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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm planning to refresh the suspension in the X5. I want to keep the same height, I will reuse the springs but I want to improve the handling a bit. The car currently has 92,000 miles with "Standard Suspension" and 20" wheels 214 Y Style as factory options.

For Strut and Shocks ==> BILSTEIN - B6 Performance. Part numbers 24-272674, 24-143943 and 24-143950. I was considering the Koni "Special Active Shock Kit" but Koni offers only 2 year warranty while Bilstein offers limited lifetime warranty.

Considering the miles, what else is suggested to replace? I was considering the following, see label pictures attached for reference:

Picture "A"
  • 2, 3,4, 5, 6, 9
Picture "B"
  • Maybe 16 & 21
Picture "C"
  • 4, 5, 7, 8, 9 (necessary?), 10
Picture "D"
  • 4
Picture "E"
  • 5, 10, 16
  • Specific question about number 16 BMW part # 31126863785 and 31126863786 Offered and FCP Euro ==> There is BMW "Standard Camber Setting", Lemforder & TRW "No Camber Setting" and there is Meyle "Specially designed control arm that allows for negative and positive camber correction, also features a serviceable ball joint". Which one would be the recommended one?
Is there anything not necessary in my list? I'm really open to suggestions because i don't want to spend in unnecessary parts. I'll be buying most of the parts in FCP Euro, I'm incline in buying mostly Lemforder.
 

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Absolutely go Bilstein!
But, B6 are harder. I use them on E90 and I track the car.

As for refresh, it is simple:
All front bushings or if you don’t want to pish bushings out, all control arms, ball joints, sway bar links, sway bar bushings, tie rod ends, inner tie rod ends, strut mounts.
Rear shock mounts (go Monroe lower mounts they are harder rubber), and IMO I would also do all wishbones and arms, sway bar bushings and links.

Use Lamfoerder!


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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Absolutely go Bilstein!
But, B6 are harder. I use them on E90 and I track the car.

As for refresh, it is simple:
All front bushings or if you don’t want to pish bushings out, all control arms, ball joints, sway bar links, sway bar bushings, tie rod ends, inner tie rod ends, strut mounts.
Rear shock mounts (go Monroe lower mounts they are harder rubber), and IMO I would also do all wishbones and arms, sway bar bushings and links.

Use Lamfoerder!


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I always used Bilstein yellow sport in my previous E46s and in my E85 Z4 with Meyle everything else. Of course with those vehicles I was looking for a much more improve handling for spirit driving which is not the case with X5. I want to improve handling without making the car too harsh. My other options is to go for the Bilstein B4 that for what I'm reading, is more apple-to-apple replacement of the OEM BMW shocks & struts. Would you say that the B4 is a better application than the B6 for our E70s if comfort and a bit of improvement in handling is wanted?

Looking at Realoem I can find part numbers for control arms bushing but I don't see part numbers for the ball joints. Looks like the better option is to replace the whole arm because at the end the price, specially if going with Lamfoerder, won't be a big difference.
 

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B4 is twin tube design. That is only drawback. B6 is mono tube.
I don’t have complaints about B6 on roads and I use E90 as DD. Rule is 10% harder on B4, 25% on B6. If you ditch RFT, might be actually more comfortable.
I would go new control arms, Lamfoerder or TRW. If you want to improve handling, consider polyurethane bushings in thrust arms or monoball bushing (expensive!!!).


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I'm also about to start on a front end rebuild- collecting parts now. I went poly as much as I could and have all new arms and links for the front. Some stuff for the rear, but the rear arms and links later. They look ok right now. I bought the Bilstein B12 kit with the lowering springs and will transition to quality non-run flats with a robust repair kit. The kit ships 9/2 supposedly. I also bought the poly read sub-frame inserts. Not sure I can put them in easily though so might skip.

The plan is to try and retain the rear air suspension but if it's too bouncy I will install the rear springs from the kit. I picked up the different height rear shock upper mounts to try and adapt the shocks from the kit.
 

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Want to make you aware of what myself and a couple other people have been experiencing with Lemforder bushings. There is a thread on XBimmers where a poster changed out his entire front-end suspension with Lemforder parts from FCP. Premature failure (after a year) on the tension strut bushings with leaking fluid. I had my tension struts changed out by a reputable shop I've used that specializes in suspensions and alignments. They purchased their Lemforder from their local supplier. Also experienced premature failure (after six months) of bushings with leaking fluid. A poster commented that the aftermarket part is not always the same quality as what BMW uses even if same manufacturer makes them. An example given is Bosch ignition coils where BMW branded is made in Germany and Bosch brand is made in Lithuania and subject to more quality control issues. Curious if anyone has more knowledge about this subject matter.
 

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The reality is that parts, even new ones fail. The most common reason for premature bushing failure is improper installation. Suspension components that use rubber bushings must be tightened at normal ride height, not with the vehicle in the air with suspension fully extended. I've used Lemforder parts for 35 years, most recently replacing my E70's LCA and tension strut bushings 8k miles ago with Lemforder units. All is well. Given the choices, I will continue to use Lemforder parts over anything else.
 

