Suspension Rebuild for the Street. Our 996 Gets Some Love.

Suspension Rebuild for the Street. Our 996 Gets Some Love.

 

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The MGC Suspensions 996, (Which happens to be my personal daily driver car) has been riding around on a tired, high mileage suspension for too long now. So after 112,000 miles of potholes, dirt roads, and curbs, we decided to freshen things up and make some big improvements.

We started with a completely stock, factory suspension that came with the car  back in 2003. We also had previously installed H&R street performance coilovers to lower the car and give some performance enhancement. The only issue was the lower stance was stressing the limits of the factory end links, tie rods, and toe arms causing bump steer and rough handling. 

 

H&R street performance coilovers for Porsche 996

H&R street performance coilover kit that was previously installed. Ride height was lowered about 2 inches. They offer great rebound and compression presets and have ride height adjustability from 1-2.5 inches. Price is around 1900.00 for the kit.

First order of business for the rebuild was to replace the 4 lower control arms and 4 diagonal fork arms. These parts were supplied by Meyle which are high quality direct replacement units that are fairly priced. We figured they were perfect for a budget specific rebuild. Meyle products are not currently available at MGC, but soon will be. Replacing these arms restores tightness to the handling and gives new ball joint ends to eliminate any of the common 996/986 clunking issues.

 

meyle brand Porsche 996 lower control arm Meyle brand porsche 996 lower fork arm

 Meyle brand lower control arms with new bushings and ball joints. These were the base for the project, and the only direct replacement parts used.

 

We then called our friends at Tarett Engineering for some help to put together a kit that was perfect for a daily driver that sees occasional track days and a lot of canyon carving. 

We started with front and rear GT series adjustable sway bars. They are made to the same specs as the factory GT3 bars and are a game changer! Here is the product description from our website about these great sway bars. 

"Made to the exact same specs as the Porsche OEM GT3 bars, for the same perfect fit and performance, but at a more affordable price.  CNC machine bent from aerospace quality 4130 chrome moly material for reliability you can depend on, and finished in black powder coating.  Pair them with our drop links to provide a winning combination!  The GT-Series bars are SPC, SPB, & SP996 spec legal.  The light weight hollow design is half the weight of a solid bar with the same stiffness.  Multiple attachment hole positions allow for quick and easy swaybar stiffness rate adjustments, to fine-tune your car's handling for various track conditions and driving styles.  All components are designed and manufactured to the highest quality standards, and make this the finest and most reliable sway bar on the market.

<span itemprop='name'>Front Swaybar & Bushing Kit, all 996/997/991, Boxster & Cayman</span><BR>

Shown above is the front 5-hole adjustable GT series sway bar we installed, along with a matching 4-hole adjustable rear bar. We used Tarett drop link kits to compliment the bars, which yielded stiffer, bind free performance which was very noticeable. Setup of the bars depends on driving conditions and driver preference. We set things to neutral (middle holes) to start and may adjust in the future. 

 

Tarett brand front sway bar drop links

Pictured above are the front drop links we used. Notice the heim joint ends that give greater angle range to keep geometry correct at lower ride heights. They are also length adjustable with a right and left hand thread to make it easy.

Below is the drop link product description on our website. If your 996/997/986/987 is lowered, these links are great even with stock sway bars. 

"Upgrade your stock front sway bar with this simple bolt in replacement for the factory drop links. Left & right hand threaded rod ends allow for simple length adjustment to eliminate sway bar preload.

 
Correctly sized, precision, Teflon-lined rod-ends for smooth and quiet operation, long life, and high reliability.  No wear and rattling problems, like those seen with other designs, due to undersized or low quality rod ends.

Eliminates the factory compliant plastic drop link bushings that deflect under loading and quickly wear out.

High misalignment, stainless steel spacers allow for superior bind free operation and corrosion resistance. Precisely connects the stock or adjustable sway bar to the front strut assembly for improved feedback and sway bar response.

Overall length is adjustable to accommodate either stock or adjustable sway bar requirements. Tarett front drop links are the aftermarket links that have been exclusively certified for SPB & 996 Spec racing".
Going back to the front end for some attention, we installed a tie rod/bump steer kit that set the angle just perfect for smoothness through the entire suspension cycle. 
<span itemprop='name'>Front Tie Rod (ea), Motorsport Style </span><BR>
Tarett motorsport style tie rod kit. The fit, finish, and quality is awesome and will last as lifetime. Here is more tie rod info:

 Inspired by the Porsche Motorsport design. This no compromise design is hands down the best tie rod kit on the market. 

