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julian said:
Standard Insight rear springs allow bottoming-out on roughish roads.

Daewoo Matiz rear springs are a direct drop-in replacement. Same free
length, slightly stiffer.

If changing to them, make sure you also swap over the rubbery plastic
sleeves that slip over the bottom few Honda spring coils. (Otherwise
there's lots of boooiiiinnnng noises!) Julian Edgar
Many thanks to Julian for this info. I took advantage of it, and am now posting my upgrade info. Luckily there are loads of Daewoo Matiz cars in the scrap yards in the UK. I bought a pair of springs recently for £25.00 inc delivery off e-bay. (Didn't even need to go and take them off, or get my hands dirty.) :)

My walk through is based on my own experiences, skill's and facilities, your's may differ ;)

I have a pit in my garage, so this made the actual spring exchange a 30 minute job. But first of all I prepared the new springs, shot blasted and re-painted them matt black. Note the springs are shown here with the Matiz top rubbers, I used the original Insight rubbers when I fitted them.

http://www.solarvan.co.uk/insight/Springs01.jpg

I reversed the back third of the car over my pit, got underneath and removed the lower shock absorber mounting bolts from both sides.

http://www.solarvan.co.uk/insight/Springs06.jpg

Original spring still in situ.

http://www.solarvan.co.uk/insight/Springs05.jpg

I then jacked up one rear wheel using the side rear jacking point, I left the wheel and tyre on and handbrake off, as I was operating from underneath and could access the spring with it in situ. Also the added weight helped release the spring later on.

Now by pulling down on the wheel and tyre from underneath you can pull the suspension down far enough to release the top of the spring from the body mounting.

http://www.solarvan.co.uk/insight/Springs17.jpg

Then just take it out of the bottom mount as well.

http://www.solarvan.co.uk/insight/Springs16.jpg

You will see on examination of the original spring it has two plastic sleeves over the bottom couple of coils. You should transfer these to your replacements. They simply slip over the coils.

http://www.solarvan.co.uk/insight/Springs10.jpg

The top of the springs have a rubber mounting insert, I re-used the original Insight one on the the new springs.

http://www.solarvan.co.uk/insight/Springs09.jpg

Before I fitted the new spring I cleaned out the bottom mounting point. You should note the spring has to fit correctly in the bottom mount, and there is a space for the bottom coil to be located.

http://www.solarvan.co.uk/insight/Springs14.jpg

To reinstall, put new spring complete with plastic lower coil sleeves and top mount rubber into the bottom mounting, and rotate it until the lowest coil is correctly located.

http://www.solarvan.co.uk/insight/Springs18.jpg

Now pull down hard on the wheel and tyre to enable you to slip the top part of the spring onto the mounting. Be careful not to disloge the top rubber insert, you need quite a bit of weight on the wheel to do this.

http://www.solarvan.co.uk/insight/Springs20.jpg

Now slowly let the weight back onto the rear wheel and re-check spring is correctly located and rubbers have not been disloged. Re-attach bottom shock absorber mounting. Bounce suspension to seat correctly.

Repeat for the other side.

I noted the height with original springs from the road to the middle of the rear bodywork above the wheel spats was 640mm, after the conversion it was about 660mm, an increase of 20mm. The replacement springs are stiffer, and the coil metal is larger diameter, probably about 12-13mm compared to the Insight 10mm.

http://www.solarvan.co.uk/insight/Springs21.jpg

A nice mod, a quick test drive seemed OK. Will do a final spring seating check tomorrow. :)

Why did I do it? well my wife and I are tall fairly heavy people. We are away for a 1000 mile trip in the car for next two weeks with a bit of luggage. The original springs would not have liked this, and poor roads would have meant a lot of bottoming out. I shall report back after the trip. :D

Peter
 

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Spring upgrade update.

Just got back from holiday in Scotland's Highlands. 97.3mpg over 1982.5 miles in my recently rear spring upgraded Insight.

http://www.solarvan.co.uk/insight/1982miles.jpg

Car did not miss a beat, and we tackled some rough roads and steep hills over our two weeks away. Rear spring upgrade was a great success, did not bottom out once, very slightly under damped on one or two very short sections, but certainly not enough for me to do anything about it.

