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      09-22-2020, 12:00 AM   #1
6ixSpd
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Bilstein B16 Damptronic Review on Road and Track.

Sharing my experience with installing and using this nice piece of kit on both road and track. Full write-up on my blog here: https://6ixspeed.com/2020/09/15/shifting-the-balance/

Unboxing & Impressions

.
L: B16 Damptronic coilovers with Ground Control Street camber plates.
R: H&R Sport Plus springs with factory shocks and hardware.

Bilstein includes all the necessary wiring that connects to the OEM EDC harness, along with lots of accessories (zip ties, clips, etc) to make the wiring clean and tidy. A fully illustrated instruction manual with detailed install tips and manufacturer specifications on the parts make installation a breeze as they guide you on routing the wires safely and neatly.
Install Instructions: https://productdesk.cart.bilsteinus....M4-Y611A00.pdf

Everything fits perfectly like the original parts. No surprises here. The kit is compatible with the stock front upper mounts. I tied up and tucked the excess Bilstein wiring by the coolant reservoir and airbox so it stays secure and out of the way.

Setting the Height

The front struts/collars were set to three threads from the bottom up front out of the box. In the rear, I set the collars to 9 threads from the bottom. This sits at exactly the same height as the H&R Spring combo.
NOTE: I am using Ground Control Street camber plates which adds approx 5mm to the stack height. You may want to set your fronts with 5 or 6 threads showing if using OEM top mounts.








Lowered the front some more. Here are some better pics with approx 1.5 threads to go up front, same 9 as before in the rear:


On the Road

I always felt the stock shocks paired with the H&Rs were a bit underdamped for my liking, as any situation that compressed the suspension largely would result in a bit of rebound bounce. The car would not feel upset over such road imperfections, but it was enough to be felt and this feeling would be exposed consistently when pushed to its limits.

After fitting these B16s though… oh man! It’s shocking (heh) how well it stays composed in Normal mode, smoothing out road imperfections every time with the same consistent response. There is less vertical movement of the chassis overall and it is a smidgen stiffer than stock Normal operation; you feel tar strips and dips in the road more than before, but it is never jarring or uncomfortable - just more communicative. Chuck it into a highway ramp and the car hunkers down as fast as you can ask it to, maintaining the utmost composure as you fling it around the winding road. I would have no issues daily driving with this setup.

In Sport Plus mode, the firmness amps up significantly. It feels much more rigid, communicating every detail of the road surface be it pebbles, tar strips, whatever comes your way. It irons out these encounters in one swift vertical movement as you chart your course. Not once does it feel harsh, but it sure tells you it is up for some serious driving. I can’t imagine using Sport Plus on public roads often, it’s simply much more stiffer than one would want to experience on all but the smoothest asphalt.


On the Track


The duality of this kit comes alive on the track. In Sport Plus mode, they keep the car very flat through the corners. Bumps are also absorbed quickly with authority, there is no excess vertical body motion/compression. Yet, there is just enough lean to let you feel what the tires and chassis are doing as I placed the car on the driving line in high speed sweepers or clipping curbs to gain wider exit.


Given my higher camber and grippy rubber, understeer and oversteer was minimal. The few times I missed the mark or didn’t scrub enough speed, I knew immediately what the front axle was doing. This is also in part due to the tires, but it was confidence inspiring to feel the car move into and beyond its limits and apply whatever corrections I needed.

The car also puts the power down much better. The rear end permits the right amount of squat to let the tires hook up and maximize traction under full throttle while loading the suspension on corner exit and doesn’t wallow over hitting bumps.

The H&R + stock setup would simply end up being a bit more bouncy over extreme road situations, and the B16 fixes this fault with ease. It does everything the other kit did, only so, so much better in every single situation imaginable with zero drawbacks.

I can happily say the agonizing wait for this kit to resurface was worth it. The B16s are an absolutely badass dual purpose kit!
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      09-22-2020, 01:07 AM   #2
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Hi mate, I just installed this same kit to my E92 yesterday.
Unfortunately, I could not get the wiring to work because the
rear connectors were different and would not connect to the car.
I can drive the car, but it is really stiff, so I'm wondering if you know
whether the default setting is the hardest?
I'll need to get some different connectors and rewire it.
Thanks
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      09-22-2020, 02:12 AM   #3
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Awesome review man!

Now I just need to find a set...
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      09-22-2020, 03:50 AM   #4
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kinda disappointed in that drop. i wanted to be about .5" lower than H&R springs on my ZCP shocks...
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      09-22-2020, 03:51 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ABC99G View Post
Hi mate, I just installed this same kit to my E92 yesterday.
Unfortunately, I could not get the wiring to work because the
rear connectors were different and would not connect to the car.
I can drive the car, but it is really stiff, so I'm wondering if you know
whether the default setting is the hardest?
I'll need to get some different connectors and rewire it.
Thanks
Yes the default is the hardest. If EDC fails it is in the harshest setting until the EDC is working.
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      09-22-2020, 05:07 AM   #6
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Thanks
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      09-22-2020, 11:14 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ABC99G View Post
Hi mate, I just installed this same kit to my E92 yesterday.
Unfortunately, I could not get the wiring to work because the
rear connectors were different and would not connect to the car.
I can drive the car, but it is really stiff, so I'm wondering if you know
whether the default setting is the hardest?
I'll need to get some different connectors and rewire it.
Thanks
Do you have a photo of the connectors they gave you?
Quote:
Originally Posted by DanMpower View Post
Awesome review man!

