Ford Figo 1.5 diesel: Changed alloys twice & got suspension upgrades

Had the spring installed and initially the wheel combo was a definite problem. But I like the way the car handles post-installation.

BHPian black bandits recently shared this with another fan.

It’s been a while since I updated this thread and today I thought I’d post some updates. The car has gone through several upgrades, some of which failed miserably and dented my pockets and has covered 70K km so far. The experience so far has been great and the car still runs like a beast. So far there have been no major issues facing Touchwood. Apart from routine maintenance have changed the front supports – No issues encountered but as they were a bit weak and a new pair cheap enough decided to change them before installing the lowering springs, Right side engine mount – Failed during my trip back to Mangalore from Bangalore, and disc front rotors. List all the experiences one by one below.

Saga alloy wheels:

As part of the change, I got 16-inch Massimo Momo alloy wheels for the car. Now as it has been pointed out many times everywhere that 16 inches is a bit too much for the Figo, I out of curiosity (more than stupid) decided to continue after seeing some photos of Kerala Figos sporting 16 inch wheels as well as 17 inches. Instagram. The wheel turned out to be a disaster within days of installation. Since they are 7.5J concave rims, they start to dirty the fenders. At first it seemed bearable but turned out to be an outright disaster on the long journey. The wheels rub against the fenders at every turn and make a ripping sound along the way. However, since I’ve invested a lot in this wheel, installing a coil buffer in the front spring and solved the problem. But this causes the whole steering and suspension on the front side to act a bit funny and I’m not happy with the end result. However, r continued this setup for 2 months when the downgrading bug bit me. My funny brain assumes that a stiffer set of springs would be a better result than running a buffer to stiffen the springs. Ordered a set of Eibach pro Kit for the car and set it up. And the result is an immediate disaster. The car sits so low that the wheels have barely any gaps now and are barely rideable. The spring dealer told me to get 7J or lower wheels to resolve the issue as many have installed the same and have had no issues. There began my quest to swap my alloys. Ended up getting a pair of Ecosport alloys that were around 6.5J and decided to test the same for some time. While cars look like monsters with this set of wheels, they still can’t get over the friction of the fenders. Now, the tires in the 205/50/R16 Yokohama Earth 1 car are all sided. At this point Someone else told me to use the 205/45/R16 to deal with friction. But here I got fed up and considering that only cheap tires were available at that price, I decided to take the loss and ended up buying Freestyle wheels from a Ford showroom. Got 195/55/R15 SDrive tires to accomplish the same and I’m not happier with that decision. Posting some photos of the wheel saga:

As you can see in the image above, the gap is almost non-existent.

The car in looks awesome in this avatar IMO but is still plagued with issues.

Eibach ProKit lowering springs:

Had the spring installed and initially the wheel combo was a definite problem. But I really like the way the car handles post-springing and therefore decided to remove the wheels and keep the springs. The Eibachs have become a love-hate relationship for me. While I like what they have to offer in terms of handling and the way the car takes corners, I don’t like the overall level of comfort that comes with it. It’s definitely on the stiffer side and not a passenger-friendly setup overall. But the way it changed the handling and steering characteristics of the car, and since I mostly drive the car alone, I decided to come to terms with the comfort issue. List of pros and cons.

Advantages:

  • Completely changed the handling characteristics of the car. The car is now racing into corners and it has changed the way I drive. Initially, I used to take corners with caution because of the car’s body roll and mass market handling. Now I just push the car and handle it like nothing. It just stays composed and maintains the driving line perfectly.
  • Body roll is almost non-existent.
  • Excellent high speed and cornering stability.
  • Don’t lose your cool in center corners on bad roads or at speed breakers like I used to with stock springs.

Counter:

  • Poor driving comfort. I would say it is somewhere between average and worst more inclined to the average side. Although I didn’t face much of a problem with it all the passengers sitting in my car on a regular basis have clearly said that the old comfort level of the car has been completed. The current arrangement of the car doesn’t make passengers happy but they don’t complain too much either. As long as I keep the speed under control on bad roads, it’s fine.
  • Problems with full load. While the car behaves well when m driving alone or with about 2 light people in it, this is not the case if the car is at full load. The suspension setup feels a bit odd.
  • The car sits quite low and scrapes sharp bumps especially when someone is sitting in the back.
  • The uneven highway feels quite sharp in the cabin when driving at speed Previously the car would have lost its cool and was thrown in this situation but now the car clings to the road and holds it quietly but makes itself felt.

Some photos with current settings:

Notes on Ford Services:

While my experience with the Cauvery Ford Mangalore has been great and continues to be great, I can’t say the same for the Cauvery Ford in Bangalore. I have visited them to check my car for strange noises and vibrations that are starting to appear. That’s when I run the Ecosport mix. The person who took the test drive was quite arrogant in his approach. He went ahead and challenged me saying there was no problem with the car, the problem was because of the lowered spring. I proceeded to explain to him that I have been running the springs for almost a month now and have never faced this noise and vibration and it appeared recently. He refused to accept my explanation and stood his ground. Giving it the benefit of the doubt, I replaced it in a nearby garage and the vibration and sound was still there, so I took my car back. He’s now telling me it’s also rims. I had to go back to stock to fix the sound and vibration. I will be driving back to Mangalore and due to his incompetence I decided to have him checked in Mangalore myself where I know the service advisor quite well. On my trip to Mangalore the sound and vibration only increased gradually and towards the end of the trip the vibration only increased to a horrible level. That’s when I realized it was the cracked engine mount that was causing all the trouble. The SA in Mangalore asked me to get the car if it was driveable and because of that, I took the car and had it fixed within 2 hours. Props for them. Vibration also makes the exhaust pipe burst, may be cracked or weak and SA welded in the workshop.

This means that my experience with the Mangalore Ford Cauvery service center has always been the best even after Ford’s departure. Had an accident in October which resulted in damaged side skirts, doors and tie rods. The car was sent to the repair shop and the whole job was done within 2 weeks and shipped. The work done is also to my satisfaction. Completed my 70K service recently. Taken early in the morning and directly installed on the incline. The brakes weren’t working properly and upon inspection, the rotors got pretty bad grades. Because they are cheap, the rotors and brake pads are replaced. And the car was delivered to me within 2 and a half hours. The bill also came to 9k which I think is reasonable for the work done and the replacement of parts. I also received several calls from dealers as well as Ford asking the status of the vehicle after delivery and if the work was done to my satisfaction. Overall a great experience with them and hope it stays the same in the future.

See BHPian’s comments for more insight and information.

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