Fast Car - - Fast Projects -

So far, the gear­box, diff and engine oils have been changed to pre­mium Red­line flu­ids, we’ve steam-cleaned just about ev­ery­thing hu­manly pos­si­ble to steam clean and up­rgraded the brakes to a rather nice set of EBC per­for­mance discs and pads. To be fair, I think there’s not a true petrol­head on the planet who wouldn’t be damn happy to drive home in this 350Z al­ready… but there’s a long way to go be­fore it’ll be ready to give away at TRAX.

So, with that in mind, this month I thought I’d get on with one of the most im­por­tant, if not THE most im­por­tant, mods on the whole car. I’m talk­ing, of course – sus­pen­sion.

Now, I’m not say­ing the 350Z is clown-car high as stan­dard, but it’s cer­tainly get­ting to­wards some sort of mi­nor cir­cus sta­tus. I guess that can be for­given be­cause it’s more of a GT cruiser than nim­ble sports car, but even so, we want to beef up the han­dling on ours.

Our weapon of choice for this? A spanky set of PB coilovers. We’ve cho­sen this par­tic­u­lar brand of bouncy bits for a few sim­ple rea­sons.

First, we’ve used these on lots of FC projects over the years and we’ve al­ways found them to per­form ex­cep­tion­ally well; much bet­ter than many in the same sort of price range. They also of­fer all the ‘bells and whis­tles’, such as mono­tube dampers, mul­ti­ple spring rates and 30-stage ad­justable damp­ing. The only rea­son they’re such a rel­a­tive bar­gain is be­cause PB cut out the mid­dle-man by de­liv­er­ing them straight from their fac­tory.

I also like the fact that they come ready built-up with al­loy top mounts, which means there’s no need to risk life and limb by break­ing out the spring com­pres­sors. This makes them su­per-quick to fit if you know what you’re do­ing and even if you’re a bit of a span­ner-swing­ing numpty ( like you, you

mean – Jules), you should have no trou­ble get­ting these on with ba­sic tools and a jack.

Any­way, I or­dered a full kit last month and they landed in less than a week. For once, it took sub­stan­tially less time than I thought to get the job done. Sure, we’ve been here be­fore – we fit­ted air-ride on our Time At­tack 350Z just four or five years ago. But the truth is: I’m get­ting old and I for­got what was in­volved. On the bright side, though, it was a rather pleas­ant sur­prise when I re­alised all the plas­tics and guff in the boot didn’t have to be stripped out to fit the rear shocks be­cause they mount from the bot­tom, un­der­neath the wheel arches.

The front shocks were dead easy to fit too. It’s just a case of drop­ping the bot­tom arms, un­do­ing the top mounts, pulling the stan­dard gear off and bolt­ing up the new stuff. Lovely!

The only real prob­lem I had along the way was that the front drop links were knock­ing more vi­o­lently than our Jules’ head­board when the new Vic­to­ria’s Se­cret cat­a­logue comes out. The lit­tle bas­tards ab­so­lutely re­fused to come off! Still, af­ter a lot of tem­per tantrums and scraped knuck­les, out came the grinder and short work was made of those, too.

That’s one big job done but there’s plenty more to do be­fore I’ll be happy to give the car away… well, I say happy, I’ll ac­tu­ally be cry­ing into my corn­flakes when they make me hand over the keys…

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