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You bring up a good point and this was mentioned by a poster on XBimmers as well. The OP in that thread is a mechanic by trade and claims he did load the suspension before tightening the bolts by the bushings. I watched the shop install mine and they did the same so improper installation does not seem to be the issue.

I'm not trying to bash Lemforder as I understand they make the OE parts for BMW. I am just trying to see if there is any truth to what was posted on XBimmers that the aftermarket parts from same company may not be of same quality as OE.
 

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You bring up a good point and this was mentioned by a poster on XBimmers as well. The OP in that thread is a mechanic by trade and claims he did load the suspension before tightening the bolts by the bushings. I watched the shop install mine and they did the same so improper installation does not seem to be the issue.

I'm not trying to bash Lemforder as I understand they make the OE parts for BMW. I am just trying to see if there is any truth to what was posted on XBimmers that the aftermarket parts from same company may not be of same quality as OE.
Were loaded struts installed, or the old bushings pressed out and new pressed in? I've also seen early failure of the bushings when pressed in some times; the slightest "wrong" positioning of the drift moves the rubber within its sleeve leading to fluid leakage. Back in the day when bushings were $30 and loaded struts were $200 it was a no-brainer because it only takes about half hour to replace a tension strut bushing, but now that bushings are $50-60 and loaded struts are $80-90, there's really no reason to not replace the arm. The arms themselves can only handle 1 IIRC bushing replacement before needing to be replaced.

Poly is loud, and poly is hard. I'd never go poly on a daily driver; actually I did, and then replaced them with rubber and sold them as UBG.
 

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Were loaded struts installed, or the old bushings pressed out and new pressed in? I've also seen early failure of the bushings when pressed in some times; the slightest "wrong" positioning of the drift moves the rubber within its sleeve leading to fluid leakage. Back in the day when bushings were $30 and loaded struts were $200 it was a no-brainer because it only takes about half hour to replace a tension strut bushing, but now that bushings are $50-60 and loaded struts are $80-90, there's really no reason to not replace the arm. The arms themselves can only handle 1 IIRC bushing replacement before needing to be replaced.

Poly is loud, and poly is hard. I'd never go poly on a daily driver; actually I did, and then replaced them with rubber and sold them as UBG.
Brand new tension struts installed.
 

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Perhaps I am unfortunate to be one who got a bad set. It's under warranty so more of a hassle for me. I'm needing to change out sway bar end links and was debating if I should save the $50 per link between BMW branded and Lemforder. Sounds like I should save the $$ and go aftermarket Lemforder.
 

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I have used B6 B4 and koni Activ Shocks and the Konis are LIGHT YEARS more superior that any Bilstein in terms of performance AND comfort. Koni Sport Yellows are less so. But trust me on the Activ Shocks. You won't believe the difference driving over ruts and then swerving on the highway...don't know how they did it...but they did it.
 

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mmoffitt
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The reality is that parts, even new ones fail. The most common reason for premature bushing failure is improper installation. Suspension components that use rubber bushings must be tightened at normal ride height, not with the vehicle in the air with suspension fully extended. I've used Lemforder parts for 35 years, most recently replacing my E70's LCA and tension strut bushings 8k miles ago with Lemforder units. All is well. Given the choices, I will continue to use Lemforder parts over anything else.
Never had a problem either but these were on a 2003 Z-4
 

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I'm planning to refresh the suspension in the X5. I want to keep the same height, I will reuse the springs but I want to improve the handling a bit. The car currently has 92,000 miles with "Standard Suspension" and 20" wheels 214 Y Style as factory options.

For Strut and Shocks ==> BILSTEIN - B6 Performance. Part numbers 24-272674, 24-143943 and 24-143950. I was considering the Koni "Special Active Shock Kit" but Koni offers only 2 year warranty while Bilstein offers limited lifetime warranty.

Considering the miles, what else is suggested to replace? I was considering the following, see label pictures attached for reference:

Picture "A"
  • 2, 3,4, 5, 6, 9
Picture "B"
  • Maybe 16 & 21
Picture "C"
  • 4, 5, 7, 8, 9 (necessary?), 10
Picture "D"
  • 4
Picture "E"
  • 5, 10, 16
  • Specific question about number 16 BMW part # 31126863785 and 31126863786 Offered and FCP Euro ==> There is BMW "Standard Camber Setting", Lemforder & TRW "No Camber Setting" and there is Meyle "Specially designed control arm that allows for negative and positive camber correction, also features a serviceable ball joint". Which one would be the recommended one?
Is there anything not necessary in my list? I'm really open to suggestions because i don't want to spend in unnecessary parts. I'll be buying most of the parts in FCP Euro, I'm incline in buying mostly Lemforder.
I'm planning to refresh the suspension in the X5. I want to keep the same height, I will reuse the springs but I want to improve the handling a bit. The car currently has 92,000 miles with "Standard Suspension" and 20" wheels 214 Y Style as factory options.



