Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: San Antonio, Texas
Koni Yellows with stock suspension
A few months ago I installed a set of Koni Yellow sports setting shocks on my '72 Super. My Super has a stock suspension, its bushings are nice and firm, etc. It is also a remarkably original car so I shouldn't have been all that surprised to find that it was riding on its oem fittment Allinquant. At 139k klm, they were well and truly worn out.
Why Koni Yellows? There is some "received wisdom" among Alfa enthusiasts that Koni Yellow sport setting shocks are "too stiff" for for street-cars and are better suited for race applications. I haven't found this to be case at all. I started using Koni sport setting shocks long before before they were identified by the yellow color. Back in the day they were red but identified by an SP1 code. This was a long time ago. Before I go on I should say that I've driven 105 series Alfa with Koni Red stock setting shocks and find them excellent all-around shocks. I will note that many Alfa owners increase the stiffness of the red front shocks a bit. Just sayin' . . .
My comments, however, are not intended to be a direct comparison of Koni Reds and Koni Yellows. What follows is my rather favorable impression of fitting new Koni Yellow shocks to an otherwise stock Giulia Super suspension. As mentioned, my Super has a completely stock, entirely roadworthy (bushings are still in good shape and so may have been changed at some point in the car's life) suspension so installing the Koni Yellows gave me a good baseline. The only difference from stock is that I have 15x6x29mm GTA style wheels with 185x65x15 Kuhmo H rated tires.
The Koni Yellows were installed in their stock position and, as installed, are relatively stiffer, i.e., you can immediately feel the difference, than my experience with Koni Reds. My entirely subjective interpretation of the difference between stock setting reds and stock setting yellows is that the yellows in my experience are indeed stiffer but hardly uncomfortably so (as in not jarring your teeth over bumps) and---again this is entirely subjective---less harsh than, say, sport setting Bilsteins or even the sport suspension settings on my Mazda3 5 door. Basically, the yellows are designed to provide more control and, in this, I think they do a good job.
Not far from my house there is a limited access uphill access road. It's long enough to allow some hard acceleration and, since there are seldom any other cars present, it's a great place for tuning. The road terminates in a decreasing radius sweeping turn which made it great for trying out my new shocks. I was especially impressed with how the yellows performed in the decreasing radius turn. If I time things just right I can catch the green light and enter the intersection (usualy devoid of cars, btw) fast enough to break the tires loose. This time, however, I could actually feel the Koni Yellow shocks firmly controlling the front suspension movements. To confirm this I made several loops around the access road, each time increasing my speed until I was right at breaking the tires loose. Each time the Konis showed that they were doing what their advertised to do: they provide more control while remaining supple enough to make them unobtrusive in normal driving. In everyday driving, you're aware that the shocks are stiffer than stock but not so much that you are constantly aware of the "stiff-shock-spring" harshness from race-oriented suspension settings.
I like this combination of stock suspension, Koni Yellows, and the Kuhmo H rated tires so much that I've shelved my plans for further suspension mods for the time being.
I will add a final caveat. I am speaking from the standpoint of a long term user of Koni Yellow sports setting shocks. These are my preference mainly because I like 'em. You're experience may differ.
Jim . . . '72 Super 1300, '70, 1750GTV, 2nd series,
'62, Lancia Flaminia Zagato3c, 2nd series
Last edited by 180OUT; 01-01-2017 at 04:43 PM.