The MK7 GTi is the latest in the world’s most famous hot hatch dynasty. Volkswagen always strive to keep ahead of the pack and make the latest GTi the best GTi yet. With every increase in driver dynamics comes a trade off in power, every increase in equipment comes a trade off in weight and VW have to please an ever wider, more critical audience. This means the MK7 GTi in standard form can never be the out and out driver’s car you might wish it could be. With the MK7 GTi being the best GTI package yet, what can you do to inject a slice of teenage excitement?
Well, there’s a new kid on the block with a great answer, ST suspensions. Their ST XTA coilover kit gives a TÜV certified right height and damping adjustment with camber adjustable top mounts and a sportier, more assertive drive. Developed by suspension giants KW Automotive, the ST range calls on experience from multiple Nurburgring records and uses KW’s motorsport ‘wet build’ technology. Each and every ST coilover kit is setup on KW’s shock dyno before shipping to ensure a fantastic blend of road holding and ride quality, straight out of the box. Just the thing to re-focus your MK7!
We’ve teamed up with Regal Autosport to show you how to fit your kit…
Get yourself some room to work and raise your car securely in the air using your choice of floor jack and axle stands or ramp if you’re fortunate enough to have access to one. Safety is paramount when lifting any car, take note of the OEM lifting points in your owner’s manual and bear in mind this is probably the hardest part of the install!
With the car safely suspended, remove the scuttle panel. You will have to remove the wiper arms and two retaining clips. This will allow access to the top mounts.
Starting at the front, remove the hub to shock retaining pinch bolt and set aside. Remove the anti-roll bar drop links and brake line clip. Disconnect the electronic damper plugs. The hub is a tight fit to the shock, and you will either need the specific VW hub separator another method to prize the hub apart to slide the hub away from the shock absorber. Once removed support the weight of the hub assembly with a jack or transmission stand.
Now move to the top of the strut and remove the three top mount retaining bolts from the scuttle area and remove the whole strut assembly.
Your new ST suspensions front struts come pre-assembled. Check top mount nut is tightened to 50NM or 37ft/lb and install the assembly. Start with the three top mount retaining bolts, and then the hub mounting. You will have to use your hub spreader tool to allow the hub to slide onto the shock absorber; easiest way to do so is to jack the hub gently onto the shock. Install new ST anti-roll bar drop links and attach brake line to the strut
Next is to mount your electronic damper cancellation kit. The ST cancellation kit uses OEM connectors and is direct plug and play. Secure cancellation bracket to shock body with insulation material separating the metal parts. Then fix the cancellation module to the bracket.
With the front end complete move to the rear axle. Remove the rear shock absorber; the two top bolts to the body are accessible in the wheel arch. These are sometimes hidden by the arch lining. Also remember to disconnect electronic damping plug.
With the rear shock removed, next thing to remove are the rear springs. The easiest method to do this is to remove the lower arm to hub bolt and allow the lower arm to drop to give enough room.
Now remove the original top mount from your rear shock absorbers and fit them to your ST suspensions rear shock absorbers. Tighten by hand to 25NM or 18ft/lb.
Next you can slip your new ST spring and perch assembly into your lower arm, and attach your shock absorber to the body by the top bolts. Mount the spring with the original spring support at the bottom and the adjustment perch at the top. Then you can use a jack or transmission stand to align the bottom shock bolt and hub bolt on the body by compressing the spring with the lower arm.
Attach your rear electronic damper cancellation module brackets to the rear shock body, and then attach the cancellation modules to the bracket. Ensure insulation material separates the shock and bracket. Remember to connect the electronic plug!
With all the suspension installed its time to get the wheels on the car and check your height adjustment, the Golf MK7 XTA kit can lower up to 55mm on the front and 45mm on the rear axle but we recommend around a 30mm lowering on the front and 20mm on the rear for optimum handling. With your ride height set, it’s time to stand back and admire your handy work and get booked in for alignment to get the best of the ST suspensions ST XTA coilover kit!
The ST suspensions ST XTA coilover kit is available for the Golf MK7 GTi for just £1199 and is manufactured by KW in Germany. Every ST coilover is built to meet the strict German TÜV standard of lowering to ensure maximum quality and safety in all driving conditions. This in turn allows your car’s suspension to be adjusted to its lowest setting without compromising its drivability and usability on the road.
Once fitted to the Golf MK7 GTi, the ST XTA coilover allows a lowering of between 25-55mm on the front and 20-45mm on the rear axle, and comes with all the necessary tools for adjusting the ride height and a comprehensive instruction manual to make fitting as simple as possible.