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WHAT'S THE BEST BUDGET COILOVER KIT FOR A MK1 - GUIDE/REVIEW

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WHAT'S THE BEST BUDGET COILOVER KIT FOR A MK1 - GUIDE/REVIEW

Hi All over the last few years there's been a massive influx of cheap coilovers for Mk1 and looking at the price tags on H&R and KW and having used AVO and KONI back in the 90's I really wanted to know does the price tag really mean better ?  apart from stainless steel kits that oviously won't seize up they all look pretty much the same.So after trailing every forum imaginable and reading so many conflicting reviews I decided to not only buy a few sets of the so called best budgets on the market and post my findings to make the impossible task easier.

So today we got both sets in

FIRST KIT - THE HOTUNING SET (TUNING ART) (blue springs)  HEIGHT ADJUSTABLE FIXED DAMPING 199-249

SECOND KIT - THE NEW JAMEX EXTREME KIT ( red springs) HEIGHT ADJUSTABLE FIXED DAMPING 329-399

I went for these as hotuning also know as Tuningart kit as seemed to get the least bad reviews ( compared to other ie jom and fk ) and after loving jamex stuff years ago I rang the new UK office and a nice chap called Matthew agreed to send me one the first sets of the new extreme kits which have uprated shocks and springs compared with there baseline version.

Firstly how do they look ?







at first glance they look identical apart from different colour springs.But when you look further you start to see differences

1 - Jamex units very slightly heavier
2 - Jamex spring on compress by hand test were a lot firmer
3 - Jamex shocks return almost immediately when compressed while hotuning shock returned a much slower rate

So today we decide to fit the front Jamex's on



Top Tip if your going to change your suspension well worth changing the top mount at the same time ! I went for original quality Bilstein Febi (Made in germany about 40 the pair)



My Bro fitted these with ease and tightened it all up and then was just a matter of repeating the process on other side took him less than a hour,



we went for a mid height at first about halfway point on coil thread so still at least a further drop of 30-40mm is possible

Then stuck the wheels back on and lowered the jack !



Even though there was 40mm still left on thread the jack still got stuck ! Car was to low !! so I had to pick it up while my bro pulled the jack out .




Wow what a difference



So it was getting dark so we decided to continue tomorrow on the rears but couldn't help ourselves and decided to go for a 5 mile test drive .

I was pleasantly very impressed with these even at this height the ride felt really smooth obviously not like stock but no bunny hopping down the road, another surprise was how the fronts did not bottom out ( my AVO kit banged hard on even the smallest London pot hole even on soft setting) another immediate difference was in how much more responsive the front end was just a little turn of the wheel made the car steer accurately.

But that's all for today folks, going to put the rears on tomorrow and will continue the review.

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So we get the up to fit the rears and in typical English fashion its bucketing it down, so after lunch it calmed down a bit so decided to just get on with it, fitting rears was simple enough but making sure the car sat level was another thing ! after a hour of adjusting putting wheels back on lowering jack over 10 times we finally got it to sit right, again as with the fronts about another 40mm of lowering is still possible on rears.



Looking at the before and after shot we must have actually come down at least 85mm already the MK1 looked liked a totally different car !



We kept the front a little lower to give it a proper mk1 aggressive stance.

Then we went for the first full test drive !

At first it seemed very good, putting the rears on made the whole car feel different and bit go kartish but at 60mph on a smooth road it seemed much more solid with hardly any body roll whatsoever, so far so good, we next thought we would take it on some typical London humped and pothole riddled streets and that's were it really did not do well, could feel every bump and hump hard! hitting the roundabout at 50mph the car stuck to the road like glue but on bumpy straights even at 15mph not very nice at all had to slow down to almost standstill on humps.

I hoped that it would be like my brothers koni set up he bought 10 years ago( which they don't make any more but did cost 900) but just my luck no chance.

I now have a bit or a dilemma Looks vs Everyday Driving

Im sure round a track this Extreme Kit from Jamex would be wonderful build quality is great and on a good road surface its really good but as a every day driver it would surely do your head in !We may try raising the car tomorrow as it may well make it drive bit smoother but my brother says on coilovers the higher you raise them the less travel so in theory it may get worse, but for today it seems it far to hard to be used daily at this height setting.


