Are you having trouble riding your vehicle as it goes over a rumble strip? How about on dirt roads? Are your tires able to get a good grip on the road? Are you soar and dusty with bumpy rides?
If the above is true, the chances are that your auto suspension system needs a replacement or an upgrade. That’s true. Most manufacturers try to meet the expectations of a large customer base while designing a vehicle. They don’t know your personal needs and the terrain you drive for work or pleasure. Hence, even the best auto suspensions may not meet your particular needs.
Now, get yourself one of the best auto suspension systems that keep you safe. Get rid of all the backaches and pains with a smooth ride. Hang on tight as we explore the best auto suspension systems.
Top 3 Picks [Comparison Table]
Our detailed research shows the following 3 top picks.
How Did We Pick the Best Auto Suspension Systems for You?
Our pick is based on detailed secondary research from the OEMs and some of the best auto companies. What did we look for? Durability, pros and cons, best ride experience, and more.
Best Auto Suspension Systems [Reviews]
1. Bilstein 47234413 Shock Absorber (B8 6112 – Suspension Kit)
Commonly known as B8 6112 – Suspension Kit, this is one of the best auto suspension kits. Bilstein is a reputed and quality OEM for automotive. The use of this shock absorber gives you a steady and reliable performance throughout. Your drive is smooth, and the tires are at your command. Breathe easy as you experience a super comfy ride. It uses the Bilstein gas pressure technology.
The packaging includes two pieces each of 60mm shock absorbers, billet hard anodized spring seats, and springs. Remember that these shock absorbers have six adjustable spring notches. This allows you to make adjustments for leveling your vehicle front and rear. If you need a lift for your vehicle, you could always have a different setting for the front and rear shockers.
Bilstein 6112 is equipped with digressive valving. What does that mean? In simple terms, it means a low flow rate at low shaft speeds. As the resistance rate is increased, the shaft speed increases. It increases till a pre-set level. After that level, you will notice the resistance lowering. However, the shaft speed continues increasing. Results? You have a firm grip at handling your vehicle at the start of force, for example, on a highway or when at speed bumps. This is followed by increased shaft speed at a different terrain later.
- Higher ground clearance
- Allows for larger tires for increased wheel travel
- Hassle-free monotube design
- Best for front wheels
- Excellent adjustable front lift of 0-2.75 inches
- Increased damping control with 60mm digressive piston
- Custom engineered linear springs for enhanced vehicle control and ride comfort
- Available for late model trucks and SUVs which utilize a front coil-over suspension
- Not available as preassembled
Most users reported an extremely comfortable ride with this shock absorber’s front lift. For some folks, it may appear a bit overpriced. However, don’t miss the safety and relaxed drive experience it provides. Surely value for money!
2. Bilstein 5100 Monotube Gas Shock Set
If you have an SUV or a light truck, the BILSTEIN B8 5100 series shocks are perfect for you! How is that? Well, these vehicles have large tires and increased lift compared to others. Bilstein 5100 monotube shocks offer you increased damper performance. You get zero to two and a half inches of lift with three options for height settings. An expert will understand that it is not the shocks themselves that give the vehicle the desired lift. The coils of the shocks provide the actual lift for your vehicles.
Remember that Bilsteins were one of the first to offer monotube design. This design allows adjustable height installation for different vehicles. These shocks have a 46mm piston (digressive) designed to enhance your road handling experiences.
Bilstein’s offers you good quality shocks. Designed and manufactured with strong technological backup, they are much better than others. What makes it even better is the patented monotube design. This design allows the piston to dispel any excessive heat. Such heat is generated as the piston oil works very hard to keep the machine going. This heat is transferred to the outer shell of the suspension. Thus, pistons work much more efficiently.
You will like the patented digressive valving technology used. This allows you to switch between different terrains easily. You must be aware that Bilstein’s shocks are precision made, just like finest surgical instruments, calibrated to perfection. An extrusion process makes the shocker strong for increased tolerance on the road. Equipped with the best quality seals and piston lubricants, these shocks for Ford Rangers ensure you get a good grip you’re your tires.
- Wear-resistant chromium tube piston
- Adjustable height settings while installing
- Compatible with four-wheel-drive vehicles
- Excellent front lift (2″) and rear lift (0-1″)
- Digressive valving for different terrains
- Zinc plated piston for durability
- Vulcanized neoprene rubber bushings for increased durability
- Made in the USA or Germany
- Check for vehicle computability
Overall, Bilstein 5100 Monotube shocks are the best for different road conditions. Results? You can experience a safe and comfortable drive as you notice handling and steadiness in the vehicle’s performance.
3. Rancho RS5000X Gas Shocks
You will love the Rancho RS55326 and RS55328 shocks for your vehicles. The Rancho shocks a brand under the larger Tenneco Inc. That’s the same company that has other brands, including Monroe, Walker, Thrush and DynoMax, to name a few.
