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Which Model 3 springs for a more comfortable ride?

Andrew

Model S #6151, Model 3 #1576
Supporting Member
Mar 11, 2013
434
210
Santa Monica, CA
We have an early Model 3 (RWD, LR - delivered in January), which had an extremely rough ride quality. We had "the suspension fix" performed by Tesla back in March, but I'm still not happy with the ride quality... It's still too harsh and bumpy.

I'm looking at the various spring replacement options out there, and am wondering which is the best option. My goal is ride comfort without a significant decrease in handling. I don't care about lowering the car (this isn't about aesthetics), and I would actually prefer to keep as much ground clearance as possible. I also don't want to make any modifications that are irreversible, or would wear out other parts faster.

If any of the available options would help reduce the amount of road and tire noise that's transmitted into the cabin, that would also be a huge bonus.

I'm considering these options - would love any advice/recommendations (or other suggestions!). Thanks!

@UnpluggedP Mild Dual-Rate Springs

@MountainPass Comfort Coil Overs

Eibach PRO-KIT Springs

@Tsportline Lowering Springs (though these seem to be more about lowering than softening the ride?)
 
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AltLogic

Member
May 14, 2018
252
328
SoCal
Shocks will improve what the passengers and drivers feel when going over bumps. Changing to the springs you listed will not change the ride much and will probably make it worse. I owned a car for 8 years and had two sets of springs and two sets of shocks. Changing the springs was almost imperceptible in ride feel. Changing the shocks was a big difference. The MPP comfort shocks and springs are the only way to improve the ride. (Sorry MPP, I can’t call them coil overs since only the fronts are coil overs)
 

MountainPass

Vendor
Mar 2, 2018
1,501
2,961
Toronto, Canada
Shocks will improve what the passengers and drivers feel when going over bumps. Changing to the springs you listed will not change the ride much and will probably make it worse. I owned a car for 8 years and had two sets of springs and two sets of shocks. Changing the springs was almost imperceptible in ride feel. Changing the shocks was a big difference. The MPP comfort shocks and springs are the only way to improve the ride. (Sorry MPP, I can’t call them coil overs since only the fronts are coil overs)
How dare you :)
 

Andrew

Model S #6151, Model 3 #1576
Supporting Member
Mar 11, 2013
434
210
Santa Monica, CA
Yep. If I let a bit of air out of the tires, say down to 42 or 43 PSI, that helps a little...but of course that will decrease efficiency and increase wear on the tires. So I'm hoping to find a better solution. :)
 

coleAK

Member
Oct 23, 2018
895
660
Alaska
I’ve been doing suspension mods on my track cars and off road land cruisers for >20 years. springs alone will do nothing for comfort, it will be a combo of shocks and possibly springs. Could you also go to a 16 or 17” rim? That would help at least as much as suspension and be a whole lot cheeper.
 
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Andrew

Model S #6151, Model 3 #1576
Supporting Member
Mar 11, 2013
434
210
Santa Monica, CA
@AltLogic & @coleAK - Thanks for chiming in re: springs not doing much for ride quality. That's quite a bit different than what I've read, both on the sales pages for these products (of course) and also in some anecdotal reports on these forums from folks who have changed out the springs on their 3's (though it seems most people have done the "Moderate" springs from Unplugged, not the "Mild" ones, because lowering was an aesthetic goal as well). Interesting idea to switch to 16" or 17" wheels, too...

Curious to know what @UnpluggedP, @Tsportline, and @MountainPass have to say about this?
 

MRPLUGIN

Member
Jan 8, 2017
89
98
Utah
I too would like to see some one would figure out a softer ride without lowering . I am not into cornering hard, and the car rides like a tank over bumps. I live where there is snow, no lowering here.