Will raise up about 10mm all round and continue the review tomorrow guys and thanks for all the great comments.

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Looking forward to the updates on this  :mrgreen:

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I've just bought a set of JOM from Venom so I'll give my opinion on these soon enough.
It was either it needed dropping on air (and I couldn't warrant the 2k bill) or get a reasonably priced recommended kit.

Guy

R32GUY

1992 Rivage in Classic Blue Pearl "B16YUG" 2.0 TFSI, 6 Speed FWD with Quaife LSD, running on Air with sorted geometry and Eibach ARB's, G60 brake setup front and rear, 4x100 17" BBS LM's, Power Steering, Opening Quarter-lights, Mk2 electric recaros and the whole car trimmed by MJ Interiors in tan and Alcantara with a brown roof.


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Damn what happened to the rest of the review ! i thought i'd struck gold when i started reading this

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IMHO for a budget set of coils the JOM are fine… they are a little crashy (i'm used to KW or PSS9) on uneven surfaces but get the job done for whay is very little cost.

For under 200 delivered they are worth the money to get the stance…




R32GUY

1992 Rivage in Classic Blue Pearl "B16YUG" 2.0 TFSI, 6 Speed FWD with Quaife LSD, running on Air with sorted geometry and Eibach ARB's, G60 brake setup front and rear, 4x100 17" BBS LM's, Power Steering, Opening Quarter-lights, Mk2 electric recaros and the whole car trimmed by MJ Interiors in tan and Alcantara with a brown roof.


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I remember buying a SPAX RSX kit for my first mk2 golf it was over 500 at the time but it was amazing quality.
I wouldn't spend that much again but there must be a kit out there thats good value and doesn't want to snap your spine.

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R32GUY said

IMHO for a budget set of coils the JOM are fine… they are a little crashy (i'm used to KW or PSS9) on uneven surfaces but get the job done for whay is very little cost.

For under 200 delivered they are worth the money to get the stance…






Damn that looks really nice, can i ask which engine you have as when i lowered ours down of the the jacks it pretty much bottomed out with the KR replacement so i need to know what strutts or coils to specify if i buy a new kit?  :dontknow:

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unityjon said

R32GUY said

IMHO for a budget set of coils the JOM are fine… they are a little crashy (i'm used to KW or PSS9) on uneven surfaces but get the job done for whay is very little cost.

For under 200 delivered they are worth the money to get the stance…






Damn that looks really nice, can i ask which engine you have as when i lowered ours down of the the jacks it pretty much bottomed out with the KR replacement so i need to know what strutts or coils to specify if i buy a new kit?  :dontknow:

I've got a 1.8 DX Cabriolet GTi. Apart from a strut brace and new top mounts it's standard (only done 83k).
I bought the JOM kit from Richard @ Venom Venom

Running this low be very careful of the sump - I have already taken a few shavings off and I will probably raise it back up 20cm or so. It handle surprisingly well, reasonable stiffness and recoil - just a little crashy at the back when going over speed bumps.
(The Wheels make the car).

R32GUY

1992 Rivage in Classic Blue Pearl "B16YUG" 2.0 TFSI, 6 Speed FWD with Quaife LSD, running on Air with sorted geometry and Eibach ARB's, G60 brake setup front and rear, 4x100 17" BBS LM's, Power Steering, Opening Quarter-lights, Mk2 electric recaros and the whole car trimmed by MJ Interiors in tan and Alcantara with a brown roof.


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What wheels are they R32GUY? That is sexy for a cab!

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mk1golfdriver said

What wheels are they R32GUY? That is sexy for a cab!

Thanks :-)
Wheels make the car indeed.
They are rare BBS RS 501 with a 3" rear and a 2" front lip for the nice staggered look.

Guy

R32GUY

1992 Rivage in Classic Blue Pearl "B16YUG" 2.0 TFSI, 6 Speed FWD with Quaife LSD, running on Air with sorted geometry and Eibach ARB's, G60 brake setup front and rear, 4x100 17" BBS LM's, Power Steering, Opening Quarter-lights, Mk2 electric recaros and the whole car trimmed by MJ Interiors in tan and Alcantara with a brown roof.


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Anything to report?:)

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this thread started off strong and then kinda fizzled out………bit of a shame.

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