They have a pair of two front and two rear shocks in the packaging. It also includes bushings, washers, and required nuts. You can reuse the original factory mounting bolts to replace these shocks. They are compatible with most four-wheel-drive vehicles. These white and red painted shocks are quite attractive to look at.
The best thing you will notice is that each one of these shocks has gas-pressurized to 150 PSI. This helps reduce the air-to-oil solution. If not reduced, it could cause much foaming, and your vehicle can see shock fades. This pressurization makes these shocks ride rough for a few folks.
If you consider different height settings for your vehicle, opt for the Ranch 9000 series. This new series has better adjustability of the valve settings. Remember that all of the Rancho springs used in the shocks are made in Australia, highlighting their high quality.
- Unique rebound valving system
- Enhanced drive performance
- Comfortable ride
- 16 mm thick Nitro-Carburized piston rods
- Strong shocks at 25 lbs each
- Low-friction and self-lubricating seal
- Double-welded loops for strength
- Easy to install
- Limited lifetime warranty
- Installation manual may be difficult for a novice to understand
- Shocks rust very soon – needs another coat of paint before you replace
Reviews indicate that these are good shocks at a budget price. Largely popular for Wrangler Jeep, they may have limited compatibility. Most folks found that the back shocks are easy to replace while the front ones are challenging due to the short clearing. You may want to take the Rancho lift kit system. It has a raised spring seat on the springs. This raised seat spring aims to provide your vehicle with a lift of two to two and a half inches. So even larger tires are not a challenge should you decide to get them!
4. Supreme Suspensions – Full Lift Kit
There is no need to go hunting if you are looking for the best suspension systems for your Jeep Grand Cherokee 4WD. The entire packaging contains a pair of 4 to 3″ front and 3″ rear suspension lifts and shocks. You also get Dupont’s Delrin coil springs, both front and rear. The single-piece transfer case drop kit, four premium silicone blend shock boots, installation manual and hardware, are included.
What is Delrin? Offered by Dupont, the acetal homopolymer is the best for heavy-duty machines. It replaces the need for metal, as it has a low-friction and high-wear resistance rate. It offers optimum operating temperature ranges between -40 °C to 120 °C.
Every inch of ground clearance is valuable when you are driving in rough terrains. Now, improve your vehicle’s performance as you raise the front or rear lift. With these lifts, you can add customized tires and stronger rims for your needs. Be ready for installation, which may take between two to four hours.
These shocks have a twin-tube design. They are filled with nitrogen gas for superior performance. The ten-stage velocity-sensitive valving offers you a steady performance. No more fading!
- Increased ground clearance
- Nitrogen gas-operated
- Made for heavy-duty vehicles
- Low on friction
- Excellent Stiffness & Dimensional Stability
- Increased off-road performance, handling and stability
- Enhanced shock sleeves made from a silicone blend
- Limited compatibility with vehicles
- May twist the torsion bar if installed incorrectly
Enjoy a superior ride experience as you control your vehicle in any terrain. Increase longevity of shocks by installing Supreme Suspensions that are available easily. Though they have some of the best auto suspension systems, watch out for compatibility with your vehicle.
5. Rough Country 2.5″ Lift Kit
As the name suggests, these Rough Country shocker kits are for your Wrangler TJ and more. Explore the unclaimed territories as you use this kit with two and a half inches of rear and front lift. The packaging includes four N3 shocks and coil springs. Coil springs offer you a progressive performance and one of the best ride experiences. Don’t miss the fact that the Rough Country coil springs are factory-tuned to match the OEM’s bounce or spring rate. With this, your ride is as good as it was when bought originally.
Regain the smooth first-time ride when you took the vehicle from the showroom/factory. Your mean machine is now set up with a killer look to remove anything that stops its tracks. You are assured of a leveled ride as both front and back suspensions are leveled.
- Best budget shocks
- Easy to install 100% bolt-on process
- Heavyweight shocks at 48.5 lbs
- Amazing 3-year warranty on shocks/struts
- Lifetime Replacement Warranty on all other parts
- Made in the USA
- Shock sleeves not included
Users recall that these shocks offer one of the best budget upgrades. Be it off-road or on-the-road, and the experience was distinct for anyone. Get to more than a beginner’s level trails with your vehicle fitted with these Rough Country shocks. Glide over difficult terrains and control your vehicle easily. The OEM recommends using the services of a qualified technician /mechanic to replace shocks for the best ride experience.
Things to Consider When Buying the Best Auto Suspension System
Different vehicles need different suspensions, and most OEMs offer standardized products per vehicle and make of the year. Most OEMs offer suspension designs that offer you a good ride experience, enhanced performance and increased safety.
1. Types of Suspensions
There are eight different types of auto suspensions, and your vehicle may have one or more of them for the back and front tires. These can range from direct, indirect, double wishbone, multi-link, rigid axle, Macpherson, leaf springs and more. Know the type of suspension system your vehicle has before you go for an upgrade.
