Independent Front Suspension Options

This Independent Front Suspension Options section looks at the many different options that are available for updating an older vehicle's steering and front suspension to a rack n pinion based IFS front suspension. It is divided into:

Mustang II IFS - The 1970s Mustang IIs, Pintos and Bobcats has a rack n pinion front suspension that could be unbolted and installed into an older vehicle. A whole industry has been built using aftermarket suspension kits based on the original design. The Mustang II (preferred name to Pinto) is the industry standard.

Corvette IFS - You can replace your front suspension with a C3 (1968-82) Vette IFS or a C4 (1984+) IFS. There's kits to do both and there's an example of how to do it to a 53 Chevrolet. This method requires much more fabrication than the Mustang II and there's not very many kits available.

Ford Crown Victoria - Late model Ford Crown Victoria are a great choice for a rack n pinion based IFS. They are bolted on and offer excellent handling - just ask the police who use them for their squad cars! This is the latest secret for IFS, the only drawback is the width which is quite wide.

Put the body on another full-size frame - You could search the wreckers to find a late model vehicle with a similar wheelbase and full frame then drop the body on to it. You can try to mate the floorpan to the late model frame which can be an adventure or you could try to mate the late model frame's floorpan to the 54's body. The theory is that you cut out the late model's floorpan just to the outside of the frame rails. You cut the body and late model's floorpan. This is becoming a very popular method as in one process, you update the steering, suspension, brakes, engine, transmission, gas tank, etc..

Chrysler Clip - This is often called the Volare clip but it refers to a number of Chrysler models such as the 1970s Diplomat, Grand Fury, 5th Avenue, Pacer, etc.. It is very similar to the Camaro clip as it requires quite a bit of welding and fabricating but it is not as popular. The advantage to the Chrylser clip is that it has torsion bar suspension - no springs! The ride height is set by tightening up the torsion bars.

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Copyright March 2011 Eugene Blanchard