Suspension is important for any type of car, whether it be a street cruiser or corner-craving monster. When it comes to safety, quality suspension components are a must, and should take priority over shiny valve covers and a kickin' stereo.
Here we will show you the options available for many different model cars. Keep in mind most of these companies make kits for several models, not just the one featured. (There are not enough pages in our mag to show you every system from every manufacturer for every car, so we're showing you a well-rounded grouping.) You could choose to rebuild your stock suspension with high-quality OEM-style components, but it's only a few bucks more to upgrade to aftermarket pieces with modern designs. Often, these pieces are lighter weight, stronger, and safer than stock. If the handling of your hot rod matters to you, and you actually plan to use it on the street-or even at the track-these suggestions will help you get started.
Adjustable Front & Rear Suspension
Fits: 1979-1993 Mustang (Fox-body)
After a long stretch of Mustang II regrets, Ford came out with what most experts refer to as the Fox-body Mustang. They had no idea then how this would change the hot rodding world. These Mustangs have a huge following that is growing every day, and the rarer the cars get, the more selective the owners are about modifying them. Lucky for them, the aftermarket world loves these Fox-body Mustangs.
Hotchkis suspension has an adjustable rear suspension kit to replace the stock four-link system. Its arms allow for infinite pinion angle adjustment, which is critical in eliminating wheel hop. As an upgrade, you can get the double-adjustable upper arms (bottom) that use a constant pivot joint that won't bind or disrupt your suspension settings. The lower trailing arm is constructed of TIG-welded .120-inch steel tubing with an ultratough CNC billet spring perch.
To cover the front, Hotchkis has adjustable camber/caster plates, (shown, right)since the factory does not accommodate enough adjustment for the serious cornering enthusiasts. The kit comes with CNC-machined 6061 heat-treated aluminum plates with polyurethane bushings for smooth and quiet operation. It also comes with TIG-welded strut hats that allow extra travel necessary for lowered vehicles.
|Rear Suspension kit (upper and lower) ||$461 |
|Double-adjustable uppers ||$252 |
|Caster/camber plates ||$256 |
Air Ride Technologies
PosiLink Sway Bar Endlinks
Here's something for everyone! There aren't a lot of cars out there that can't benefit from an endlink upgrade. There are a couple different things that can be wrong with your current setup. One is that the length can be incorrect. Length is crucial to fitment and operation. The ends of the sway bar need to be level so that they have room to travel up and down with the suspension. If the ends are angled too much in either direction, they can bind prematurely, resulting in loss of traction or broken parts. Deteriorating bushings from a stock or low-quality replacement endlink can also cause the bar ends to be angled, or allow the sway bar to move without affecting the suspension, as it should.
Air Ride has put together a line of components that can be ordered for a specific car, or pieced together to fit your application. They come in straight or 90-degree ends that thread together with or without a spacer. They are constructed similarly to tie-rod ends, so they have the ability to pivot without damage.
|Sets for Air Ride sway bar (pair) ||$150 |
|Straight or elbow, 10mm or 12mm (each end) ||$39 |
Classic Performance Products
Front Suspension And Brake Kit
Fits: 1964-1970 Chevelle (GM A-body)
Classic Performance Products, also known as CPP, has been breathing new life into cars in need for over 30 years. Its product line covers Chevy trucks and passenger cars from the 1940s through the 1970s. Our focus is on its front suspension kit for the 1964-1972 Chevelle. We have a lot of experience with this kit with our own Project Street Sweeper '68 Chevelle.
CPP has made several improvements to the factory control arm design. They have revised the coil spring pocket on the lower arm to make installation easier, and reinforced the ball joint sleeves extensively. Its billet chrome-moly cross-shafts encapsulate the bushing on both sides, unlike factory arms that only use the outer washer to control the bushing. CPP uses a self-lubricating bushing that provides squeak-free operation in conditions up to 400 degrees. To further guarantee their durability, CPP designed an interlocking shaft and sleeve to keep from working loose under stressful conditions.