I actually saw another UK Insight on the Isle of Harris (Part of the Hebridies) met the owner and had a chat, nice chap, he had owned the car from new, he believed it was the only one on the islands, and he was delighted to see me and the wife, he took a photo of the rare union!

http://www.solarvan.co.uk/insight/harrisinsight.jpg

I also caught a fleeting glimpse of another Citrus yellow Insight heading north on the A1 at Leeming today at about 1730hrs as we came back south. Anyone on here?

Conclusion. I shall upgrade our other Insight rear springs as soon as I can get another set from the scrap yard :) Excellent.

Peter
 

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List For Daewoo Matiz Rear Springs

Apparently "there are loads of Daewoo Matiz springs in UK scrap yards". Many US Insight owners want to install these springs in our cars. If a list of sufficient size of interested buyers were compiled, somewhere in the UK some enterprising soul may arise to fill the need or be able to direct buyers to a source or sources who will painlessly export these springs to the US.

I would be interested in buying two sets. Put my name on the list:

1. Hugh-Falls (two sets)
2.....
 

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Apparently "there are loads of Daewoo Matiz springs in UK scrap yards". Many US Insight owners want to install these springs in our cars. If a list of sufficient size of interested buyers were compiled, somewhere in the UK some enterprising soul may arise to fill the need or be able to direct buyers to a source or sources who will painlessly export these springs to the US.

I would be interested in buying two sets. Put my name on the list:

1. Hugh-Falls (two sets)
2. Kevin Dougherty
At this price point, I'm in.
 

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OK, tell me why are we putting in new springs? I dont think it needs it for load carrying as I just drove 200 miles with a 200 pound wind turbine on top of the battery case (with some aluminum bars to spread the load!!) and experienced no bottoming.
 

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Ride Height

OK, tell me why are we putting in new springs? I dont think it needs it for load carrying as I just drove 200 miles with a 200 pound wind turbine on top of the battery case (with some aluminum bars to spread the load!!) and experienced no bottoming.
EV and PHEV conversions generally require additional batteries. Ride height changes with the load and to maintain ride height, a spring with a different rate is required. Peter has found that the Daewoo Matiz spring appears to be a satisfactory exchange for his loads. It may be OK for mine.
 

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OK, tell me why are we putting in new springs? I dont think it needs it for load carrying as I just drove 200 miles with a 200 pound wind turbine on top of the battery case (with some aluminum bars to spread the load!!) and experienced no bottoming.
I think one's need for stiffer rear springs must depend on the roads one typically drives and the load one typically carries. Having just driven 5,300 miles through Europe with 2 adults and our luggage (i.e., load capacity maxed out), I don't recall more than a handful of bottoming experiences.

But last summer, roads in northern Norway had dips at regular intervals for some reason. Traveling the speed limit with approximately the same load as this summer, we bottomed out on every dip. I was considering installing stiffer rear springs after that uncomfortable experience.

I wish there were air springs that could be installed inside the rear stock springs. One could increase the air pressure when a heavy load was carried to minimize bottoming without the need to install stiffer springs. One Insight owner claimed to have installed such air springs but never posted details.
 

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Air Springs

.......I wish there were air springs that could be installed inside the rear stock springs. One could increase the air pressure when a heavy load was carried to minimize bottoming without the need to install stiffer springs. One Insight owner claimed to have installed such air springs but never posted details.
The Airlift Co. Air Lift - Suspension Innovation Since 1949 support technicians suggested using their Suzuki #60793 air bags as a possible fit but had no specific recommendation. These could be a good solution for adjusting to variable load situations but if a known/constant load is being carried, like a set of batteries, replacement higher rate springs may be better.

For the EV or PHEV, the replacement (metal) springs would appear to be a simpler more reliable arrangement.
 

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Interesting to look back over the thread after 11 years.

1) Some people here don't change, do they?

2) A lot of people missed out on a pair of springs at US$65 delivered.

3) I would now recommend variable rate rear springs, not the fixed rate Matiz springs.
 

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Peter which year of Matiz? I have just tried to fit 2005-09 springs and they are 1"" dia bigger and about 1" shorter
You need the early model it is all detailed on here if you dig about.
 
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