Now I just need to find a set...
Thanks! It'll be worth the wait
Quote:
Originally Posted by BayE30 View Post
kinda disappointed in that drop. i wanted to be about .5" lower than H&R springs on my ZCP shocks...
I'm not sure if you read any of my post correctly... It can go much lower than the H&R Springs drop.
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      09-22-2020, 11:20 AM   #8
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Good stuff! Awesome upgrade.
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      09-24-2020, 06:56 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 6ixSpd View Post

Setting the Height

The front struts/collars were set to three threads from the bottom up front out of the box. In the rear, I set the collars to 9 threads from the bottom. This sits at exactly the same height as the H&R Spring combo.
NOTE: I am using Ground Control Street camber plates which adds approx 5mm to the stack height. You may want to set your fronts with 5 or 6 threads showing if using OEM top mounts.

[
actually read entire post 2x to be sure. you stated that you are only 3 threads from bottom, and exactly at the H&R spring height. maybe i am not understanding this correctly...

i actually have B16 sitting in the box for about a year, just haven't gotten around to installing.
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      09-24-2020, 09:39 PM   #10
6ixSpd
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BayE30 View Post
actually read entire post 2x to be sure. you stated that you are only 3 threads from bottom, and exactly at the H&R spring height. maybe i am not understanding this correctly...
I have GC camber plates installed which increase the stack height by 5-8mm depending on who you ask. Meaning, these have 5-8mm more of a drop to go, plus 3 full threads vs. the H&R setup. 3 threads on these moves ~10mm, so you have nearly 15-18mm more to lower which should be tucking the top of the tire...

They can easily go lower than the H&R drop if you wanted to spin them that far down. I'm sure you'll be satisfied

Here are some better pics of mine with approx 1.5 threads to go up front, same 9 as before in the rear. It's plenty low imo, they're not BC Extreme Low by any means.

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      09-25-2020, 01:27 AM   #11
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that pic looks more what im going for. i just want to get rid of the fender gap, not tryning to tuck the tire. i am also running them with GC plates. thank you for all the info, these are not well documented at all.
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      09-25-2020, 02:23 AM   #12
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BayE30, sell me your B16 setup.
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      09-25-2020, 08:35 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BayE30 View Post
that pic looks more what im going for. i just want to get rid of the fender gap, not tryning to tuck the tire. i am also running them with GC plates. thank you for all the info, these are not well documented at all.
No problem! GC also sells a bushing that reduces the stack height back to normal. That's another option to go even lower. I'm 100% sure that even without them, you'll easily close the fender gap. Get these installed already and enjoy them!
Quote:
Originally Posted by DanMpower View Post
BayE30, sell me your B16 setup.
There's a new set FS in the Classifieds
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      09-25-2020, 11:34 AM   #14
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There's a new set FS in the Classifieds
NY forum member right?

I tried, he won't ship.
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      09-25-2020, 11:12 PM   #15
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Do you think with stock top hats they could be set to near ZCP height? The minimum drop specs Iíve seen seem to be all over the place.
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      09-25-2020, 11:51 PM   #16
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Do you think with stock top hats they could be set to near ZCP height? The minimum drop specs Iíve seen seem to be all over the place.
You will be fine with your dinan hats
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      09-25-2020, 11:58 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DanMpower View Post
NY forum member right?

I tried, he won't ship.
Shame. It's not even that hard or expensive to ship these days lol.
Quote:
Originally Posted by wyatth View Post
Do you think with stock top hats they could be set to near ZCP height? The minimum drop specs Iíve seen seem to be all over the place.
Absolutely. Plenty of threads left to spin them up to ZCP height, maybe even more.
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      09-26-2020, 05:13 AM   #18
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Sounds good, and yeah my Dinan plates add a little stack height which makes that goal easier. Ultimately I'd like to be just a hair below ZCP height, thanks for confirming! These are at the top of my list when my ZCP shocks fatigue.
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      09-27-2020, 06:00 AM   #19
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[QUOTE=6ixSpd;26711987]Do you have a photo of the connectors they gave you?

Hi, as it turns out the connectors are correct, but in my car they are hidden
behind the side seat cushion under the seat belt.
To get to them I need to remove the seat cushion.
Do you know how to remove this?
Also, I noticed that the Bilstein plugs can be connected either way.
Is polarity an issue?
I have connected mine by cutting and joining wires but it still does not work.
Does the error code need to be cleared first?
Any help would be greatly appreciated.
Thanks,
Gerry
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      09-30-2020, 12:15 PM   #20
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Great review and great pictures! I'm thinking about lowering it a little bit more myself. Loving the set so far.
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      10-03-2020, 07:16 AM   #21
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Anyone compare these to KW DDC?
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      10-03-2020, 09:46 PM   #22
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[QUOTE=ABC99G;26733364]
Quote:
Originally Posted by 6ixSpd View Post
Do you have a photo of the connectors they gave you?

Hi, as it turns out the connectors are correct, but in my car they are hidden
behind the side seat cushion under the seat belt.
To get to them I need to remove the seat cushion.
Do you know how to remove this?
Also, I noticed that the Bilstein plugs can be connected either way.
Is polarity an issue?
I have connected mine by cutting and joining wires but it still does not work.
Does the error code need to be cleared first?
Any help would be greatly appreciated.
Thanks,
Gerry
Can you post a photo of yours? I got the skinny ones, not this style:


The connectors for the rears are simply on top of the rear struts behind the trunk liners on both sides of the trunk.

This is a non-EDC car, but the connector should be sitting right on top of the strut poking out in the cutout here:

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