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Strut Bars | Should I have them Installed?

Virtually all cars sold today, including several sports cars, use a MacPherson strut system as part of the front-end suspension design.

With a MacPherson strut suspension system where the spring and shock absorber are combined in the one suspension unit which also replaces the upper control arm, the entire vertical suspension load is transmitted to the top of the vehicle's strut tower, unlike a double-wishbone suspension where the spring and shock absorber may share the load separately.

That means the strut becomes part of the steering geometry for the vehicle. It is an inexpensive option that still provides enough support so that the riding experience remains comfortable.

One disadvantage of this design is that the strut system transmits its load through a strut tower. This issue causes the chassis to flex, which can create stability issues for the vehicle.

This brings us neatly to a piece of metal called the strut bar.

A strut bar is designed to reduce this strut tower flex by tying the two strut towers together. This transmits the load off each strut tower during cornering which ties the two towers together and reduces chassis flex.

By reducing strut tower flex, your coilover is more effectively able to absorb bumps in the road. Suspension tuning also becomes much easier, since the chassis is no longer causing handling characteristics to change randomly. This is especially important if you install sticky tires and high spring rate coilovers.

Better cornering and less body flex are two additional benefits that have a positive effect on driver experience and will help you enjoy your car. Strut bars also create a more even distribution of the roll force, which helps to keep it upright if you enter turns with too much speed.

Even better, because strut bars are so easy to install, they’re equally easy to uninstall. If you don’t like the feel of the ride, it’s easy to remove your strut brace. It’s a pretty low commitment modification.

Perhaps a disadvantage is adding a little bit of weight which is negligible compared to the additional handling power your car will reap.

If you are thinking about adding a strut bar to your front-end suspension, then most vehicles come with several design options to consider. Each one gives you some specific advantages to consider when you get behind the wheel.

Buy online or contact Vivid Racing today by calling (480) 966-3040.