I’ve been interested in Tweaking my 2013 smart Fortwo ED’s suspension. I’m an engineer and practicing auto mechanic. I work on classics, but, the smart is my car. The tires are fairly new, stock size continentals. I didn’t want to do anything radical or extensive and reversible is good too.
I remembered in the early genesis of smart, that the car was modified in the 450 model just prior to full production The front track was narrowed to increase understeer, to prevent the dreaded roll over. At the expense of neutral handling.
I found a listing for wheel spacers, from Eibach. They come in a few sizes, but, as they are easily reversible (removable), I chose a more radical 20mm thickness.
Well, it took me almost a year to get my plan together, due to purchasing the wrong (longer) lug bolts.
Spacers-Eibach part # s90-2-20-017 ($127 plus shipping)
H&R longer lug bolts- [URL=https://www.smartcarofamerica.com/forums/usertag.php?do=list&action=hash&hash=1254502]#1254502
-[/URL] these are critical, Stock are 12x1.5x 25 mm threaded length.
For 20 mm spacers, the lugs are 45mm long and the #1254502
, same number. If you go for another thickness of spacer, you need different lug bolts. (About $35 with shipping)
Wheels come off, Spacers slide in (align the holes before putting the wheel on) and bolt the wheels on with the new lug bolts. Torque to 85 ft lb.
Driving impressions- WOW!
At speeds over 70, the car has far less understeer. It also seems to have a smoother ride. In corners where the car would “rotate” around its front end under braking, it now goes around without any transition. It goes where I tell it and asks for more. Only a few miles of testing so far, but I cannot see any detrimental effect,
I thought there would be trouble with brake stability, or perhaps even oversteer. No. Corners that I took before are now fast and sure. I have not found the new limits-yet
After about two months of testing, and driving like a nut. This seems to have improved ride, handling, and looks. I love it!