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rear Strong-Strut testimonials are below pictures
The rear Strong-Strut fits all Z3's and all E30 series including the ///M version.
Links to rear Strong-Strut installation pics and text
all rear Strong-Struts are now powder coated in black texture
click this link to see detailed customer installation of rear Strong-Strut with many pictures
How it works. Although the rear Strong-Strut appears to be bolted to the sub frame/ rear axle carrier, it is actually bolted to the mounting brackets that support the sub frame assembly. The sub frame itself is above the mounting brackets and is mounted in large rubber bushings that allow considerable movement but also isolate road noise and vibration. Although the sub frame is a massive assembly, it offers no rigidity to the rear body structure since it is mounted in rubber. The rear Strong-Strut is bolted to the same brackets but below the sub frame. This placement results in direct reinforcement of the chassis since the rear Strong-Strut is effectively bolted to the chassis/body.
WARNING !! IMPORTANT INFORMATION rear Strong-Strut ground clearance disclaimer
Please be advised that the addition of a rear Strong-Strut may reduce ground clearance on your Z3. Since the various Z3 models have some differences, and there are a lot of aftermarket suspensions and wheel/tire options out there, we can't be more specific than this. The prototype has been road tested on a 2000 ///M Roadster with a Dinan stage 3 suspension without incident. The Dinan kit lowers the stock ///M Roadster by 1/2 inch. On any of the current Z3 models, the rear Strong-Strut will have approximately the same clearance as the bottom of the front air dam or the rear bar of the OEM “X” brace. If ground clearance is an issue with any potential customer, we suggest you do not purchase the rear Strong-Strut. If you do install one, we suggest that you measure the distance from the bottom of the strut to the ground and keep the measurement in memory. Avoid straddling any road objects that exceed this dimension since striking a solid object may cause damage to the vehicle. The cross bar is a very robust structure, 1/2 inch thick and 2 inches wide solid cold rolled steel. Although not tested for crash worthiness, it should be able to withstand a fairly solid hit. The pictures of the installed strut on the web page show its orientation and the fact that it could be vulnerable to large objects passing beneath the vehicle. On the plus side, it’s location and strength could prevent damage from straddled objects, to the differential. Photographs of the installed and uninstalled rear Strong-Strut can be viewed on this page.
The rear Strong-Strut is manufactured of the same stock we use now for the "CL" cross bar of the front strut, 2 inches by 1/2 inch solid 6061, T-6 treated alloy. It's all one solid piece and mounts under the car near the front of the rear wheels and is a very simple installation - even easier than the front STRONG-STRUT. Since the rear Strong-Strut can't be seen unless you intentionally look under the car, there are no finish options, they are all powder coated in the Black textured finish. The rear STRONG-STRUT is longer than the front one and spans the entire width of the car with a reinforcement beam to resist the Z3 rear end "hula dance."
The new rear strut works like gang busters and even surprised us the way it tightens up the rear end and forces the rear of the car to follow the front when you point it into a turn. Amazing! One driver said it felt like the car had rear wheel steering. We noticed when driving over bumps, "chop" or RR crossings, the car reacts as one piece rather than reacting in "sections" with a bunch of wiggling. The additional rigidity is quite noticeable and evokes more confidence and certainty in tight "esses" when "G" forces are rapidly switching sides.
We have a good supply in stock for immediate shipping. The sooner you send in your emailed order , the sooner you'll tame the infamous Z3 butt boogie.
Testimonials: rear Strong Strut
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Paul and The Strong Strut Team.
Just a note to let you know our findings after fitting your Competition Alloy Front Strut, Rear Strut (rear Strong-Strut) and Body Brace to my wife's 2.2l Z3 Roadster in June this year. Sorry for the delay in my reply but the past 4 months have given us the opportunity to understand the changes in the cars behavior. I am pleased to state that the cars handling has been significantly improved bringing a degree of fun and enjoyment into driving the car which it previously lacked. This lack of dynamic handling ability, much cited by the motoring press, has been vanquished and one can now drive the car with relish through bends and twists in the road confident of a safe outcome. The original 'tail-end wagging' of the car when exiting bends whilst accelerating has been eliminated. Steering response has improved considerably with good 'point and go' capability and increased sensitivity to movement of the steering wheel. The original under steer of the car has gone and the car demands that you pay attention to inadvertent movements of the hand when driving hard. My wife found this a little disconcerting at first and initially preferred the cars behavior with the front strut only fitted. I did wonder whether i would have to remove the rear strut and body brace as a consequence of her concern but she has persisted with the full installation and now drives the car with confidence and enjoyment.
As stated by other Strong Strut customers, the car exhibits greater body stiffness, noticeable even when pulling off the drive at home over the uneven surfaces.
Overall this additional stiffness endows the car with far greater dynamic handling abilities bringing greater pleasure to driving the car and well worth the weight penalty. Many thanks for your help and it was worth the wait for delivery. Bob Turner.
(LA) Dear Paul,
My rear Strong-Strut arrived Friday, February 28, 2003 in perfect condition. I must say that the testimonials you post on your advertising web site aren't exaggerating about how beautifully made this product is. The metal work, drilling, finish and supplied hardware are beautifully first class!
