Sachs vs. KYB: Which One Should You Prefer?

For any vehicle we drive, we need top-notch suspension system components. Two such components’ makers are Sachs and KYB. Especially, shock absorbers and struts are common products from these brands. However, people often get confused when selecting between them. And a debate appears: Sachs vs. KYB.

In short, Sachs is a renowned German brand under ZF Friedrichshafen. Since 1911, this company has produced high-quality OE (Original Equipment) powertrain and suspension components. Alternatively, KYB is a Tokyo-based manufacturer founded in 1919. It is popular for its affordable and high-performing products like top-of-the-line shocks.

Of course, these companies work with the same purpose. Both want to keep the vehicles running well over bumpy and even roads. Still, there are significant differences. So, I suggest you read this discussion thoroughly to know more about Sachs and KYB besides their differences.

Historical Differences: Sachs vs. KYB

Both companies are maintaining their strategies of business in the market. However, each of them has significant backgrounds. In this part, I will discuss the evolution of Sachs and KYB.


Fichtel & Sachs is the precursor to Sachs automotive products. It was established in 1895 with an initial focus on producing innovative ball bearings and bicycle parts.

Over the years, the company’s focus shifted towards motors and motor components. It marked its evolution into a significant player in the automotive parts industry (1).

The former Fichtel & Sachs group underwent significant changes in ownership. Then, the German Mannesmann group acquired it in 1987. Later, after plans to take it public fell through, it was sold to Siemens AG in 1999. ZF’s acquisition was Germany’s third-largest vendor to the automotive industry (2).

Today, Sachs is a brand under ZF Friedrichshafen AG (ZF Group). It is a global technology company that supplies systems for passenger cars, commercial vehicles, and industrial technology.

The integration of Sachs into ZF signifies the brand’s significant role in the broader automotive parts and technology industry (3).


Established in 1919 as Kayaba Research Center in Japan, KYB has grown into one of the world’s largest manufacturers of shock absorbers. It supplies around 50 million OE shocks annually to world-leading vehicle manufacturers (4, 5). So, you can see the journey from a research center to a global leader has significant milestones.

Initially focused on hydraulic dampers, the company was known as Kayaba Manufacturing Co., Ltd. by 1935. It indicated a shift towards manufacturing and away from its research roots (6). This period laid the foundation for KYB’s future growth. In this way, it establishes its core competencies in hydraulic technology.

KYB’s expansion came into the spotlight due to its listing on the Tokyo Stock Exchange in 1959. Indeed, it was a move that underscored its growing importance in the automotive sector (6).

Then By 1974, KYB had established a sales subsidiary. It marked its foray into international markets and set the stage for further expansion (6).

KYB Manufacturing North America Inc. was established in 2001. Besides, the brand got acquisition of a shock absorber manufacturing company in Spain (KAMS). These ownerships further illustrate KYB’s commitment to fulfill the customer’s demands (7,8).

Product Range Comparison: Sachs vs. KYB

Sachs’ portfolio includes various components for passenger cars and trucks, trailers & buses. Alternatively, KYB offers many products, manufactured using the same factories and technology as OE (9).  Thus, I will show you the difference between these two companies in terms of their products.

Available Products
TransmissionsShock Absorbers
AxlesCoil Springs
ClutchesMounting Kits
Shock absorbers & dampersProtection Kits
Steering & Chassis PartsMini Motion Package (MMP)
Brake and actuation systems 
Driveline Components 

Performance and Durability Analysis

In this part, I will discuss why you should consider any of these two brands: Sachs and KYB.


Sachs suspension systems deliver more transmittable torque and more stability. Also, they are good for their longer life and superior thermal resistance. Particularly, the height-adjustable coilover suspensions feature a lot of things. For instance, they have sports-oriented responsiveness, long service lives, unparalleled quality, and simple handling (10, 11).

Then again, the monotube dampers are suitable for the high-tech shock absorbers from the Sachs Performance series (12). Their special alignment and a valve system allow flexible characteristic curves to be adjusted. This way, they provide maximum sportiness right up to their threshold limit.

Sachs shocks are recognized for their German build quality, yet they are relatively expensive. You can choose them if you want to invest more in quality products (13).


