Worth replacing stock shocks with Bilstein 5100s ? Tires/Rims question

'14 4Runner SR5

I read that these shocks are a great upgrade over stock. 1.75" lift in the front, better ride quality and long life. What about brake dive, will it be the same as it is now or be worse?

I am also thinking of replacing the stock tires. Dunlop Grandtek AT20 would be replaced by Nitto Terra Grappler tires. Stock rims would be replaced by black TRD rims

OR leave everything as is…?

With your other complaints I don’t understand why you want to open up more cans of worms.
You’re certainly free to change shocks, tires, and wheels as you wish. However, any warranty claims regarding alignment, wheel hubs, vehicle ride, tire wear, suspension problems, and so on can be legitimately denied no matter how hazy the connection between the parts and the problem.

As to Bilsteins, if I were in the dealer shop I would refuse to install them. Why? Because I’ve worked in dealer shops where customers wanted Bilsteins installed on their new cars and were severely irritated and downright pxxxxx off when those Bilsteins failed at a young age.

In one case, I installed a full set on a 2 week old VW and one failed within 3 weeks. Two weeks later another one went and the customer had forgotten all about the warranty on labor only; we do NOT warranty a non-factory part.
Our copy on file of the repair order refreshed his memory…

I have the 5100’s on my 05 4runner. Great shocks. I installed them when the OEM shocks wore out at 175k miles. The OEM shocks are excellent. I see no need in replacing them until needed.

I’ve always felt like the engineers who designed our cars were probably much smarter than I am. If your shocks are worn out, that’s one thing, but if they are still good, why bother?

I have friends that work at Bilstein. I worked with their engineers many years ago on a few projects and I know what goes into them. I think they are a good quality part and I have them on one truck and one car. 25000 miles + on each set with no issues. Better ride than the factory parts on each vehicle. So I’d recommend Bilsteins.

As for your brake dive, the shocks will help the transient motion but not the final amount it dives. The springs control that, the shocks only slow it down. Jacking up the ride height will only make that worse.

If the shocks are part of a kit that supplies new springs with the shocks, then yes, your brake dive will likely be the same or less because the springs are likely stiffer. Your ride may suffer a bit, in either situation.

My vote is to leave it as until the warranty runs out. Use the time in the interim to research things like the changes to the suspension geometry that elevating the truck creates and how to compensate for them (for example, does the kit exist to align the front end after elevating it? And will the inner CV joint be at the limits of their extension capabilities?), and do U-joints that are operated at greater angles of articulation due to chassis elevation actually wear out faster (they do), and if you put more unsprung rotating mass on the corners by changing to bigger/heavier wheels and tires, and in so doing also increase the rolling resistance, will the added load on the drivetrain cause premature wear and/or failure (it very well might).

And, last but not least, do shocks that reduce “brake dive” also provide a better ride (only if you like your ride stiffer).

I won’t even bother getting into issues like the effect raising the chassis has on things like the operation of the sway bars. Suffice to say you may want to lower the rotating axis of the bars (the points where they’re held to the chassis) to compensate.

Once the warranty has expired and you’ve done the research to really understand the implications of the changes you want to make, then have a ball emptying your wallet.

A way to find out for the newer gen like yours, is to try out the 4Runner TRD PRo with Bilstein shocks and compare it to yours. There may be other differences, but it is as close as you can come to finding out for sure. The 2014 generally handles much worse then the older model Imo, so if the Bilsteins make it much much better in the Pro, I would consider it if I could get the unnecessary expense by my co financial administrator ( my wife). Otherwise, I would sooner use the money for a new set of golf clubs.

But if you have money to burn…try out the Pro then GO from there. After all, the 2014 4Runner was really panned for it’s crappy handling and nose dive when braking. If the Bilsteins help keep the passengers from barfing in the back, they then could be worth the added expense saved in cleaning over time. But then, does the Pro have Bilstein 5100s ? You will have to do research and talk to both Bilstein reps and Toyota parts department.

Is brake dive a problem now ? How about cornering lean ? Does it seem now, that you need stronger shocks ?

My 80 Bronco drove like crap with the new-fangled gas shocks on it…put the old oil-filled shocks and it hugged the corners like it should.

Big E350 motor home had way too much sway with everything we tried…except the Bilsteins, which required a floor jack to compress them enough to install them. But that’s what it took to control the sway.