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Old 05-25-2006, 05:37 PM   #1
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Default Performance Struts

Terrible story of mine I want to share. In 2003, I had LF strut go bad on my 99 SSEi. Strut happened to be the adjustible electronic ride. Unfortunately, GM discontinued this strut and cannot be purchased anywhere (except for boneyards). Dealership told me that replacement strut will be in compatible with other three struts/shocks, therefore, needed all four replaced ($1,000+). Complained to Pontiac whom, in turn, picked up the cost for replacing three of the four struts/shocks (very cool).

Today, less than two years later, my car has horrible handling. My car bounces excessively and has body lean in turns. I think I need to replace my struts and/or stabalizer links or any engery absorbing bushings. Any suggestions?
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Old 05-25-2006, 05:40 PM   #2
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i would recommend you doing the endlinks while your in there

and the struts should last longer than 2 years unless they were utlra cheepies
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Old 05-25-2006, 08:26 PM   #3
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I have reason to believe they were cheapies. I had them put in at a GM dealership, who obtained the replacement struts through GM. I thought they were going to be okay, but I noticed a huge handling difference. I get a lot of body motion, or roll, in turns or sometimes on acceleration. This leads me to believe that the stabilizer is bad. All suspension, except for the struts, are OE. Any recommendations? Also, recommendations for end links? OEM or aftermarket? any significant differences?
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Old 06-18-2006, 12:21 PM   #4
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Okay, I bought an end link set from Napa (about $35). I put it on and I noticed a difference in the firmness of the car. I'm still looking for the best strut / shock for my car. I've heard Monroe sensatracs are good. I'm looking for performance - can anyone give me suggestions as to which strut manf. to purchase?
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Old 06-18-2006, 01:10 PM   #5
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I've heard Senstracs are very good. I think I actually got them on my Cutlass a couple years ago, and they helped a lot. A lot of members run Sensatracs.

I will be looking into Bilstein to see if they have any struts that fit our cars. I'd bet they are not cheap though so I have no idea if I'd get them if they did have an application for the Bonnevilles.
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Old 06-18-2006, 01:51 PM   #6
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Monroe Sensatracs are the equivalent of KYB GR-2 struts. Very good. I'd go with them if you can't find Monroe Reflex, depending on how firm you want it. Reflex struts (if still available) are VERY good performance struts.

The good thing is that Monroe makes rear ELC struts for us. In both Sensatrac and if you can still find them, Reflex.
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Old 06-18-2006, 02:46 PM   #7
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In December of 04, my right front OEM strut failed. My car has the Selectible Electronic Ride Control (Touring & Sport). The OEM strut was discontinued. I bitched to Pontiac about discontinuing a part that was less than 5 years old. The replacement struts offered by GM did not have the electroinc ride control feature, thus all 4 had to be replaced. Again, I bitched to Pontiac and Pontiac picked up the bill for replacing the other three struts/shocks. Now my car rides like crap!

From your last post I'm under the impression that I can re-engage my electronic ride control using Monroe Reflex struts? Please let me know if this is possible for I would love nothing more than to bring back the reason why I loved my Bonnie so much when I bought it.
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Old 06-18-2006, 06:08 PM   #8
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You're confusing ELC (electronic level control, rear only for heavy loads in the back) on the rear only with CCR (computer command ride) which is the selectable suspension on all 4.

Do NOT buy rear struts without the ELC option. FE2 suspension depends heavily on the air assist. In other words, FE2 suspension on our cars was designed with ELC in mind. It'* part of the handling, not just level control.

I have working CCR on my 95, and not on the 93. My 93 on worn out struts out-handles my 95 with CCR. You're not missing much. The handling of the car can be greatly improved with the right selection of components.
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Old 06-18-2006, 11:37 PM   #9
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Thanks for the knowledge! I'll start looking for Monroe Reflex struts and ELC rears. I'll update everyone after the install.
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Old 06-19-2006, 01:54 AM   #10
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When you're done, if the ride isn't as responsive as you like (if you can't find Reflex and get Sensatrac, or if you find Reflex and want more response), post here. I'll have another option soon to ADD to that setup. I've been running some fun in my setup for about a month, and I'm looking for test cars.
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