Development Review: Golf MK7 R with MSS Spring Kits
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Over the years, I have published a number of reviews on forums however as forums are increasingly getting a little ‘crowded‘ and therefore good information is often easily missed, I felt it necessary to move future publications to our News page. So, here goes another Williams ‘War & Peace‘ however this is about the VW Golf MK7 platform as we switch our attention to tackle the VAG MQB platform.
Briefly about MSS KITS, it was one of those ideas that started as a quest by me to improve the handling of my Audi TT-RS Roadster back in 2010.
What followed over the years was plenty of lows and a few highs which ultimately delivered a performance spring kit solution, working with Eibach, that allowed me to have fully adjustable front and rear capability, enhanced ride comfort, composed & balanced handling however retain the factory shock absorbers. The solution has found its way on to a great deal of Audi MK2 TT cars – from FWD right up to the TT-RS range topping model.
If you doubt what our performance spring kits are capable of achieving for track and streets use, then immense yourself in the videos below;
North America is our biggest market closely followed by Asia then Australia. If you are an existing customer reading this review, then thank you for your support – we are here today because of your support and, make no mistake about that!
The VW Golf MK7 MQB platform is highly regarded and that lead us to focus our attention on the MQB platform with 3 target models planned for 2016 – VW Golf MK7; Audi A3 8V; Audi TT MK3. The VW Golf MK7 is our first MQB release and our Development MK7 R will be followed by a MK7 GTi to complete development for the platform which will accommodate all the models in the range.
- MSS KITS Development VW Golf MK7 R
- Transmission: 6-speed MT
- Engine: Stock and claimed 300BHP
- Anti-roll bars: OEM
- Wheels/Tires: OEM 18″ with Bridgestone Potenza tires
- Suspension: Factory passive shock absorbers (non-DCC) tested with pre-production MSS Track Pack and MSS Sports modular performance spring kits
Our own MY 16 MK7 R – shown below in the driven state after another long road test – has been in stock trim since arrival in 2015 and the only change made is the replacement of the factory single form linear springs with MSS Spring Kit developed solution for the platform which is a single form linear spring kit for the front axle mated to our unique developed triple rated dual stacked adjustable rear arrangement for the rear axle.
The car shown above and below has MSS Sports Kit fitted though has been lowered 20mm on the rear axle from 365mm down to 345mm. The front axle has been lowered 12mm from 360mm down to 348mm…yes that is slightly reverse rake and for a reason. Our tests is in many forms and we do test a number of optimum and non-optimum setups to gain a view, address issues, be able to advice customers what the various setup scenarios may yield in terms of ride comfort, handling and any other traits that would be useful information to share at point of product release.
The rear axle can be lowered further by 20mm and the front can be lowered also a further 20mm. For VW Golf MK7 R models with DSG – the heaviest cars in the range, we expect these to be the lowest the vehicles can be lowered safely however we will cap lowering to 30mm (+/-3mm). For lighter cars in the range, we will also test and share the optimum capped lowering – though likely to be 30mm (+/-3mm). Again, our performance spring kit solution being fully adjustable, front and rear, enables customers to dial-in to millimetres the height they desire or just adjust back to stock height and enjoy all the MSS traits which includes our primary aims of enhanced ride comfort with composed and balanced handling for streets or track use.
It is important that I make a point about ride height lowering. Our solution will allow you to return your car to the stock ride height, this is key, or lower down to 30mm (+/-3mm) and not many solutions on the market can offer this option. This is an important point and want to ensure that this is understood – that makes our kits entirely different to other lowering kits or Coilover kits as neither of these competitor products will allow the ability to return to stock height for Winter use, as an example. We do not promote lowering for the sake of lowering as that, often, does not yield our primary key aims of enhanced ride comfort with composed and balanced handling.
