BILSTEIN B4, B6 or B8: Which is the right shock absorber?

Technology & Knowledge
November 17, 2022 4 min read

Correct advice for workshop customers

In this episode of the video series “Suspension Fundamentals – powered by BILSTEIN Academy”, we explore the question of which shock absorber from the BILSTEIN OE replacement product range is best suited to which application. BILSTEIN B4, B6 or rather B8? The shock absorber experts Rainer Popiol and Mustafa Yavuz give important tips on how automotive professionals can offer their workshop customers the right shock absorber.

We traditionally have a very wide product range for every application. But which OE replacement shock absorber is suitable for which application? We explain which BILSTEIN model workshops should recommend to their customers, depending on the situation.

Workshop Tip #7: Which is the right shock absorber?

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BILSTEIN B4 OE replacement shock absorbers: Driving experience just like on the first day

Mustafa Yavuz from Technical Support at BILSTEIN knows his stuff. Every day, the master mechanic helps with questions about suspension and shock absorber technology, advises independent workshops and car drivers. “In most cases, our BILSTEIN B4 OE replacement shock absorber is the right choice”, says Yavuz. “If the customer was satisfied with the driving characteristics of the intact OE suspension, then the B4 is exactly the right shock absorber for them. After all, it restores the optimal driving experience, just like on the first day.” This shock absorber offers the highest OE quality and has a high market coverage and availability, so workshops cannot go too wrong with it.

BILSTEIN B6 shock absorbers: Improved OE replacement for high demands

The BILSTEIN B6 shock absorber offers higher performance reserves for a variety of demanding everyday situations. With its special damper setting, it is particularly suitable for vehicles that are often heavily loaded, for trailer operation (caravans) or for vehicles with a gas tank. The use of BILSTEIN B6 shock absorbers is also recommended for external loads such as a bicycle carrier with heavy e-bikes. This is because the additional weight in the rear area greatly increases the drawbar load acting on the rear axle, which impairs driving stability. But even dynamic drivers benefit from the improved driving characteristics. A particular advantage is that an additional spring change is not necessary. Since 2022, there has also been a special product line, BILSTEIN B6 Camper and B6 Camper Advanced, especially for campervans.

Yavuz: “For these applications, we have our BILSTEIN B6 high-performance shock absorber, which offers better damping performance that maintains driving stability, but also driving comfort, at the highest level. Just like the BILSTEIN B4, the BILSTEIN B6 does not require registration and can be installed according to the plug-and-play principle.”

Each vehicle application for the BILSTEIN B6 shock absorber is developed in the legendary BILSTEIN road test and has to pass an extensive range of tests, as the head of BILSTEIN Academy, Rainer Popiol, reveals. “The tests we perform are unique in the aftermarket. Many other shock absorber manufacturers increase the damping force alone to enable a higher load.” At BILSTEIN, however, the driving behaviour is extensively tested in a wide variety of driving situations in order to be able to work out the perfect characteristic curves.

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BILSTEIN B8: Perfect OE replacement shock absorber for lowered vehicles

Based on the BILSTEIN B6 shock absorber, we developed the BILSTEIN B8 shock absorber. A high-performance shock absorber for racy cars. “The BILSTEIN B8 shock absorber is the perfect damper for especially racy driving”, says Mustafa Yavuz.

The high-performance shock absorber is shortened and can thus ensure the preload of lowering springs or sports springs. The BILSTEIN B8 shock absorber is designed for almost all lowering spring sets and OE sports suspensions and offers a noticeable advantage in terms of safety and sportiness.

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