Many suspensions offer you a lift too. A lift increases the ride height for a vehicle. What are the advantages? Well, for some vehicles, when a lift is added either to the front or back suspensions, it improves your ride experience. You can climb steeper approaches easily. You get higher ground clearance for difficult terrains. You can even accommodate larger tires and rims that offer you a better ride.
2. Load Capacity
Watch out for your vehicle’s laden and unladen weight before you decide on a suspension. The suspension you choose should be able to take the laden weight of your vehicle, including passengers and goods, if any. Most suspensions will have variants showing rating capacities depending upon the load factor.
Few suspensions have air filled in them to take on the vehicle’s weight. Many OEMs offer you adjustability on managing an air suspension’s pressure. To manage this, the air pressure inside the suspension is changed. Hence, go for suspensions with a higher capacity, say 100 PSI instead of 70 r 80 PSI. When needed, you will be able to go full capacity up to 100 PSI. But again, this is dependent on your needs.
You may be into car racing at a rally or dirt racing. Different types of terrains require customized suspension adjustments. Hence, we recommend that you go for the ones that give you greater adjustability.
5. Safety with tires
The suspension of a vehicle affects the wear and tear of your tires. If the vehicle is being pulled in a certain direction, tires on a particular side will tend to get bald and patchy. Your vehicle tires lose grip on the other side. Most tires offer a limited grip and durability for vehicles. Vehicle manufacturers hence have pre-decided brands and models that they recommend. Don’t short-change yourself on these specifications for a few dollars.
Do not keep the quality of aftermarket or OEM suspensions on a low priority. Any suspension and all its parts are equally important. If you are replacing or upgrading, change parts like shocker sleeves/boots, bushings, washers and more. Why? It increases the longevity of your shocks.
Tip – Remember to change shocks in pairs to maintain even balance and use of shocks.
Having a longer warranty period makes you less stressed, should something go wrong. While you have branded OEMs offering you limited warranties, go for those with a lifetime warranty. OEMs that offer you a lifetime warranty are usually the ones who are definitive of their product that they challenge other manufacturers in the market with this offering.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. How do you know if your vehicle’s suspension system needs a replacement?
Firstly, do a quick inspection of your tires, looking for wear and tear or bald spots. Secondly, do you feel that your vehicle is pulling or drifting away from you? Third, are you experiencing a much bumpier ride as you drive over a smooth road or at speed breakers? Fourth is your car bouncing even after you have hit a bump or pothole over the road.
In either case, most probably, your shocks are not aligned or are malfunctioning in keeping your vehicle steady. Bumpier rides could also result from broken seals, washers and more in suspensions. Sometimes, it is a sign to get worn-out tires replaced and a check on suspension systems.
2. What is the normal longevity of suspension systems?
Most OEMs label the number of miles a shock will last. However, this
is only under test conditions. When you install them, a lot depends on the terrain conditions, your experience in driving, the car’s laden weight and more.
More than the number of years, consider the number of miles it runs.
3. Is it safe to drive with a bad suspension system?
Driving with a bad suspension or any symptoms mentioned above is a strict no. You are endangering your life and even of those on the road around you. If your car is not in control, you cannot expect it to be in control on turns or stay in its lane. This could cause accidents. Broken or damaged parts of a suspension system could cause further damage to your car.
4. How should I replace or upgrade my car’s suspension system?
Many folks have an aptitude and are very good with car systems. If you feel you are comfortable, all you need is a mechanical toolbox. It will involve uninstalling the previous suspension system and fixing it in the new one. Follow the instructions given. If you are uncomfortable, you may need to head out to the garage for repairs.
5. How long will it take to change a suspension system?
Change times are impacted by the complexity of replacement required, mechanics knowledge and expertise, and the number of shocks to be changed. If you are doing it yourself, your aptitude and expertise in such matters will prove helpful. Usually, replacement times vary between two to three hours for a set of shocks.
6. What are the costs for a suspension inspection?
While a lot depends on the vehicle, type of inspection required and the type of suspension currently fitted, this could cost you between $ 100 to 300. The variance is also dependent on the auto shop if it’s a branded one. During this process, a mechanic will check for the quality and life of all bushes, washers, shock absorbers and any other equipment. This may need the parts to be removed and checked for functionality at times.
Your vehicle’s suspension system is one of the most important parts to keep the vehicle aligned to where you want it to go. Do not ignore the symptoms of a bad suspension. a Suspension system include several parts, including shocks and struts. these parts are manufactured by several brands, such as Sensen, Monroe, KYB, Gabriel, and many more. therefore, invest your time before selecting a suspension system for your vehicle.
Frequent car checks and servicing should help you prevent any mishaps. Choosing one of the best auto suspension systems for your vehicle requires you to be certain of your needs. Choose from quality products from renowned OEM manufacturers after you have confirmed the current specification of your vehicle.
So, what are you waiting for? Replace or upgrade your Ram 1500’s shocks and Ford Ranger’s shocks for enhanced controls, better ride performance and stay safe with new shocks. Once done, just go ahead and experience the magic of your ride from one terrain to another!