To make this a complete frontend kit, CPP includes a new 600-series quick-ratio steering box, drop spindles, 13-inch brake kit with aluminum hubs, 1 1/8-inch sway bar, and all the necessary hardware to play.
|Complete suspension, brakes, and steering kit (save $147) ||$2,199 |
|Upper and lower control arm/cross-shafts ||$799 |
|13-inch brake kit with drop spindles ||$999 |
|New 600-series quick-ratio steering box ||$399 |
|1 1/8-inch sway bar kit with endlinks ||$149 |
Classic Performance Products
Tubular Front & Rear Suspension
Fits: 1978-1987 Buick Regal and Grand National, Chevrolet Monte Carlo and Malibu, Oldsmobile Cutlass, and Pontiac Grand Prix (GM G-body)
There's no doubt the GM metric-or G-Body-platform has become the fastest-growing segment of modern musclecars. With the high market demand for the early Chevys, Fords, and Mopars, these midsize 1980s cars are hot rodder gold. BMR produces many suspension components for these cars to optimize handling and traction. In front, they have tubular upper and lower A-arms (bottom) constructed of high-quality DOM tubing with provisions for factory or aftermarket springs, shocks, and sway bar. To further upgrade, the BMR system also accepts QA1's popular Pro Coil kit. Installed in these arms are low-deflection polyurethane bushings and billet steel cross-shafts.
BMR realizes the need to improve the rear suspension, as well. The upper control arms are made from large-diameter DOM tubing and can be ordered as fixed length units or adjustable with polyurethane or spherical bushings. BMR suggests using the adjustable arms to allow for on-car pinion angle adjustment without removing the control arm. Unique to BMR are its billet lower control arms (above). They are machined from forged 6061 aluminum, and come in a black-anodized finish. In addition to the billet units, high-strength boxed steel arms are available. To round out the rear suspension, BMR also offers a sway bar kit intended for drag racing. With the exception of the billet lower arms, all components are available in red powdercoat and black hammertone finish.
|Pricing: || |
|Front || |
|Upper A-arms (pair) ||$347 |
|Lower A-arms (pair) ||$550 |
|Upper and lower kit ($65 savings) ||$829 |
|Rear || |
|Upper control arms || |
|Nonadjustable w/bushings (pair) ||$130 |
|Adjustable w/bushings (pair) ||$220 |
|Adjustable w/spherical bearings (pair) ||$320 |
|Lower Control Arms || |
|Boxed control arms w/poly bushings (pair) ||$200 |
|Boxed control arms w/spherical bearings (pair) ||$347 |
|Chrome-moly adjustable control arms (pair) ||$260 |
|Billet lower control arms (pair) ||$230 |
|Rear sway bar kit ||$400 |
Universal "Bikini-Clip" IFS
If your application is more specialized, and a prefabricated application-specific clip can't fit, using a universal setup is a natural choice. Art Morrison has designed its "bikini-clip" front suspension to be molded to nearly any vehicle from the 1940s through the 1980s. For consistency, this unit is jig-welded, and comes with a length of framerail to make squaring up and installing between the factory pieces as easy as possible. This kit comes with three choices for suspension types: Corvette C6 suspension, tubular upper and lower control arms with coil springs, or with air springs. All of these options are designed for real-world abuse and have been optimized to experience little to no bumpsteer. The steering rack from AGR comes in a choice of two ratios and is connected to the wheels through Wilwood/AME-designed spindles. Keep in mind, this is not a Mustang II suspension, and has proven to be even more durable.
|Bikini-clip IFS kit ||$2,855 |
Total Cost Involved
Torque-Arm Rear Suspension
Fits: 1964-1970 Mustang
Light cars like the early Mustang are prone to traction issues, and the stock suspension does not help matters. TCI designed this torque-arm rear suspension setup to dramatically reduce or cure these issues. This kit stretches from the front frame section all the way to the rear axle housing, helping to stiffen up the car. TCI's three-link system includes all the necessary brackets to convert your leaf spring car to this modern alternative. The TCI kit comes with subframe connectors, frame stiffener, torque-arm bar, rear Panhard bar, frame brackets, All American coilover shocks, shock crossmember, rigid three-link, and reinforcement plates. The kit can be dressed up with chrome and powdercoating for an additional cost for a show-quality finish.
|Rear suspension kit (base) ||$1,679 |
|Rear suspension kit (show-finish) ||$2,069 |
Total Cost Involved