Bolt-On Trackbar Correction Kit (BOTCK) For 5th Gen 4Runner – An Essential Modification For Lifted Trucks
In my opinion, lifting your 4Runner for more ground clearance or to correct the stock stance/rake is one of the top modifications. Let’s be honest, lifting the truck does improve the aesthetics and functionality, but it also takes a toll on the driving characteristics.
This happens because we are changing the geometry of the vehicle by raising its center of gravity. In addition, it creates further problems down the road if not addressed properly. Be proactive and correct your 4Runner’s post-lift geometry with the Bolt-On Trackbar Correction Kit from DR. KDSS.
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- Bolt-On Trackbar Correction Kit (BOTCK): Check Price
Trackbar/Panhard Bar Correction
One of the many things that get altered after lifting your 4Runner is the position of its rear solid axle relative to its stock position.
A Trackbar/Panhard bar is as the name implies, a bar that is responsible for tracking the position of the rear axle checked when the vehicle is in motion.
Lifting the rear end of the 4Runner will shift the Panhard bars vertically. This causes bump-steer issues and pulls the axle out of center alignment. With the help of the Bolt On Trackbar Correction Kit, you can return the Panhard bar to its OEM position (close to or parallel to the ground/axle). This eliminates the need for an aftermarket adjustable Panhard bar and raises the roll center to improve handling back to the “OEM” feel.
There used to be only one solution for this in the past and it involved welding. That made it a daunting option for most. That’s no longer an issue, as DR. KDSS has come to the rescue and developed a bolt-on option.
BOTCK – Bolt-On Trackbar Correction Kit
The Bolt-on Trackbar Correction Kit is a 3-piece design that includes the main part (bigger bracket), the small bracket portion, and the wing nut. The bracket is made up of 1/4″ steel and it looks and feels solid.
It wraps around the OEM Panhard bar bolt-on bracket which distributes the load evenly. This results in less maintenance and headaches in the future when it comes to the Panhard bar. If you are rough on your 4Runner, you can also add welds on top and make it totally bulletproof. For the average Joe, this thing will not budge.
As per DR. KDSS’s website, “Just being bolted on and toque down properly, it is stronger than what’s on the market.”
It comes in 2 different versions as well – A regular and short height in multiple color options to match your suspension setup!
This is catered towards the guys who jump their trucks with LT setup for maximum up travel in a high-speed setup. Someone with extended travel shocks who wants the maximizes the up travel should go for the short version. Also, make sure that you have appropriate bump stops to avoid any binding issues with drive terrain when going with this option.
This is catered for trucks that are lifted higher (2.5” or taller) as opposed to wider in a long travel (LT) setup. This comes with the flexibility of two mounting holes for the Panhard bar. Depending upon your setup you can choose from the two positions to bring the Panhard bar as parallel to the ground as axle/possible.
- Bolt-on design
- Made of 1/4″ (3 gauge) steel
- Comes powder coated with color options
- Two versions to choose from
- KDSS compatible
- Bolt x 3 – 18mm
- Nut x 1 – 21mm
- Sockets – 18, 19mm
- Wrench – 21mm
- Impact wrench or Ratchet
- Crescent wrench
- Bungee cord
- Torque wrench
Note: Removing the spare tire can make additional pace for this installation, although it’s not required).
Secure the Panhard bar with a bungee cord to support it when it comes loose and remove the green plastic tab used to secure the ABS line. Use some zip ties to secure the ABS line to the brake line behind the factory bracket.
Use the 19mm socket to remove the bolt facing you and be careful about the Panhard bar as it will lift up and shift once it is free.
From the factory, the lips of the factory bracket are tilted inwards and now with the help of a crescent wrench pull the top portion of the OEM brackets towards you to increase the opening to fit the smaller portion of the BOTCK fit inside.
Place the small piece inside as shown and try to fit the OEM bolt (19mm) through the OEM hole and the new bracket which you just installed. Once the bolt is threading it is good and go ahead and remove the bolt.
Now, take the wing nut and insert it in the hole at the bottom of the OEM bracket. Make sure the nut is facing towards the top, the longer part of the wingnut is towards the front and the shorter side is towards the back of the 4Runner. Center it as best as you can.
Next, take the bigger portion of the BOTCK and line it up. Start the 19mm bolt until it catches the threads (Use some blue Loctite).
Start the bottom bolt (18mm) into the wingnut for at least 5 to 6 turns. Next, start the third bolt on the side and give it a good 5 to 6 turns as well.
Bring the Panhard bar down into the bracket and insert the bolt through the bracket and Panhard bar and finish it with the nut on the other side (use some blue Loctite).
Now, tighten the bolts in the following order (highlighted in the picture above):
- OEM 19mm bolt so that it pushes the whole bracket toward the front of the 4Runner, do not torque it yet.
- The bottom 18mm bolt and then the 18mm bolt at the side.
- The final Panhard bolt with a 21mm wrench on the nut.
Lastly, torque everything to 95 ft/lbs.
Who is this kit for?
To answer this simple question, if you are not lifted and you are on stock ride height then you do not need this modification.
On the other hand, if you are lifted using a suspension lift the answer will be yes. One of the ways to check is to look under the 4Runner behind the rear axle when it is parked on level ground. Check the position of the Panhard bar and see how parallel it is to the axle/ground. If the angle is more than roughly 5 degrees, it needs correction.
The other way is to feel the rear end when you make a sharp turn at a moderate speed. If you notice any vibrations or jitters in the rear end, that may be another reason to go for this modification.
After driving around town and testing this setup out on some trails, I definitely notice a difference in the way the rear end of my 4Runner drives and feels now. It is back to OEM if not better.
Apart from that, the installation only took a couple of hours compared to the weld-on option which takes much longer and is not as DIY-friendly. Last but not the least, the product is built to last, and it feels rock solid!