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Installed KW V3 coilovers

Recently had a set of KW V3 coilovers installed by Evasive Motorsport who I trust as they did all the work on my GTR

The handling is pretty amazing. I drove two M3P cars with two different brands of aftermarket springs (not mentioning brands as I am not trying to bash them) and wasn’t impressed. The springs lowered the ride height but handling was only minimally improved, mostly from the lower center of gravity. So I decided to go with coilovers and wow what a difference. Ride height isn’t slammed l, just at the height KW recommends. We played with the damping settings and at full hard, the shocks are mega stiff. Way to stiff for the street, but wicked on the track. Razor sharp handling, very little roll, felt like a go kart. In the end I went with full soft and it is comfortable on the street. Handling is still amazing. Car feels like it is on rails. Body motions are just so well controlled. I drove another M3P with aftermarket springs just to compare and it was so mushy and soft. The difference is night and day. I dare say the handling feels pretty close to my GTR and blows the doors off my F80 M3. Now I just need wider wheels and stickier tires. If you really want your M3P to handle like a sports car, I highly recommend getting some coilovers.

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Futaba

Member
Aug 17, 2021
72
51
Seattle, WA
Thanks for posting this. I also have a F80 M3 since 2014. Your comparison with your M3 gives me the relative handling performance I am looking for. My Model 3 Performance has a lot more body roll during cornering than my F80 M3. I was thinking to upgrade the antiroll bars. Now I need to look into coilovers :D

Do you still have the stock antiroll bars?
 
Thanks for posting this. I also have a F80 M3 since 2014. Your comparison with your M3 gives me the relative handling performance I am looking for. My Model 3 Performance has a lot more body roll during cornering than my F80 M3. I was thinking to upgrade the antiroll bars. Now I need to look into coilovers :D

Do you still have the stock antiroll bars?
Yes I have stock anti-roll bars. I was going to upgrade those initially too, but not sure I really need to now. I just need wider tires now. My M3 was a 2016 Competition. I like the look, feel, sound, and presence of the M3 Competition a lot more than my M3P, but I think the M3P would eat my M3 for lunch in the canyons or on the autocross track (with the KW coilovers on).
 
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tm1v2

Member
Oct 18, 2021
652
439
USA
What’s this do to daily driving comfort. I really wish there was an easy active dampening solution. Mag ride would be so great in the Model 3. I don’t want a harsh ride in 90% of my driving for better handling in the 10%.
I'll bet money that a high quality, street-focused damper / coilover set can ride and handle better than the stock dampers at the same time (if adjusted correctly for this goal).

Or handle much better without riding any worse (again if valved and adjusted correctly for this goal).

In fact I bet several thousand dollars on this with my Öhlins DFV coilovers order. 😉 I'm still eagerly awaiting them, and once I've put some solid miles on them I'll write up a review and I won't mince any words, good or bad. My expectations are pretty high I admit based how much better a competing EV that came with Öhlins DFV from the factory handled and rode.

I expect these KW v3 and the MPP KWs are also capable of a wholly superior ride/handling balance than the stock dampers. I went with the Redwood Öhlins from my experience test driving that other car with Öhlins DFV, its suspension tuning was so good. Once I've installed my Öhlins I'll also see if I can find any locals with other coilovers to meet up with and do comparison test drives (might delay this due to COVID), just for fun and to do a comparison writeup for anyone stuck deciding. (I don't think it'll be a better vs worse thing for these good ones, more like what do you want and how much can you budget).
 
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Yes I have stock anti-roll bars. I was going to upgrade those initially too, but not sure I really need to now. I just need wider tires now. My M3 was a 2016 Competition. I like the look, feel, sound, and presence of the M3 Competition a lot more than my M3P, but I think the M3P would eat my M3 for lunch in the canyons or on the autocross track (with the KW coilovers on).
No, you likly don't need them unless you can't dial in the balance with the damping adjustments. I am thinking about taking mine off and sell them after installing MCS with decent spring rates.
 

MasterC17

Active Member
Dec 3, 2015
1,377
2,147
USA
What’s this do to daily driving comfort. I really wish there was an easy active dampening solution. Mag ride would be so great in the Model 3. I don’t want a harsh ride in 90% of my driving for better handling in the 10%.

MPP Comfort's improved the ride on my wife's Model 3P considerably without any additional NVH and were only a second off the MCS at VIR (which fwiw, the MCS added quite a bit of NVH).

MPP:

MCS:
 
What’s this do to daily driving comfort. I really wish there was an easy active dampening solution. Mag ride would be so great in the Model 3. I don’t want a harsh ride in 90% of my driving for better handling in the 10%.
Well, the KW V3 have a pretty wide range of adjustment. You can go from rock hard shatter your teeth stiff to a very compliant ride in full soft. My wife absolutely hated the ride in full stiff which is probably only good for track days. In full soft she can tell that it is stiffer but doesn’t mind it at all. So if it passes the wife test (wife who typically drives a minivan), I would say it is pretty comfortable. In fact, she thought the ride in our bone stock BMW X3 M40i in sport mode was a harsher ride than the M3P with KW V3 in full soft. You can definitely tell it is stiffer than stock, but I think it’s perfect for driving on the street and again, the handling is amazing.
 
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I messed with them for about a year and a half. Spring rates were 800/1000. I'm sure they would have worked nicely on a race car with a cage, but for a car driven on the street the added NVH was too much for me.

If you have the spherical front top mounts I can see some increase in NVH, it's no more than McPherson strut type vehicles running camber plates. The spherical top mounts help remove some of the torsional/twist loads from the shock. I think we might see some premature top mount and/or lower damper mount failures at some point with coilovers or even with the OE suspension. Model 3 front dampers moves way too much for a double wishbone type of a suspension.

If you drop the rates and remove the spherical mounts you should have a nearly OE NVH. On my personal car with 672(Swift 12kg) rear springs on 2WNR and compression set at 4 and rebound at 6 it's softer than OE. Front springs at 504(Swift 9kg) and compression set at 6 and rebound at 8 it is slightly firmer than OE. According to a reputable source OE rates are 6 and 9kg respectively on a 2020 M3P. MCS is more than capable of serving double duty with the right spring rates.
 
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