I love the steering feedback of my 2010 Honda City that has dampers and upsized tyres.
BHPian evil_grin recently shared this with other enthusiasts.
I have a 2019 Octavia 1.8 TSI with slightly higher sidewalls of 205/60R16 P4ST changed at 25k km (for more ground clearance and more comfort) that’s run 45k km. It’s a lovely car. The only thing that irks me a lot since the beginning is the suspension.
It’s fine if loaded. Over undulating roads, there is too much vertical movement. That’s somewhat acceptable because I rarely go on the highways without packing the boot.
There isn’t a lot of feel or feedback from the steering wheel. That’s downright disappointing for a car made for enthusiasts. Also, over bad roads, there is too much of sideways movements before settling down. I hate that.
I wanted to get an RS, but it wasn’t available when I bought the car.
My other car is a 2010 Honda City with Teins dampers and upsized 195/60R15 Yokohoma Earth1 tyres. I love the feedback from the steering and the stability it has over bad roads irrespective of speed or load. It’s more comfortable than stock though less than the Octavia over bad roads.
I’ve also driven a Laura with stock 15-inch wheels and loved its suspension.
I’ve also sat in an RS245 and felt its suspension to be tight enough to handle well without being too stiff for bad roads.
What can I do to improve the suspension on the Octavia? I need:
- a lot more feel and feedback from the steering wheel
- less sidewise movements and thuds over bad roads
- less vertical movement over undulations though I don’t want to make it harsher over bad roads
I have thought of the following alternatives based on reading threads here but since there is no place I can try them out, I don’t know which approach to take.
- Bilstein B6 dampers: The default choice according to many. Dampers will wear out eventually. So why not upgrade when they do? But these will make slow-speed rides a little worse. Will they help with the sidewise movements over bad roads?
- RS245 dampers: How do these fare over the Bilsteins?
- RS245 springs: Changing the springs might be a better solution for the sidewise movements over bad roads and vertical movements over undulations but they probably won’t help with steering feel and feedback. Also, springs are supposed to last the lifetime of the car so I don’t want to throw away perfectly working springs for more expensive ones.
- Any other?
I’d like to leverage the collective wisdom of this experienced group to decide the path forward.
Here’s what BHPian jinojohnt had to say about the matter:
Long back there was a review in Auto Car India Magazine about retrofitting Koni FSD shocks in an Octavia. A bit expensive, but reportedly makes a huge difference in handling without any compromise in ride quality.
Here’s what BHPian itwasntme had to say about the matter:
I have an MY16 pre-facelift Octavia 1.8 TSI (bone stock on P3ST 205/55/16), so can comment somewhat.
The stock suspension on the pre-facelift was tauter than the facelift, but even then I find it wallowy unless driving with a full load. Your facelifted Octavia was made softer even though the rear track is a little wider. From a mod point of view, the first thing to know is your budget!
In my humble opinion, I’d suggest the following:
- Change your 60 profile tyres to either 225/50/16 in PS3 (if you can get them) OR change to 225/45/17s in PS4 if you have the budget. A lot of the floatiness and wallowing will immediately be ironed out, in my opinion. P4ST is not ideal for the Octavia with the FWD and 178 bhp.
- Go for the Bilstein B6 (my preference) OR vRS230 springs like sharan1988 has. I’d prefer the former because it is already running on zillions of modded sedans starting from BMWs to Skodas without any huge issues. You are also in HYD which (like BLR) has an active modders scene. Take a few opinions/estimates from good modders and take a call. Worst case, you can drive down to BLR or even KL and make a holiday of it.
Let us know how it goes! I would have loved to move to better/fatter tyres and lower it, but the Octavia is now almost exclusively chauffeur-driven. Touch it and the better half will lower me into the grave.
Here’s what BHPian Akshay1234 had to say about the matter:
Go for the Bilstein B6s without a second thought. It will give you far better stability, much better damping and reduce the thuds of bad roads. The only downside is a bit more body movement at low speeds, but again well damped so not troubling at all. But once the speed picks up, it’s in a different league altogether.
Here’s what BHPian Gypsian had to say about the matter:
Enquire for a Koni complete suspension kit consisting of high-performance adjustable dampers and matching lowering springs, which I guess reduces the height by 30mm. One of my friends in Chittoor had installed this suspension setup on his Laura and its handling was spot on.
Check out BHPian comments for more insights and information.
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