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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello all, just recently picked up a 2010 Mazda6 with 227k on the odometer, and that is in km, since I am in Canada. I was wondering what is a good suspension renew procedure for it. It rides a bit "boaty" at times, though it is not critical. So I am just researching my options, as there are not too many unfortunately for the 2nd gen 6.
I've learned that Bilstein B8 is a great replacement shock/strut. But I am not sure about what spring to try? I know there was a racing beat springs set before, but they no longer have it. I think it was a very mild in drop, which would be perfect for me, as I do not want an aggresive drop to be able to still have decent road clearance.

Any suggestions on that part, and also is there indeed a rear sway bar that would fit or not? I could not find a concise ino on this. In any case, it is a nice resouce for the information and I am thankful to all the people who shared their knowledge here.
Automotive parking light Wheel Car Tire Land vehicle
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Hello. Have you searched the site? There is not a lot on the Mk2 but there is some here.
How To: 2nd Gen Lowering Spring Install
Outside of the coils above, and coil-overs, there is nothing else for that series car.
A lot depends on your budget but you may be able to find someone who will make custom sway bars.
Good luck, it looks like a nice sedan.
yeah, I searched quite a bit. Could not find a combination of springs/shock/struts that people really enjoy or like. I understand that struts/shocks are best when they are matched to the springs to be better then stock suspension. For me the stock suspensions is pretty good, though right now it feels like it gets a bit bouncy, not as planted as I imagine it should be when being upset by the road. Usually to remedy a slightly better at rebound struts/shocks remedy this I think. So perhaps if I just upgrade/replace the shocks/struts and keep the stock springs it might be a good combination.
And thanks, that how-to thread is very cool, and very nicely done.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Seaching a bit more reveals that a good suggested upgrade is Bilstein B6, while keeping the stock springs... though after 220k I am not even convinced that stock springs are still as good as they were... but more time to think....
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
The Bilsteins will be good.
Thanks! I was also wondering if Racing Beat still make the springs, or ever did for the 2nd gen. I am pretty sure they do not produce them now. I found a video that has them installed though.
They were pretty mild, and I think they would work well with some Bilstein B6, providing a good controlled ride with a very mild drop.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Contact Racing Beat. They have been very helpful in the past for me. They even gave me the spring stats on their 1st gen wagon units (discontinued) so I could have some made.
They may also have limited units still available (but not listed on the page) for older models.
I like the RB stuff because it does not drop the car too low or make it too stiff. I think it is something like a 20% rate increase.
FYI, my RB (front) springs at +20% and King springs (rear) at +30% are under-dampened by my KYB GR2 units. While this is not a revelation by any means, I am noting it in case you were tempted at any point. I had the dampers before the springs and have been making due until I replace the gas holders.

If you do go lower don't forget to release torque on your suspension bushings at the new ride height and re-torque them so you don't destroy those, (provided they are still viable after 220K km's).

If they are bad I would start any suspension project there. Best to have everything working properly before asking it to do more.
Thanks for all the tips, definitely would need to access the health of other components before doing springs/dampeners.
As for RB I contacted them and they said they never had the springs for the second
gen of mazda6, and are unaware what is person in the video is installing... I asked him in the YouTube comment, maybe he will answer. Second Gen does not have a lot of choice it seems, just eibach and h&r.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
oh, just took a look underneath the car (it was on the lift for alignment). Looks decent, only surface rust and balljoints are still good. I could see that the endlinks (both front and back) were changed, otherwise seems all still stock, but holding up. I imagine it had a highway life (I just got the car). So I think I will go through the winter and will form a plan for the spring on the new suspension. Really would love an improved handling without much of a drop. A racing beat would be great, but evidently Racing Beat never made springs for the 2nd gen, though the video I quoted earlier has them. I also found some evidence that people were indeed putting 1st gen springs on the second gen. From what I gathered the front spring is a direct fit for the 2nd gen, but the rear spring would not fit the lower part (control arm) so people apparently would flip it upside down (the spring) to fit and just say that it stays there solidly, even though it's not supposed to fit perfectly. Not sure how I feel about it.... anyone has anything to say on this issue? there is also some threads that say that mazdaspeed springs from 1st gen could work on the 2nd. Interesting to investigate...
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
one more question, I hear that it is better to replace the strut mount then reusing it from the old strut. My question is which one to get. I found a KYB replacement on rockauto and I think it should work. Should I really replace it, or reuse the old one. Seems like a good idea to replace it, since it is a rubber peace.
here is the link to the part in question:



so for now, thinking of eibach pro-kit springs paired with Bilstein B8 and those KYB strut mounts. From what I've read the eibach will be a mild drop and with a progressive spring it still good in daily driving. But also there is the H&R and from what I found it will be a more sporty/stiffer spring, so not entirely sure, which combination will be better for daily driving. In the end it is how well they match up with the B8 dampeners. A good combination is stiff without any bounciness, fast solid rebound, the car should feel heavy and stable. In the BMW world the eibach + B8 works really well, not sure about the mazda world. Still searching the forum for those direct experiences. But B8 does not seem to disappoint.
 

