There are several aftermarket options for upgrading your rear sway bar including various parts sold by Nico sponsors like Enjuku, 240sx Motoring, and FR Sport. Some of these parts come with or can be further upgraded by harder bushings or adjustable endlinks, also available at these sponsors’ sites. This install features the OEM 21mm swaybar that comes on HICAS-equipped fastbacks and OEM endlinks and bushings.
Time: ~1 hour
– ratchet and extensions (stubby handle optional)
– breaker bar (optional)
– 12mm deep and regular sockets
– 14mm socket
– 12mm open-end wrench
– adjustable wrench
– PB Blaster or equivalent (optional)
– FSM (for tq. specs)
– helper (optional)
– rear swaybar (new/aftermarket endlinks and bushings optional)
(comparison with non-HICAS bar)
Begin by parking your car and placing it in gear, then chock the front wheels. *Safety First* Raising the car is not necessary, and will not make this job any easier.
Look under your car directly in front of your rear wheels. Attached to the rear subframe is a long tube with a bend in it. Notice that it is held on by 2x u-shaped brackets and bushings and 2x thin metal rods with more bushings at the ends (endlinks).
If you look closely at the endlinks, you will see a squared section just above the lower bushings (highlighted).
This is used to secure the link so the bolts can be loosened/tightened. Put your adjustable wrench there and secure it, then put your 12mm socket wrench on the upper bolt and start turning to remove it. Space in this area is limited, so a stubby or short-handled ratchet would be a handy tool.
After the 12mm bolts on the top of the endlinks have been removed from each side, you can pull the 14mm bolts holding the brackets and bushings to the subframe.
There are two on each side, and they may be stuck from age and crud. You can spray them with your chemical penetrator if need be, then attack them with the breaker bar. After they are out, you should be able to drop the sway bar and pull the bushings and brackets off. You can chuck the old bushings if you like, as your new bar will more than likely be too large for them to fit on. Retain the brackets.
Now that the bar is free, it should be easier to remove the old endlinks.
This is NOT absolutely necessary but makes the next step about ten times easier to accomplish. If you are keeping the links, set them aside. If you are replacing these bushings as well, you can go ahead and put the new ones on the links (most aftermarket endlinks come with new bushings).
Time for the fun part: snaking the old bar out from in between the chassis and exhaust system. With your endlinks removed, this should be very easy. If you need to, there is a rubber exhaust mount with a single 12mm bolt attached to the first muffler you can pull to give yourself more room. This is where your helper comes in handy as they can sit on the other side of the car and help you guide the bar out.
When its clear, breathe a sigh of relief and get ready to do the same thing with the new bar, but in reverse. After its where you want it to be, replace or install your endlinks and bushings (make sure they are in the right way) and tighten them to the tq. specified in your FSM. Re-install your bushings and U-brackets and tighten the bolts, again to the specified range.
Replace the exhaust mount and bolt if you removed it.
*NOTES* increasing your rear sway bar disproportionately to your front bar can induce snap oversteer and trailing oversteer in certain situations. Take is easy for the first drive and get a good feel for the car before trying any rainy day or otherwise adverse road-condition stunts.