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Suggestions for better handling?

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Old 09-29-2011, 07:00 PM   #1
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Suggestions for better handling?

Looking to know what I can do to improve the handling of my '09 base regular cab. The stock suspension for the most part seems adequate and reasonably comfortable on most roads but on the highway it tends to sway a bit and the wind pushes it around. It also leans more than I'd like on corners and feels like the chassis loses its composure when going over bumps and rough roads.

I noticed most people here go for the lift setup when it comes to upgrading, but are there options for those who want to keep stock-ish appearance and just improve handling? One of the first things I plan to do when I get the chance will be swapping out the stock shocks with a set of Bilsteins (not sure whether to get the HDs or 5100s). Would this be enough to address the handling issue? What other options are available? (stiffer springs/leafs, poly bushings, sway bars, etc)

Any help is appreciated!
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Old 09-29-2011, 07:01 PM   #2
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X runner springs, rear sway bar, wider tires...I don't know what is really out there for 5 lugs.
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Old 09-29-2011, 07:04 PM   #3
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Old 09-29-2011, 07:07 PM   #4
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Hellwig anti sway bar...made a big difference in the corners.
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Old 09-29-2011, 07:25 PM   #5
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I remember with the Saab 9-3 community, the rear swaybar was one of the most effective upgrades and got rid of a lot of the lean in the handling and noticeably improved cornering ability. Definitely considering that option for the Tacoma.

The XRunner is a V6 model right? Wouldn't the springs throw off the weight balance with the 4cyl? How much do those generally cost?
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Old 11-09-2011, 08:00 AM   #6
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adadmhalliwill,

You did not state what tires you have. Are they Dunlops? If so, take them off and plant petunias in your front yard with them. They are a trash tire and Toyota knows it. My truck wallered like a drunken hog until I pulled the Dunlops off and put real tires on, anything but Dunlops.

If you seek further handling improvements, look into the rear anti-sway bar as a second step.
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Old 11-10-2011, 04:00 AM   #7
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I have Firestone Destination LE's on 15" steel rims. Not sure how those rank in comparison to the Dunlops, but they can't be much worse. I'm thinking about getting a set of different rims though if I get new tires and putting a set of winter tires on the existing ones.

What is a quality tire? Suggestions?
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Old 11-11-2011, 08:40 AM   #8
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adamhalliwill,

In my opinion, Dunlops are the worst. Go to "Tirerack.com" and look at the suveys and ratings of the type tire you are seeking. I switched to Michelin LTX M/S2 on my truck both from experience and the ratings. They are rated number 1 accross the board for all parameters. The Michelins cured the sway and wander I was experiencing with the Dunlops as well as are rated for 70,000 miles. I expect to get many more miles from them. Yes, the Michelins are top priced, but you will feel the difference imediately.
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Old 12-01-2011, 05:32 PM   #10
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I have a 08 plain jane 4 cyl 5 spd. I put a 2 inch lowering kit from 12 performance on there and it cured all the body roll and everything! great kit and easy to put on. im gonna go with some 17 inch konigs and throw away those hockey puck dunlops... looking to put on a rear sway bar too... but i'd recommend getting that kit if you want it to handle...
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