The "I have x amount of money what suspension should I get" thread


Mar 29, 2009
Originally posted by "Libertariat" on a well known Honda Forum. I absolutely stand behind his opinion and grabbed what he wrote because it's well written.
Okay, so for years I've seen perpetual posting like this:

"What suspension do I get?"
"What's good for my car?"
"Is this suspension setup good?"
"How low can I go on this?"

Well, I'm here to provide you my personal insight based on what I've witnessed on these forums mixed with my personal experience with suspension on my personal car, a 2000 DX hatchback, and my various friends and my brother who used to have a DC2 on a few different setups. This thread is aimed at 92-00 civic owners as the suspensions are all very similar and are what I'm familiar with.

I'd like to cover a few basic things, you can scroll down to read my budget recommendations and brands to avoid.

*****Remember, this is all based on my subjective opinion, if you don't like it that is your prerogative. I'm not posting "fact" when recommending suspension setups, merely suggestions based on my observances over the years I've spent on this forum.*****

1) Suspension is suspension. Suspension capabilities aren't going to vary or be different enough from car to car to really matter for recommendation purposes. We don't need to know that you have a black 1993 VX to help you pick a suspension nearly as much as we need to know what your budget is, your goals for the car, and so on.

2) Money is money. When making purchases for your car consider the length of ownership you intend for the car. If you're like me and don't ever see yourself getting rid of your car, think about the cost of that part over a longer period.

3) I'm telling you right now that my brother and I have both learned the hard and expensive way that buying the more expensive, higher quality product the first time is a lot better than trying to cut corners to do more to your car sooner.

The number one tip I have for you for car part buying is patience. Waiting a few weeks to buy a better part will make you infitiely happier in the long run. Selling a crap part for 1/2 what you paid for it to buy the product you really needed is not fun. I've done it a lot and I'm tired of it. I went from fake wheels, cheap suspension, etc to having volks, recaros, Progress CS-II, Function7, etc because I learned the hard way. It took me a tad longer to save up for it all, but in the end it's 10 kinds of worth it.

Budget recommendations for suspension setups:

1) If you can't afford to spend $600 on your suspension, it is my personal belief that I am doing you justice by telling you to find a new hobby. If you find that much money to be too much for suspension you really need to focus more on paying your bills than dropping your commuter.

2) Adjustable damping means nothing. You really think you know how to program a shock better than a reputable racing component manufacturer? What you "like" isn't necessarily going to be safer or handle better than the appropriate damping matched to a spring rate. So many people buy a product based on how many levels of damping it has.

3) Cheap setups with expensive features. They're pointless and useless for 99.9% of drivers out there looking to have some performance. Cheap coilovers with high end features like camber adjustments, pillow ball mounts, oil reserves, etc are just that. Cheap companies slapping extra junk on an already junk part so teeny-boppers will cream their pants and buy it with their mom's credit card.

4) Don't let the shiny colors sell you a product.


(I know there are a bajillion other products to choose from, I'll discuss those at the end.)

NEW <$600

KYB GR2 and Tein S. Techs. You could probably get away with stock shocks for a little while, but how many times do you want to remove your suspension? There really isn't a shock I can think of out there that can handle a much lower drop where the owner can expect longevity. I'm not saying the Koni Orange or the GR2 wouldn't last for a year, but don't expect it to be like Progress, or Koni/GC where many members on these forums have driven on them for DECADES and have no issues.

$600 range

Koni SRT + Spring/coilover sleeve of your choice.


Progress CS-II

Koni- Lifetime warranty. Plain and simple. You can pick from a plethora of springs and coil sleeves that suit your driving needs.

Progress CS-II- I use these currently and enjoy the everliving out of them. best budget suspension period in my mind. 1 year warranty, great company, great product. I've put 10,000 miles on them and 5 autocross races and they work like brand new. Available in 250/350/500lb spring rates.

Edit: As a side note Eibach also offers some good options with the pro-kit and sport-line kits for those who just want a moderate drop and to close off some of that wheel gap.

