D22 Lifts

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Horatius

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Thought I’d start a general thread on D22 lifts, hopefully people can join in and point out if/where I’m in error, because I could have read or measured something wrong (I’m nothing if not an idiot lol) and also because debate could make this a good resource for people thinking about getting one (lift). There seems to be as many ideas about lifts as there are people, so outlining the regulatory limits for NSW could at least be a good starting point. Take none of this as gospel of course, be sceptical and confirm everything to your own satisfaction.

The “standard height” used as a starting point is referenced from the RTA website. As such all measurements are from the centre of the wheel straight up to the bottom of the guard flare. Other info from this document. It won’t be relevant to other states but could still be helpful in a “ball park” sort of way.

The zd30 model D22 is listed as follows...rear = 515 mm , front = 495 mm when measured from the centre of the wheel to the flare of the guard when unladen. Strangely the later yd25 models are listed as slightly higher in the rear. I measured this on a zd30 nav that has been put back to spec in the front end (explained in the manual) and got 495 mm. The rear I got 510 mm which seems odd as the springs actually appear inverted. So there is always going to be variation, nevertheless if your car gets measured for height in NSW this is the reference point that is likely to be used.

I also measured the full suspension travel on the front by jacking it up until tyres left the ground and performed the same measurement (which was 585 mm). So a stock nav has a mighty 9 cm of travel lol (what some call “droop”) ie 585 – 495 = 90 mm. Of course lifts will reduce this further. The lack of suspension travel is why these cars (IFS cars in general) are so limited off road and why a front lokka is a good idea. These measurements will also be relevant further on.

The regulation says that a suspension lift of up to 50 mm is allowed, although this can be misleading. It also says when changing ride height that at least 2/3 of the original suspension travel must be maintained. While a 50 mm lift at the front gives 545 mm (original 495 + 50 mm), that’s way over what is permissible. To keep at least 2/3 suspension travel you would need to go up no more than 30 mm (ie 1/3 x 90 mm) which would give you 525 mm unladen.

5.2 Suspension travel
In all instances, modifications to a vehicle’s suspension must ensure the integrity of the system and not compromise the ride quality. At least two thirds of the original suspension travel should be maintained in both directions (rebound (i.e. extension) and bump (i.e. compression)), and rebound must be limited by the same method used by the vehicle manufacturer or if this is not practicable due to the nature of the modification, an equivalent method. If an alternative method is used, evidence must be available that its functional performance is equivalent to the original.

The rear isn’t so important, only that 555 mm (measured same way, from centre of wheel to flare) would be the maximum. No doubt you could fudge things a certain amount and be fine at either end, but at a certain point winding the front becomes counter productive and would be better off with aftermarket UCA’s (which are a no-no in NSW without engineer approval). The measurement I got when it hits the bump stops was 555 mm, so winding the front 50 mm is going to put you close.

While all “brand name” suspension lifts shouldn’t be a problem at all, it’s worth noting that not all 2”/50 mm lifts are the same. Some are much higher than that and rely on “settling” over time (which they all do to some extent). But if you end up with a rear figure of 260+ mm it’ll look like a dragster unless you wind it that far that that far it’ll be squashing the bump stops. There are all sorts of downsides to this that depend on what you use your car for and would require another thread or post (such as safety, off road ability, wheel alignment issues).This can be more of a problem for people who don’t carry much in the back and just want the lift for looks, with the front wound up somewhere close the rear.

I have heard of some places that only go 40 mm lifts on these type of cars and even then only use specific brand/s.

As to torsion bars there’s also all sorts of opinions. IMO for a small lift like this I don’t think you need new ones unless the old ones are stuffed and people just seem to get them because they come with the set. Certainly no harm in replacing them though. I have heard that winding the torsions up allows the possibility that the stock torsion bars could twist in a range beyond what they are designed for (as there is now an extended range of travel in one direction rather than equal in both directions), although I have heard arguments against this too lol, but anyway I haven’t heard of anyone having problems from it. Stiffer torsion bars will limit this but usually give a stiffer ride (though not necessarily harsher – depending on shock absorbers).

With 40 mm lift (original torsion bars) my car measures 515 mm at the front and 525 mm at the rear (from wheel centre to flare). That's fully loaded for a trip though, extra spare, water, extra fuel and so on. Not sure what it is unladen.
 
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Horatius

Misanthrope
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Noticed the link to the RTA spec sheets wasn't very good above (only took you to the search page). Hopefully these are better.

zd30 model D22 dual cab ute.

yd25 model D22 dual cab ute.

edit to add...looks like they didn't work either lol.

For anyone interested click on the "post 1999 RVD search" top left of linked page and then type in the details for a D22. Will take you to a wide variety of navs to choose from. Or you can type in the specific CPA numbers... 11821-659088 for zd30 model...11821-804773 for yd25 model.
 
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