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Discussion Starter #1
I want to slightly reduce the ride height on my 3.6

Im also experiencing a very bouncy ride and the car doesnt handle very well and rolls too much.

So Ive decided I want a different setup altogether. My last M5 had the same thing and it had brand new suspension. I hated it in all honesty.

Whats out there for 3.6 M5's?

Shall i change just th springs or do the shocks aswell?

Thanks
 

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I though the one I sold to you handled and rode very well. You have to remember it's a big heavy car dude and isn't going to be spankable like your e30 M3. Maybe consider the touring rear ARB before you go ditching the whole standard set up? You'll get less roll, less understeer and a more pointy front end. You won't sacrifice ride or comfort either. Maybe consider some negative camber on the front too? This should reduce understeer and make it pointier still. I think BMW do camber correction top mounts. If I remember correctly you can fit these the wrong way round and gain about 1° negative. Otherwise you'll have to look at adjustable top mounts from Ground Control or similar.

If you decide to go the whole hog I'd forget a spring and damper kit and look straight towards proper coilovers. I'm not sure how you'd integrate the SLS though - I imagine you'd have to discard it.

You're welcome to have a go of my car when you're over next - it's got lowering springs on it and it rides like a pig. It'll put you off straight away. :)
 

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Cyrus said:
I want to slightly reduce the ride height on my 3.6

Im also experiencing a very bouncy ride and the car doesnt handle very well and rolls too much.

So Ive decided I want a different setup altogether. My last M5 had the same thing and it had brand new suspension. I hated it in all honesty.

Whats out there for 3.6 M5's?

Shall i change just th springs or do the shocks aswell?

Thanks
Hi Cyrus
Can you put your finger on exactly what you dont like about the setup.
Is it the front or rear end behaviour. Your car still has self levelling rears.
Is the ride height at the rear set correctly ?
It makes a difference especially in damp conditions.
Lowering one of these things much further than BMW Intended can make their handling twitchy in the wet & the crashes & bangs get worse as more of the jounce (compression) is removed as the damper movement is also reduced.

However, if you were to go to a full coilover spring & damper setup with adjustable top mounts and adjustable front lower arms, you could set the car up & still maintain a good tyre contact patch on all corners.
Lowering can increase wear to the inside edges of the tyres unless consideration is given to the above.

To my knowledge , there is no tailor made coilover kit made by any manufacturer in Europe. A system can be made to fit wth appropriate internal valving to suit the cars characteristics & intended use.

It is all possible as I met a fella at the Nring who had his 3.6 all stripped & lowered with coilovers all round.
It went like stink & handled like a race car, which it basically was.

MONEY... MONEY... MONEY... MONEY... MONEY..OH & MORE MONEY !

Good luck Mate

Farrell
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I'm glad you guys know what your talking about otherwise I might have ended up wasting my money.

I want the car to sit a bit lower than it is now.

I dont like the way it rolls, both of them do this and I keep thinking its going to fall over.

I dont like the bouncy castle effect on motorways and yes my tyres pressures are fine.

I want flatter cornering.

The most annoying thing is the roll.

So, less roll and if its possible lower ride height.

Thanks

Sal
 

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Farrell, what setup are you running? Sounds like you are stock. I'm curious because I'm at the crossroads with suspension and I am seriously considering going back with SLS. I'm new to the M5 but I can tell the suspension needs refreshing. All these option flying around, Dinan Stage III, Coilovers, makes it hard to choose.

So what does ride like a pig mean? Is that good?


farrell said:
Hi Cyrus
Can you put your finger on exactly what you dont like about the setup.
Is it the front or rear end behaviour. Your car still has self levelling rears.
Is the ride height at the rear set correctly ?
It makes a difference especially in damp conditions.
Lowering one of these things much further than BMW Intended can make their handling twitchy in the wet & the crashes & bangs get worse as more of the jounce (compression) is removed as the damper movement is also reduced.

However, if you were to go to a full coilover spring & damper setup with adjustable top mounts and adjustable front lower arms, you could set the car up & still maintain a good tyre contact patch on all corners.
Lowering can increase wear to the inside edges of the tyres unless consideration is given to the above.

To my knowledge , there is no tailor made coilover kit made by any manufacturer in Europe. A system can be made to fit wth appropriate internal valving to suit the cars characteristics & intended use.

It is all possible as I met a fella at the Nring who had his 3.6 all stripped & lowered with coilovers all round.
It went like stink & handled like a race car, which it basically was.

MONEY... MONEY... MONEY... MONEY... MONEY..OH & MORE MONEY !

Good luck Mate

Farrell
 

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Cyrus said:
I'm glad you guys know what your talking about otherwise I might have ended up wasting my money.

I want the car to sit a bit lower than it is now.

I dont like the way it rolls, both of them do this and I keep thinking its going to fall over.

I dont like the bouncy castle effect on motorways and yes my tyres pressures are fine.

I want flatter cornering.

The most annoying thing is the roll.

So, less roll and if its possible lower ride height.

Thanks

Sal
Hi Cyrus
How old are your springs & Dampers ?
What condition are roll bar & bushes / brackets in ?

Metals fatigue at varying rates dependant upon the composition & treatment
& environment in which they live & work.

