(The white stuff under the chassis simply rocks! It is out of sight but not out of mind – you can really feel the difference especially at the corners. Image source: Ultra Racing)
Phase 6 – improvement of car handling
My car came with the inscription “tuned by Lotus” and I thought it was great until a couple of months later; I hopped over to the local car accessory car shop and saw a brand new front strut bar on display.
I have heard about the benefits of having a front strut bar and thought it would be an added improvement to the overall handling of the car (I was not wrong – handling of the car improved like 20 times just with the front bar).
Many, many years later and when I decided that improvement of the current car is better than buying a whole new car, I started to look for more ways to improve the handling of the car. One day, my buddy who been looking to improve on his new Toyota Vios talked about “Ultra Racing” and his plans to add front and back strut bars.
So, a quick check on the internet on the parts required and without much hesitance (yes, my wife would be very angry on this), I went to one of the authorized sellers in Sunway and bought the rear anti-roll bar (I wanted to buy the rear strut bar but worry that it may not fit with my speakers at the back. No point buying something expensive but could not use at the end).
But the problem was the place where I bought the anti-roll bar did not have a place to do the installation. They asked me to do another place – their branch nearby to get the installation done. The guy at the counter insisted that all I need to do is to be at the place – he will call and tell the guys up front.
A couple of hours later (blaming it on having too many cars at the workshop), my car was fitted with the rear anti-roll bar. Noticeable difference after installing the anti-roll bar – the steering feels stiffer (less vibration) and almost nil body roll at high speed at cornering.
Ultra racing rear anti-roll bar is not cheap (you can buy imitation ones for a much cheaper price but you will be taking a big risk) but it comes with a lifetime warranty.
(Anti-roll bar in action. I have front strut bar and rear anti-roll bar. Next phase would probably be a front anti bar and a rear strut bar. Image source: http://www.ukcar.com)
The only thing I was not happy with this latest “upgrade” was the installation. The so-called authorized dealer had the right stuff with them and have no problem when it comes to unscrewing and screwing the parts (ya, I can do that too) but their welding (something needs to be welded to the frame before installation can be done) sucks big time.
It was not clean installation and was not really looked professionally done (they managed to weld enough for the anti-roll bar to be installed and they managed not to get the car on fire).
That was the only downside but other than that, the car is performing even better. In fact, it performs over my expectation that I sometimes forget that having a good grip is also crucial at the corners (thank God for my tires still being new and still have threads).
Parts changed and the cost to date:-
Ultra racing rear anti roll bar
Total cost = RM300.00 (including installation)
To be continued…