Pickups might be catching up the Land Rover Discovery in the comfort stakes, but the one big difference is the super-smooth comfort of a top-spec Disco’s air suspension.
VB Air Suspension reckons it has the answer to that with its retrofit air suspension kits. They are designed to get rid of spring or leaf-suspended pickups’ jittery on-road driving and increase ground clearance on the slimy stuff. Air kits can also be handy for levelling off-centre loads and reducing vehicle on the move.
So far VB’s suspension systems have been type approved in the UK for the Isuzu D-Max, Toyota Hilux and VW Amarok, although other makes and models are in the pipeline including the Navara, Ranger and Defender.
Price varies from £200 for a pair of coil springs, £400-800 for semi-air (only available on the rear axle), or you can go whole hog with a full air suspension kit for about £3,000.
In-cab the driver gets a controller with various functions. If full suspension is specced then there’s a height memory function, raise/lower buttons that can be used on the move at up to 25kph and an off-road mode that pumps the air bags up to an almost-maximum point. There’s also a parking mode that drops the vehicle down on its haunches.
Every kit is a bolt-on unit (no cutting or drilling is required) but its not a self-assembly job – it takes about a day for one of VB’s 10 dealers to complete the fitting.
VB claims its air suspension kits give a better ride and greater ground clearance.