The installation was extremely easy, though I did have to make several shim adjustments to get proper clearance between the bar and my fuel tank support.
It is up to you, of course, but I believe that it is completely unnecessary for you to advise your customers to put their cars up on jack stands to do this installation. It is very easy to do with the car flat on the ground as a "one person job".
Your claims of better chassis rigidity are true. Many of the roads I must
travel on each day have a rough, washboard texture that made the (pre-rear Strong-Strut) car quiver and jiggle in a most unpleasant way. Though your rear Strong-Strut doesn't eliminate this sensation, my seat-of-the-pants assessment is
that it is "markedly improved". The car now feels much more pleasantly solid
on these surfaces. High-G cornering is also more pleasant! The car's chassis
now seems noticeably more rigid, and the tires seem to be significantly
In short, my love affair with my 5 year old M Roadster has been re-ignited because of your superb product! I can't wait to get the "aero ducts" and the chassis brace. After those items are installed I will probably soon order a front Strong Strut.
You are free to use my endorsement on your web site. Thanks for your great work!
Walter (PA) The testimonials of the Strong-Strut rear Strong-Strut were appallingly conservative. The performance results were phenomenal on my 2001 Z3. BMW should have included this accessory as standard equipment. In addition, the installation was a "piece of cake."
John (CA) To any Z3 owner (and especially Coupe owners): edited for length
A couple of weeks ago, I installed a Strong Strut rear Strong-Strut in my 2001 Z3 3.0 Coupe, and I just want to share my thoughts and experiences. I am writing this review for a few reasons, first of all the product is great, second, the service I received from Paul is second to none, and third, I want all the Coupe owners out there who are skeptical about the rear Strong-Strut to know that it makes a huge improvement on the handling and chassis of our cars. Don’t think that because the Coupe body is more rigid than the Roadster that the rear Strong-Strut won’t solve many of the inherent shortfalls of the ‘classic’ design of the Z3 suspension.
I would venture to say that I know cars pretty well, and I can say that the rear Strong-Strut does the job it is designed to do. I will throw one more thing into the mix - when the rear Strong-Strut is combined with a front strut bar, some better sway bars, and some good tires, the stock struts & shocks and springs actually work pretty well, providing a compliant yet sporting ride and handling (at least on my 20,000 mile car), thus saving a lot of time and money, as well as scrapes and bruises from riding lower.
On to the rear Strong-Strut:
I must say, I was a little skeptical, and I thought the price was a bit high, but borrowing an accounting phrase, I must say that "Substance over Form" definitely prevails when it comes to the rear Strong-Strut. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a beautiful piece of hardware, but it just seems too simple to accomplish so much.
Starting with the installation: this had to be the first time that I've ever done something faster than the instructions. I've read some people have trouble removing the tightly torqued factory nuts, but with the right tools and enough strength, they came off quite easily, and even after playing with the spacers/ washers, I was done in 20 minutes at the most. The doors immediately had a 'thunk' like my wife's 2001 530i. I must have opened and closed each door four or five times just to listen and feel it.
My impressions of the improvements from the rear Strong-Strut in the first 500 or so miles:
Needless to say, I would definitely recommend a rear Strong-Strut to any Z3 owner.
Steve (OH) edited for length.
After reading all the raves about the "rear Strong-Strut" on this board
I had to give it a try. I hate the way the back of the car acts around bumpy
corners. So, I ordered, it came yesterday, and a friend of mine and I
installed it today.
Here are my thoughts:
First, the product is as high a quality as it could possibly be.
Installation is very easy and not necessary to jack up the car.
After getting it installed, we took it for a ride. I wasn't sure what to expect but I was pleasantly surprised.
It's everything they say it is. The back of the car doesn't "wobble" as much, it seems to actually steer much better - much smoother, and the transmission seems to behave better.
In addition, much of the body roll the car had is gone. This - at least to me - was the most noticeable part. It handles a lot more like my wife's 528i (sport package) now than it did before. To me, this alone is worth the price of the strut.
Finally, my car also has less little irritations than before. You know, little jerks, wiggles, stuff like that. I've grown accustomed to all those little annoyances, and it's funny to be driving along expecting the car to act up and - nothing.
Why BMW didn't do this is way beyond me. It seems so simple and the car handles much better.
I think my next project is going to be a front strong-strut and then a body brace. I'm very impressed with Paul and this product. If you own a Z3 and don't have this accessory, you're only having about half as much fun as you could have.
Andy (HI) Just installed my rear Strong-Strut (Thanks Paul) last Wednesday, been driving around for a few days, and also did an autocross with it installed. First impression was Wow!, feels like some one put a back brace behind the seat, the car just felt tighter, stiffer. My friend who helped me install (he has an '01 M Roadster) said he could feel it too. Rough roads felt significantly better, less vibration and overall stiffer. The back end seems to follow the front better, hard to describe, but feels good. No clearance issues on my car as far as installation, stock muffler etc. Combined with the front strut, definitely recommended.