When the KONI FSD came out, it revolutionized sporty daily driving.  KONI is famous for adjustability in their shocks and struts, and the FSD (short for Frequency Select Damping) was able to adjust stiffness and responsiveness based on the vibration frequency of the road.  The Frequency Select Damping technology features special internal valving that is meant to increase or decrease the strength of the dampers depending on the type of vibration going through the car.  This made for a smooth luxurious ride over harsh roads where NVH was very high.  When the road transitioned to something smoother with less harshness and vibration, the dampers were able to tighten up and provide a responsive and sporty handling experience.  KONI has combined this famous FSD technology with the very popular KONI Special dampers to create KONI Special ACTIVE, a next generation damper system that builds on this no-compromise approach.

KONI Special ACTIVE Dampers are able to automatically adjust handling depending on road type

Koni Special Active DampersKONI Special ACTIVE replaces the KONI Gold FSD as the next generation of the technology, and in doing so also supersedes some KONI Sports as well.  The Special ACTIVE is designed to be a do-all replacement, providing high levels of sporty handling without the need for manual adjustability.  As you can see above, the adjustability on the Special ACTIVE happens during rebound, exactly like the KONI Sports but with less knobs. One major bonus is price, as the KONI Special ACTIVE dampers will be available at a much lower price than the outgoing FSD’s.

You’ll notice in the graph above the fat range that these can cover between low and high rebound force, which is impressive considering these aren’t electronic in any way.  It’s so effective that many OE manufacturers are embracing the FSD technology found in KONI Special ACTIVE dampers and utilizing them in their factory setups.  Names on that list include Mercedes-Benz, Jeep, Alfa-Romeo, FIAT, Ferrari, and Lamborghini.

If you have an electronic adjustable damper system in your car, or have had one previously, you’ll probably be familiar with the occasional problems they have.  With the Special ACTIVE line, KONI is able to do away with all the complicated switches and solenoids to maintain a completely hydro-mechanical approach.

KONI Special ACTIVE are good to use with the lowering springs of your choice, we recommend H&R springs available on eEuroparts.com due to their progressive spring rate and Made-In-Germany high quality.  Just be wary that KONI suggests not to drop lower than 1.25 and a maximum around 1.5in, otherwise you lose the benefits of the FSD ride.  If you are a commuter that enjoys a smooth ride, with the occasional canyon run or autocross mixed in, these are for you.  Hit the button below to shop for a set of KONI Special ACTIVE dampers for your car, availability begins at the start of June.  The KONI Improved rebate ends soon, so if you are thinking about upgrading your suspension to the brand new Special ACTIVEs, get your purchase in before May 31st!


9 thoughts on “KONI FSD is now KONI Special ACTIVE
  1. Erv P.

    Ive heard ony great things about the FSD’s and have been told the Special Actives are even better. Now that they are available for the E46 chassis and my stock suspension is in need of replacement- I want to pull the trigger. I’ve checked a few sources such as tirerack.com, ECS TUNIING and a couple others that state that these are to be used with factory springs and not lowering springs (I couldn’t find the info on Koni.com.) Yet your article states the opposite. I want to believe your information as I really want to use the Special Actives on my E46 but I also need to close some serious wheel gap on the front. The H&R’s would lower the vehicle perfectly but I’m afraid of compromising the integrity or durability of the dampers if Koni or others don’t recommend the use of lowering springs. I don’t want to change out blown shocks or struts anytime soon after completing a labor intensive suspension overhaul. The time, money and warranty headaches would be a P.I.T.A. Any additional info or clarification would be much appreciated.

    • Adam Goral

      Hi Erv, The KONI Special Active absolutely can be used with lowering springs. If you don’t trust me, I found an official page online that says so: http://www.koni-na.com/en-US/NorthAmerica/Products/Cars/Special-Active-(Red)/ “Perfect match for all standard and sport OE springs plus many lowering springs”. These don’t have an internal bump stop, so they will work the same way whether or not the shock is fully in or fully out, just as long as it isn’t completely bottomed in either direction and can still move through its full range. They will be bundling these with Eibachs soon and will have everything available as a kit, but they lower just as much as the H&R’s so you’re in the clear there. Your warranty will also stay intact with the H&R’s, I have the sports installed in my car and love them. They take a minute to settle and quiet down after install FYI.

      We will even build these for you so you can erase the labor intensive aspect of it, as we assemble complete strut units here on our own equipment and ship the assembly whole. That way your work day becomes far shorter and you don’t have to deal with spring compressors (trust me, these BMW struts are a total bear to put together), just yank, bolt, and go to the rear. Added bonus you replace your strut mounts, bearings, and hardware at the same time. Shoot an email to customerservice@eeuroparts.com with your VIN and they can set you up with exactly what you need, or you can give them a call at 800 467 9769.

  2. Oskari Uitto

    I’m running Koni FSD’s, and for a while I was using Eibach ProKit lowering springs with them, but changed back to stock springs as the FSD’s didnt dampen the rear end sufficiently. My theory is, the stiffer springs’ higher frequency of oscillation keeps the operation closer to the point where the FSD’s allow more movement, and as a result, the dampening was impaired. My experience is, the FSD’s work best (and they do work great) with stock springs or equivalent.

  3. Anders Aarsoe

    About your comment above where you stated that the KONI Active does not have an internal bumpstop. It is my understanding that you are to use the bumb stops from the original install or better yet purchase new ones. In any case they need to have them installed.
    I just installed one of the first sets in Europe on my bmw e60. Very happy. Firmer than the standard suspension maybe even a bit more than the sport line but so soft over big bumps. Definitely the best of both worlds. Would get them again for my next replacement but hopefully it will be a while…

    • Adam Goral

      Thanks Anders! Yes, no internal bump stop. We sell all the parts required for a perfect install, bump stops included. Glad you like the new Special Actives, they are a great product!

  4. Damien Shulock

    Like the comment above, I found the Koni FSD’s to be too wimpy with aftermarket springs. My car is a 2007 Saab 9-3 SportCombi 6MT. The pre-made suspension kit was purchased from Eeuro with H&R springs. Compared to OEM, the ride is harsher in all conditions with very little benefit when driving aggressively on smooth roads. The body motion is all over the place, not well controlled. I have endured it for 15k miles and I’m disappointed. Would not recommend.

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