Im going to be controversial here & give an example that may concern some.
Take a new vehicle and perform a front end impact test at 50 kph.
Wow, excellent the safety cell remains intact, everyone is fine and all walk away. Hello Ncap 5 star rating.
Now take the same vehicle thats spent 10 yrs in the real world with extremes of temperature and 150,000 on the clock etc & do the same test.

Oh effin ell...the drivers got the clutch pedal stuck in his leg & the doors wont open. It all looked ok but metals, plastics etc all succumb to fatigue in one way or another

Your anti-sway bars or roll bars as you like, are under tremendous momentary transitional bending & torsional (twisting) forces.
They are mounted to the body via a bushing & bracket arrangement.
The whole assembly inclusive of roll bars are scrap by 150,00 km

Please dont consider lowering your car. that will lower the centre of gravity
and make the car more stable as there is less air moving under the vehicle.. but my not deal directly with your main problem... ROLL.
It may also make your ride more crashy & bumpy.

My advice for what it is worth is to go get a Touring rear roll bar & bushes.
a front roll bar & some bushes & bolt them on.

If your springs & dampers are as you say, then I will eat my Bosch Automotive handbook if this does not improve on your concerns.

Is that a deal...?

Regards
Farrell
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Ok i promise not to lower the car because I know your right about the ride and all the tyre wear issues.

I agree that metals and plastics undergo massive stresses and after a certain amount of abuse metal fatigue comes into play.

Looks like im looking for some ARB + bushes then! Hartge recommend I use Poly bushes for the ARB's, what you think?

Does anyone have the part numbers for the springs and dampers by any chance for a 3.6? I want to check if they put the right stuff on the older car which apprently has brand new everything. Both cars handle and roll exactly the same. The ride is the same aswell.

I have no idea if the dampers or shocks have been changed on the newer car though. Willl go through the 1 million pieces of service history to find out.
 

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Cyrus
I would recommend putting the car on a hoist & checking wear on the suspension arms & things like rr beam mounts.

Roll bars & bushes will need changing.

Polyeurathane bushes distort less & last longer but transmit more vibration & noise to the body. Choose your compromise...
Hartge are good parts.

I have outlayed huge amounts over the yrs on suspension parts, not just EDC dampers. Everything deteriorates gradually, then bam, its all over the shop.

Take care
Farrell
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Ive had Bexleys under the car already, all the arms, balljoints, subframe bushes, tie rods were fine. I dont think they looked at the anti roll bar bushes though.

To be honest I dont think they are worn, I just dont like the roll the car has. Maybe Im too used to having very little roll due to the M3 I had and the e30 C2 2.7 Alpina I had which were almost roll free. Very very flat.

The handling to be honest is very good for such a big car.

Am I asking too much from a big 1800kg machine?
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Fair enough, I will just have to live with it then.

Good thing i posted, you guys have probably stopped me from

1) Taking apart my suspension for no reason
2) Wasting money

However, I will fit the Touring ARB if you think its going to make a difference.

How much are they and wheres the best place to get them. Are there any other ARB sets you would recommend?
 

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This is the body roll on my 3.6 I have H&R sport suspension all around with stock roll-bars, and no strut-braces. I am really happy with the stability at all speeds, feels way more solid that stock M5s i've driven. I just wish I had Koni's.

 

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Discussion Starter #15
Just been looking into it, H&R do a spring set (£200!) which lowers 10mm at the back and 40mm at the front.

The coils are progressive.

Im tinking about this because evertyhing h&R seems to touch handles great and the ride is fantastic.

The rear lowering is minimal on this but they obvoulsy must have had some sort of gain from lowering the front end. Ive always felt that the front end on the M5's was way to up in the air.

Ive also had access to an E30 where the front end was lowered slightly more than the back and it really makes a masive difference to the way the car corners. Its much sharper turn in, bit more over steer and virtually no understeer. Infact the car became much more neutral. Only problem was a bit of negative camber at the front which was sorted out using some top mounts which were adjustable.

Whats your thoughts on this now?

M power suspension isnt necesarily the best for a particular car. H&R's are not some cheapo springs, they develop them properly before resleasing them.
 

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You could get less grip do to the the front being lower and so the weight over the front. Not sure how much this sort of thing would effect a E34 but with Golfs it did. Being FWD.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
You could be right about the grip issue at the front with a FWD drive car.

If your lowering 10mm at the back and 40mm at the front the effective net increase of front lower than back would only be 30mm which in all honesty is very little. Also, it also depends on the spring rates.

Im going to give this a go as I have had a few reports that this works extremely well on E34's without effecting to the ride which is quite firm anyway.

I personally really hate the stance it currently has with the massive gap bewteen the front wheels and the wing.

Also, h&R say that their lowering springs work extremely well with standard shocks. This is certainly true with E30's where people have used H&R's, not got a massive amount of lowering (nor should it be) but got huge gains in handling and a better ride quality than Mtec springs.

Same goes for people with E36's.

I will investigate further.
 

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If you do lower the front you should be wary of ripping the arches off when cornering fast - I've already bent my arch a few times (a rubber mallet straightened it for now)!
 
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