Rancho vs. Bilstein Shocks Comparison in 2023

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Enjoying a great time driving on or off the road could be dangerous when the vehicle lacks the right components.

Some of those essential items are the lift shocks, which significantly enhance your experience in front of the wheel regardless of the surface.

When it comes to good lift shocks, two companies are often the best to consider: Rancho and Bilstein Shocks.

These products have been in the market for quite some time now, and yet, their relevancy up to this date remains. Not for nothing, they’re among the most valuable choices.

If you’re wondering which one is better, you’ll find the answer to that question in this article after we review them both. Let’s start!

Rancho Shock

Recommended Rancho Shocks to Buy

What to expect from this brand? Let’s take a look!

Long-lasting Performance

Thanks to Rancho’s high-quality tech, the absorber shocks are as durable as they’re effective for a lot of activities.

Whether you’re using them to carry heavy cargo or towing, these products won’t disappoint.

Better Performance and Handling

Installation may be tricky in some cases, but the overall results are pleasing. Once installed, the shocks improve the vehicle’s performance by making the rides smoother through better handling.


Use the Rancho shocks for on and off-road driving, and the results will be equally as good.

These products are ideal for casual driving on highways while also being great for those tricky trails.

Recommended Rancho Shocks to Buy

Now, we’ll dig deeper by reviewing some of the best Rancho has to offer.

Rancho RS5000X Gas Shock Set 2001-2010

Rancho RS5000X Gas Shock Set 2001-2010

The following gas shock set features a set of 4 items, suitable for vehicles featuring factory height or w/0” front lift, and w/0” rear lift.

More specifically, this kit will fit 2WD and 4WD vehicles, offering high compatibility for a variety of cars, particularly for off-road driving.

Other than the four shocks, the purchase includes pretty much everything else you may need.

You get the needed washers, bushings, and nuts that are essential for the installation.

Additionally, the reused factory shock mounting bolts allow for a quick installation.

This set of shocks is innovative as none other. It features the unique and exclusive rebound valving system from Rancho, which includes advanced compression phase of the shock absorbers.

If you wanted to improve the handling and performance of your vehicle, these products are a must-have.

Despite being fairly easy to install, you may experience some issues setting up the front shocks.

They require more space than OEM or other shocks, which could be confusing at first. It could turn into a big issue if the vehicle doesn’t have enough clearance.


  • Fits 2WD & 4WD models
  • Durable performance
  • Improves handling and stability
  • Includes all needed parts for installation
  • Remarkable for on-road and off-road


  • Installing the front shocks could be an issue

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Rancho RS5397 RS5000 Series Shock

Rancho RS5397 RS5000 Series Shock

Now, we’re talking about the Rancho RS5397 RS5000 Series, which features ten-stage velocity sensitive valving. Once installed, the shock offers tuning that’s specific for each vehicle.

Although it was released many years ago, this shock continues to be a good choice for light trucks and sport utility services.

With enough flexibility of use as stock or lifted applications, the RS5000 is suitable for on and off-road driving.

Since it’s available at a fairly low price, this product is a worthy acquisition that improves performance without being too expensive.

The 5/8-inch diameter piston rod (16mm), is capable of adding strength and durability for optimal performance.

As for the 1-3/8-inch diameter piston (35mm), many drivers found that it guarantees a stable ride over almost any environment you encounter.

For protection, the purchase includes protective boot, which keeps the shock rod and oil seal secure.

Installing the shocks is simple and easy. However, you may need extra tools like a torque wrench and a jack stand. Other than that, expect the process to be straightforward.


  • Ideal for light trucks and utility vehicles
  • Suitable for on and off-road driving
  • Provides strength and durability
  • Improves performance in most environments
  • Shock rod and oil seal protection


  • You may require extra tools like a torque wrench and jack stand

Rancho RS999324 RS9000XL Series Shock

Rancho RS999324 RS9000XL Series Shock

With a 2.75-inch (70mm) body diameter suitable for multiple applications, this shock provides good performance in most environments.

Plus, the 18mm Nitro Carb rod is large, durable, and strong, guaranteeing efficiency on and off the road.

Besides being quite effective, the shock is also good-looking. Due to its liquid metallic finish, the item has a premium design that resists well for many years.

The shock offers 9-position tuning technology. Undoubtedly, the nine different levels provided by the shock help increase comfort while driving. Also, being Nitrogen gas charged, it will optimize the shock performance, taking your vehicle to the next level.

Due to its massive shock body, the shock allows the RS9000XL to have a smoother ride, especially under towing applications.

Other valuable features are the polyurethane bushings for enhanced performance and the boot that gives protection for both the shock rod and the oil seal.

Overall, the products are outstanding. The installation, on the other hand, could be tricky, considering the instructions aren’t that clear.

Customers may have to check other sources for information on how to get the job done.


  • A good-looking shock that improves performance and appearance
  • Strong and durable build
  • Offers up to nine different levels of shock performance
  • Puts up with heavy loads
  • Increases smoothness while driving


  • The instructions for installation aren’t clear

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Bilstein Shock

Recommended Bilstein Shocks to Buy

There are many reasons why Bilstein shocks are the preferred choice for many drivers.

Here, we’ll learn a few of the advantages offered by these products.

A Complete Kit

Bilstein knows how to do things right. With front and rear shocks included, as well as bolts and everything else, customers won’t need to purchase extra parts to get the shocks installed.

