Having recently fitted the TTE springs, I thought I’d share the experience and this article briefly describes the process I followed. Disclaimer: I and the club will not accept any responsibility if you follow the described process with negative results (i.e. damage your car and/or injure yourself). With that out of the way, I can move on.
The springs were ordered from Inchcape Sandhurst and the part numbers are AM27911 (front) and AM27912 (rear):
Things I used:
A few tools:
– Sockets 14mm, 19mm
– Allen (hex) key 5mm
– Combination wrenches 12mm, 13mm
– Springs compressor
I thought this might work better with some help. I used my mate Kris of Belgium.
There is a lot of dirt under there.
I would not work on the suspension without having the car on stands. Accidents do happen (as, rather unconvincingly, demonstrated by Top Gear) and good stands could prevent a serious disaster.
A man-sized jack:
The standard Toyota jack is only good for changing tyres. I used a proper one as I needed to lift the car high enough to place the stands.
Ok, onto the interesting stuff.
First I loosened up the bolts that hold the brake disk and completely unscrewed the ABS sensor lead and break fluid pipe from the suspension…:
…while Kris of Belgium unscrewed the two of the three bolts that hold the shock in place:
While I finally had the shock free from all bolts, Kris of Belgium carefully unscrewed the last bolt. The shock just fell in my hand. Without the suspension to hold the disk in place, it will be hanging off the ABS lead and brake fluid pipe; it’s not such a good idea and Kris of Belgium decided to tie it up while I was working on the shock:
To remove the existing spring, I tightened the spring with a spring compressor and just unscrewed the centre bolt at the top (in the centre of the strut mount).
This is the stock spring in comparison with the TTE. Uncompressed the TTE is more that 30mm shorter but it’s a lot stiffer:
To install the TTE spring, I compressed it with a spring compressor and replaced the old one. Compressing the spring allowed me to put the strut mount back in place easily. One thing I noticed was that the strut mount is keyed; this made it easy to tighten in place. The shock absorber before and after:
To fit the completed item, I followed the removal process in reverse.
Front strut schematic and torque figures:
The process is almost identical to the front but there is the extra complexity of the stabiliser mounts.
I unscrewed all the bolts (circled) except the stabiliser mounts which were a real pain in the derriere; I first tried the top one but failed miserably as it was too tight and access was very restricted. I then decided to unscrew the lower one:
It’s worth mentioning that these are not normal bolts; there is a hole where the bolt is screwed and an allen key is needed to hold the internal part in place while loosening up the actual bolt (otherwise it will keep rotating to judgement day):
As with the front, Kris of Belgium unbolted the top mount bolts and again, the suspension just dropped in my hand:
The difference between the rear springs is not as great as the front:
The spring installation is identical to the front and the shock was put into place following the aforementioned process in reverse…
Rear strut schematic and torque figures:
The whole process took an entire afternoon but it was worth it. Upon completion, the car was booked for a 4 wheel laser alignment to ensure everything was in order.
The difference is instantly obvious but I expect a drop of a further ~5mm within a year:
The difference is remarkable despite only having done commuting driving since installation; the car can now carry higher speeds while cornering and there is hardly any body roll. Chassis is as communicative as ever and comfort hasn’t been compromised. Turn-in seems to be a lot sharper as well although steering appears to have lost a fraction of its feel. This is not necessarily a criticism, just an observation.
All in all, if you’re looking for your first mod, this is the best place to start. If you’re buying now (new or used), tell your dealer you also want the “sports springs” accessory…