Suspension Evaluation Log / 08-11-2012
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Cadillac Catera and Cimarron Forum Discussion, Suspension Evaluation Log / 08-11-2012 in Past Cadillac Vehicle Discussion; 10-24-2011: I've finally upgraded my Catera Sport's front suspension. She now wears Koni Sport struts upfront, front control arms upgraded ...
  1. #1
    elvin315's Avatar
    elvin315 is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Suspension Evaluation Log / 08-11-2012

    10-24-2011:

    I've finally upgraded my Catera Sport's front suspension. She now wears Koni Sport struts upfront, front control arms upgraded with polyurethane front/horizontal bushings, new OEM rear/vertical bushings and ball joints, new anti-swaybar links, and polyurethane anti-swaybar bushings. I have a set of front & rear suspension tower braces made by forum member R-Caddy but didn't get to install them yet. Finances also kept me from updating the rear suspension. Except for the GTO springs, all the parts are waiting in my garage so it's just a matter of time. Badly needed tires (Goodyear GTs) put a strain on my budget but all the suspension improvements so far would've been wasted on the old ones. While the car was on the lift I had the GTO front calipers refilled with C5 Corvette brake pads from Hawk. An evaluation will be following as soon as all the Autumn leaf peepers empty the mountain roads and allow me some quality time with my Baby.

    12-27-2011

    Two thousand miles* and two months later and I can't get this grin off my face. I'm still caught off guard by how quickly the car responds to steering inputs. The faster we're going and the quicker I turn the wheel the better it feels. I'm still experimenting with the front Koni's adjustments but the firmer I go the better she responds. The increased firmness helps keep her flat when turning and the ride harshness is much less than I expected. When I don't have time to do the Catskill Mountain roads around here I get cheap thrills on highway cloverleafs and traffic circles. I even got chased out of a mall parking lot late one night while performing a makeshift autocross. I don't have the GTO springs yet and the rear suspension is completely stock with over 93,000* miles on it. Even so, my Catera Sport is the best handling car I've ever owned. I've test driven the BMW 328i in the past and my Cat is up there with it. Granted, I couldn't wring it out like I have my Catera but they felt identical up to a point. When I finish the updates this coming year I'll reevaluate the improvements.

    *- Mileage estimated due to EBTCM failure.

    08-11-2012

    It's no secret that money is tight. I've yet been able to upgrade the rear suspension. Still, with 105,000 miles on her clock my 2001 Catera Sport is still riding and handling like a new car. I've found the front Koni struts work best at 1 turn up from full soft. The turn-in at speeds between 30-60 MPH on twisty backroads is amazing. I'm using Goodyear Eagle GTs and for All Season tires they stick pretty good. The car stays almost flat during quick L/R transitions. I get tossed left & right but the car stays pretty much flat. These are tight mountain roads with limited sight lines so I never know what's coming at me. I could go faster but there are no shoulders and I never cross the center line. I'll have to readjust the struts when I finally have the rear Koni Sport shocks installed. I might have to add firmness out front to balance the increased firmness in the rear. On a smooth highway you can feel the expansion strips and asphalt patches a little more but not to where it's objectionable. These settings are for road use. They leave plenty of adjustment if you take her out on a track day. This suspension tuning stuff is new to me so I'll have to play with the adjustments a while before I find the right setup. If your Catera has over 100K miles your suspension is past its prime. I suggest refreshing it with springs, poly-bushings, links, and shocks. Standard or sport you'll be surprised how much difference it makes.

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  3. #2
    hemic05 is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: Suspension Evaluation Log / 08-11-2012

    Do yourself a BIG favor get rid of those JUNK GOODYEARS that is the WORST tire made by mankind kmart tires are better Kumos great tires

  4. #3
    elvin315's Avatar
    elvin315 is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Re: Suspension Evaluation Log / 08-11-2012

    True, they're not the best but I bought them under duress. My previous tires were worn to the cords and leaking. Cheapest performance tires in stock that would fit my Sport were the Goodyears. I'm doing my best to wear them out and replace them with Hankook Ventus Evo V12s.

  5. #4
    hemic05 is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: Suspension Evaluation Log / 08-11-2012

    Yes hankooks are great tires but the kumo ecxta platnums are better the ride quality is awesome i have then on my 2001 sport

  6. #5
    IvoryWhiteCatera's Avatar
    IvoryWhiteCatera is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: Suspension Evaluation Log / 08-11-2012

    I'm rockin' bargain basement Primewell PZ900s

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