Project VA WRX, Upgrading the Bushings and Swaybars with Superpro Part 1
We decided to be different and tackle the Subaru WRX as our latest Project Car because it's big sister, the STI has been always getting all the attention. More people can afford the WRX which we consider to be a performance bargain and more enthusiasts drive them. We will be working with ARK Design to get this car going and make it more fun to drive.
One of the first things we did as is typical on most of our project cars is to work on the suspension first. Since we are still deciding on what to do for dampers on our project, we decided to start with changing the soft rubber suspension bushings with some polyurethane parts by Superpro.
We also upgraded the swaybars to some Superpro units. Superpro has a long history as a Australian replacement bushing company. Australia is lightly populated and has many mile of unimproved roads which are very hard on a cars suspension. Thus Superpro made a name for itself in the market with heavy duty lifetime warranted replacement bushings which just happened to improve performance as well. Now Superpro is expanding their line up to include adjustable suspension links and swaybars as well!
The VA WRX has a multi link rear suspension compared to the trapezoidal link rear suspension of previous models. The suspension is designed to provide the advantages of a multilink while still providing a low profile for good trunk room. The new suspension has ride advantages due to way less articulation bind and a better rear camber curve for more rear lateral grip over the old design. The new suspension also has less rear antisquat which can have an advantage with corner exit grip. One disadvantage that the mulitlink suspension can have is that there are many more mushy rubber bushings to deflect and cause unplanned changes in toe and camber under load.
The Superpro lower control arms have hard Superpro polyurethane bushings already installed. They have eccentrics that have a lot of adjustment leeway for setting the camber. The toe links also have the polyurethane bushings pre installed and have a lot more adjustment than stock which are essential not adjustable.
You can see how the stock stuff is oriented here before we start removing anything.
You can see the stock toe link here compared to the adjustable Superpro part. Basically it is adjustable a small amount only through an eccentric at it's mounting point. Since we can now adjust the lower arm for camber, the toe link needs a lot more adjustment leeeway than stock so the toe can still be corrected if negative camber is run in the rear.