Well, its been almost a year now since we have purchased Mambo. He has taken us on some incredible adventures ranging from long treks through the barren deserts to freezing nights in the mountains of New Mexico. During these trips, it became apparent that Mambo was in dire need of some performance improvements.
Mambo is an incredibly heavy van, with the finished interior, off-road bumpers and winch and this was extremely obvious with his driving characteristics. He would sway and bounce along the highway, which for the most part was fine, but became almost dangerous in particular road conditions. Not only did Mambo need to be equipped for adventure, but he needed to do it safely, so we reached out to our friends at Nisstec Lifts, who specialize in Nissan suspension and outfitting. I had done tons of research online, scouring vendor sites including Icon which came up with nothing for the NV van, so I reached out to Chris Owner and Operator of Nisstec Lifts in Denver, Colorado.
We dropped Mambo off for some TLC from Chris the owner who made some measurements and test fits and found that coil-overs designed for the Nissan Titan XD fit perfectly in the NV van platform. We discussed some options and decided to opt for a set of Icon coil-over shocks which were tuned for a heavy-duty application like the Titan XD. The rear suspension needed a little help carrying the load of the build out so we decided to run a set of Firestone airbags to aid the tired leaf springs. Chris worked wonders in fitting this untested suspension and installing the airbag kit sending pictures of the install as he went.
We received a call from Nisstec informing us that Mambo was done and we should come and pick him up. The initial test drive felt great, but the first trip would be the final tell. Overall, the handling characteristics were completely overhauled. No longer did the front of the van bounce uncontrollably after each hump in the road, and sway was greatly improved. The rear bags allow for weight to be transferred from the tired leaf springs leveling out the van, which was beginning to sag in the rear. Mambo’s stance was greatly improved.
In the end we were thrilled at the suspension upgrades. We would highly recommend the Icon suspension upgrade for the front end to any NV owner that plans on taking their rig off road for any length of time. The airbags are working wonderfully, although we are going to need a new set of shocks and possibly leaf springs in the near future, they aided in extending the life of those parts. After the upgrades were are now more thrilled then ever to hit the road for our next adventure with Mambo.
We at OTGWM are not paid by or sponsored by Nisstec lifts, but we do support small business. If you are in Denver, Colorado stop by and say hi to Chris and the gang at Nisstec Lifts. If you are in the market for suspension visit their website via the link above or clicking the logo.
2091 E. 74th Ave. Unit M, Denver CO, 80229