about 10% firmer than the originals to account for the wear that accumulates in other suspension components over time and their goal is to provide ride and handling that equals or exceeds the Original Equipment.
 

The Bilstein Sport is a high-performance shock absorber designed for use with lowering springs. The mono-tube design, while more expensive to produce, has advantages for heat dissipation, longevity and consistent performance. 
 

Do I spend the money on the Bilstein shocks or save some cash and go back with a factory-equivalent part? The Bilstein Sports are the only replacement shock absorbers that are officially recommended to use with the Pro-Kit springs. Using the Touring Class or GR-2 with lowering springs would void their warranties. While this wouldn't be the first warranty I've ever voided when modifying a vehicle, I think that if I'm going to go through the trouble and expense of replacing them, it's worth doing it right. The Bilstein Sport was the winner and will make a great addition to my BMW 740i.

Which Shocks Are Right for My Car?

Monday, October 17, 2011 by Alex Mouroulis
KYB Gas-A-JustHave you ever felt that your car bounces more after you go over a bump? It just doesn't feel as connected to the road as it did when it was new? Shock absorbers are an expendable item that has a big effect on your ride quality. When it comes time to replace shocks, you're going to have access to your springs. This is a great time to add lowering springs.

Not every shock is designed for all driving circumstances. There are two major categories for aftermarket shocks: performance and touring.
  • Performance shocks give the firmer ride, and help reduce body roll. They are often combined with lowering springs for the ultimate handling combination.
  • Touring shocks are more focused on a soft, compliant and comfortable ride. Touring shocks add to that supple, luxurious ride by soaking up more impacts and road imperfections.
Listed below are a few terms that will help you better understand the characteristics of a shock adjustment:
  • Compression - The collapsing stroke of a shock, directly correlated to the movement of your axle.
  • Rebound - The return stroke of a shock, directly tied to vehicle pitch and ride quality. To learn more about shocks check out, "Damper Dynamics."

Take a look at a few of the shocks available at Tire Rack:
  • KYB Gas-A-Just: An Original Equipment replacement shock.These are your excellent-value option, as they are self adjusting.
  • KYB Monomax: Increased load control, and a firm planted feel for your light truck or SUV. These shocks have been known to offer a firmer ride, but the trade off is better control. These shocks are self adjusting. They completely transformed my Chevy Blazer back to the consistent like-new handling I missed.
  • Koni STR-T:  A cost-effective performance shock, designed to offer better handling, without a harsh ride.
  • Bilstein 5100 : Designed with the lifted truck or SUV in mind. These are ideal for your Jeep or pickup truck with mild body and suspension lifts. The articulation in off-road circumstances is superb.
Shop by vehicle to find the suspension components that work best for your vehicle.

Coil-Over Suspension: Is It Right for Me?

Friday, May 20, 2011 by Doc Horvath
Coil-over suspension kits represent the top end of the suspension market, giving the driver the most flexibility in adjusting both the ride height and "firmness" of the shock absorbers to fine tune the handling of their vehicle. Sounds like a great option to have right? Well, the answer lies in how and where you drive your vehicle.

The first thing to remember is that any component that lowers the ride height of your vehicle will affect ride comfort (see a previous blog post titled "What Should I Expect from Lowering Springs?"). Even the most modest lowering spring (1.0" of drop or less) will affect ride comfort, but any coil-over setup will have a much more aggressive spring rate which translates to a firmer ride. In my mind, the coil-over suspension is intended for a driver that wants to maximize the handling of the vehicle in "track" conditions and also have the flexibility to adjust ride height (and damping rates) to suit track conditions. If local road conditions are poor, coil-overs will make a rough ride even rougher!
Eibach Multi-Pro Coil-Over R2
Eibach Multi-Pro Coil-Over R2
KW Variant 1 Coil-Over
KW Variant 1 Coil-Over

The Eibach Multi-Pro Coil-Over R2 and the KW Variant 1 have the least "aggressive" spring rates, which will minimize the change to ride comfort but still improve handling and allow you to adjust your ride height for the perfect stance.

Bilstein PSS Coil-Over Kit
Bilstein PSS Coil-Over Kit
KW Variant 3 Coil-Over
KW Variant 3 Coil-Over

The Bilstein PSS Coil-Over Kit and KW Variant 3 represent the elite in coil-over systems and provide the greatest range of adjustability for ride and ride height.

