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Old 08-07-2003, 04:42 PM   #1
tdxflex
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2002 WRX
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Default swaybars, Hotchkis vs Cusco

I've had a chance to use both. There's been enough discussion about handling and honestly a swaybar is a swaybar, really the only concern is the fitment. There are also a lot of reviews on the cusco bars, so I'll try to focus more on the hotchkis ones.

First off, they are hollow and much bigger in diameter for a huge strength-to-weight ratio. The front bar also has spot welded "stops" on the outer edge of the bushing to prevent the bar from walking.

Zero fitment issues, but one thing that I found that was now very annoying that probably hasn't been brought up.. Because the swaybar is much bigger than the stock or cusco bars, it now covers any access to the engine mount bolts. When I had to change out my uppipe, I also had to remove the swaybar. If I knew this beforehand, I probably would have just done the install from up top and unbolt the turbo.

In the rear, the bar bolts up to the outside of the links vs the inside like all the other swaybars, so fitment issues may occur with spherical endlinks (perrin, helix, hairpin). On the stiffest setting (25.1mm IIRC), there are also other issues with the kartboy endlinks because they are shorter than all other endlinks. I have the MRT alloy endlinks and have no fitment issues.

I have zero rattling issues and my exhaust setups have been stock and TurboXS stealthback with cat, using the stock exhaust hangers.

Weight factor. I was not able to get accurate readings because my scale is way off, but it is an obvious difference. In order of heaviest -> lightest, cusco -> stock -> hotchkis. According to my scale, the cusco vs hotchkis set (front and rear combined), there is a 6-7lb difference. By itself the weight won't make a noticeable difference, but it sounds nice on paper.

Final thoughts, the Hotchkis swaybars will have no fitment issues for the majority of typical suspension setups. I got my set of swaybars for $250 shipped which IMO is a very reasonable price for swaybars. Often people complain about how expensive the cusco bars are and buy the whitelines instead, well here's another alternative.
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Old 08-23-2003, 03:50 AM   #2
tdxflex
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Default

After a few more months to test things out, I've noticed that the sway bar and the endlink have slight rubbing when set at the stiffest setting, no wonder the hotchkis endlinks have a different slope to them. So the mrt alloy endlinks have a slight fitment issue, I would think the whiteline noodle looking endlinks would have zero fitment issues since they are much narrower. Just scraped away a little bit of paint, I set it to the middle setting and actually feels much better than it did at the stiffest, no further endlink rubbing.
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Old 08-26-2003, 06:48 PM   #3
android
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I also have the Hotchkis setup with kartboy drop links. I don't have the rear set to the stiffest setting, but I have to say there are no complaints here. The fitment is perfect as far as I'm concerned, though the rear seems like it could be putting some stress on the linkage due to the unconventional placement (outside the droplinks). Time will tell. Hotchkis has been in business for a long time as far as domestic applications go, and they are tried and tested. Did I mention my car feels rock solid?
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Old 08-31-2003, 01:34 AM   #4
neverendingmods
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I've had the Hotchkis/Mrt combo and noticed rubbing(rear right away. I couldn't use stiffest setting(rear only) til I dremeled the endlinks. No biggie. Nobody sees it cause of how swaybar is on ouside of endlink. But, dremeling soft aluminum is no cake job. Kept coating the dremmel grinder.

Stiffer is better. Til. the snow comes.
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Old 09-16-2003, 12:33 PM   #5
WRXtreme02
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Hey tdxflex... where did you get them for $250 shipped??

THANKS!!
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Old 09-16-2003, 12:38 PM   #6
tdxflex
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I got them from SubaruStore when they had a special on them. There's also a different package that includes the upgraded mounts (not links) I think they call a sport swaybar package. I just got the bars without the mount.

http://forums.nasioc.com/forums/show...light=hotchkis
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Old 10-27-2003, 07:16 PM   #7
JDMSubaru
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So which was better in handling? There doesn't seem to be any other commentary other than that about weight and fitment...
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Old 10-27-2003, 08:54 PM   #8
tdxflex
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There isn't that big of a difference between handling, not just from the Cusco and Hotchkis. All of the aftermarket bars are a certain percentage stiffer than stock, don't have the exact numbers but all of the adjustable bars usually will give you a setting you will like. I say just go for whichever one you can get a deal on.
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Old 10-28-2003, 02:28 AM   #9
JDMSubaru
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but isnt the front cusco bar comparably less stiff than the hotchkis front bar???
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