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OMP MINI Cooper Lower Stress Bar

Price: $135.00
tax free
Born on the track, the OMP Lower MINI Cooper Strut Brace allows suspension geometry to remain unaltered in hard cornering while improving feedback to the driver. Strongly recommended for vehicles with low profile tires.

Unlike other under strut systems (uss) that simply attach to the existing heavy duty subframe the OMP MINI Cooper lower stress bar joins the 2 sides on the MINI's uni-body to actually strengthen beyond the existing subframe support. Other systems that attach to the existing subframe simply do nothing to strengthen the MINI's uni-body and simply add weight and clutter. If your truly interested in making your MINI handle better and not interested in the latest fad then the OMP Lower Strut Brace is for you.


Testimonials

I recently added the OMP lower stress brace in my `05 MCS, and was surprised at how well it works.

The issue it addresses is that all cars, have a certain amount of flex built-in, and this flexing causes the geometry of tire on road to change dynamically, reducing traction and handling precision.

The MINI, while torsionally stiffer than many cars, has it shortcomings; the points where the suspension attaches to the sheet-metal body are under a great deal of stress, and do flex when cornering or when you hit a bump.
This is noticeable when the car skitters around on rough pavement when cornering, and also allows noise and vibration into the passenger
compartment by propagating resonances into the sheet metal.

The MINI body resembles an Altoids tin, with about 1/3 of the bottom of the tin removed at one end (where the motor sits). The suspension is basically bolted to the sides of the engine compartment hole, at the top and bottom. This is not a particularly rigid structure in re. the suspension mounting, and the inevitable flexing does have negative effects.

What the OMP lower brace does is to span the sheet metal of the engine compartment at the back end where the front lower suspension control arms are attached. The tubing attaches with one bolt at each end (easily installed in a driveway) and cross-braces the rear right- and left-side front control arm mounts to each other across the car. This distributes the stresses of cornering and road irregularities across the two sides of the car, and reduces the amount of geometry change during cornering or bumps. It also stiffens the engine compartment sheet metal against engine and road-noise and vibration, and reduces interior noise and vibration.

It rides just in back of the 1" plastic lip at the back of the engine compartment, and the bottom of the tube is about ¼" above the bottom of
that plastic lip. I suppose it could scrape on a seriously lowered car, but if the plastic lip of your car is intact (most are) you probably won't have any problems with ground clearance.

The effects of installing the OMP brace are not as dramatic as a stiffer rear sway bar or lighter wheels and tires. If you got in someone else's
MINI and drove it on roads you were not familiar with, you might attribute the effects to a difference in tires.

However, in your own car, on a road you know well, the reduction in the impact of road bumps, and the reduction in noise are quite apparent. Overall engine and road noise are reduced, and the amount of squeaky-plastic ticks and buzzes caused by body flexing are greatly reduced.

The first time you take your car through a bumpy hairpin with which you are familiar, you will also find that the car is a bit more precise in going where you point it, and in your ability to control the degree to which you slide the front tires.

Bottom line is that the OMP lower brace does more good for the MINI than an upper strut brace, and isn't in the way every time you want to touch your engine.

It does work very well along with a strut brace at the top, and the effects of each brace are amplified by having one at both the top and bottom of the suspension attachment points. I added the OMP strut brace, and the effects of the lower brace are basically enhanced by another 50% - even more body stiffness and reduction in noise.

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tax free

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