To get an in-depth look and feel for the Energy HYPER-FLEX polyurethane touch, we took a Fourth-Gen Camaro down to the facility in San Clemente. The Camaro is already outfitted with new sway bars, a torque arm, shocks, coilovers, a Panhard bar, and trailing arms that all have polyurethane bushings installed. For that reason, we're not going to replace the existing polyurethane bushings with new ones; keep in mind, though, that Energy does have bushings available that will replace those applications. Although a good majority of the suspension components do have polyurethane, one major aspect still riding on OEM rubber is the front control arms.
The Energy HYPER-FLEX bushings for control arms are designed to drastically improve handling, sharpen steering response and overall vehicle control. All of Energy's control arm bushings are full-floating and non-binding. This aspect is especially important in terms of lowered vehicles that have altered suspension geometry. The Energy bushings help keep your vehicle aligned because lowered vehicles place more stress and suspension load on the vehicle that the softer rubber bushings can't accommodate. In the case of Energy's bushings, the durometer of the polyurethane counteracts the stress of a lowered vehicle and keeps the suspension more upright and aligned.
In the rear of the car, the polyurethane bushings are designed to help control wheelhop, reduce shudder during braking, and increase cornering control, too. Essentially, all of the Energy Suspension HYPER-FLEX bushings act the same way. They're designed to pick up where the OEM rubber let off, and take the performance and durability aspect to the next level. In a case where metal is used with the bushings, such as a motor mount, the metal is zinc-plated for long-lasting life.
One might still think, how big of a difference can a polyurethane bushing make over a rubber bushing? Well, here's my story. When I pulled up to Energy my car was LOW, I mean low as in the wheel tucked up in the wheelwell at all times. I knew the frontend would be apart, and this would be the perfect time to raise up my coilovers 3/4 of an inch, which would have set the wheelwell right at the top of the tire. After the install was finished and the car was raised 3/4 inch, I pulled off the lift to find that my wheelwells were now nearly an inch above the tires.
The new bushings were so stiff that my car no longer sagged to the ground, and that was only my initial visual impression. Once I got in and drove off, it took no more than 200 feet to feel the difference. When I pulled out of the driveway, I could immediately tell the suspension was tight and much more performance-oriented. That thought was only amplified when I nailed it and dove into a hard turn. No joke, it was as if I took a bite out of an orange and then turned around and ate a banana. It was that different, and all for the better.