For Strut and Shocks ==> BILSTEIN - B6 Performance. Part numbers 24-272674, 24-143943 and 24-143950. I was considering the Koni "Special Active Shock Kit" but Koni offers only 2 year warranty while Bilstein offers limited lifetime warranty.



Considering the miles, what else is suggested to replace? I was considering the following, see label pictures attached for reference:



Picture "A"

  • 2, 3,4, 5, 6, 9
Picture "B"

  • Maybe 16 & 21
Picture "C"

  • 4, 5, 7, 8, 9 (necessary?), 10
Picture "D"

  • 4
Picture "E"

  • 5, 10, 16
  • Specific question about number 16 BMW part # 31126863785 and 31126863786 Offered and FCP Euro ==> There is BMW "Standard Camber Setting", Lemforder & TRW "No Camber Setting" and there is Meyle "Specially designed control arm that allows for negative and positive camber correction, also features a serviceable ball joint". Which one would be the recommended one?
Is there anything not necessary in my list? I'm really open to suggestions because i don't want to spend in unnecessary parts. I'll be buying most of the parts in FCP Euro, I'm incline in buying mostly Lemforder.
I have 2015 X5 35d M sports 20inch with 3rd row seating(rear air spring)

At 95000mile I did major suspension service.

Bilstein B6

FCP Euro

Front upper control arm with camber adjust.

Both 2pice Lower control arm(One is aluminum)

Air Spring Change to aftermarket brand.

Everything else is excellent other than Bilstein B6. Ride night get higher about One inch and that makes front outside of Tire wear faster. (why not Adjust camber? It more like a ride height issue)
I think the Bump side of this is a shock and is a pretty hash, especially the first 8000miles or so. Now I have 15000miles past after installation, the mid-part stroke of the shock is already getting lose but this hard part of the bump reaction is still there.

Another think is, this Bilstein B6 is too strong against the sway bar that BMW already sets(M sports ARS), like a lane change in the middle of 80-90mph corner, shock does support yawing but sway bar doesn’t, it makes rolling action. This dictate cornering speed.

Next time, I will choice back to B4, because I’d better matching with all other part of suspension and comfort ability.

Fmr Jim russel Racing School instructor(90’s).
 

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I have used B6 B4 and koni Activ Shocks and the Konis are LIGHT YEARS more superior that any Bilstein in terms of performance AND comfort. Koni Sport Yellows are less so. But trust me on the Activ Shocks. You won't believe the difference driving over ruts and then swerving on the highway...don't know how they did it...but they did it.
KONI Active is more comfort oriented. B6 is more of performance shock. Also, built quality of Bilstein is better. Generally they take beating much better.


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I have 2015 X5 35d M sports 20inch with 3rd row seating(rear air spring)

At 95000mile I did major suspension service.

Bilstein B6

FCP Euro

Front upper control arm with camber adjust.

Both 2pice Lower control arm(One is aluminum)

Air Spring Change to aftermarket brand.

Everything else is excellent other than Bilstein B6. Ride night get higher about One inch and that makes front outside of Tire wear faster. (why not Adjust camber? It more like a ride height issue)
I think the Bump side of this is a shock and is a pretty hash, especially the first 8000miles or so. Now I have 15000miles past after installation, the mid-part stroke of the shock is already getting lose but this hard part of the bump reaction is still there.

Another think is, this Bilstein B6 is too strong against the sway bar that BMW already sets(M sports ARS), like a lane change in the middle of 80-90mph corner, shock does support yawing but sway bar doesn’t, it makes rolling action. This dictate cornering speed.

Next time, I will choice back to B4, because I’d better matching with all other part of suspension and comfort ability.

Fmr Jim russel Racing School instructor(90’s).
Yep, other parts have to follow other improvements.


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KONI Active is more comfort oriented. B6 is more of performance shock. Also, built quality of Bilstein is better. Generally they take beating much better.


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Thanks for your opinion.
I don’t really trust durability of KONI compare Bilstein, but it is a personal choice.
If I am just using my X5 for the personal use like 10-15kmile/year I might give a chance to what ever high Quality shock absorber, but I am using this X5d for the Uber; this car is running about 5000mile/Month pace in Los Angeles.
Wheel Tire Sky Car Vehicle registration plate

I am so Amazed, passenger has been complained regards to the Ride quality Of My car so far! 🤣
 

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Thanks for your opinion.
I don’t really trust durability of KONI compare Bilstein, but it is a personal choice.
If I am just using my X5 for the personal use like 10-15kmile/year I might give a chance to what ever high Quality shock absorber, but I am using this X5d for the Uber; this car is running about 5000mile/Month pace in Los Angeles.
View attachment 1068514
I am so Amazed, passenger has been complained regards to the Ride quality Of My car so far!
KONI Red proved really good in that comfort/performance balance. Bilstein B6/8 (8is version for lowered vehicles) have similar function as KONI Red, but emphasis is on performance. KONI is going for balance. I personally on X5 would try KONI Red. They are both superb quality. Bilstein proved though better on track environment taking beating.


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