$800 range

Koni/Ground control

That's it. There is no other choice. It is hands down the best suspension for the money. Lifetime warranty on the shock and coil sleeve, pick your rates and easily the most used and most sold performance shock in the world. Koni has drivers all over the country with track records using their products. Anything else in the price range can't be justified over this setup. The only thing that comes close is Tokico Illumina shocks paired with ground control coilovers. Tokico also offers a lifetime warranty and a superior product for a similar price at the koni shock. The emphasis on ground control for use with these shocks is merely the ability for the individual to pick the spring rates best suited for their needs and tastes.

Another consideration would be PIC Apex at $835. Good company, not a lifetime warranty however.

$1000+ range

The only choice in my opinion at this price point is AMR. Small company, lifetime warranty, custom valving and spring rates to suit your needs. B-E-A-U-T-I-F-U-L
coil-over. About $1200 for honda-tech users.

Iffy companies:
Omni - Reputable, good drag racing stuff, not bad.
Tein - My brother had 2 different tein setups on his car and the SS was the best. The basic was utter garbage. He was astounded by koni/gc when he finally sold his SS for $1100 and got a better suspension setup for $800.
skunk2 - they have made strides recently but they have a reputation for overpriced parts (for what they are) and blow shocks and too stiff spring rates. Their LCAs are notorious for torn bushings, the new model supposedly addresses that. However for $190 you should hit yourself with a hammer for not buying Function7 instead. PIC makes a good affordable LCA that I would trust. They make outstanding bushings.
Buddy Club - Much better stuff out there for the money. They make killer high end stuff, pretty reliable low end stuff, I think better bang for buck is had elsewhere.

Bad companies:
Function&Form - They have made strides, but they appeal to the kiddies who want to slam their cars and don't care about much else. I've seen numerous posts over the years about leaking shocks being shipped to them, or leaking immediately afterwards. 1 year warranty.
Ksport - Can't tell you how many broken/leaking/etc ksport I've seen here. For that kind of money there are much better options.
D2- Comes out of the same factory as ksport. As far as I know they're identical in construction.

Good companies:

^Bottom line^

****This article is aimed at persons aspiring for functional cars for daily driving/weekend autocross or road racing. I have included tips for people who want to slam their cars in the details.****

In my opinion I believe there are essentially 3 choices for the enthusiast driver:

Progress CS-II@$600
Koni/Ground control@$800

I merely believe that the positives outweigh the negatives of similarly priced products and therefore these are the best choices. PIC even offers a $1100 coilover, but when you're spending $1100+ for a suspension wouldn't you spend the extra $100 for the lifetime warranty of the AMR? PIC is a GREAT setup and should definitely be considered. Many people have ridden on these for YEARS with no issues!! Great company and great service.

Thanks, I hope this helps many of you pick your suspension.

-Adam (aka Libertariat)
Adam's opinion is most definitely open for discussion! If you have anything to contribute feel free to add your two cents!

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Mar 29, 2009
Same guy

Here are spring rates for common racing products for those of you who are curious:

The P = Progressive, which means the spring rate changes dynamically over the compression.
The L = Linear, where the spring rate remains roughly the same over the compression

