I picked up my E46 M3 about a month ago and knew already which suspension I wanted to buy for it. I contacted Redline360 and placed my order. I went with the Fortune Auto 510 Series (their track version) and opted for the Swift Spring upgrade. I went with 10k front springs and 12k rear springs. When ordering, I made a mistake and mixed up the 10k/12k and ordered it as 12k/10k, which is not the right front/rear bias for an E46 M3. Fortune Auto was kind enough to swap me out for the right springs. So you’ll see in the pics below that it shows it as 12k front and 10k rear, but it’s really 10k front and 12k rear 🙂
I went with Fortune Auto coilovers because I’ve done a lot of research on them and their new Generation 6 coilovers. They hand build the coilovers in Powhatan, VA using very cool race technology. Also, with their 5 year warranty, they really stand behind the product and if anything happens, it’s fully rebuildable in the USA. Also, their coilovers are all modular. If I ever want to upgrade to 2 way, or to their latest generation, they can do it all in house.
My coilovers come with centered top mounts, 7″ front springs and 6″ rear springs. Here you can see the 12k and 10k spring rates, which I didn’t even notice were reversed of what I wanted – oops!
The coilovers come packaged pretty well. Thick cardboard box with good packing inside.
Chris Smith at Fortune Auto was the one who build, shock dyno’d and assembled mine. They also include a shock dyno chart.
Some material inside that explains a bit about their shocks as well as basic setup.
Ah, we’re getting closer to the final product! Everything came perfect with no scratches or marks.
The front shock comes assembled and ready to be put on. Keep in mind, when you get yours that these are not set to any specific height. They’re adjusted to fit into the box. You’ll need to do some trial and error to get yours to the height you want. I ended up going full low in the front and I love the look but might have to lift it up about half an inch to match the rear. I might just lower the rear. You can lower your car with these without affecting shock travel.
The front camber plates are made from thick aluminum and are good quality. Everything on the kit feels solid and well built. Interestingly enough, when I had my alignment it appeared these camber kits as they came were already set to around 3 degrees front negative camber.
The rear springs are 6″ tall and come with a nice sleeve that fits perfectly into the rear control arm.
The rear shock is adjustable, but you don’t adjust the height with it. You need to adjust the length of the shock here to set your preload. What I did was use a jack to raise the car in the rear by the control arm. Once the spring had 1/4″ of compression, I adjusted the height of the shock and bolted it down to keep that preload on the spring.
The rear top mount. Again, great quality top mounts.
The rear dampening adjuster.
The front spring is 7″ long. I set the preload here to 1/4″ as well, same as in the rear.
They include two spanner wrenches, both different sizes, and two allen keys. You need these keys to take apart the dampening knob and other components if you ever need to service your suspension.
This is what my front wheel well looked like before. Dirty and with 115k miles, I wanted to clean it up.
Ah, much better. I used a degreaser that worked pretty well to cut through everything, but after some research and a recommendation from a friend, I went with Purple Power degreaser. I’m going to try this next to clean up the wheel wells and under carriage next time.
I even cleaned up the bracket that holds the brake line and other various lines around the front suspension. Looks so much better.
Here is the front coilover installed. I slid the bottom into place, set it to be in center, and then used a jack to lift it up to the strut mount. You need to have both sides in the front lifted up or you won’t be able to get the sway bar back into the bracket.
Front camber plate installed. I ended up using the Fortune Auto nuts that they supplied.
Bummer, the OEM cover doesn’t fit. Was hoping to use this to keep dirt out of the camber plate.
I love this picture. Even with the car in the air, the front suspension doesn’t hang low and looks nice.
Here’s the car on the front all set. I think the height is perfect and it really fills out the wheel well with my wheel and tire combo. For reference, I am running 18×9.5 +35 APEX ARC8 Square with 265/35/18 Federal 595-RSRR.
Another angle of the front.
Here you can see the AKG Motorsport rear top strut mount installed as I move to the rear of the car to finish the suspension.
After setting the rear preload, this is the finished product.
The rear spring looks a little angled here, but it sits straight once lowered. In this position the spring did hit the perch a bit and cause some small scratches. I was worried it would rub, but once lowered it straightens out and doesn’t rub.
Aww yeah. All done!
I love the finished product.
First drive impressions were great. The car rides firmer, but very comfortable, and if I daily drove the car, I would have no problems. Very nice ride for a track suspension with firmer springs.
The shocks are 25 way adjustable. I initially started with 15/25 in the front and 18/25 rear. I made the rear 18 to be 20% stiffer than the front to match the spring rates.
I’ll see if I like this setup when I take it to the track and dial in the settings. Once done, I’ll follow up here and give my impressions.
So initial review of these Fortune Auto 510 coilovers are great, and I do highly recommend them! I also recommend when doing this to get the front and rear upper strut reinforcement plates as a bit of added insurance.