Over the past few weeks I have been privileged to initially test MSS Track Pack and currently MS Sports on our Development VW Golf MK7 R with 6-speed MT. The car weighs in at 1453kg (3203Ibs). This is a relatively heavy car and similar weight to an Audi MK2 TT-RS Coupe, expect the DSG to add roughly 20kg. The car however, does not feel heavy and is in fact a competent package in stock trim. To get much out of the stock car in terms of driving fun requires driving rather aggressively – which is not always the best way to enjoy any vehicle on open roads or on track for that matter – smooth is fast is often noted by accomplished drivers.
MSS Track Pack is marginally and noticeably firmer riding compared to the stock setup – which is how we designed the kit – however manageable for streets use. That is where the comparison ends.
Steering is weighted and feels almost like the power assisted has been dialled back perhaps 25% when DCC steering is set in the Sports mode. This is a very nice and welcomed changed in my opinion. The net benefit here is that, the steering has gained a ‘feel‘ of the road surface with the steering gently jiggling in the hands which reminds me that this car has 300 horses primed and ready to be used.
Find a bend, drop to 2nd gear give it a boot full of kinetic energy and the car stays, rear does not squat as much, steering is nicely weighted and so much more reactive to each input….flick of the steering and you can adjust the attitude of the car whilst navigating bends..this kit is going to be fun on track or for open roads aggressive Canyon drives – safely however due to the additional composure the chassis has now gained with our solution. You really know exactly what the tires are doing, what the chassis is doing; composure is taken care of so you do not worry and instead enjoy the driving experience.
Driving has not been this fun for ages in a hot hatch…this is what a Golf is supposed to be…right now. I really like this kit and enjoyed it immensely. It will be my default kit for our 7R once development and the various testing is complete. Basically, I only used to drive the 7R because we needed mileage as baseline and none of us in the development team looked forward to the stock car. Now, it is a fight as to who puts the next 100 miles on…fortunately as the owner of MSS KITS, I have earned the privilege of being able to pull ranks on the odd occasion and it has come in very handy with MSS Track Pack fitted with our 7R…trust me, am always first in the queue to drive the 7R now!
This kit is fun, it is a proper ‘sports’ kit and makes the car what it should have been from the factory…a very capable and fun 300BHP ‘HOT’ hatch…you want it to be stable; composed; communicative; ride bumps with confidence and enable all that 300 horses to be put to tarmac with greater zest…it does that now!
MSS Sports builds on the fine traits introduced by MSS Track Pack however you gain enhanced ride comfort which is similar to the ride comfort of a regular Audi A3 8V Cabriolet 1.4L which we used for a back-to-back ride comfort comparison. This kit takes the stock setup, reduces squatting on acceleration and therefore the steering does not go light when pushing on at pace thus adding steering feedback to enable the driver to judge exactly what grip is available. Composure is a much welcome noticeable improvement over the stock setup.
For a daily driver that is fun to drive, gets you enjoying the commute back home after a day at work or lay down some lap times at the weekend, this is the right MSS Spring Kit for you. The fact that you can lower the stock ride down by up to 30mm or adjust to a millimetre to whatever ride height suits or maintain the stock ride height if desired is something I am very pleased we have been able to achieve as this puts our solution heads and shoulders above other solutions for the VW Golf MK7 platform.
I have been enjoying MSS Sports for over a 2,000 miles and it is just so different to the stock setup and in a way for daily use, this kit does put MSS Track Pack in to the shade a little in regards to ride comfort…however for me, it really is all about the handling hence MSS Track Pack will be what I will opt for on my 7R…sure it is firmer however 300BHP are screaming to get out and I really must oblige!
The MK7 Golf platform is very exciting and what I have seen of the simple solution we have developed so for tells me that this platform is going to be so much more fun. I look forward to customers taking delivery of their kits and getting out there to enjoy this wonderful MQB platform…it really is very capable.
A short video of the 7R early this morning – this is what I enjoy doing most…early morning drive to get acquainted to the English countryside, safely however.
Thank you for reading and for the interest in MSS KITS.
William | Owner | MSSKITS.COM