January 15, 2018
Why you should fit a Sway Bar to your 4WD

 

Why you should fit a 4x4 Sway Bar to your 4WD

Fitting a larger sway bar, particularly in the rear of a 4WD, has two main effects, vehicle balance in terms of understeer or oversteer and increased roll resistance. Both of these effects can provide increased overall handling and safety benefits in a 4WD vehicle. If you are looking for increased stability on the road or when towing, sway bars are a great upgrade option.  

As most factory vehicles are partial towards understeer, fitting of a larger rear sway bar, or the addition of a sway bar, helps in providing a more neutral characteristic in the handling. This is due to the increase in roll stiffness at the rear, which changes the loading of the rear wheels under conditions of increased cornering load. SuperPro offers a great range of aftermarket sway bars engineered for many off-road applications, also offering many adjustable kits to best suit your 4WD build. 

 

 

At the same time, as the rear end is resisting more of the roll, the front end resists less in proportion, leaving the front wheels more evenly loaded, producing more available front end grip. In the end an increase in overall stability can be achieved by balancing the vehicle.

Another effect of introducing larger rear sway bars is a reduction in chassis roll. This reduces the effects of “roll camber”. Roll camber is the variation in the wheel and tyre camber setting due to chassis roll. During cornering the presence of chassis roll usually results in the outside wheels gaining positive camber. By increasing the roll stiffness and reducing roll camber effect, the wheel and tyre combination stays closer to its optimal setting.

As an alternative, this could be remedied by starting out with large amounts of static camber to counteract the positive camber gain. The trade-off however is the resulting increased tyre wear, and reduction in straight-line handling.

Now that the basics are covered, imagine a Nissan Patrol, Toyota Land Cruiser or Toyota Hilux that has had a 4x4 lift kit installed and been lifted 50mm with a bulbar and winch package. It has been fitted out with a draw system, roof rack and tows a twenty foot caravan! This may be the extreme, but somewhere between this and a standard, off the showroom floor vehicle, is where most of these vehicles operate. The factory sway bars were never designed to control anything other than the standard vehicle at standard ride height and with something less than being loaded to their GVM (Gross Vehicle Mass) limit.

The modern 4WD Dual cab utility, almost the family sedan of this century. Is normally coil sprung with a strut front end and leaf sprung rear with no rear sway bar support. Becasue of this dual cabs typically suffer from understeer and can be very unstable during high speed directional changes. When you load the vehicle with accessories, people, change its height or tow the problem only gets worse.

 

SuperPro Sway bar fitted by Fulcrum

'SuperPro 20mm Heavy Duty 2 Position Blade Adjustable Sway Bar installed on a Hilux.' 

 

Upgrading to a 4x4 sway bar is the only way to compensate for:

  • A change in centre of gravity of the chassis
  • An increase in vehicle mass
 

Upgrading to a 4x4 sway bar will;

  • Improve the stability of the vehicle at high speed
  • Neutralise the factory understeer
  • Increase tyre life
  • Control the roll in load carrying applications
  • Improve safety with no loss of comfort

The biggest resistance to the fitment of bigger 4x4 sway bar to 4WD vehicles is the flawed concept of the loss of articulation in the suspension. If the replacement sway bars are designed correctly and the sway bar links are lengthened, replacement sway bars can be fitted with minimal or no loss of articulation. However, the improvements to stability, safety and driveability will far outweigh any loss of articulation.

So without reducing comfort or articulation, a sway bar will make the suspension system and tyres perform better, making the vehicle more responsive while neutralising understeer. Fitting a sway bar offers all round improvements in handling, tyre wear, comfort, safety and load carrying. It is one of the best handling improvements you can make.

 

Get Your 4WD Sway Bar Upgrade (4x4)

SuperPro have engineered a large range of sway bars suited for a variety of 4WD's with different off-road applications. SuperPro where the first company to ever engineer and manufacture aftermarket 4x4 sway bars for Dual cab 4WD's. We offer the largest range of 4x4 sway bars in the world, call us on 1800 385 278

SuperPro 4x4 sway bar kit specifications

 

Check out our whole range of 4x4 Sway bar Upgrades

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