Before we get into this review, one thing needs to be said upfront so everyone is on the same page. The stock rear control arms have nothing wrong with them. They are perfectly sufficient for the average Evo owner. This review isn’t intended for you to go out to replace a perfectly good stock part if you don’t need to.
Now with our disclaimer out of the way, we can now get down to the review. So why did we replace our stock rear control arms with the Agency Power Rear Control Arms. For some reason the rear camber in our project car wouldn’t go past -1.2 degrees. The car was experiencing some rear sidewall rub on our tire when going through tight portions of certain tracks. The goal camber setting we were looking to get was -2.0 degrees and we were definitely not going to get that out of our current setup. Trying most of the suggestions posted on the forum without any luck we decided to find another solution. With a little research we came across Agency Power’s Rear Control Arms. Each arm comes in two pieces, which gives its ability to be adjustable (a rod end mated with the main portion with 2 bushings). It was very intriguing and at this point we were willing to try anything.
With any new aftermarket part there are always pluses and minus. A minus that should be mentioned is by adding these new arms won’t save weight but rather add more (9 ounces more per arm with the 2 pieces assembled). This is primarily due to the rod end portion of the arm. It’s made with heavy gauge metal in order to maintain strength. The main portion of the arm not only has 2 urethane bushings, but it’s also extremely light in weight. Made from a very thick aluminum (6061 aluminum) and reinforced with steel sleeves, the chances of the arms ever failing are pretty slim. The plus side with these arms is obvious; we can now get more camber! Weight savings is important but 9 ounces per side wasn’t going to kill us.
Installation was very simple and with the right tools on hand it can be done in about an hour. After installation, we headed straight to the alignment machine to get everything dialed in. The following was our initial setup (Keep in mind we still run stock sway bars):
- Front: -2.5 degrees of camber with 1/8th toe out
- Rear: -2.0 degrees of camber with 0 toe
The car was setup and ready to hit the track. Luckily Car Guys was holding a track event at Shenandoah a few days after we installed the arms, so we signed up and patiently waited for the weekend. The weekend finally arrived and we logged in our first few sessions. On some of the tighter corners, the car seemed like it needed some more camber on the front (slight push during corner entry). With a few more changes to the camber in the front we went out again. This time the car felt much better. The rear felt very planted and didn’t have the usual instability experienced on the straights when running too much camber. Turn in was crisp and responsive. The car had a tendency to push from the apex out, which wasn’t too bad because it made the car more predictable. With more track time, we could definitely iron out the small issues.
Unfortunately since it was our first time at Shenandoah, we didn’t have a base line time to compare to. What we can say is the car did feel very response and gave us more confidence to push the car more, which is based on our driving style. The nice part about having these arms is the fact that the rear camber settings can be adjusted very easily for quick changes, which was a big time saver in-between sessions.
With the track results out of the way, it was now time to talk about the project car’s street experience. Since we drove the car to and from the track we got to experience how the car felt on the street. In reality it didn’t feel very different. The only time we could tell a difference was when the car hopped through road bumps. The rear felt very light while it was going over the bumps but very stable. Purchasing these arms for just the street would not be recommended because there really wouldn’t be a need to run aggressive camber (aggressive camber settings will shorten the life of your tires dramatically). We feel that the arms would be better suited for the track junkie or possibly the car show participant. What ever the case may be, if more rear camber is needed and it can’t be accomplished with the stock setup, then give the Agency Power Rear Arms a try. Stay tuned for more follow-ups and long term results!