PART NUMBER: 61-0015
The BEST MX5 Miata coilovers! These have been the Coilovers in many of our DAILY DRIVER and our fastest NC track and autocross Miatas, including our Supercharged 07 and our all out NCLIGHT full caged track racer. Nothing beats the speed with control and ride quality combo of Ohlins which is why these are factory equipment on exotic cars from Koenigsegg to Pagini Zonda. DOT AND TUV Approved,corrosion tested through ISO 9227.
Brian's Summary: A top feature the Ohlins gets you that lesser choices do not is the DFV, the dual flow valving. That makes a critical difference at the limit. I can push the 325hp NC below over the rumble strips at Laguna Seca Raceway and if late in the day I take a little too much of that inside yellow curb then the secondary pathway in the Ohlins opens instantly to absorb that blow that would otherwise pop the car hard upwards and offline. What it boils down to is confidence at the limit, a lot more of it with the OHLINS. With the lesser priced choices I can be almost as fast but I must leave a little more margin for error between the car and those curbs because otherwise flirting with having a spin into the walls. For daily drivers that dual flow valving means running over a bad pothole in the road is absorbed by the secondary pathway instead of being felt by YOU deep in your spine!
How Ohlins Explains This in More Detail: Driver Confidence! The number one modification you can make for your car is the Driver and Drivers drive faster when they feel confident. The DFV Super High speed Oil path provides the ultimate driver confidence during those extreme moments on track. Hitting a bump, dip, curb or hole at high speed can create instability or twitch that will rattle the driver and it could take a few corners or even laps to feel confident again. Even worse, these extreme moments can cause the driver and car to crash. The DFV will allow the tire to move up AND down quickly and control the car in situations that many other track dampers physically can not. The DFV is top tier technology and design at a value price.
Temperature Sensitive Bleeder Valve! Ohlins DFVs have a temperature sensitive bleeder valve on the low speed oil path. When the dampers are cold the needle opening contracts providing the colder, less viscous oil a less restrictive path to move through. During hot lapping the sessions the needle opening expands to restrict the more viscous oil, creating a more consistent low speed damping across operating temperatures. Additionally, the DFVs have 46mm pistons compared to 30-44mm pistons found in other systems. This provides increased damping sensitivity across more precise piston movements.
Single Adjuster, Dual Adjustments! Another reason the DFV often gets overlooked as a great track damper is the fact that it is classified as a single adjustable damper. However, each adjustment changes BOTH compression and rebound, providing changes similar to a dual adjustable damper. The single adjuster allows the DFV to be more affordable while maintaining Ohlin s quality and revolutionary design.
The DFV Technology Advantage. The dual flow valve gives the same characteristics on rebound as it does on compression, the damper fluid has a consistent path of flow in both directions. This means that the wheel and tire can quickly and effectively resume their important position back on the ground, providing grip and traction. The new Ohlins Road and Track range uses DFV technology on every single fitment, making it the perfect upgrade for the enthusiast that needs comfort and agility in the one unit.
Figure 1: (Compression flow) At low shaft speeds, oil flows mostly through the shaft jet bleed (lower dotted arrow). At higher shaft speeds, oil flows mostly through the compression ports in the piston (upper dotted arrow). At very high shaft speeds, or during sudden shaft accelerations, oil can also escape through the compression ports in the DFV, increasing comfort. Figure 2: (Rebound flow) At low shaft speeds, oil flows mostly through the shaft jet bleed (lower dotted arrow). At higher shaft speeds, oil flows mostly through the rebound ports in the piston (upper dotted arrow). At very high shaft speeds, or during sudden shaft accelerations, oil can also escape through the rebound ports in the DFV, maintaining tire contact with the road. Because DFV opens more quickly and easily on minor road imperfections, ride comfort is surprisingly supple and more akin to an OEM shocks than a coilover set-up. Over undulating surfaces, the compliance of the Road and Track units allows your Miata to crest bumps and potholes, whilst still keep stable and in control. Traction is always maintained at its optimum level. When comparing suspension, why settle for second best?
Figure 3: (Vehicle no DFV) Without DFV the oil can not flow through the piston quickly enough on the rebound stroke after hitting a bump, so the tire is not able to stay in contact with the road.
Figure 4: (Vehicle DFV technique) The DFV valve opens, letting the oil flow quicker through the piston on the rebound stroke after hitting a bump, enabling the tire to stay in contact with the road. When adjusting ride height on coilover units, it is worth comparing how it is done. On many inferior designs, height is adjusted by raising or lowering the lower spring platform. This has the effect of compressing or extending the spring, which can limit the suspension travel that may cause topping out. The Ohlins method is to leave the spring seat in its perfect position, while the lower flange spins easily on the threaded body, to allow you to adjust with absolute precision whilst maintaining the perfect characteristics that we took so long to design in! Once you have set it all up, the adjuster simply locks off to maintain your exact settings.
