Getting rid of some of that nasty understeer on our front wheel drive vehicles is always a good thing, and it can be done on the cheap for most folks with a simple upgrade of the rear sway bar.
This summer I installed a heavy duty rear sway bar in my 2005 Impala with the hopes of making the car feel a little less tipsy and loose. I picked one up from GM Parts Direct for about $50. Installation was very simple. Remove the end-link nuts, then remove the two subframe clamps (single bolt for each) and the old bar can be removed. Putting the new one in was just as easy, reusing the clamps and endlink nuts. There are a total of three new parts installed when complete: the sway bar, and two bushings.
All in all, it took me a bit over an hour to do everything taking my time mainly using three tools.
Once complete, I was eager to to test it out. The change was noticeable in how the car felt. The ride quality was unchanged, yet the whole car felt more composed and body roll was definitely lessened. But the best part of all was..wait for it..
LIFT-OFF OVERSTEER!!! *
*On loose gravel
I'm sure some of you can already do this in your vehicles, but this is lift-off oversteer in a GM W-body car, it impressed me. Think about how much fun it'll be come winter!
Sway bars for other vehicles are still fairly affordable. It seems like for most FWD beigemobiles, they seem to be about $50-$200. TRD makes sway bars for some of their vehicles including the Camry and Corolla. Numerous aftermarket companies offer sway bars for numerous other vehicles as well, so chances are you can find one for your vehicle.
So if you're tired of sloppy understeering and gratuitous body roll, drop a few bucks and hours on a new rear sway bar. You wont regret it.
Photos from GMPartsDirect and TheJacobJones