Check out our full line of coil-over systems!

Bouncing along? Need new shocks?

Saturday, May 14, 2011 by Hunter Leffel
KYB GR-2 ShockHas your chariot lost some of that new car handling and ride? Do you feel like you're on a trampoline after hitting a bump? It might be time to get new shocks and struts (dampers) for your car, truck or SUV. 

Tire Rack offers a wide range of options from Original Equipment style replacements to performance upgrades. The KYB GR-2 line will firm up the ride 5-10% over factory new. KONI and Bilstein offer higher performance options — some with adjustability to give you that "on rails" feeling.

Look to the professionals at Tire Rack for all of your suspension needs. View specs, shock absorber reviews, and pricing for your specific vehicle.

Suspension Products at Tire Rack

Wednesday, July 21, 2010 by Henry Carlson
Tire Rack not only sells tires, but has a large selection of suspension parts for your vehicles.

We carry Eibach Springs, H&R Springs, Bilstein Shocks and Koni Shock Absorbers just to mention a few.

Eibach lowering springs give your vehicle a great look and maintain good ride quality while enhancing cornering performance. So if you are looking to give your vehicle a more sporty look and at the same time improve its handling, you should consider Eibach.

Please check out all of our suspension products.



Bilstein Shock Absorbers

Wednesday, January 13, 2010 by Tire Rack Team

50 years ago, Bilstein revolutionized the shock industry with their monotube gas pressure shock absorber technology. And to this day, Bilstein shock absorbers lead the market.

Bilstein offers a number of gas shock absorbers, but also single and twin tube McPherson strut style suspensions that are equally impressive. No maximum load challenge goes unaccepted, thanks to specific design techniques that provide high durability.

But will they fit your vehicle? All Bilstein shocks and struts are built based on the individual fit and performance needs of a vehicle. Search by vehicle to see if they are a fit for yours. And with an excellent lifetime warranty, you can rest assured you'll experience continual satisfaction with the product.

Check out the 5100 Series Adjustable Shocks, or search by vehicle to fine-tune your suspension.

What are adjustable shocks?

Friday, December 11, 2009 by Tire Rack Team
The most integral part of your suspension system is, surprisingly, your shock absorbers. They adapt to the roads and your vehicle's weight, as they must be able to absorb every last pothole and bump your vehicle comes in contact with. But, did you know that some performance shocks are adjustable? 

Adjustable shocks allow for a certain level of fine-tuning, which brings the vehicle to the ride comfort and handling preferences of the driver. It also allows the driver to adjust dampening, and that compensates for wear. (Read more.)

Tire Rack carries the following adjustable shocks:

Bilstein 5100 Series Adjustable Shock
KYB AGX Adjustable Gas Shocks & Struts 

See all shocks.

You CAN find shock absorbers online!

Monday, November 2, 2009 by Tire Rack Team
At Tire Rack, we'll do our best to end your exhaustive search for shock absorbers online. We've developed our inventory by compiling some of the industry's best suspension products.

Search our stock by vehicle. It's easy! We'll generate a list of suitable suspension products, like shock absorbers, springs and strut boots—all of which are ready to ship from one of our distribution centers.

You can also search by brand:
Bilstein
Eibach
H&R
Hotchkis
KONI
KYB

Regardless, you'll find the information you need to make an educated purchase. If not, contact us. Our team of performance specialists would be happy to help you find shock absorbers.

KONI Damper Set Improves the Mini

Friday, July 10, 2009 by Mark Veldman
After hitting 60,000 miles on the my Mini Cooper S, I could tell it was time (and maybe a little late) for replacement shock absorbers.  The car wasn't settling as quickly after dips in road and small bumps were becoming much more noticeable.  I considered shocks from a few different manufacturers like KYB, KONI and Bilstein.  But after reading the shock absorber reviews on tirerack.com, I decided to go for the KONI FSD Damper Set.  I have had great experiences in the past with Koni shocks, so I had high hopes for the Damper Set.

The customer reviews were correct...the Koni FSD Damper Set was fantastic.  The handling was improved with quicker response to steering inputs and less bounce after bumps or unsettling maneuvers.  But true to the customer feedback, the ride quality actually improved absorbing bumps in a more subtle fashion than the stock shocks.

The Koni FSD Damper Set is a definite step up from standard shock absorbers, but there are also a huge step up in ride quality and performance.