This is a question we get all the time. Before asking any other questions, you should be familiar with the aspects of this question. Ride height is usually defined by the distance between the bottom of the car and the ground. This question depends greatly on what you are looking to accomplish with your car. There is no correct answer to this unless you know what you want to get from your car. Are you looking to use your car for motorsports? Are you looking for that super cool stance? Are you somewhere in between? Is this vehicle a daily driver? These are all extremely important questions to answer prior to settling on a ride height. The ride height will impact your car’s center of gravity, aerodynamics and many other factors that will be noticeable the second you take the wheel!
Ride Height for Motorsports
When considering what the best ride height is for motorsports, you traditionally want to go as low as you can without impeding the suspension from working properly. With a motorsport only vehicle you don’t have to worry about potholes or bad road conditions, but you do still have to consider bottoming out or going so low that your suspension cannot function properly (end links, control arms, tie rods, etc). The lower you go, the better center of gravity which typically means better handling and cornering. At the same token, the lower you go the more likely you are to cause other suspension issues like bump steer. It is also important to note that ride height effects nearly all suspension factors and adjustments previously made. It is recommended to adjust your ride height first, then move onto other adjustments such as alignment specs (camber, caster and toe).
Ride Height for Stance
In regards to the “low life” crowd, these enthusiasts tend to go as low as possible and are more concerned with form rather than function. The team at ISC isn’t against this as every driver has his/her own wants and needs. For the most part, this is considered to be “safe” as these cars don’t undergo any actual racing, but are rather entered into shows or lifestyle events rather than motorsports. There is no right or wrong approach when looking for the best stance. It comes down to personal preference. I should mention, a super low ride height is alright for shows or appearance, but if the vehicle is ever driven on public roads, say to and from a show because you don’t have a trailer, extreme caution should be taken as any small bump or pot hole can cause major structural damage as well as weird suspension characteristics. Other than that, the one of the best recommendations to alleviate this issue would be to use air cups. Air cups allow you to raise your vehicles ride height by 1-2 inches on the fly. This is quite useful if you are leaving a show or meet and need to raise the vehicle to get over obstacles or to help get you into (or onto) a trailer.