1.8 VT sport - shock absorber recognition ?

may be a daft question - but can anyone tell me how to tell if I have Bilstein shocks or not on my mk 2.5 VT sport . They look std black type - there doesn’t appear to be any Bilstein labels on them or anything?  Is it obvious a label or something?


Bilsteins would be yellow and even if rusted some yellow paint would still be visible.Black most likely standard

Nothing wrong with standard MK2.5 struts - they work really well on our 1991 Eunos - well certainly better than the crusty Bilsteins they replaced:-)  

The early SVT had standard dampers and I think from 2002 onwards they had Bilsteins.

Our 2002 full blob chart Sport has standard blacks.

They are, after 12 years, performing perfectly.

As I understand it, Billies are not everyones’ cuppa.

They can be crashy and just too stiff for general comfort.

I recall some (apocryphal?) tale years back that Billies were made under licence by Krupps in Germany in black and factory fitted to 5’s which confused the issue.

Nothing much came of it. Bet Saz knows!

As said, earlier sports had black dampers. The build sticker in your door shut will probably call the suspension “Sport S”.


I had those on mine, before a certain bloke on this thread offered me some Bilsteins, If you’ve got a lot of miles on the clock those black dampers will be quite floppy.

I find the replacement bilsteins to be so much better, but then they were also a whole lot newer. 


If you want to stay OEM and avoid insurance debates, a Bilstein refresh isn’t a bad thing (if you can find a good set for cheap), otherwise you’ll start down the “lowz” route with 3rd-party kit.

Thanks Guys, I haven’t pulled them off the car to assess them yet - but as I have the front stripped out I may as well take this step. I will probably go for new std black OEM dampers if they are floppy…