Feb 18 build 18"
 
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MountainPass

Vendor
Mar 2, 2018
1,501
2,961
Toronto, Canada
@AltLogic & @coleAK - Thanks for chiming in re: springs not doing much for ride quality. That's quite a bit different than what I've read, both on the sales pages for these products (of course) and also in some anecdotal reports on these forums from folks who have changed out the springs on their 3's (though it seems most people have done the "Moderate" springs from Unplugged, not the "Mild" ones, because lowering was an aesthetic goal as well). Interesting idea to switch to 16" or 17" wheels, too...

Curious to know what @UnpluggedP, @Tsportline, and @MountainPass have to say about this?
It's all about the dampers my friend. I'm not trying to shamelessly plug our products though, you should make whatever decision feels right for you!
 

MoreAgain

Member
Nov 23, 2018
389
449
San Diego
I'm no expert on suspension, but I did experience the same issue. My wife came from a Lexus Sc 430. She got the RWD model 3 with aero wheels in September and was immediately unhappy with the ride quality. We reduced the tire pressure to 40, but it still felt rough to her. We happen to live about 100 miles from Unplugged Performance, so I called to ask about the dual-rate Mild Springs. At the time, they had just gotten the milds in stock, and they were able to get me in for installation the next day. I tried to pay close attention to the feel of the ride on the way up, and before I took the car in I drove up and down a rough road close to their shop. When I picked it up I went back up and down the same road and felt a noticeable improvement there, and found the 100 mile ride home was much more pleasant. In addition to the feeling over bumps, I really notice the reduction in body role around the corners.

My wife has been very pleased with the change. I measured the distance from the ground to the fender above the center of the wheels before and after and it was almost a 1 inch drop, from roughly 28 inches to 27 inches, which I actually do think looks better, but it has not been a practical difference in ground clearance. No worries going over speed bumps or steep driveways. I ended up getting my own model 3 in October with the 19 inch performance wheels and also got the mild UP springs right away.
 

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MoreAgain

Member
Nov 23, 2018
389
449
San Diego
You may have already found this on Unplugged's site, but I found this interesting.
 

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BlackM3

Member
Nov 2, 2017
200
229
Sherman Oaks, Los Angeles, CA
I too am unhappy about the Model 3 ride quality on LA city streets, I have 18-inch aeros, tire pressure at 40PSI. I'm coming from a Lexus GS430 which was way smoother and more comfortable. I can feel every little bump in the road on the Model 3 and if the road is especially bad then it can be bouncy/jarring on certain spots. Alternatively, highway trips are fine and cities with new smooth streets are totally fine. I know the Model 3 is a sports car so I can understand the bumpy ride quality on city streets, but I really really want to make it more smooth and comfortable. I'm nervous that the AWD has better suspension compared to my RWD and I should have invested for AWD. I'm waiting for more stories of people getting aftermarket dampers/springs installed on RWD that *noticeably* improve the ride quality. It's gotta be a big difference for me to invest.
 
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Andrew

Model S #6151, Model 3 #1576
Supporting Member
Mar 11, 2013
434
210
Santa Monica, CA
@Msjulie Ha! ...or it could be that Tesla has continued to change the suspension. When did you get yours? Do you have the newer seats? I think they have more padding, so that'll make the ride feel a bit softer too. :)
 

MoreAgain

Member
Nov 23, 2018
389
449
San Diego
@BlackM3 I feel the benefit for the cost is great! The Mild springs were $385 + $300 to install. A smoothed ride and improved handling for less than $700 bucks? That's hard to beat.

Especially compared to all the other crazy things I've bought for this car (PPF, Ceramic Pro, console wraps, puddle lights, etc. - why can't I stop buying crap for this car?)
 

Michel3

Love those Aero's
May 2, 2016
632
411
Steenderen, Netherlands
Thanks, this is useful. It underlines why I would love to get Smart Air Suspension for my (yet to be ordered) Model 3.
Air Suspension does two things: 1 possibility to lower or raise the car, 2 more comfortable ride yet perfect handling.
But then I'm spoiled, having 35 years of experience with hydropneumatic (oil-gas) suspension.
 

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