 

  • Pinch Style Locking Design:  Provides easy alignment compared to the typical jamb nut designs that tend to shift when you lock them down.  Several tedious iterations are usually needed to get it right.  The pinch style design allows you to simply set toe and lock it down with no shifting and resetting required.  It also allows for a significantly increased adjustment range.

 

  • Bump Steer Optimized & Adjustable:  The attachment to the wheel carrier is raised more than any other kit on the market, thus maximizing bumpsteer reduction.  Spacers can be added as needed to adjust bump steer, but most applications require raising the attachment point to reduce bumpsteer.

 

  • High Quality Rod Ends:  Precision grade 3-piece Teflon lined spherical rod ends replace the compliant factory rubber bushing for improved suspension response and feedback, and also reduces toe changes under acceleration and deceleration.  The result is improved rear end stability and control.  The rod ends are oversized for high strength and long life, and have a fine thread for more precise adjustability.  The Teflon liner is self-lubricating for smooth and quiet operation, and long life.
With the front end now complete, we gave some more attention to the rear with motorsport style toe arms and upper control arms. 
Tarett porsche 996 rear toe arm kit
These rear toe arms make rear alignment simple and will keep things correct at lower ride heights. They eliminate almost all bump steer for great performance. Set the toe, lock them down, and enjoy!
Read more about these great toe arms:
  • Pinch Style Locking Design: Provides easy alignment compared to the typical jamb nut designs that tend to shift when you lock them down. Several tedious iterations are usually needed to get it right. The pinch style design allows you to simply set toe and lock it down with no shifting and resetting required. It also allows for a significantly increased adjustment range, and is much easier to reach than the jamb nut design.
 
  • Bump Steer Optimized & Adjustable: The attachment to the wheel is raised more than any other kit on the market, thus maximizing bump steer reduction on 986/987/996/997 suspensions. Spacers can be added as needed to adjust bump steer, but most applications require raising the attachment point to reduce bump steer.
 
  • High Quality Rod Ends: Precision grade 3-piece Teflon lined spherical rod ends replace the compliant factory rubber bushing for improved suspension response and feedback, and also reduces toe changes under acceleration and deceleration. The result is improved rear end stability and control. The rod ends are over sized for high strength and long life, and have a fine thread for more precise adjustability. The Teflon liner is self-lubricating for smooth and quiet operation, and long life.

 

<span itemprop='name'>Rear Upper Control Arms, 996/997</span><BR>

Shown above is 1 of the 4 upper control arms in the upper control arm kit. Simply rotating the link will quickly and accurately increase or decrease the overall length and adds additional camber adjustment over the OEM links. 

Benefits of these arms are similar to the toe arms and tie rod kits:

Tarett Engineering is proud to be able to provide these new Motorsport style camber links. Inspired by the Porsche Motorsport design, this no compromise design is hands down the best rear upper control arm on the market.
  • Pinch Style Locking Design: Provides easy alignment compared to the typical jamb nut designs that tend to shift when you lock them down. Several tedious iterations are usually needed to get it right. The pinch style design allows you to simply set the length and lock it down with no shifting and resetting required. It also allows for a significantly increased adjustment range. 
 
  • Increase Camber Adjustabilty: The adjusting link has a left and right hand thread on each end. Simply rotating the link will quickly and accurately increase or decrease the overall length and adds additional camber adjustment over the OEM links. 

 

  • High Quality Rod Ends: Precision grade 3-piece Teflon lined spherical rod ends replace the compliant factory rubber bushing for improved suspension response and feedback,  also reduces alignment changes under loading.  The result is improved rear end stability, control, and traction. The rod ends are over-sized for high strength and long life with a fine thread for more precise adjustability. The Teflon liner is self-lubricating for smooth and quiet operation, and long life.
We are extremely happy with the results of this project. The suspension has been transformed and is now better than new. If your Porsche, or other German car is on a worn out, high mileage suspension, we highly recommend a suspension upgrade. Nothing else will change the character of your vehicle more. 
All Tarett suspension parts shown above are available on the MGC Suspensions website, Email us if you have any questions or need recommendations. We also have parts by Tarett for BMW and MINI, check the site for more info.
Our friends at Redline Automotive in Orange, Ca. did the installation, setup, and alignment. If you are in Southern California and need German car service, definetely give them a call. 
 Here are some additional photos 
porsche 996 suspension parts installed
Porsche 996 suspension parts installedTarett sway bar on Porsche 996
Suspension kit for Porsche 996

 

 

 

 

 

 

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