Lowered Prime Users, Question!

Discussion in 'Prime Accessories and Modifications' started by roypaik, Sep 13, 2019.

  1. roypaik

    roypaik Member

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    Has anyone noticed how springy or bouncy the stock Prime is on the freeways or over bumps. I feel like the car either has a weak spring rate or the shocks need to be more firm to compensate for the larger battery. Any one that has lowered their car with aftermarket springs, OR upgraded shocks, noticed an improvement on the springy or bouncy??
     
  2. Rob43

    Rob43 Senior Member

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    I have a few thoughts on this, but before I continue can you please post up your current tire size.



    Rob43
     
  3. roypaik

    roypaik Member

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    195/65/15
     
  4. Rob43

    Rob43 Senior Member

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    OK, got it.

    Here's the main problem, it's the 65 series sidewall of your tire that creates almost all of the effect that you speak of.

    The moment you add coilovers, they will actually exacerbate this effect. The stiffer coilover suspension will highlight all of the weaknesses of the 195/65-15 tire. Your current soft-ish OE suspension is helping to mask this issue.


    Rob43
     
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  5. roypaik

    roypaik Member

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    I see where you are going with the large sidewall but it’s definitely not that mushy feeling. My past car I had 225/55/18 (forester) with a similar sidewall height and it had a way better drive. I wonder if the spring rate is the problem or the shock damper.

    Going over big dips I feel the back of the car bounce. Does yours not do that with a smaller sidewall tire?
     
  6. Rob43

    Rob43 Senior Member

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    First, you can't compare a Subaru with a 225/55-18 (Heavy Carcass) to a Toyota with a 195/65-15 (Lightweight Carcass) with their different suspension systems, IMO this would be like comparing Apples to Softballs; I guess they are both round.

    I don't like putting percentages on this stuff, but I'd go with at least 80% that a plus 2 or 3 wheel n tire upgrade will solve ~almost all of your porpoising issues at highway speeds. I've said it before & I'll say it again, from a handling / higher speed driving standpoint, the OE 195/65-15's feel like marshmallows.

    So to directly answer your last sentence, my upgraded plus 2 wheels n tires "virtually" solved the issues you speak of.


    Rob43
     
  7. Leadfoot J. McCoalroller

    Leadfoot J. McCoalroller Senior Member

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    Prius & Forester suspensions aren’t horribly different, the Forester’s independent rear and more travel being the principal differences.

    I’ve run into this in other cars. They spec one spring/shock for the car, then change the design to add weight without revising the shocks, and you get a floaty-boaty ride out of the result. I’m not confirming that this is true for your Prime, just pointing out that your theory is plausible, it has happened before.
     
    #7 Leadfoot J. McCoalroller, Sep 13, 2019
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2019
  8. Rob43

    Rob43 Senior Member

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    What's the F & R spring rate difference between the two chassis as you see it ?


    Rob43
     
    #8 Rob43, Sep 13, 2019
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2019
  9. roypaik

    roypaik Member

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    I value your view point. I will respectfully disagree. The cars are only around 300 lbs difference, similar style of suspension. But they are different types of cars. The car does not feel marshmallow-ly... But more bouncy. Maybe someone who has does suspension work on theie car can help clarify my question.
     
  10. roypaik

    roypaik Member

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    I think you're on to something there. The Prius and prime might share a lot of the same parts. But the rear has major difference. That maybe the problem we are facing with the bounciness. Shocks might be what we need too upgrade.
     
  11. Rob43

    Rob43 Senior Member

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    That's fine, thank you.

    I suggest that you put a coilover on it right away, but when that does not solve your issue to your satisfaction, remember this thread.


    Rob43
     
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  12. Leadfoot J. McCoalroller

    Leadfoot J. McCoalroller Senior Member

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    I’ve never driven a Prime, so I’ve never felt what you’re working on. I will give you more details on my earlier experience, though. I bought an older generation Outback secondhand, years ago. I didn’t like the handling. I learned that the car had been spec’d for a certain grade of rear shock while they were designing it for target weight x. It would have been a reduction from the preceding generation of the sheetmetal. Then something went wrong late in the process and they blew the weight target for most trims. They already had a zillion lightweight rear shocks on order. It wasn’t unsafe, just a bit hovercrafty.

    So I put on a set of shocks meant for the previous generation of the car, before the weight reduction program. The handling cleaned up and the car was much more fun to drive.

    @Rob43 I never changed the spring rates in that car, so I can’t even offer a guess as to an appropriate spring hack for the Prius.
     
  13. jb in NE

    jb in NE Senior Member

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    Mine does the same and I don't think it is tire flex. The shocks have low rebound damping.
     
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  14. Rob43

    Rob43 Senior Member

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    I'm not saying an upgraded rear shock wouldn't help because it might help a bit, that's why I left a ~20% margin for that.

    The absolute REAL culprit is the OE 195/65-15's, they are the farthest thing from a performance size & carcass in design.

    When trying to address a problem like this, you always tackle the biggest item first. The reason there's push back from the OP is because he has already invested $$ in 15" aftermarket wheels, he would need to start all over if he moved up to a 17" wheel n tire package which would of course be a financial loss from his perspective.

    OP, I will offer you this:

    1) As a Suspension Builder I solved this exact issue by upgrading to a lightweight 19.2 lbs Ultra High Performance non-LLR A/S tire in a 205/50-17 size on lightweight 17 x 7" 17.0 lbs wheel.

    2) I could've installed my OWN brand of adjustable rear shocks on my Prime,....but decided against it once I got a great result from my 17" wheel n tire upgrade. Would my adjustable rear shocks add an even better outcome, yes, but realistically it's a Daily Driver & I'm not attempting to set any lap records with this chassis.


    Rob43
     
    #14 Rob43, Sep 14, 2019
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2019
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  15. roypaik

    roypaik Member

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    Don't get me wrong, I hear you. I get the car came with crappy LRR tires and smaller rim size, it definitely contributes to your accusations. I dont think the push back is because I put the $$ 3rd gen prius wheels on my car (which I do not have LRR tires on them, and the stability and handling went up a lot more even though these Kumhos are shit). I have modded my cars for over 18 years, and this problem does not feel like a tire issue. Again, I respect your knowledge and contribution. I would just love to hear from other members who have done suspension mods to see if their approach solves my issue.
     
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