Dampers will get hot. That is one thing that you can be sure of. As the piston moves within the damper, it generates friction and therefore, heat. Although we cannot stop heat, we can deal with it, and this is yet another way that Ohlins differs from the competition. As the heat increases, the viscosity of the damper fluid can change, altering the car handling characteristics. With Ohlins a unique needle bleed valve expands with temperature, closing the gap that the fluid travels through, maintaining a consistent damping rate. The best thing of all? You will not even notice! All you feel is that the car responds consistently, lap after lap, turn after turn. Allowing you to concentrate on braking points and apexes whilst the Ohlins technology takes care of the damping.
Figure 5: Thermal Expansion Design Advantages.
These kits amazing out of the box, but there is still plenty of adjustment for you to set things your way. You like stiff and reactive? Or soft and forgiving? It is all there. Too much low speed rebound damping can have an adverse effect on grip, so the easily accessible adjuster at the top of the Ohlins units allows small, but positive increments of fine tuning, so you can take into account every single parameter. Sounds complicated? It is actually very easy to adjust a few clicks either way to find the settings that work for you.
Since 2010 super light-weight design with a majority of the parts in aluminum and on top of that all shocks have proven through extensive corrosion tests according to ISO 9227.
Spring Rate Front 392 lbs/in (7kg), Rear 224 (4kg)
Ohlins has long lead the way for suspension design in the world of motorsports from Motorcycles to Indy Cars. This package comprises aluminum bodied, mono tube design shocks, with 30 clicks of adjustment. The beauty of the Ohlins is not only will your MX5 Miata handle better, be easier to drive at the limit, but it will also ride better. Spring rates are 7kg front and 4kg rear. This is a great choice for the dual purpose user who wants a setup that can be VERY comfortable around town yet super competent in the twisties, the race track, or the autocross course.
See our Forum Installation Instruction section for notes and pictures on install.
More Application Notes from Brian: Ohlins makes Formula One dampers, and the 'stock' shocks for many of the most amazing SuperCars in the world from Koenigsegg to Zonda. We have used Ohlins for decades and have always been amazed with the ability of this brand to provide both great handling AND great ride quality, and their NC MX5 Miata coilover kit continues this tradition. The ride is very close to stock yet less busy and more controlled and the handling is light years beyond stock...we set top time of day in our local autocross on our first day out with these installed....simply amazing. One of the great features is that you can set pre-load independent of height setting thanks to the multi-piece construction (beware of designs the other guys are selling that skip this feature because you get lots of noise without this feature!)
Ohlins are what I used for years on my motorcycles because they are the best, and we approached Ohlins to make these for the MX5 Miata application because we wanted our customers to enjoy the best MX5 Suspension! Ohlins are what you find on Formula 1 cars and at the highest level of motorsports and now you can have the best on your Miata. Please see our forum install notes if you plan to do the install yourself. Ryan Otis drove this kit with spring upgrade (and no re-valve) to 6th overall at 2012 SCCA Autocross Nationals and set top STR time on the West course....yet it rides like a fresh new BMW, amazing!
Update 2015. Had a few questions about what Ohlins will do to 'compete' with some motocross sourced one-piece shocks from a competitor. The issues with the one-piece coilovers in this price range is that you can't dial in the amount of pre-load you want on the springs, and you can't put the travel where you want it. That old single piece shock style usually ended up with very LONG heavy spring stacks comprised of both LONG main spring and helper springs to prevent spring CLANG-CLANG noise, with the additional downside of lots of unnecessary unsprung weight (which has same performance downsides as heavy wheels). Another problem is that Motocross shocks on the Miata would be okay if the Miata was 400 pounds like a typical Motocross Bike, but using such small piston area and volume on a 2400 pound Miata is not recommended for consistency or durability (for track use in particular it would mean MUCH HIGHER piston temps that results in FAST wear, not a good idea).
In contrast, the Ohlins setup is not merely proven and designed for the Miata, it is quite a bit more sophisticated with the three piece design meaning you have constant pre-load on the main springs without need for helper springs to avoid spring clang issues and without having nearly a foot of spring stack to band-aid around the issue of a cheaper one-piece design.
INSTALLATION NOTES. See our MANY PAGES of install thread in our forum Installation Section! Note we usually have customers CAREFULLY drive the result for a few hundred miles before corner balance or alignment because the car will settle significantly. Once that is complete we usually start most customers at 13.25 inches front, 13.5 inches rear, measured center of wheel up to fender lip.
DRIVEN DAILY...AND COMPETITION PROVEN. What better way to prove this setup is the BEST MX5 Coilovers for the money then to take them to competitions and WIN, WIN, WIN. This is the setup in my "Project Blue" daily driver below that is regularly top time of day at local autocross events. Yet while it is fast enough to consistently win it is also comfortable enough that we daily drive this car on long road trips...including the 437 mile drive drive each way to Laguna Seca for a full weekend of fast laps...and back 437 miles home again in comfort.