If I talk about KYB shocks, they provide a more predictable performance. Certainly, it is essential for drivers who value performance under various conditions. They are also better for handling different types of terrain. Hence, these components have a longer lifespan than Sachs shocks. You get a blend of reliability and durability (13).

This brand uses processes to provide the best possible protection from corrosion and premature breakage. More precisely, the hot and cold coiling technology they use to strengthen the steel and improve durability. Similarly, they use zinc phosphate coating and epoxy powder painting (14).

KYB shocks are known for being relatively affordable. So, you can consider a suitable option if you are a budget-conscious driver.

OEM Replacement & Warranty


Sachs warranty specifics for Sachs Performance products. It includes clutches and suspensions (you can find them on their official website). Still, I can give you some examples.

For Mercedes-Benz vehicles, Sachs-Boge OEM shock absorbers have a limited lifetime warranty. It indicates a level of trust in their durability and performance. The average price of these components is around $88.89 each.

The general warranty covers defects in manufacturing and materials. It ensures that customers (like you and me) receive high-quality components for their vehicles. When you get defective items, a service team will help you (14).

Many users have already reported that Sachs shocks can perform excellently even after 100,000 miles of service. For sure, it indicates that you can rely on their durability and longevity. People are even praised for the excellent OEM quality of Sachs items at an affordable price (15).


In contrast, KYB offers a full warranty policy for its products. For instance, you get a lifetime warranty for all branded KYB shock absorbers, struts, Strut-Plus™, and strut cartridges. It is exceptional for electronic and self-leveling shocks and struts (16, 17).

Then again, KYB offers a one-year warranty for strut mounts, boots, hardware, coil springs, and steering stabilizers. It may also include those shocks and struts without lifetime warranties.

For specific regions, like South Africa, this brand offers a warranty limited to 3 years or 100,000 km from the date of fitment, whichever occurs first. This warranty is particularly for the original purchaser of KYB Shock Absorbers, KYB Struts, and KYB Cartridges. Please note that it is against any manufacturing or material defects (18).

KYB shock absorbers are noted as a recommended OE replacement. So, they are a viable alternative to the OE manufacturer parts but with a focus on affordability. You can buy them at an average of $54.86 each (19).

Application-Specific Recommendations: Which One Should You Pick?

I know you were looking for this answer. So, here is my suggestion with proper logics:

For Ride Comfort

A significant difference between KYB and Sachs is the “installed height” of the OEM springs. KYB’s are much shorter by about 3 inches. So, the KYB struts do not extend as far as the OEM Sachs. It leads to less travel and a noticeably harsher ride over rough roads (20).

For Daily Driving

As I said, Sachs shocks are noted for their durability and OEM quality. It is particularly appealing for drivers to prioritize ride comfort and long-term reliability. Though these components are more expensive than KYB, the high-quality German engineering is a worthwhile investment.

For Budget-Conscious Consumers

You can save a lot of money if you choose KYB shocks. The brand offers a good mix of price and performance. Especially, the shock absorbers provide more anticipated performance. Also, they can handle different types of terrain better than Sachs shocks. Plus, their lifetime warranty also adds value.

For Performance and Handling on Varied Terrain

Do you frequently encounter rough roads or engage in off-road activities? Then, my suggestion would be to choose KYB shocks. They can perform better on any terrain. Moreover, the longer lifespan of KYB shocks reduces frequent replacements.

For OEM Replacement and Warranty Considerations

Well, for specific vehicle brands like Mercedes-Benz, you can choose Sachs OEM shock absorbers with a limited lifetime warranty. But if you choose any (most of them actually) KYB products, you get long-term reliability and assurance for their lifetime warranty.

Final Words

How was the discussion on Sachs vs. KYB? In this article, I have clarified the difference between these two brands in a comprehensive way. I hope you like it.

Certainly, Sachs enjoys a strong market presence with its products fitted to over 10 million vehicles every year. It indicates a strong OEM relationship. On the other hand, KYB is recognized for its leadership in the Japanese market. People consider it a field leader that suggests a strong brand reputation in specific markets.

Now, it’s up to you- what you need and for which you need. Thanks for reading this article.

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