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By Jeremy Martien
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Bilstein has been developing dampers for the auto industry since 1957 after prominent success of brand
recognition from their previous industry endeavors.
Thanks to the discovery from a French scientist, Bourcier de Carbon, Bilstein was able to make its first
monotube shock absorber for the Mercedes-Benz series in 1957. Today, Bilstein has shock absorbers for
many applications including Porsche, Lamborghini, Bugatti, Aston Martin, Audi, BMW, Ford, Jaguar, Land
Rover, Lotus, Mercedes, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Opel, Subaru and Volkswagen offering direct OE
replacement.
Bilstein has a specific line of shock absorbers, Damptronics, that is in line with the new technologies
today with electronic active suspension utilizing tradional shim stack technology with electronic solenoid
valve for instant adaptivity. The Damptronic series shock absorbers come in different variations from B4,
B6, and B16.
The difference between the models of Damptronics vary dependent on performance level. The B4
Damptronic is an OE level shock absorber while the B6 Damptronic offers more dampening force as a
conventional high-performance shock. The B16 Damptronic however is the high-end coil over shock
absorber provided by Bilstein made for motorsport level performance.
The B16, being the high-end shock absorber, has great attributes that exceed the OE equipment. Like
many aftermarket shock absorbers, the Bilstein B16 offers the capability to adapt to the OE electronic
adjustment system. The shock absorber is not limited to the versality of being able to switch rapidly
between comfort mode, sport mode, and race settings for high-end motorsports. Zinc coating on the
shock body is meant for corrosion resistance and threaded body makes for 20mm of adjustment. The
shock aborsorbers are road tested by Bilstein under motorsport conditions to acheieve the high
standard of quality control.
This video illustrates well how the Bilstein Damptronic shim-stack design and solenoid valve works under
load conditions and the variables given from lateral and longitude load rates.