It is never a pleasant thing to find out that your car needs new shocks and/or struts.
However, many brands have come out with products that make it easy and cost-effective for you to replace these parts quickly. Two of the most prominent of these brands are KYB and Gabriel.
The following article will be looking into the brands’ shocks and strut assemblies at a glance, reviewing a few of their products, and finally making a comparison of KYB vs. Gabriel.
After reading the following, you should have a proper guide for your next shock and/or strut shopping trip at any of these two brands.
KYB’s shocks are used not only by the everyday person but also by professional racers.
Over the years, they have built a reputation of supplying not only their regular stock suspension systems, but have also branched out to produce the best aftermarket struts and shocks.
Their products are customized for different vehicles, so not only can you replace your car or truck’s original components, but KYB also allows you to upgrade your vehicle so that it can become its best version.
The company produces in Japan, but its many components are supplied globally. In fact, it has been found that almost 1 in every 4 vehicles features a KYB shock.
Needless to say, KYB is truly a global brand which produces the best quality shocks for vehicles worldwide.
KYB Shocks — Our Recommendations
Now that we are familiar with the KYB brand and its operations let us look into some of their most popular shocks.
This convenient kit from KYB comes with two shocks and two struts for the front and rear of your vehicle.
Given that KYB rarely sells its shocks and struts in sets, this is a great option if you are looking to replace all the shocks and struts in your vehicle for a lower price.
That said, this may still not be a complete kit, and you will likely need to go out and get components such as a coil spring and dust boots. You may also need someone to help you install these.
Even though you will need to get extra components and equipment, these are still quite easy to install, especially if you have some prior experience working with automobiles.
Though, if you have the option to buy them with the springs already mounted, that is highly recommended.
All in all, this kit will certainly improve your vehicle’s handling response and make it more comfortable to ride even on the bumpiest of terrains.
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This belongs to a line of Excel-G Gas Shocks from KYB, which can be bought individually at affordable prices.
It acts as the perfect replacement in most Asian minivans and is also calibrated to mimic the original handling features of a select few Honda vehicles.
The piston band (which is Teflon coated) works seamlessly with the cylinder to ensure a solid seal and lengthy durability of the shock.
This shock is also quite resistant to wear and tear thanks to the piston rod, which is thrice plated with chrome and the multi-lip seal oils.
When installed correctly, the shock will restore your vehicle’s original stability, improve its stopping distance, and help your vehicle maintain its wheel alignment.
It also greatly increases the driver’s control of the car since it comes to ESC ready.
The shock also helps prolong the life of your tires by improving handling and response time to commands.
Another option from KYB’s Excel-G Gas Shock line is the 344353. This also comes individually and at a very reasonable price.
As with any shock from this line, this one also provides great stability and responsive handling.
This includes easier lane changing, steering, and braking, as well as improved stopping distance.
The possibility of rattling is eliminated thanks to the fitted eye rings and bolt bushings.
This also helps restore the original control and handling characteristics of your vehicle and helps you maintain wheel alignment.
Because this shock reduces the need for unnecessary drifting, it helps your tires last longer and keeps them from wearing out due to friction.
One downside, however, may be that the selection of this shock may not have the right one for your particular vehicle.
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Gabriel ReadyMount Strut Assemblies
Gabriel’s line of fully-loaded strut assemblies is a game-changer. The brand has always looked to expand itself in the pre-assembled department, so this is a much-needed and excellent addition.
These strut assemblies are tested across several parameters such as fit-and-ride, precision testing, components testing, etc.to ensure maximum safety.
All in all, these strut assemblies make for a firm (but not stiff) ride with smooth handling, braking, and cornering.
Because these come assembled already, you save upwards of an hour of installation time.
You also do not need to use any extra equipment like a spring compressor to replace your old struts with this new pre-assembled one.
Along with the strut, each fully loaded strut assembly comes with a strut bumper, an upper strut mount, a strut boot, a spring seat, and a coil spring.
Gabriel ReadyMount Strut Assemblies — Our Recommendations
There are a few options you can look into when shopping for Gabriel’s Ready Mount Strut assemblies, and these are discussed below in depth.
The most appealing feature of this product from Gabriel is that it is a pre-assembled strut.
This means that you do not have to take out your spring compressor or any other equipment to install this.
As mentioned before, this strut assembly comes complete with strut boot, coil spring, strut bumper, spring seat, and an upper strut mount.
It is easy and fast to install even for folks who do not have any experience working with automobiles and have some basic knowledge of their vehicle’s parts.
The Orifice Disk of this strut, with its nine stages variable valving, ensures a consistent flow of oil.
This strut also provides the vehicle with a quicker response time to commands, thanks to the G-force technology.
Its piston rod is also bonded in such a way that it not only resists rust but also improves the product’s life span.
In addition, this strut makes for a safe and stable ride because of its stable steer valving.
This is a more lightweight and less expensive option from Gabriel’s line of Ultra Ready Mount fully loaded strut assemblies.
That said, it is just as versatile as its heavier and more expensive counterparts.
It is tested thoroughly to ensure that it provides precise steering, efficient braking, and an overall safer and more comfortable ride. The strut almost eliminates the bumpiness of vehicles on uneven roads.
Needless today, this strut is very easy to put in place and requires little to no additional installation components.
It has the same ReadyMount steady oil flow and is highly resistant to wear and tear. Even after 96 hours of use, the piston rod is said to retain its chrome finish.
One thing to note, however, is that the suspension on this strut may not perform as well in colder temperatures.
Other than that, you will most likely find an option from this range that fits the make and year of your vehicle.
This is a heavy-duty strut assembly from Gabriel’s line of pre-assembled struts.
It weighs a whopping 28 pounds, but will definitely deliver on its promise of making your vehicle easier to control and more comfortable to ride.
Along with the signature all-in-one quality, this strut (once installed without any trouble) will shorten your vehicle’s response time to commands and handling such as braking, steering, and changing lanes.
All of this also ensures the safety of your vehicle, as the strut prevents your tires from wearing down as fast, and also improves its braking distance.
There is a positive seal between its piston and the working cylinder, which ensures that oil cannot leak or bypass. This is in addition to its already consistent oil flow.
However, as mentioned, this is a heavier strut and can also be costly, so make sure it is the right fit for your particular vehicle before committing to it.
KYB vs Gabriel Shocks — Comparison
You may already have decided which brand and which product you will go for.
However, it is always good to see the brands and products go head-to-head in a more concise comparison.
You may need some professional help or, at the least, personal experience working with vehicles, in order to install the products from KYB.
For Gabriel, though, the installation will go more smoothly. This is because the products mentioned above from the brand come pre-assembled.
You will not need to go out and buy a separate coil spring, and putting the product into your vehicle itself is quite a swift process.
Because the Gabriel Ultra ReadyMount line comes pre-assembled, it provides the user with incomparable ease of installation.
You do not have to buy any separate parts or get any extra equipment to install these.
However, the ease and quickness of this product mean that it is also more expensive than the KYB shocks and struts, which require additional equipment and also need to be installed by the user.
While the KYB shocks and struts may come in kits, that is not as convenient as the already assembled and easy-to-install strut assemblies from Gabriel.
The components from KYB may require you to get some extra tidbits to complete the installation process. Even their kits do not come with everything you will need.
On the other hand, Gabriel provides you with strut assemblies which you need a little experience and virtually no extra components to install.
It comes with every component that you can need during the installation.
When it comes to KYB vs. Gabriel shocks and struts, both brands produce quality components that last almost a lifetime with most vehicles.
That said, there are benefits and deficits with both, so it is always up to you to understand which brand’s shock or strut is the right fit for your automobile.