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Discussion Starter · #22 ·
Yes, and the KYB mounts are good. I LOVE my H&Rs and Koni Yellows on 9/10 full stiff. Little bouncy sometimes, but on the highway its better than stock ever was.
Thanks for the confirmation, I used to have an old 1986 VW Scirocco with Koni yellows, and yes, I loved it on the highway, it would just glide super steadily, it was completely on rails and just gliding. No power steering also had a really good feel for controlling it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #24 ·
I went with KYBs on all 4 for my daughter's 2012 at 122K Miles, they were already leaking oil. Bought the 2 front QuickStrutPlus (with loaded springs) from Rock Auto, the rear 2 shocks from TireRack. It took me about 2 hours to do all 4. The front right was mis-aligned for the notch that goes into the knuckle collar, I used a pipe wrench to align it after using the top 3 mounting bolts to secure it. While KYB makes these for Mazda, the after markets from KYB are cheaper than the one's from Mazda, the specs maybe different, I can't tell any difference except the ride quality is better than before, without the leaking shocks. I have used KYB replacement in other cars I own (Subaru and Lexus). No complains so far...
thanks for all the info. Impressive that you were able to do it a couple of hours (I guess some of the saved time is in no need to compress the spring, since you got a fully assembled strut). So after 122K all the bolts came off with no problems? did you use hand tools or power tools?
 

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Discussion Starter · #26 ·
I have all the tools especially the breaker bar along with jack and jack stands needed. I did the job one wheel at a time. No power tools, had a friend help me with holding things, handing me stuff as needed. I did most of the work myself. I live in the SW (New Mexico) this car has spent its life here and I do not see the issues with salt and moisture here that is very prevalent in most of the country. I did spray WD40 a day ahead of time on all the bolts that needed to come off. Make sure to get the torque specs and the torque everything as per specs. The reason I was able to get this done quickly was because I had watched 2-3 videos on YouTube multiple times to familiarize myself with the process.

I have changed the outer control arm with the ball joint on the front (both sides). I have also replaced all the rotors, brake pads and other hardware (pins, boots, springs, etc) along with cleaning and greasing the necessary parts. All the best...
oh, yes, I am watching a few videos, the process of struts/shocks is pretty straightforward and seems quite easy. Only tricky part is not to forget to tighten up the top strut mount bolts, once the suspension is loaded. I think the back suspension shock can be tightened once you put the jack under the control arm to compress the spring a bit.

On the subject of the control arms (fronts), it has been already suggested that it is a good idea to replace them, however I was wondering, you mentioned outer control arm, while if I look at the suspension diagram, there are two control arms in the front (lower and upper) and both have ball joints. So I am wondering which one you replaced. The lower looks quite a bit more involved in changing it. Right now I am planning to leave it for the time being, and then replace it later down the road, but for now just do the struts/shocks and springs for the moment. I was wondering since you've changed the control arms, was it very hard? or just time consuming? for the lower control arm, I think you need to maybe drop part of the subframe to unbolt it, but I am not sure. Can you share your experience a bit?

I also plan to replace the bushings on both swaybars with some tighter ones. I found that this company https://siberianbushing.ca/ and they have the swaybar bushings, hopefully you can just slide them on ( I would hate to remove the swaybar, but usually bushings can be slid on. I think those bushings, plus slightly lower springs (eibach) and stiffer dampeners (Bilsten B8) would be a great upgrade to make the m6 feel very solid and planted.
 

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Discussion Starter · #28 ·
Oh, i forgot you have a 2nd Gen and two LCA's. You should do both on each side.
makes sense, but perhaps I will separate the job, first do the struts/shocks. Looking underneath, they still looked ok-ish, with no obvious bushings/ball joints failure. But I understand that replacing both would be the best bet, it would then be practically brand new suspension in the front at least. And is it two LCA, or one LCA and UCA? that's what it seems to me for the 2nd gen. I am not an expert in terminology, just trying to clear things up for myself as I learn.
 

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Discussion Starter · #30 ·
Sherych...
Don't know if the KYB tops n bearings are the best because most of the time I have installed the Monroe package, all of the pieces available.
(sometimes including the cover/boot to protect from road debris n salt, lived in Colorado).
Koni has inserts for the struts BTW, but then you are doing the R & R yourself 🤔, HMMM?

Good luck
thanks, I plan to reuse the cover/bumpstop etc from the old strut, but replace the top cover with bolts just to be on the safe side.
KYB makes the original struts for mazda I think, so they should be sufficient hopefully.
 

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Discussion Starter · #31 ·
A little update: Started ordering the parts, and bilstein b8 seems to be fine, order is being assembled, but the eibach pro-kit seems to be not in stock. I also check out the eibach official site and I can't find it there for the 2nd gen mazda 6. Retailers still have it listed but can't be sure if they actually have it in stock... so now I have to muse the H&R as an alternative... and B&G i guess as well... I thought that eibach would be the mildest drop and I would like to keep it that way for everyday drivability and occasional careful venture into the backroad. It's hard to guage but it seems that in actuality Eibach pro-kit and H&R sportline is basically the same drop. I also was looking at some reviews of the H&R sport on mazda 6 but could not find, except that some people like it, for Eibach system there is quite a bit of reviews from people.
 

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Discussion Starter · #34 ·
For those who are interested, just got a word from tdopperformance, that indeed Eibach springs are not available anymore, and moreover Eibach does not produce them anymore.... so that settles it... H&R route we go
 
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