Watched some Variant 1 KW Suspension going on a Grand Prix White Porsche 964 Targa in the JZM Porsche workshop earlier this week. It was interesting to follow the Porsche project as the rusty old factory dampers came off the 911, to be replaced by KW kit.
When it comes to upgraded Porsche suspension, KW kits are amongst the best available. The German brand with a penchant for finding fine detail on its ex-Formula 1 hydraulic test rig is a favourite of many winning race teams, particularly in the exhilarating VLN championship, so it’s no surprise that KW Suspension Variant 3 kits are common on Porsche cars used for fast road and track days.
Steve MacHale at JZM Porsche has been fitting KW products to his Porsche tuning projects for more than a decade. The new three-way KW Clubsport adjustable coilover kits are a favourite amongst the firm’s 997 GT3 RS track day crowd, but the cheaper V1 and V3 kits are an affordable, quality upgrade for worn-out original suspension.
With prices starting at just over £1,000, the KW Suspension Variant 1 coilover kit is hard to beat. The struts are made from stainless steel, with corrosion resistant springs and bump stops. They also come with the top mounts, which are usually ruined on old 911s. This saves a few quid.
Variant 1 is TUV-approved, so maximum lowering is restricted to no more than 70mm: not that you would want to go quite this low in a classic 911, assuming you were serious about driving. Experienced suspension tech Ricky (above with old and new) carefully set the ride heights before fitting the kit, but the rust-resisting trapezoid thread and composite collar will move freely at any stage in the future, so a new owner could easily raise or lower the car using the supplied KW toolkit.
KW Suspension says that each Porsche suspension kit has been specifically tuned for the car in damper setup and spring rate. The new dampers reduce body roll when the suspension is in compression and give much sharper handling than anything fitted to 911 road cars as standard.
It probably sounds like I have swallowed the KW blurb on this, but I’ve road tested quite a few KW cars and no doubt they feel better to drive. One interesting comparison would be the Bilstein setup fitted to the 964RS I lived with for a few months. That was special, but there seems very little in it when the cars are on track.