Choosing the coilover suspension for my S2000 was the biggest setup decision that I made, and was the foundation for everything that was to come. Ive aways been a huge fan of Ohlins DFV, and believe that theyre probably the best mid-range price dual-use coilover on the market. Ride quality for the street was a HUGE factor in my decision, and almost outweighed track performance. While some alternatives like the Fortune 510 priced out at about half of what I spent, I just couldnt risk any detriment to ride quality.
The OTS Ohlins DFV for the S2000, however, have 2 big drawbacks to performance; very short rear travel, and limited height adjustability in the rear. This ultimately led me to going with a set of FP Spec Ohlins from Sakebomb Garage.
The Sakebomb FP Spec Ohlins utilize a longer stroke damper, along with a custom passthrough lower rear mount. This solves both issues with the OTS set.
When you work with Sakebomb, they gather a lot of information about you and the car; what sort of driving are you doing, your goals, appetite for stiffness, driving preferences, vehicle weight, aero, power level, etc. All of this information gets plugged into their proprietary models to help determine the ideal spring rates.
I wound up going with 12k front and rear springs, along with 5k rear helper springs. The dampers were custom valved by Ohlins from the factory to match the spring rates. The FP Spec kit also includes Swift Springs, pillowball top hats, and non-marring spanner wrenches. All preassembled and preloaded. I also negotiated a free t-shirt 🙂 .
While 12k rates seemed high to me, the SBG team reassured me that the DFV technology enables you to run higher rates without them feeling harsh and clunky. They should feel firm and sporty.
The front assembly weighs 9.8lb and the rear assembly weighs 8.6lb. So it should also be a nice little weight savings for the car.
Along with the coilovers came an instruction manual from Ohlins. It says that the factory adjustment is set to 7 clicks from full stiff. SBG recommends starting at 10 clicks but figure about 4-5 clicks from full stiff for track, then adjusting from there. While theres 30 clicks of adjustable range, the actual usable range is 2-20 clicks from full stiff. Above 20 they say is a bit of a crapshoot as far as the actual benefit.
To accompany the new coilovers and pair nicely with the square spring rates, I also chose to go with the Sakebomb swaybar kit for both the front and rear. The front bar is a beefy 3-way adjustable 32mm, making the 21mm rear bar look like a toothpick in comparison.
The comments of the team at SBG were that this setup will handle closely to a Miata; tossable and totally predictable, without the threat of snap at the limit.
The front bar weighs 11.6lb and the rear bar weighs just 4lbs.