Also for the second model generation of the popular BMW 3-series, the BMW E30, the suspension manufacturer KW automotive has developed new KW classic suspension kits. These differ from the well-known KW coilovers for the BMW E30 that the front axle struts have forged steering knuckles also known as forged spindles.
This no longer requires the time-consuming processing of the original parts. “Customers told us that the series struts which are usually only produced in small numbers can be very expensive per piece”, says KW Product Manager Johannes Wacker. “Our classic applications on the other hand, are an interesting alternative and differ from the series in their modern
Due to the KW coilovers available for the BMW E30, the driving dynamics is greatly increased and the BMW classics are much easier to control, with modern tires and larger rims even at the limits of driving dynamics. And with KW suspensions, also the unique character of the popular E30 remains and the driving pleasure doesn’t come up short.
Fans of classic automobiles often face the challenge that the advanced development of the tires barely harmonize with the suspension technology of the seventies and eighties of the former century. Mostly, for various models there are no tires available with the technology standard of the former original equipment. Drivers of a classic automobile often have to switch to modern tires. ‘‘In the recent decades, an immense change has taken place in this segment”, says KW Product Manager Johannes Wacker. What was formerly known as wide base tire has long become standard in original equipment and, accordingly, the range of retroﬁt tires has also changed. “Older suspension and damper developments with standard technology from the time of their market launch, combined with modern tires in everyday life or at the limit of driving dynamics, can be inharmonious or even difﬁcult to control in regards ofdriving behavior. This is not the case with our suspensions.”
With the KW dampers independently adjustable in compression and rebound, it is also possible to adapt the driving behavior of all BMW E30 (except ix-models with permanent four-wheel drive) to the personal driving demand. “The rebound adjustment which can be
adjusted with 16 clicks allows to directly take inﬂuence on handling and driving comfort”, explains KW Product Manager Johannes Wacker. “By increasing the rebound force, the body movements are reduced. The E30 drives with more tracking and the drivers have more ride
stability at fast cornering speeds.”
With the compression damping that is separately adjustable with twelve clicks, for example the traction of the tires can be increased and the handling can further be inﬂuenced. “In our dampers, also pre-conﬁgured high-speed compression valves are used”, continues the KW Product Manager. “This has the great advantage that, for example, when crossing large transverse joints or speed bumps, bypasses channels in the damper open and the piston rod can dive in. Simply said, the wheels are springing in when driving over a bump and even at high speeds, the tires do not lose grip.This blow-off-characteristic of the KW coilover suspension makes sporty driving safer.”
In addition to the variant 3, also the Variant 1 kit is available with forged steering knuckles. But in contrast to the Variant 3, here the compression and rebound damping cannot be set independently. Both suspensions enable the BMW E30 to be continuously lowered at the front axle from 60 to 80mm and at the drive axle from 55 to 80mm. While for the well-known KW coilovers Variant 1 and Variant 3 the series struts must be sent to KW in advance for processing, the KW classic coilovers are available including forged axles on the suspension strut, which at the end are the cheaper investment forthe BMW E30 enthusiast.
Photos: KW automotive GmbH
… Read more in AUTOMOTIV Issue #13
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