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Just got my car back last night from Turbo People with my new H&R coilover kit and Hotchkis front & rear antisway bars installed (upgrade from TRD sport/lowering springs and TRD rear antisway/stock front antisway). The car is also equipped with a Hotchkis front strut tower tie bar and the tires are stock-size Avon Tech M550s.

Well I was getting tired of my car being way too low on the TRD springs, so I sought a solution that would allow me to raise the car up from the drop of the TRD springs while maintaining equal if not better handling (with the possible risk of worstening ride quality) and I came upon the H&R coilovers as the choice, based upon the specific range of adjustment.

When Turbo People first completed the install, I had them start from the very highest height setting and he called me to tell me that, "You should come in and take a look. It looks like a(n effin') truck! The rear wheel gap's like over 3" and the front is over 2"." I went in to see and sure as heck, with the very highest ride height setting on the H&Rs, the tC is higher than stock. So, I told him to lower it down to 1" to 1.25" all around, even gap front & rear (as opposed to regularly where the rear gap is tighter than front gap). They were able to lower the car to an even gap but they told me they can't go lower than the current setting without affecting camber according to Toyota's specs, so right now I'm looking at about 1.25" gap all around (I will shoot pics as soon as I get my car cleaned).

Now the juicy part, how well the parts perform. Well, I don't want to sound like someone hyping the crap out of these things, but the H&R coilovers are likely the best money I've yet spent on my car. I was not surprised to find that the H&R coilovers improve handling over the TRD sport springs; the car has less dive under braking and less squat under acceleration compared to the TRD springs, and combined with the Hotchkis antisways (set for softest setting front and rear--for now) makes the car far more settled and consistent through transitions; I can accelerate harder when taking low speed corners and turning the corner around a block without the inside wheel losing traction as easily or as much as with the TRD springs because there is less weight transfer off the inside front wheel. I'm considering having the antisways set to their tightest settings though, now that I know...

...that unbelievably, the H&R coilovers ride noticeably better than the TRD sport springs!!! THAT is the most amazing thing to me of all in all this. I was expecting better handling but I was also expecting a buckboard ride, and the end result on that front is the complete opposite of my expectations; I can honestly say the H&R coilovers are the best riding suspension I've yet experienced on the tC (rode in a friend's Tein-equipped tC and that thing was rough!!!)--caveat, I personally like a firm, controlled ride, not a squishy soft cloud ride.

Not only is there less shock from bumps compared to the TRD springs (likely because these springs are longer and less progressive compared to TRD's drop springs), but more importantly, body motions are way more controlled by the dampers in these coilovers. The car is so much more settled now and so much less disruptable by bumps that it literally feels as though the car itself is more solid (when in reality, it clearly isn't).

Finally, here's one for Lance: Both myself and my dad agree (I've had him riding extensively with me since I got the car back) that a remarkable quality of this suspension set is that wheel compliance is phenomenol. Driving through New York's rotten, salt and rain-abused streets, we noticed that even under fairly strong low-gear acceleration (granted I'm a fairly good driver who knows how to accelerate hard while not breaking loose) over beat-up roads, the wheels are remarkably compliant to the road. This is the thing that amazes me about it, and I think it has to do with the fact that the actual wheel rate on these coilovers is not so high that there is excessive damping applied to control them. I wish I lived closer to Lance so that I could get his own opinion on this suspension, or to anyone else for that matter who is knowledgeable in this field (Rick, a nod to you, sir!).

Oh yeah, the antisways are not rubbing at all with my setup.

PLEASE feel free to post questions (ro the discussion thread linked below)!

-Ed

EDIT: Oops; I didn't realize replies can't be posted here. Here's a link to the discussion thread!
 
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