Why Upgrade To A Tubular K-Member?
Your K-Member may not be the first thing that comes to mind as you plan out suspension upgrades. But it’s a more important component than you might think! Upgrading from a stock, stamped steel K Member in your Mustang or classic Mopar offers a wide range of benefits—on top of looking way cooler.
First thing’s first: what is a K-Member?
A K-Member is a very important structural element of your vehicle. In some ways, it’s similar to a crossmember. It ties the front frame rails together in both unibody and full-frame vehicles. But it goes a few steps further.
In many cars, the K Member acts as the foundation of your entire front end. Your motor mounts bolt to it. Your lower control arms attach to it. It can play an integral part in the way your front sway bar mounts and functions. In other words, it plays a huge role in the way your car bolts together. That makes it a prime candidate to be one of your first suspension upgrades if you’re looking to get the most out of your car.
Most stock K Members (especially in older vehicles) are made out of stamped steel. That made them great for manufacturability, but not much else. They’re heavy, bulky and—really—pretty ugly. Tubular K Members remove a lot of that excess material used by old-school OEMs. Using strong, steel tubing means you can improve on the original design by using material and cutting weight. For instance, our QA1 Fox Body and SN95 Mustang K Members weigh in at 50% lighter than stock.
Create more clearance
Let’s go back to that idea of bulkiness. Stamped steel isn’t the most efficient option. OEM designs eat up a lot of space under the hood, limiting your exhaust options and taking up room that could be used for other upgrades. A tubular K Member gets rid of those headaches and frustrations. Plus, they make it way easier to access parts and wear items you may need to adjust, modify or replace.
Increase strength and rigidity
There’s a reason roll cages are made out of round tube – it’s a very strong material that can take a lot of stress and add rigidity. Tubular K Members do the same thing for the front half of your car. Replacing your stamped steel components with tubular ones reduce flex, which reduces stress on your frame, minimizes suspension bind and improves overall performance and predictability. This is especially important when you’re pushing the car hard and want it to behave the same way every time.
Make engine swaps easier
Many tubular options, including our Foxbody and SN95 Mustang K-Members and Mopar Coil-Over Conversion Systems, use modular engine mounts. That means swapping in a different powerplant—whether it’s an LS, Coyote or Gen 3 Hemi—is as easy as ordering up some new motors mounts that bolt right into the same location. Yes, there are a number of other fitment details to think about. But the job of actually situating the engine in your car can be accomplished with a few bolts and zero fabrication.
Prep for future upgrades
As we mentioned above, your car’s K-Member plays a few very important roles. Using it as a first upgrade means you have a really solid foundation to build off of. Replacing future parts, from control arms and sway bars to oil pans and headers, gets a lot easier. And you can be confident you’re bolting everything on to a component you plan to use moving forward. No need to install everything now just to pull it off later when you upgrade your K-Member.
Give us a shout if you have questions about K-Members
Our tech team is happy to help answer any questions about QA1 products, including our tubular K-Members. If you have questions about swapping components into a classic Mopar car, Fox Body Mustang or SN95 Mustang, give us a call at 952-985-5675.