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Discussion Starter #1
Are Bav Auto sway bars any good? I'm looking for a cheap handling upgrade about a $300 budget and they looked promising. I heard strut bars don't do anything and I also don't want to get new springs that would compromise ride comfort, so I saw sway bars as the best options. My car is completely stock and has 128k miles on it.
 

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LCABS and RTABS would be your best bet and within your budget
 

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Have you been out to the Houston Police Academy playing on their training track? :)
There are monthly fun sessions (AutoX events) out there courtesy of the local BMWCCA chapter.
http://www.houston-bmwcca.com/portal/index.php?option=com_ohanah&view=events&layout=calendar&Itemid=199

At 128K your shocks and struts are very well worn. I could tell a big difference in the stock suspension by about 50k on my 2003 330Ci I bought new.

I have these and really like the improvement to handling:

http://www.turnermotorsport.com/p-103-e46-323325328330ici-turner-motorsport-frontrear-2721-sway-bar-upgrade.aspx
 

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Bavarian Autosport
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If you're looking for a big improvement in cornering without changing the ride much larger sway bars are the way to go. They do compliment other suspension upgrades like sport springs and performance shocks quite nicely but are also a great upgrade for an otherwise stock car. Provided the rest of the suspension is in proper working order our bars should be what you're after.
 

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Do you have the sports package?
I agree, larger swaybars are great for reducing body roll without making the ride stiffer, but they would have to be several mm larger to make a difference.
 

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They'll impact ride quality a little (going from, say, a 23 mm front bar to a 27 mm), but the flatter cornering is well worth the trade. I have the same bars as Shanneba, and love 'em.
 

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OP it depends on what shape your suspension is in whether this is the right move at this point.

Do you have sport or non sport suspension?
Have you refreshed any other suspension components?
If so what did you do and how long ago was the work done?

If you're driving on the original shocks, struts, bushings, etc, then there are other things to replace before adding a set of performance sway bars. If you have the sport suspension already they simply replacing worn out sway bar bushings will give you a noticeable improvement. Adding performance upgrades like those sway bars is something that should be done after making sure that all other areas of the suspension if in tip top shape. If you can answer the questions I listed above then we can help you out a little better knowing your car's current condition.


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1999/2000 Standard......Frt 21.5mm...Rr 15mm
1999/2000 Sport...........Frt 24mm......Rr 19mm
2001+ Sport................Frt 23.5mm...Rr 18mm
2001+ Standard...........Frt 23mm......Rr 18mm

Bavauto sways are 27/23 mm.

There is barely any difference in size between sport and non-sport on the 330i.
There is a big difference on the 99/00 models (glad I have ZSP)
 

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2003 M3 6MT Slicktop
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yep at 27frt/23rr that should be a nice upgrade. this kit also appears to have upgrade urethane bushings. which can be a good (or bad thing if they squeak)

thing i noticed as something less desirable is that it only has one setting for the swaybar. others will have two-three differnt holes on end to "dial-in" for the more hardcore handlers. (but that's not that big a deal for most as they usually just set as highest leverage). sometimes less choices is better for a novice.

maybe Ken can let us in on who makes the bars for them. i was gonna guess eibach but maybe ST ??
 

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Bavarian Autosport
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yep at 27frt/23rr that should be a nice upgrade. this kit also appears to have upgrade urethane bushings. which can be a good (or bad thing if they squeak)

thing i noticed as something less desirable is that it only has one setting for the swaybar. others will have two-three differnt holes on end to "dial-in" for the more hardcore handlers. (but that's not that big a deal for most as they usually just set as highest leverage). sometimes less choices is better for a novice.

maybe Ken can let us in on who makes the bars for them. i was gonna guess eibach but maybe ST ??
Alex, You're dead-on on the reason why these only have one position for the link attachment. If someone wants more adjustment we have a few other brands available that are adjustable. But as a simple install it and forget it upgrade these bars are perfect. I can't reveal the manufacturer but I can say they are made here in the US. Both the manufacturer and us did a lot of on-car testing both on the street and the track before we started selling them.
 

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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
Do you have the sports package?
I agree, larger swaybars are great for reducing body roll without making the ride stiffer, but they would have to be several mm larger to make a difference.
I do have the sports package and I don't know when the last time many of the parts were replaced. I've only had the car about 2 months and I have failed to get the service records from the dealer yet.The car is in good shape though, it was owned by a well educated man. I'm assuming he serviced the car when needed.
 

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Are Bav Auto sway bars any good? I'm looking for a cheap handling upgrade about a $300 budget and they looked promising. I heard strut bars don't do anything and I also don't want to get new springs that would compromise ride comfort, so I saw sway bars as the best options. My car is completely stock and has 128k miles on it.
Another thought for you.

A few years ago I bought the Powerflex sway bar urethane bushings & installed them on my stock 330Ci front & rear bars, I was amazed at how well they increased my handling. Your 128K mile rubber bushings are weak at this point, the urethane upgrade will make your stock bars work much harder making you think you installed bigger sway bars. This option is MUCH cheaper, & works pretty well.

Good luck.
 

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Also, do new sway bar endlinks alone help with anything?
They won't make a difference you can feel, unless the originals are so bad that there's slop in the balljoints (front) or excessive wear in the rear links' rubber bushings.

Rob43's point is well taken. My 325i's front bushings, while still in decent shape, were some of the largest, doughiest, marshmallowiest bushings I've ever seen fitted to a production car. Definitely motion lost there.
 
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