This is also the exact same setup we run in our NCLIGHT Project Track Car that has track records like the counter clockwise record at Chuckwalla Raceway....in a field of Vipers! Talk about bring a knife to a gunfight....yet we won and set a Miata lap record in a field of Vipers, see the article about it from Grassroots MotorSports bottom of this page. It was so fast the TV commentator dubbed it the "Mighty Miata"...and we stuck the corners thanks TO OUR STANDARD OHLINS KIT RATES...not the higher rate race kit, because we wanted to prove that even our standard Ohlins kit can be VERY, VERY, FAST!
PROVEN FAST, PROVEN RELIABLE, PROVEN THE BEST MX5 COILOVERS FOR THE MONEY!
MIATA MX5-NC 2006-2015
* FREE SHIPPING
MIATA MX5-NC 2006-2015
MIATA MX5-NC 2006-2015
MIATA MX5-NC 2006-2015
* FREE SHIPPING
MIATA MX5-NC 2006-2015
* FREE SHIPPING
MIATA MX5-NC 2006-2015
* FREE SHIPPING
Amazing handling improvement. Note Brian's recommendations for cruising:shock settings at 16-18 clicks from full firm front, 12-15 rear, at least if your roads aren't perfectly smooth. Latest instructions from Ohlins are much clearer than early ones. I didn't change the factory ride height settings, and got a 1" drop from stock in front and rear. Looking forward to trying them on the track (dialed up to 10 clicks front and rear). Also added Racing Beat sways at the same time. Save yourself some frustration and drop the underbody front plastic shield first, when you install the sway bars.
Overall I am very satisfied with these coilovers although the 7k/4k split was more than I liked. The rear seemed too soft in comparison to the front. I changed to the 7" swift 9k springs for the front and the 7k tein springs for the rear and the ride definitely feels smoother than it did with the 7k/4k springs. The difficulty with using a 7" spring in the front is that they are 178mm versus the stock spring which is 200mm.The preload cannot be adjusted properly with the shorter spring unless the top hat spacer is removed and replaced with a shorter one or washers.
I've linked a solution for this, but it is mentioned that using an 8" spring is ideal if you are going to change out the front springs. This information wasn't easy for me to find so I am hoping this review could help others that may find the 7k/4k springs lacking. I couldn't be happier with the dampening technology of the Ohlins though. Much better ride than stock, even with the 9k/7k springs.
My car is a real dual purpose vehicle and it sees a lot of use going to & from the track to attend HPDE events. To share my opinion of the Ohlins DFV coilovers, I thought it would be helpful to contrast some of the most common choices/options out there, my thoughts are as follows:
1st- Stock MX5- Soft, spongy, not well suited for spirited / performance driving. Pleasant ride for casual cruising at best.
2nd- Sport Suspension package - Better. Firmer ride, firmer dampening and nicer road manners. Good for drivers, who will never explore the handling potential of the car, but want a semi-well-mannered sports car for a fun experience.
3rd- Progress Springs / Progress Sway Bars / Bilstein shocks- Excellent road manners, comfortable ride, very compliant, but still delivers significantly better, performance oriented handling, reduced body roll in the corners and is reasonably suited for auto-x and track use as well. Good bang for the buck upgrade, for many all the suspension modification they will ever need.
4th- Ohlins DFV Coilovers -Outstanding versatility for a dual purpose sports car. The most controlled and compliant option of the ones listed here. Great road manners, great street ride, very supple & comfortable with lots of easy adjustability. Where the Ohlins truly start to shine is at the firmer dampening settings on the track or your favorite twisty back country road. The increased performance is remarkable and allows the driver to really appreciate what the MX5 is capable of doing when pushed hard and even to the 10/10ths limit, but still just a truly great ride even when not pushed.
Yes, sways, wider wheels and better tires all should be added in time, and they will do much to increase your enjoyment of the car and it's performance levels.
But simply put, of all the modifications one can make to a MX5, this one is the best value and greatest performance gain you can chose, it will redefine your understanding of the car's abilities, without sacrificing any of the comfort or enjoyment you have become accustomed to.
If I had known when I started setting up my car, what I have now learned to date, there would be no other choice for me, it would have been the Ohlins as the 1st upgrade to the car. Period, end of subject!
Regards, Pat S
Very pleased with the ride of the Ohlins DFV with 7kg/4kg spring rates. These can be set full stiff for autox and give reasonable results with a set of Racing Beat sway bars and Enkei RPF1 17x9 with your favorite STR class street tires. However, they are a little softly sprung for full out autox competition. You might want to take the spring rates up to the 600/350 lb/in range for that use and have the shocks revalved to work up there.
For the street, I just soften the shock setting and they are very comfortable for daily driving. Much less lean in aggressive driving, full control and yet supple over the bumps. Excellent build quality and no problems after a year of use. I really like the separate spring preload and ride height adjustments. Now if I can just find remote adjuster cables for the rear shocks, everything would be perfect!