Originally Posted by Boris
Why is it so soft??? If they fit a little harder dampers on front, things would be much better, including no more hitting ground on the speed bumps.
Also, they fit the same dampers on 147 1.6 and 2.0 but springs are different. Very stupid!!!
No wonder that in every road test they say that suspension on 2.0 is much worse then on competitive cars from other manufacturers.
And all this only for saving few Euros.... :-(
This is a popular misconception.. Dampers do NOT stop the car hitting the ground. It's the springs that mostly define how "hard" the suspension is.
Alfa have fitted higher spring rates to the bigger-engined models to make the suspension "harder" as there is more weight at the front on these models.
If your suspension feels too soft, then you're saying that the springs should be harder than Alfa fitted but you then say that this is "stupid".
The trouble is, very hard springs make the car uncomfortable and they also prevent the damper from operating correctly (especially as the damper is the same for all models). The damper shouldn't be dominated by the spring, so fitting hard springs becomes a compromise between the "hardness" they want and the effect of these hard springs on damper control.
Really you need a sophisticated damper with good compression and rebound damping - that will allow you to fit a softer spring and therefore get a nice "ride" while still controlling the damping (it's the damper that should do the work, not the spring).
Unfortunately, Alfa (along with a heap of other car manufacturers) uses a limited number of dampers across the range, they're a bit on the cheap side and so the engineers compensate for this by fitting harder springs - so ride goes out of the window.
Expensive dampers and soft springs is where it's at .. but most of the time cheap dampers with hard springs gives you a reasonable substitute.
Roll-bar affects ride, as it ties the suspension on one side of the car to what's happening on the other. More front roll-bar gives you more understeer the bigger you go but probably you won't notice a HUGE difference if you use a GTA part as that is still a road car. Fit front and back together, to keep the balance.