Suspension recommendations | Ford Escort Owners Association (FEOA)
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Suspension recommendations

Discussion in 'ZX2 1998-2004 2.0L DOHC' started by That_one_GM_guy, Aug 25, 2020.

  1. That_one_GM_guy

    That_one_GM_guy FEOA Member

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    Well, as the '03 is getting closer to 200k miles the shocks are starting to get a little tired, nothing terrible, but they'll have to go sooner or later. Any recommendations for replacement struts? Nothing too fancy, but ideally I'd like to upgrade a bit from factory. I don't want to lower it, if anything maybe go a smidge taller for curbs and blasting down gravel roads. Thanks!
  2. Apex

    Apex FEOA Member

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    I just purchased a ZX2, so this is just general advice along with the limited research I have done so far. Take it with a grain of salt.

    KYB makes factory replacement struts, I have installed KYB struts onto factory springs and mounts before on one car, it was a well over 200K mile Camry and if I was trying to make it nice I should have replaced the dust cover boots and bump stops (the Camry was bottoming out in the rear for a long time and obliterated the bump stops). Usually springs last a long time and can be reused, but I don't know in general how long the springs tend to wear out. Typically though reusing the springs means you don't need to realign a car as the ride height should be identical.

    In my experience at least with other brands of "loaded" struts (springs pre-installed for you) they tend to be of a lower quality, I had issues with the struts binding at the top and noise complaints when turning the steering wheel from the owner of the vehicle I installed them on. Last I heard they eventually took it to a regular shop which replaced them with similar units, had the exact same issue with noise, then replaced them again under warranty which lessened the issue, but it was still present. I believe this was more of an issue with that brand and perhaps being put together improperly (the top nut on the strut should not be installed with an impact wrench for example).

    As for something more performance oriented, there are coilovers available, though I have only seen a couple of options. D2 Racing makes a direct fit coilover for the ZX2, and they have 2 or 3 options, though I have only seen the standard for sale from 3rd party vendors. I did see a part number for a tarmac rally setup and at least one other part number, check their catalog for sure. They do make gravel rally coilovers, but not for the ZX2. I would either call them or see if you could find information on what the differences are.

    BC Racing coilovers makes coilovers for a 323 GTX which will bolt in. I don't know the differences between spring rates on a 323 vs a ZX2, but I believe BC will sell you different springs if you wanted to change them. From what I have read coilovers will typically lower the car even at their maximum height adjustment.

    As for a simple and cheap lift you might be able to fabricate a spacer between the strut and the top mount plate, I've seen people make their own spacers for Subarus at home.

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