High-End Tech

Since the shocks feature the technology of the highest quality, drivers will be able to expect nothing but excellence from Bilstein.

Improved handling and smoother rides are only two of the benefits you’d get.

Despite their price, Bilstein shocks are valuable alternatives when you’re looking for optimal performance.

It won’t matter the environment, surfaces, or weather conditions, as the shocks will get the vehicle through anything with complete ease.

Recommended Bilstein Shocks to Buy

Let’s take a look at Bilstein’s top offers!

Bilstein 5100 Front 2-2.5″, Rear 0-1″ Lift Shocks Kit

Bilstein 5100 Front 2-2.5 inch, Rear 0-1

When it feels like your vehicle cannot go on any longer, this set of shocks may breathe new life into it.

Not only will they look great, but the shocks make a significant difference in the performance of your vehicle. Installation is easy, requiring slightly over 90 minutes in total.

Once set, the vehicle feels more stable than it used to with the factory shocks.

The rear axle, for instance, will no longer lose contact with the road, an issue that drivers would often encounter while going around a bumpy turn at considerably high speeds.

The positive impact of these shocks is noticeable from the start. Use them to replace your old shocks, and the tires won’t get damaged during towing applications.

Not only will your ride feel smoother, but the overall handling of the vehicle feels much more comfortable than before.

Keep in mind, though; these shocks won’t work on Silverado 1500 models, only on Silverado 1500HD.


  • Complete set, including two front and two rear parts
  • Won’t require much time for installation
  • Improves performance and looks
  • Smoother ride and better handling
  • High-quality and durable


  • Won’t work for Silverado 1500 models

Bilstein 24-187367 5100 Series Shock

Bilstein 24-187367 5100 Series Shock

Now, we’ll take a closer look at a shock absorber specifically designed for trucks and SUV’s featuring front OE coil-over style suspension.

Due to the several snap-ring grooves in the body, the shock allows different spring seat positions for 0 to 2.75-inch of front lift. However, it depends on its use.

The monotube design comes with a 46mm digressive piston, which features a self-adjusting deflective disc valve system.

Following installation, the shock delivers increased wheel travel with better handling. If you’re looking for the perfect way to level your car, this shock offers just that.

Since there are many sources of information online, the installation will be a breeze for most users.

Even while set at the highest setting available, the shocks make the level of the vehicle look perfect.

After traveling more than 35k miles, there’s still no issue that would cause you any trouble.

Still, depending on the vehicle, alignment after installation may be necessary.

If that’s the case, make sure to do it immediately after adding the shocks to your car.


  • Suitable for trucks and SUVs
  • Several snap-ring grooves for different spring seat positions
  • Self-adjusting deflective disc valve setting featured
  • Increased wheel travel and improved handling
  • Easy to install


  • Depending on the vehicle, post alignment may be necessary



Lastly, we have a Bilstein front and rear shocks set that includes every part you could need.

This kit features shock absorbers and struts, which come in handy as they help improve the performance of trucks, vans, or SUVs. Besides increasing smoothness, the shocks increase handling.

When compared to conventional shocks, these offer incredible control to keep your cargo secure.

Since they feature Bilstein’s patented design, the dampers guarantee a safe performance regardless of the type of road or surface.

For the price, these shock absorbers are an affordable alternative that meets most of our expectations.

They’re one of the most effective methods to upgrade and extend the service life of your vehicle, as its performance on and off the road is more comfortable.

The installation process for the rear shocks is pretty simple, but the front shocks could be difficult.

If you have trouble, it may be better to get assistance from a professional to install the fronts.

Fortunately, that would be the only issue you may encounter after purchasing this set.


  • Rear shocks are easy to install
  • Improves handling and performance
  • Provides a smooth ride on and off the road
  • Durable build


  • Installing the front shocks may be difficult

Difference between Rancho and. Bilstein Shocks

Here, we’ll briefly compare Rancho and Bilstein shocks;

• Both Bilstein and Rancho shocks are fairly similar to one another. With many of them sharing a monotube design, their performance is almost identical in most cases.

• Some Rancho shocks, such as the RS5000X, feature a painted surface that is more prone to debris. However, the twin-tube body design protects the active internal tube.

• In terms of pricing, the Rancho absorber shocks have been consistently more affordable than the alternatives, including Bilstein.

• While it’s true that the Rancho RS7000MT shares a similar price to that of the Bilstein 4600, the difference in price is significant in other models.

Rancho Absorber Shocks – When to Buy?

If you’re on a budget, then the Rancho shocks will be the most affordable choice for you.

Still, don’t confuse their relatively low price for less quality, as they’re capable of delivering outstanding performance.

As seen in our reviews, Rancho delivers efficiency with few disadvantages.

Bilstein Absorber Shocks – When to Buy?

Instead, if you prefer true design and performance, then the Bilstein shocks would be the optimal choice.

You may face some issues during installation, but once you get it done, the money and time invested will be worth it.


In all fairness, both Rancho and Bilstein offer high-quality shocks that meet the expectations set.

Setting either of the sets would make your once burnt-out car into a new, refreshed, and more comfortable ride.

While considering Rancho and Bilstein Shocks, make sure to keep in mind the information discussed here. You’ll be able to invest your money more wisely then!