A lift kit a crucial modification to SUVs that boosts their capabilities when it comes to taking them off-road. Simply put, lift kits provide those precious extra inches of ground clearance that might just help your SUV overcome big obstacles it couldn’t cross in stock form. However, lift kits are not plug-and-play accessories, as they tend to alter the driving dynamics of a truck.
If you have always dreamt of fording raging rivers, crawling up steep hillsides, and in general make your SUV work for what it was meant to do, a suspension lift is one of the most important modifications you can do to your truck. A suspension lift involves swapping out your stock springs and dampers with a set of elongated ones that raise the entire SUV, chassis and all, increasing ground clearance in the process.
One might argue that raising the frame of the truck also raises its centre of gravity, which tends to make the SUV unstable. Nowadays though, extensive research has been put into suspension lifts that takes into account the new ride height and related issues that might crop up. Modern suspension lift kits are rated to handle the forces that come into play when the centre of gravity is raised.
Suspension lifts have the clear advantage of imparting the truck increased ground clearance, the importance of which cannot be understated. Why go around obstacles if you can simply go above them? A smaller benefit with suspension lift is the ease with which you can now access your truck’s underbody. It makes inspecting and repairing your SUV’s drivetrain, differential, and chassis much simpler. Lastly, if you choose the right suspension lifts for your prised SUV, you can also benefit from improved ride quality over both smooth and broken surfaces.
This is not where the goodness of lift kits ends. In addition to the extra ground clearance, a lift kit also increases suspension travel. This results in some significant changes to the SUV’s dimensional specifications. For one, you get increased suspension travel, which automatically adds a few extra degrees of wheel articulation. Secondly, approach and departure angles go up substantially, and so does ramp breakover angle. With the right suspension lift installed, you can safely take your prized SUV dune-bashing without having to worry about being bogged down in sand
A third and mostly overlooked advantage of lifting your SUV is the massive road presence it acquires. People tend to automatically clear the way for a big vehicle as soon as they notice it hurtling towards them in the rear-view mirror. This is another advantage of a suspension lift: not having to worry about other drivers coming too close to your truck, or having to squeeze into tight gaps in traffic. Those gaps usually widen for you.
So there you have it. Not only does a suspension lift make it easy for you to pilot your truck through harsh off-road trails as well as spirited dune bashing, it can also clear the road for you if you are in a hurry. With a lift kit installed, you will finally see the true capabilities of your SUV!