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Old 07-21-2018, 11:58 AM   #1
UCFKnightDiver
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Default Off-road Tuned Shocks?

When Ford says that the FX4 package will come with "off-road tuned shocks/suspension", what exactly does that mean? Is it just marketing? Are they really different from the other trims? If so, how are they different?

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Old 07-21-2018, 12:33 PM   #2
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Like every other off-road or FX4 truck.
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Old 07-21-2018, 03:25 PM   #3
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In theory, your off road tuned shocks have less damping for slow speed compression/rebound and then an aggressive high speed damping in rebound and compression. They are also often one size larger diameter.

The idea being it allows tires to remain in contact with terrain off road i.e. rock crawling at extreme, while preventing suspension from bottoming out on bump stops while traveling over whoops at speed. The larger diameter decreases fade when running over uneven terrain.

It does have some negatives during on road driving - during cornering/braking the vehicle will tend to move more - roll/dive respectively. And ride over potholes*/expansion joints will tend to be rougher as you aren't getting as much suspension travel.

For OEMs, the differences will be minor. For the racing crowd, you can make some serious tuning changes with the high end shocks (up to 8 different bypass valves). There is a reason the Fox shocks on the Raptor cost ~10X what the stock ones do. It isn't all brand name.

*Assumes pothole wasn't so deep that the suspension max'd out. Things get really rough if you hit bump stops.
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Old 07-21-2018, 04:54 PM   #4
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The original 02 FX4 and 03+ FX4 Level II Rangers came from the factory with Bilstein shocks that were tuned to Ford specifications. I am pretty sure these were the only Rangers that came from the factory with Bilstein shocks. I thought they were a little too soft for off-road but did pretty well on pavement. At 100K miles the original shocks on my FX4 were worn and needed replacement. I elected to go with Bilstein shocks again but with the Bilstein tune. They were much more to my liking off-road and were still good on pavement. They have over 130K miles on them now and are still working well.

I have no idea what Ford is going to provide for shocks with the 2019 FX4 but I would guess they will be an upgrade from the non-FX4 models.
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