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Guides Title TRD Suspension System
Name image Crzy Joe

Check the sidewall of your tires. Read the small print on the sidewall and you'll find a maximum load rating and related tire pressure. It is not recommended to exceed the tire pressure listed for safety reasons. However, increasing pressure up to that limit can result in increase handling performance.

A practical method of setting ideal tire pressure is to make chalk marks on the sidewalls, at 90 degree intervals, running from the wheel outward to the beginning of the tread. Drive the car in the manner you intend to use it, then inspect the sidewalls of all four tires. Contact with the ground will have rubbed off some chalk. Adjust pressure until the chalk line remains to the point where the sidewall and the tread edge meet. If pressure is too low, you'll rub off chalk on the sidewall. Do not be surprised if you wind up with a pressure setting as much as 10 psi over stock. This should be repeated after each step of suspension modification, as new pieces will change the pressure requirement for optimum tire use.


There is more to the story than keeping all four tires on the ground; you want them to maintain the proper angle to the pavement so the contact patch of rubber is as large as possible. That is what proper wheel alignment does.

Simply changing the alignment settings can make a dramatic improvement in grip. What to change, and what the change will produce, requires a brief explanation of some terms with which you may well be familiar. A car's basic handling characteristics, when pushed hard, fall into one of three types: understeer, oversteer or neutral.

Understeer is the condition when the front end has less grip than the rear. If pushed beyond its limits of adhesion, the car's front will slide before the rear tires lose grip. In oval track racing, it's known as 'push.'

Oversteer is the condition when the rear end has less grip than the front. Pushed to the limit, a car with oversteer will have its rear tires break traction in cornering while the front stays stuck.

Neutral, of course, is when the whole car slides at the limit. If you achieve this, have the car bronzed; it doesn't occur often the the real world. Ideally, you want a little understeer, because it is both more predictable (you can feel it coming) and because, when all else fails, you're usually better off leaving the pavement front end first. You have more time to close your eyes and duck!

Remember, finally, that we are talking about handling characteristics at the limit. Handling below the limit is more a function of driving technique than suspension geometry or spring rate.

*quoted from TRD USA Book - Toyota Cars: Built to Perform


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