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Registered 2001 SLK320
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24 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hello, a few weeks ago I’ve had the Billstien B12 kit with Eibach springs installed so I thought I’d share how much better the car is.

To compliment this mod I have also replaced:

1.rear multi link arms
2. rear sway bar bushings
3. installed polyurethane lower control arm bushings (Strongflex red) and polyurethane front sway bar bushings (Strongflex yellow)
4. 235 front tyres (Michelin pilot sport 4)

My SLK320 had 123000 miles on the original suspension and the handling was getting, well very interesting although my shocks and bushes were still in reasonable condition.

Personally I think the stock factory handling and suspension set up was awful, the car used to just feel unsettled, unpredictable, mid corner bumps really upset it and there was just too much body roll/ weight shift while cornering. From factory the R170 is not a good handling car.

The suspension just made the car feel dull and uninspiring in my opinion. Also the stock ride height is so high! Did they think people were going to use these things for off roading? I had 45mm wheel gap between the rear tyre and fender!!! 😄

So how much better does the car feel now? Miles better. The car just sits so flat mid corner now it feels like the weight of the car is much more evenly distributed between the wheels.

The horrid squishy body roll is pretty much gone. The steering response and feel is just great now. Now the car just feel so good to drive and gives so much more feedback. You can take corners so much faster and with so much more confidence. When you turn in you no longer feel the weight of the car moving around changing from over to understeer as you hit bumps. The car just stays composed and feels great and has sooooo much more grip it’s unreal.

You might think this newfound sporty handling comes at a great cost to comfort but it really doesn’t. It’s much more of a firm ride than stock. As a comparison the firmness is just a bit stiffer than an R172 with the AMG suspention pack.

I live in rural Dorset and the road quality is beyond shocking but the billstien dampers do a great job of smoothening the bumps. Really bumpy sections can get a little overwhelming. But I daily this car with like 350 miles a week and I don’t mind the slightly harsher ride.

The polyurethane lower arm bushing and sway bar bushings have made no perceivable difference in NVH but they have made the front the end feel nice and precise and pointy. A quality the stock r170 really lacks.

The ride height is fine I haven’t scraped on my thing yet. The front tyre is directly in line with the front arch and the rear is around 20mm gap between tyre and wheel arch. The -30mm ride height is only accurate on new cars where the old springs haven’t sagged down. I’m still running the factory springs pads but I’m going to take them down to #1 soon because the back end still has suv wheel gap.

I’d definitely recommend these mods they transform the r170 driving experience from frankly dull and uninspiring to a much more fun and sporty driving experience without sacrificing to much comfort.
 

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15 Posts
I started a thread a couple weeks ago called "R170 Lowering Springs" and received some good opinions and information, but your review and experience are what I was really looking for. Thank you for this. My main concern is that the ride will become too harsh, but based on your review it sounds like it isn't a problem. Thanks again.
 

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Registered 2001 SLK320
Joined
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24 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
The ride with the B12 kit is definitely a good amount harder than stock, along a decent highway you can’t tell much difference, just when you get some really bad quality roads with big potholes you can really feel the bumps.

It’s definitely not the comfy cruiser it used to be it’s very sports car feeling now but it’s still a an acceptable ride.
 
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