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LIVE NEWS DAY 1: New range of solid-piston dampers launched at PMW Expo
KW automotive GmbH

KW (Booth 2028) is presenting a new range of three solid-piston dampers, ranging from a basic, fixed-rate setup to a five-way-adjustable coilover. Head of motorsport Thomas Rechenberg told us how the extensive range came about: “Two years ago, we launched a four-way-adjustable damper with a solid piston; now we are launching three new dampers from that platform.”

The top-of-the-range five-way-adjustable model with an inline reservoir can be adjusted for low- and high-speed bump, low- and high-speed rebound and blow-off; ride height can be set using shims. It is primarily aimed at GT classes and LMP cars, but can also be downgraded to two-adjuster and made suitable for TCR and GT4 cars.

The second new damper on KW’s booth is an upside-down version of the four-way-adjustable solid-piston damper. “Often you have the problem that you want the high stiffness and resistance against side forces, but you also also want the clear hydraulic system of a solid piston, so we’re combining the two,” Rechenberg explained. “That has forced us to put the hydraulic unit on top of the damper, which makes it more complex design-wise, but this setup actually makes it very easy for the customer to adjust the settings – often you don’t even have to take off the wheel to make changes.”

An additional benefit of this damper is that it is homologated for TCR series as a two-way-adjustable unit. This means that race teams can run it with four-way adjustability during testing, and then run it as a two-way-adjustable damper during the race.

The final novelty on KW’s booth is a fixed-rate damper for cup series, also based on the solid-piston system. The TTSP model is a much more cost-effective solution, allowing race teams to build a complete system for €1,200-1,600, but have the driveability and hydraulic power of a more expensive system.

Rechenberg also commented on the significance of launching the new product at PMW Expo: “It’s always good to have a clear launch for a new product and PMW Expo is a really good place to do that. It’s an atmosphere to meet and connect with people away from the racetrack, because at the track everyone is always stressed and very busy.”

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