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Discussion Starter #1
Here's some interesting things I found out while poking around http://webcat.zf-trading.com/

Before 2001, there was basically 2 varieties of OE dampers
*the standard suspension came with the Sachs "Super Touring" line of dampers with a parameter code of SFE32/22X122A on the struts
* the sport supension came with "Advantage" line of dampers with a parameter code of SFE32/22X96A on the struts

After 2001, there was a switch to 3 varities of dampers, all in the "Super Touring" line
* a standard suspension with a parameter code of SFE32X56A
* a sport suspension with parameter code of SFE32X86A
* and a "M-technics II" version with a parameter code of SFE32X96A - this is the ZHP damper
The M3, by the way, also uses the "Super Touring" dampers with a parameter code of SFE32X165A

I don't really know how to translate the parameter codes, but they are clearly related to shock internals and the degree of compression and rebond damping.

I also don't really know what the significant differences are between the "Super Touring" and "Advantage" line of dampers. But judging from the producte placement on the ZF website, I looks like the "Super Touring" is Sachs lower end product, the "Advantage" is their midline product, and the "Performance Sport" is the high end. As another bit of trivia, it is the "Performance Sport" line of dampers that comes in UUC's Stage 3 suspension kit. I also suspect that these are also the same dampers used in the Eibach pro-kit.

As for the OE dampers, it's clear that along with the other model changes in 2001, the damper selection also changed. It appears that there was an overall softening of the rates. I'd guess that the 323/328 "sport" suspension dampers are actually equivalent ot the 325/330 "m-technics II / ZHP" dampers. The 325/330 "sport dampers" probably fall somewhere in between the original standard and sport damper stiffness, and the 2001+ "standard" suspension is probably cushier than the 323/328 "standard" suspension.
 

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Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)
Here's the information I've collected, sorted two different ways. All data was taken from the ZF-Trading web site and cross-referenced with RealOEM. Send me an email if you want the Excel version.
***
just noticed a mistake in my first post - the damper parameter code for the ZHP/pre-2001 sport is ***98A not ***96A - same conclusion, but technical accuracy is always good
 

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I'd guess that the 323/328 "sport" suspension dampers are actually equivalent ot the 325/330 "m-technics II / ZHP" dampers.
BIG :woot: if that is true.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Revisiting this subject again, I'm now pretty certain the the first number is a compression value and the last number the rebound value. Where you see two numbers on the compression side, such as 32/22, I believe that represents the high-speed/low-speed compression.

While I'm certain the numbers have at least a relative significance where higher means stiffer, I do not know if they have an absolute significance where a particular value correlates to a value on a dyno.
 

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Very useful information, thank you for making those spread sheets available. I just received my replacement Sachs Super Touring struts and wanted to make sure they were the right ones. My car came with the sport package suspension. The spread sheet was key because the SFE32X86A number is not printed on the box or the new strut. The sticker on the strut is 290947 and 290948 for the other. Now I can install with confidence. :bow: :woot:
 

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This is great but I do not see the 325XI or 330XI listed. These two models are a bit of a rare bird suspension wise and I have one that needs struts and shocks. Do you have any info on what will cross to these? I am looking for a plush ride and the Billsteins everyone likes are concerning me.
 

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Thanks for the info jpr ... much appreciated :thumbsup: :bow:
 

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Bumping an ancient but extremely informative thread...I've got a question...

I need new front shocks and I am considering options...but I am not sure about one thing when it comes to Sachs (Advantage or Super Touring line). I have 2001 330Ci...check out this chart:



ST=standard, SP=sport, SF=sportfederung (lowering springs)

OK, I understand the OEM portion of it (ST and SP), BUT if one is to buy shocks for lowering springs setup, they say to use S (super touring) 556867 + 556868 shocks. This is the thing that buffled me. Super Touring line shocks are around 60% of the price of Advantage line shocks (for the similar car etc...) in my country at official Sachs distributor. I am asuming that stiffer shocks should be more expensive. :) On the other hand, when you look at "code numbers", for sport suspension Advantage shock (556874/556873) code is SFE32/22X98A, and the code for Super Touring (556867/556868) is SFE32/22X122A, and if jpr's logic is correct, it does make sense that they should be used for stiffer/lowering spring. But then again, why are they so cheaper?

Bottom line, in case you have lowering spring, would you go for Super Touring 556867+556868 shocks?
 

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Bumping an ancient but extremely informative thread...I've got a question...

I need new front shocks and I am considering options...but I am not sure about one thing when it comes to Sachs (Advantage or Super Touring line). I have 2001 330Ci...check out this chart:



ST=standard, SP=sport, SF=sportfederung (lowering springs)

OK, I understand the OEM portion of it (ST and SP), BUT if one is to buy shocks for lowering springs setup, they say to use S (super touring) 556867 + 556868 shocks. This is the thing that buffled me. Super Touring line shocks are around 60% of the price of Advantage line shocks (for the similar car etc...) in my country at official Sachs distributor. I am asuming that stiffer shocks should be more expensive. :) On the other hand, when you look at "code numbers", for sport suspension Advantage shock (556874/556873) code is SFE32/22X98A, and the code for Super Touring (556867/556868) is SFE32/22X122A, and if jpr's logic is correct, it does make sense that they should be used for stiffer/lowering spring. But then again, why are they so cheaper?

Bottom line, in case you have lowering spring, would you go for Super Touring 556867+556868 shocks?
I would spring for a set of Bilstein sport dampers and call it a day.



Very interesting thread. So now we know that ZHPs had their own special dampers.
 

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Bump for me to read later
 

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Can you point me to the part where you've come to that conclusion? :) Different part number - yes, but it is the same shock 556873/556874 :dunno:
Right here, unless I'm reading it incorrectly.

After 2001, there was a switch to 3 varities of dampers, all in the "Super Touring" line
* a standard suspension with a parameter code of SFE32X56A
* a sport suspension with parameter code of SFE32X86A
* and a "M-technics II" version with a parameter code of SFE32X96A - this is the ZHP damper
The M3, by the way, also uses the "Super Touring" dampers with a parameter code of SFE32X165A
 

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Aaaah, that....what jpr meant to say (he can correct me if I'm wrong) that it is the ZHP dumper, but what he didn't say is that exact same damper was used in a variety of applications, including 325Ci etc. etc....same exact dumper: 556874/556873. Check out the chart I posted few posts earlier. Or this thread (first post, last paragraph): http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthread.php?t=398977
 

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I have a 2001 coupe. Looking at the Sachs damper reference sheet it appears my car dame with the sports suspension with the Sachs Advantage dampers. Most parts houses will tell me the Super Touring line is what fits my car. I've searched up and down but is there any information available on what the actual differences in these two lines of shocks/struts are, or why BMW switched to Super Touring line dampers?
 
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