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Suspension Lift vs Body Lift – Which Lift Should You Try?

suspension lift vs body lift
Written by Nick Steiner

Modifying your truck is a great way to give it some individuality and character, but you must select the right method to lift it. This isn’t a project you want to attempt without careful planning and the appropriate tools.

There are two ways to go about the process – body lift and suspension lift. They both serve a function and provide various advantages but operate in different ways.

Suspension Lift

Suspension Lift

Suspension lift typically provides a four-to nine-inch elevation requires more customization than the body lift. But you’ll notice a significant difference with this setup since you’ll gain not just height, but also superior suspension movement and ground clearance.

Also, this method lets you fit the vehicle with more intimidating and larger tires, as well as wider, larger wheels. Then you may add some larger fender flares to finish the look of your truck. If you’d like to go off-road, you’ll want to invest in some quality coilovers. These feature bigger bodies that can better withstand the truck’s weight.

Body Lift

Body Lift

A body lift functions independently from the suspension system. In simple terms, it raises the vehicle’s body utilizing the spacers located under the cabin. The most straightforward way to raise your truck is using a body lift kit.

Depending on your needs, you may choose from many heights. The best aspect is that it won’t affect the overall performance of your vehicle. Body lift kits are usually applied when installing larger tires and include brackets for realigning bumpers and matching the body and  gap guards to protect the frame.

Suspension Lift vs Body Lift – Major Differences

1. Cost

Lifting a truck might be costly, but the performance you get is proportional to your investment. The body lift is quite inexpensive, costing only several hundred dollars. Even if you buy the most costly, highest-quality body lift kit, you’ll notice that it’s still inexpensive. Suspension lifts are more costly than body lifts because they have a lot more components, yet some of them take a lot of expertise to assemble.

In comparison to a suspension kit, a body lift kit is significantly easier to configure. If you do not feel confident in your ability to apply the kit yourself, you’ll have to hire somebody else to do it, but it’ll be far less expensive than implementing a suspension lift. If you’re choosing between a body lift and a suspension lift simply based on installation, you’ll want to go with the standard body lift. However, if you’re willing to spend the extra money, the suspension lift will be more beneficial.

2. Body and Chassis Raise

Suspension lift kits expand the truck’s suspension, lifting every portion of the vehicle in the process. Although body lift kits often stop at 5 inches, suspension lift kits may go up to 9 or 12 inches, allowing you to completely change the appearance and performance of your truck. The body lift doesn’t elevate the chassis, it just raises the body. Because body lifts merely elevate the body, the space between the underside of your truck and the road remains unchanged. On the other hand, the suspension lift elevates both the body and the chassis of your truck.

3. Ground Clearance

Your vehicle’s ground clearance will not be increased by the body lift. The chassis and suspension are still at the same height and position as before. If you put bigger tires on your vehicle, you’ll get a little more ground clearance, but it’ll be insignificant compared to what you will get with a suspension lift. The suspension lift increases your ground clearance by one inch per inch added to the elevation height. If you intend to go off-road, then the suspension lift will be a better choice.

4. Lift Size

A suspension lift will be your best option if you desire the highest possible vehicle height. A body lift can potentially be built to give you an absurd amount of height, but that would look odd.

Body lifts for most trucks are limited to 3 to 5 inches. Suspension lifts could go up to 10 inches and even beyond, but they’ll be pricey due to the extensive alterations to handling and suspension, and they’re only for serious rocky climbing or the cosmetic of a high-riding truck.

Even the best-designed kits can’t eliminate the stability difficulties that a considerably higher center of gravity causes at high heights. If you want to get the most out of your lift, suspension lifts are a way to go.

5. Handling

Because the weight of the truck is being elevated, every lifting mechanism shifts the center of gravity. This implies that you might encounter more roll motion during a turn. Lifting your vehicle can affect how it handles, raising your chance of body roll. While both choices will affect how your truck handles, the suspension lift will significantly increase your chance of body roll.

What’s more, a suspension kit might significantly alter how your truck handles so you will need some time to adapt. A body lift, on the other hand, will only have a little influence on how your truck handles.

6. Center of Gravity

The center of gravity is the place where the majority of the weight is located. By raising your truck height, you will also raise the total amount of weight, resulting in a higher center of gravity. Suspension lifts have a great influence on the vehicle’s center of gravity and significantly affect handling. The body lift merely increases the weight of the vehicle, giving it a factory-like handling experience. If you want to elevate your vehicle without sacrificing handling, then body lift is the way to go.

7. Changes in Geometry

Body lifts merely raise the body, therefore the space between the base of your truck and the ground remains unchanged. As a result, the body lift does not affect the suspension or wheel geometry and therefore does not need adjustment. A suspension lift elevates the vehicle’s frame excluding the axle, differential, or bottom control arms, so 2 inches of suspension lift will provide 2 inches to ground clearance, for example. As a result, the suspension lift causes changes to the wheel geometry and suspension, demanding adjustment.

8. Off-Road Performance

The body lift kit does not affect off-road performance. The suspension lift, on the other hand, increases ground clearance and enhances off-road performance. People who desire to experience the most demanding off-road adventures will benefit from a higher truck. With an elevated vehicle, you may expect better performance.

9. Safety and Comfort

The comfort and security are unchanged by the body lift kit. Because a higher truck provides a better perspective of the highway and any obstructions that may occur, a suspension lift kit provides you a safety edge over lower-profile cars. Even a few seconds of warning might mean the difference between evading or being a part of a risky situation.

Which One Is Right for You?

The decision between suspension lift or body lift kits is entirely dependent on your ambitions for your truck. Body lift kits could be the ideal option if you just want to sit a bit higher at the wheel. Suspension lift kits, on the other hand, are the way to go if you want to take on the wild outdoors and put some enormous tires on your vehicle.

Select a kit that corresponds to your vehicle’s specific model. When selecting a lift kit, consider the dimensions of the wheel and tire combination you wish to install on the truck. You can always seek advice from an expert on which lift kit is best for your truck.

FAQs

1. When Is Better To Get a Suspension Lift Over a Body Lift Kit?

Ans. In scenarios when off-road performance is critical, a suspension lift is preferable over a body lift kit. To begin with, a suspension lift kit not only allows you bigger tires but also raises ground clearance underneath the frame of your vehicle.

2. Is It Possible to Install Both a Suspension Lift and a Body Lift to My 4×4 Vehicle?

Ans. By combining a body lift with a suspension lift, you can have the best from both worlds. This is a great option to elevate a vehicle while maintaining the vehicle’s handling characteristics.

About the author

Nick Steiner

Nick has been a car nut for his whole life as far as he can remember. His father was a car dealer who used to change and repair his cars himself. As a result, Nick had the opportunity to get around all sorts of cars and learned to get his hands dirty repairing vehicles from an early age.

Nick is a great fan of Japanese quality and German preciosity. His deep passion lies in older models that he believes have a flair that takes him back to his childhood. He also loves their durability and reliability when compared to the modern models.

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