Chassis flex is the nemesis of any good handling car. It’s no secret that race cars rely on rollcages and/or stitch welding to stiffen the chassis, but the question remains, how rigid should your car’s chassis be?
Generally speaking, you would want the chassis to be as rigid as it can be for handling reasons. The more rigid, the less chassis flex. Ultra Racing of Malaysia offers chassis bracing for numerous vehicles as an alternative to rollbars/cages, which are dangerous when used inside a street-driven car without the safety of a helmet.
Chassis bracing helps stabilize the chassis and suspension mounting points to minimize flex during hard driving. In fact, it helps every component in the suspension system do its job properly, and you can feel the difference through improved turn-in and sharper steering response, along with greater steering feedback.
Ultra Racing chassis bars were installed on our Subaru Impreza WRX using a service lift and air tools, but can also be installed using basic handtools, a jack, jackstands, and some assistance from a friend to aid in bolting on the braces.
Strut bars prevent chassis flex caused from horizontal movement in the strut towers. Strengthening the strut towers allows the chassis to stabilize under hard cornering with increased road.
Ultra Racing strut bars are constructed using high-strength steel tubing that is reinforced with laser-cut steel endplates to eliminate movement in the bar. The non-adjustable strut bar design is more rigid than adjustable bars, which flex at the hinge joints under extreme loads.
Side Lower Bars/Floor Bars Ultra Racing side lower bars/floor bars attach to the underside of the vehicle body, and their triangulated design ties together the inner/outer framerails and the rear lower control arm mounts. The one-piece lower floor bars mount using four anchor points for increased rigidity and are recommended by Ultra Racing for any car with upgraded springs, shocks, or sway bars.
The Ultra Racing fender braces replace the flimsy stamped-steel OEM fender braces on the WRX to limit deflection of the chassis under cornering and braking loads. The Ultra Racing three-point fender braces (also called “K” braces) stiffen the front by providing a strong link between the bulkhead and the area just beyond the firewall. Much like a strut tower bar helps eliminate side-to-side forces, the fender brace works to eliminate vertical movements and improve steering response.
Front Four-Point Ladder Braces
The ladder brace bridges the left and right suspension arms’ mounting points together to reduce flex and twisting of the chassis. While many of their competitors' braces require the removal of the factory subframe support, which affects the integrity of the chassis, the Ultra Racing brace retains usage of the WRX OEM subframe for additional chassis strengthening. The brace is also designed to accommodate exhaust clearance by ³/8 inch for fitment of larger-diameter downpipes.