96-00 EX factory 165F/80R (P/P)
99-00 Si (EM1) factory 201F/99.8R (P/P)
CTR factory 240/240 (L/P)
APEX'i WS 447F/178R
Eibach ProKit 290F/190R (P/P)
Eibach Sportline 310F/275R (P/P)
Gold-line GL 2.5" drop 320/190 (P/P)
Gold-line GPS 1.25" drop 275/160 (P/P)
Ground Control Coilover 380F/280R (P/P)*
H&R OE 280F/190R (P/P)
H&R Sport 330F/280R (P/P)
JIC FLT-A2s (USDM) 504F/336R (L/L)
Koni RSK Suspension kit 154-205/270 (P/L)
Neuspeed SofSports 260F/150R (P/P)
Neuspeed Sport 280F/180R (P/P)
Neuspeed Race 485F/395R
Omni-Power Adjustable Sleeve Coilover 448F/336R (L/L)*
Omni-Power Street Coilovers 448F/336R (L/L)*
Omni-Power Sport Coilovers 539F/448R (L/L)*
Omni-Power Drag Coilover 810F/810R (L/L)*
Omni-Power 6-Way Damping Coilovers 539/448/336 (L)*
Progress Coilovers 350F/250R (P/P)
Progress Lowering Springs 320F/200R (P/P)
SkunkWerks Coilovers (old) 400F/300R (L/L)
Skunk2 Coilovers (new) 500F/400r (L/L)
Sparco needed
Spoon Full Coilovers 300/240
SSR Cup 392/280
SSR S1 448/448
Suspension Techniques 10-15% more then stock (P/P)
Tanabe DF-210 10-15% more then stock
Tanabe NF-210 5-10% more then stock
Tein HT 1119F/448R (L/L)
Tein HG 365F/129-196R (L/P)
Tein SS 448F/224R
Tein Flex 504F/280R
Tein RA/RE/RS 783F/559R (L/L)
Tein S. Tech 235F/140R
Tokico Illumina Kit 250/123 (P/P)

For daily driving comfort on moderate drops I recommend 350-450 Front and 250-350 rear rates.

Anyone who wants to tuck tire you need at least 400lb rates. Any lower you'll easily need 500lb rates.

here's a conversion table for Kg/mm to LB/in

kg/mm to lbs/in
16 = 896
15 = 840
14 = 784
13 = 728
12 = 672
11 = 616
10 = 560
9.0 = 504
8.5 = 476
8.0 = 448
7.5 = 420
7.0 = 392
6.5 = 364
6.0 = 336
5.5 = 308
5.0 = 280
4.5 = 252
4.0 = 224
3.0 = 168
2.0 = 112


For anyone wanting to slam their cars and have it last, you need to get a good master bushing set, preferably hard rubber. And AT THE LEAST Koni/ground control with front extended top hats and rates of 600lb+ front and 400+lb rear, maybe higher depending on your wheel/offset.


Boosting since 1998
Feb 14, 2011
Mate wheres the Ohlin love??


Dont worrie its not set in stone, as said at the start its one mans opinion, There are plenty of suspension setups better in quality that were not mentioned

Last edited:


New Member
May 20, 2012
i think tein is more aggriseve in proformance but they are good i have them for about 300$ used and they are in good condtion


1998 EK9
Oct 1, 2007
Y would you change the supention in the first place? It's good standard isnt it?


Bench Racer
Aug 18, 2008
Bear in mind that it was written by an American, and the average Honda over there generally is a crappy old shopping car with a wheezy SOHC engine. Type R is a rare thing in the states.


New Member
May 25, 2009
Bear in mind that it was written by an American, and the average Honda over there generally is a crappy old shopping car with a wheezy SOHC engine. Type R is a rare thing in the states.

It's a sad fact and even worse still is suspension over here is almost always all show no go.


Apr 19, 2010
Bear in mind that it was written by an American, and the average Honda over there generally is a crappy old shopping car with a wheezy SOHC engine. Type R is a rare thing in the states.

Haha :lol:


Staff member
Jun 21, 2007
Got Tien Flex on my 2000 hatch.. Money was way worth it.. I hit corners pretty fast and hard... My car is also dunked!!! Well worth the $$$$


Staff member
Jun 21, 2007
Soft really? I don't drag so they are best to drive like a Cadillac & look like a racer.


Well-Known Member
Jun 16, 2008
Yeah spring rates are too soft and if i do upgrade springs the suspension is not properly valve for them..thats why its better for me to get rid of the and get me some strange suspension..
But yes for street use is perfect it rides really smooth i cant complain on that...


May 15, 2015
Got a Tein SS set for my EK and would really reccomend them to anyone. Great set for track and road use. Fully adjustable height and adjustable dampers. Got them over a 4 years and no issues at all. And they got 4 years manufacturers warranty


New Member
May 26, 2015
i got the Tein flexZ in me civic hatch and its amazing. i highly recommend it to anyone trying to spend around $800.