W209/W203 bonded ARB bushes

Page may contain affiliate links. Please see terms for details.

IanW

Active Member
Joined
May 17, 2009
Messages
239
Location
Reading
Car
W209 CLK 500
After 16 years and 200K miles, the front ARB bushes seemed to be due for replacement - no excessive movement in the anti-roll bar, but visible splitting in the rubber bush. Besides, drop links, top mounts, damper, springs and lower arms had all been replaced (in some cases more than once) over the years and the front suspension still crashed over speed bumps and potholes.
Rather than buy a whole new ARB with it's bonded bushes, I thought I'd try to retrofit the older non-bonded bushes. The brackets are not interchangeable between the two styles of bush, but they do fit the same bolt holes into the sub-frame.
I removed the ARB, removed the rubber bushes bonded to it; quite easy as most of each bush had become unbonded over the years. From Autodoc I bought the old-style ARB brackets, part numbers FEBI 40443 and 40444 and bushes for a 21mm bar - FEBI 23902 x 2.

A spot of cleaning up, repainting & re-fitting and the front suspension is back to being reasonably quiet - potholes & speed bumps now back to causing a muted 'thump'. I doubt that the replacement bushes will last as long as the originals, but I can't see myself keeping the car for another 16 years.

A downside, the squeaky driver's seat is now much more noticeable and getting very annoying. Looks like that's the next job!

One oddity: the brackets for bonded ARB bushes are identical and have the same part number. The non-bonded versions have separate part numbers and are marked 'L' and 'R' but are identical in all other respects.

Brackets for the bonded ARB bushes on the left, Febi replacements on the right.

Ian.
ARB-small.jpg
 
Interesting, have same problem with my CLK. According to Indie need a complete ARB for 60£(?)
 
£60 for a new ARB - sounds like a bargain. At that price it's not worth going to the effort of changing over.
The Febi brackets & bushes came to around £35 including postage from Autodoc. All I could find in the way of complete ARB (or 'sway bar') were the aftermarket Eibach or H&R kits for a few hundred pounds.
Ian.
 
After 16 years and 200K miles, the front ARB bushes seemed to be due for replacement - no excessive movement in the anti-roll bar, but visible splitting in the rubber bush. Besides, drop links, top mounts, damper, springs and lower arms had all been replaced (in some cases more than once) over the years and the front suspension still crashed over speed bumps and potholes.
Rather than buy a whole new ARB with it's bonded bushes, I thought I'd try to retrofit the older non-bonded bushes. The brackets are not interchangeable between the two styles of bush, but they do fit the same bolt holes into the sub-frame.
I removed the ARB, removed the rubber bushes bonded to it; quite easy as most of each bush had become unbonded over the years. From Autodoc I bought the old-style ARB brackets, part numbers FEBI 40443 and 40444 and bushes for a 21mm bar - FEBI 23902 x 2.

A spot of cleaning up, repainting & re-fitting and the front suspension is back to being reasonably quiet - potholes & speed bumps now back to causing a muted 'thump'. I doubt that the replacement bushes will last as long as the originals, but I can't see myself keeping the car for another 16 years.

A downside, the squeaky driver's seat is now much more noticeable and getting very annoying. Looks like that's the next job!

One oddity: the brackets for bonded ARB bushes are identical and have the same part number. The non-bonded versions have separate part numbers and are marked 'L' and 'R' but are identical in all other respects.

Brackets for the bonded ARB bushes on the left, Febi replacements on the right.

Ian.
View attachment 116872
I’ve saved this on the iPad In case I need to do my CLK . Cheers buddy
 
Not many years ago for my w203 I was trawling the internet for the replacement ARB bush thing. I ended up buying a new ARB from Merc for I think it was £50 with the bonded bushes, and therefore the job was easy (once I'd undo the bolts!!!). I was very surprised at the reasonableness of the price.

Merc Grangemouth or Newcastle might come to the rescue for the best price.
 
£60 for a new ARB - sounds like a bargain. At that price it's not worth going to the effort of changing over.
The Febi brackets & bushes came to around £35 including postage from Autodoc. All I could find in the way of complete ARB (or 'sway bar') were the aftermarket Eibach or H&R kits for a few hundred pounds.
Ian.
Just done this on my 2009 CLK buddy , worked a treat . Thanks
 

Users who are viewing this thread

Back
Top Bottom