When designing the majority of passenger car models, engineers have to consider numerous issues related to their performance. This includes general ground clearance and the likes of bumper elevation, among other factors.

Car construction requires certain amounts of space. There are various reasons for that, from allowing the vehicle to go over traffic calming devices such as speed bumps, to enabling the installation of snow chains or even just to let the car handle slopes and elevation.

Mercedes with low suspensionMany drivers prefer lower suspension on their car for aesthetic purposes.

What is car suspension?

Every car is set up with a suspension system which keeps the vehicle stable guaranteeing contact of the wheels with the road surface, supports the car while in movement and provides driving comfort. Suspension system must be suitable for standard accelerating, braking and cornering conditions. 

There are, however, drivers who are not satisfied with the car suspension system of their vehicle. Sometimes they wish to lower the suspension, whether it is for sports needs or for aesthetic preferences.

Fortunately, the standard settings on a typical car can be adapted to meet the needs of drivers who want their vehicle to look, feel and drive like a sports car, or to power through the streets and handle corners with confidence.

How to lower suspension on a car

Lowered suspension makes any car look more aggressive while enabling the driver to steer more confidently. Naturally, this appeals to a lot of motorists. In addition to lowering their car suspension, some people also decide to apply other methods such as replacing their original car tyres and rims with sportier alternatives.

If you are one of these drivers and would like to know how to lower a car suspension, the first thing you should consider is sporting springs. Do not do it yourself, though. Modifying the default settings on your own is very likely to end up unsatisfactory. Cutting the factory springs, for instance, can be very detrimental to your car’s stiffness. It could lead to an increase in the internal tension and impede the functionality of your car‘s suspension.

Side view of cars with low suspensionWhile a lower suspension can be aesthetically pleasing, some ground clearance is still required.

This is why, if you decide to lower your suspension, you are better off investing in properly manufactured sporting springs. Not only will you be sure they fit your car well, they will also significantly improve its appearance and performance. 

Lowering springs will help to lower the vehicle, giving it a more aggressive appearance, while also decreasing the clearance in the wheel housing. This refers to the space between the car tyre and the rim of the wheel housing. On a car with lowered suspension, it often looks like the tyre is ‘filling’ this space.

Why sport springs?

As far as performance goes, sporting springs provide two key improvements. First of all, they lower the driving height and provide stiffer suspension. This lowers the centre of gravity, while providing sufficient carrying capacity, improving the overall stability.

Secondly, lowering your car in this manner improves reactions through decreased body movements. In turn, this allows the tyres to operate more efficiently during extreme driving, when they are often on the verge of utilising their full strength.

BMW with low suspension

If you decide to lower your suspension, you should also consider using a complete coil-over system, which includes a spring, shock absorber and an adjustable spring perch. Their settings closely resemble a typical sport performance package. Thanks to an adjustable height they allow you to tune your vehicle more finely, ensuring the desired effect.

How low should you go?

When it comes to vehicle customisation, this is one of the most commonly asked questions. As a general rule, most passenger vehicles can be lowered by about 40 mm without any problems. 

If you decide to go further than this, you should note that there is a greater chance of the suspension having a negative influence on your driving quality and tyre wear rate, alongside the increased hazard of scratching your car’s underside on the ground.

Parked cars with lowered suspensionWhile a lower suspension can be aesthetically pleasing, some ground clearance is still required.

Wheel adjustment

Remember that every time you lower your suspension, you should also correct your wheel adjustment. Again, this is something you should not do yourself, as it is hard to adjust the wheels after the suspension has been significantly lowered without the use of specialised suspension adjustment tools.

You should also bear in mind that a shortened suspension carries a greater risk of scratching your car’s underside. In the car’s original equipment, this problem is solved with bump stops and these should only be removed or modified if it is recommended by the manufacturer of the replacement springs.