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996 Targa - Suspension Overhaul


12 Nov 2012
So, now that I've sold my Mk2 Golf track car, I can press on with the planned suspension overhaul on my '03 Targa. I already have a brand new M030 suspension kit sat in the garage but am also going to refresh most of the bits attached to/around the struts.

I was going to source the following from a combination of OPC (where competitive) and eBay (TRW parts with the logo scrubbed out):

- 4x coffin arms
- 4x tuning forks
- 4x top mounts with nuts
- 4x strut top nuts
- 2x front ARB drop links
- 2x rear ARB drop links
- 2x front tie rod and tie rod end
- All associated bolts/nuts/washers for the above

Have I missed anything? Any specialist tools that might be of use?]

I'll make sure to post pictures when I start doing the work in a few weeks time hopefully.
So, since my last post, I've managed to source the following parts from a combination of OPC and eBay (based on who offered the best price):

- 2x OE front top mounts - OPC
- 2x OE rear top mounts - OPC
- 4x TRW 'tuning fork' - PW Europarts (eBay)
- 2x TRW front ARB drop link - PW Europarts (eBay)
- 2x TRW rear ARB drop link - PW Europarts (eBay)
- 2x TRW front tie rod end - partshop247 (eBay)
- OE nuts and bolts for the above - OPC

As alluded to in a recent thread on the topic, the TRW coffin arms are difficult to source at present unfortunately. It's a shame the OPCs charge 4x the price for exactly the same item!!

What I need now is all of the torque settings for the bolts. Is there an online resource for this?
Managed to source all of the parts successfully, opting for Meyle coffin arms in the end due to the TRW supply issues. My local OPC in Bristol has been a great help with the installation work and I should be picking the car up with its fresh geometry setup tomorrow. I'll certainly report back on the handling changes/improvements, particularly as I've replaced a great deal of the suspension components.

Incidentally, we found out that the OE fitment 996 Targa anti-roll bars, both front and rear, are actually thicker than the 996 M030 items supplied for the Coupe and Cabrio variants. As a result, we have opted to re-bush the OE items and I'll have the two M030 items available to sell on as unused items....keep an eye out in the forum classifieds!
Keep us posted as you do the refresh as this is something I had meant to get around to this summer. The more "how to" photos the better. :thumb:
I have to admit that, due to some time constraints (i.e. baby on the way very soon!), my local OPC has done the majority of the hard work on the installation. They priced up a very competitive installation quote, including the full geometry setup, which suited me nicely on this occasion. Otherwise, I'd definitely have been doing this work on the driveway LOL!

I'll grab some pics when I get the car back and stick them up on this thread. I need to remove all the wheels to replace the brake caliper bolts anyway, so can take some pics then.

Look forward to hearing your opinion on your new setup I'm going through the same process getting all the bits together first, possibly going to go with kW v1 dampers though.
Picked the car up this morning, really pleased with it :thumb:

The OPC let me have a look under the car with the technician who did the work, before I drove away. He had the usual issues with the front drop-link retaining bolts that corrode themselves in but, other than that, the suspension refresh was a success. The geometry setup got everything back into spec without issue too.

On the road, the car definitely feels firmer and more composed than before. I'm impressed with the overall ride quality, it really isn't too fidgety and harsh over broken roads. The steering remains fantastic, with plenty of feedback coming through the steering wheel. Not had a chance to try it out on a B-road yet but looking forward to giving it a proper drive.

The car clearly needs to 'sit' for a bit to allow the suspension to compress and settle a bit, so it will be interesting to see what the ride height ends up at....should be 10mm lower than standard IIRC. Should have taken some pics and measurements before I took it in LOL!

I'll post some pics up this weekend.
sounds like it went well then, can sometimes be a little worrying when at OPC as they give you a general price but say it could be more due to'issues', glad yours went to plan.

Look forward to some pics and a B-road write up!

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