FONTANA NISSAN RACING
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350Z Rear Suspension
350Z Rear Suspension


The rear suspension on the 350Z suffers from two major problems. The first is excessive compliance. In an effort to increase ride quality the rear suspension uses soft bushings in all of the various links. In addition to all the link bushings the entire rear subframe is mounted with relatively soft rubber bushings. All one has to do to see the effects of this is to watch a stock 350Z pull away from a stop. If the driver is aggressive the rear wheel movement can be shocking. Add sticky tires and the problems get really ugly. The second problem occurs when the car is lowered to levels typically seen on race and track cars the geometry goes in directions not conducive to good handling.




Rear Upright Monoball Kit






The solutions we are using on the race car are always evolving. Prior to our last improvements we removed all of the rubber from the rear upright using our new monoball kit.







Megan Racing links





We also installed links that use rod end style joints. We chose to use Megan Racing links on our race car.








Megan Racing links

The Megan Racing links as delivered were not high enough quality to be used in the extremely stressful environment of our race car. We in fact failed one of the links in testing. The design of the links is sound but the quality of the welds was sub par. We have re-welded all of the suspect welds and have since had no more issues with the Megan Racing links.






Modified rear subframe Nissan 350Z





To address the geometry issues with the 350Z we began to analyze the rear layout. Knowing that the Grand Am Rolex rules allow us to move the pick up points 1" in any direction we decided that moving the point 1" straight up was the only thing that made sense.


Rear subframe modifications




We have machined the rear subframe to move the entire subframe straight up 1".









Rear subframe modifications



This moved all of the pick up points up and also helped with the half shaft angle by moving the diff up as well.









Rear subframe modifications




We also replaced the rubber bushings with solid aluminum bushings machined and welded into the subframe
.







Rear subframe modifications




Pending further tests we are leaving the rubber bushings mounting the diff. We believe that some vibration isolation is still desirable.








The pictures also show the half shafts we had made before the last event. We are very happy with these new half shafts. All indications are they are running very cool and the problems we have had in the past with failures of the race prepped OEM shafts are completely fixed with these half shafts. I really wish that we had this option back in 2003 and 2004 as we gave away some race wins back then with half shaft failures.