The Mitsubishi Eclipse has always been a popular platform among Euro enthusiasts, especially since the introduction of the new body style in 2000. Recently, we’ve been seeing its “suspension sibling,” the late-model Galant sport sedan, showing up at Euro events as well. The one thing lacking for these two cars however, was an adjustable pneumatic suspension–until now.
Thanks to the innovative engineers at Air Lift Company, the “inventors” of air spring suspensions, you can now lay out your 2000 to 2003 Eclipse or Galant with their new bolt-on EasyStreet air ride system. The kit comes complete with two convoluted (double donut) front air strut assemblies and two tapered sleeve rear strut assemblies, compressor(s), electric solenoid “fast valves,” gauges, switches, air lines, fittings and extremely complete instructions with photos, plumbing/wiring diagrams, trouble shooting, maintenance tips and much more.
To see just how easy the installation really is, we followed Sean Thurman and Galen Armenta at Suspension Dimension Unlimited in Grand Terrace, California, as they put the kit on Brandon Keller’s ’02 Galant. Brandon had put a set of 19×8-inch chrome ADR Design X-Factor wheels and P225/35-ZR19 Toyo Proxes FZ4 radials on his ride, so we also had to make sure that they “tucked” when the car was laid out.
The strut R&R was a simple process, as advertised. Mounting the solenoid valves on the air tank was also a snap. Sean installed two compressors for faster moves, installed the twin-needle air pressure gauges in the center console and mounted a custom four-switch control panel (for front, back and side-to-side moves) on the console. But the acid test would be Brandon’s trip back to Reno. His report could be summed up in one statement, “It’s fantastic. I couldn’t be happier! And when I lift the front end, the tires actually come off the ground which is also very cool.” What more can we add except, follow the photos as we show you how simple it is to cruise on EasyStreet.
1. Now it’s easy to lay out your late-model Galant (or Eclipse) with Air Lift’s new EasyStreet air ride kit.
2. With the vehicle raised and the body on jackstands, remove the rear wheels. Then, flip down the rear seat, remove the plastic panel and unbolt the upper strut mounting bolts and upper strut-mounting nut. Retain the bolts for later.
3. Unbolt the lower strut mounting bolt and remove the factory strut from the vehicle.
4. Remove the lower strut mounting bolt from the spindle and discard.
5. The OE strut assembly is noticeably taller than the EasyStreet tapered sleeve air strut (shown here with its new lower strut mount).
6. Attach the new lower strut-mounting bracket to the spindle. Note: Loctite or a similar thread locking liquid is recommended on this bolt.
7. The OE upper strut mounting hardware is removed from the OE strut and attached to the top of the EasyStreet strut as shown. Note: There is a left and right air strut; the air fitting should point toward the rear of the vehicle.
8. Remove the bolts from the upper control arm and discard. Place the supplied bushings (spacers) between the upper control arm and the body of the vehicle. Attach using the supplied bolts and flat washers. Note: Attach the bushing, bolt, and flat washer, one bolt at a time. Tighten securely.
9. Slip the air strut assembly in place and reattach it top and bottom, using the supplied bolts and Nylock nut (for the lower bracket).
10. The installed rear air strut has a smaller diameter than the stock assembly so wheel clearance should be no problem. Repeat steps on the other rear strut.
11. Begin the front strut R&R by opening the hood and removing the three nuts securing the upper strut mounting bracket.
12. Remove the two lower strut mounting bolts and retain for reinstallation. Also unbolt the sway bar end link.
13. Remove the ABS and brake line bracket.
14. Remove the strut assembly from the vehicle.
15. The EasyStreet convoluted (double-donut) front air strut is also considerably shorter than the OE assembly.
16. Attach the supplied strut bearing, rubber spacer and top washer onto the air strut shaft with a Nylock nut.
17. Insert the air strut assembly into the strut tower first. Note: There is a right and left strut, the sway bar bracket tab should face toward the rear.
18. Attach the strut to the upper mounting bracket using three supplied Nylock nuts and flat washers.
19. Attach the lower strut mount to the spindle, attach the sway bar end link to the strut mounting tab, attach the brake line bracket and you’re done. The installed EasyStreet strut will allow plenty of turning room for the custom tire/wheel package.
20. The air tank is prepared next by first wrapping all outlets with supplied thread sealant.
21. The electric solenoid valves are then assembled using the supplied diagrams. After that, all supplied air lines and fittings are run to the struts and to the trunk.
22. Sean fabricated a wooden mounting platform for the air tank and two compressors, covered it with OE-style carpet and mounted it in the trunk under the rear package tray. Note how clean it looks with all of the valves and hoses being located on the backside of the tank.
23. Sean installed the supplied twin-needle air pressure gauges in the center console and fabricated a four-switch panel for front, back and side-to-side moves.
24. The tires and wheels were then bolted up and the system pressured up. At the new “rolling height,” there is plenty of tire clearance front and back. But would they tuck when it was laid?
25. Laid out the car looks very long and lean and the tires tuck nicely.
26. Even all of the way down, the 19-inch ADR rims and Toyo radials look sweet and clear the fender lip.