Swedish suspension giant Öhlins has announced the official launch of its long awaited R/T range in the UK, setting a new standard in comfort and quality for the aftermarket.
Previously the exclusive reserve of top-level race teams and factory outfits, Öhlins has long been the darling of the OEM motorcycle market, where many leading manufacturers use the distinctive gold-hued units to provide sublime levels of control tempered with unparalleled comfort. Now four-wheeled enthusiasts can enjoy the same quality and precision.
Although you could be forgiven for thinking that all of the tricks are on the outside, thanks to stunning levels of presentation and material choice, the R/T range houses its real tricks inside its clinically machined billet alloy and carbon steel bodies. Öhlins have exclusively developed its own, unique, dual flow valve (DFV) technology which replaces the parallel compression valve (PCV) found in other units. Although a PCV application is a good basic design, it only uses one shim stack to allow fluid movement as the damper compresses and extends. It is very hard to change the handling characteristics of a vehicle that is damped this way. Two shim stacks may be used, but then this can have a detrimental effect on both comfort and road-holding.
With the DFV units, the dual flow valve gives the same characteristics on rebound as it does on compression, thanks to the damper fluid having a consistent path of flow in both directions. This means that the wheel and tyre can quickly and effectively resume their important position back on the ground, providing grip and traction.
Because DFV opens more quickly and easily on minor road imperfections, ride comfort is surprisingly supple and more akin to an OEM strut than a coilover set-up. Over undulating surfaces, the compliance of the R/T units allows the suspension to follow the contours of bumps and pot-holes, whilst remaining stable and in control, thus ensuring traction is always maintained at its optimum level.
Other design highlights include graduated front camber adjustments and factory matched combined damping and rebound rates on one positive detent adjuster. Height adjustment is also achieved by winding the lower mounting face up or down, rather than the spring platform, leaving the all-important free length of the spring untouched, maintaining optimum characteristics throughout its travel
The initial launch range covers the usual Japanese and European performance suspects including the latest Impreza, Lancers 7 to 10, Mazda MX5, Nissan 350 and R34 Skyline, Suzuki Swift, Golf 5, Honda S2000 and BMW E90. Prices start at just £1473.00 plus Vat for the Golf units and all fitments come with an unparalleled 2 year warranty. Further fitments will be released throughout the year.
For more information, please visit www.roadandtrackbyohlins.com or call Öhlins UK on 0203 286 3127.