My 1997 Volvo 850 wagon has some really tired suspension, and on top of that the car originally came with Nivomat self-leveling system.
Now I don't really need a self leveling unit I don't carry a lot on a regular basis, and a Nivomat shock costs $270 a pop from rockauto. If I do that I might as well get a set of springs and some high performance shocks to refresh the suspension components and give it a nice drop while we are there. The Nivomat shocks themelves have a really strong rebound and it's part of what props the car up in wagons so equipped. It's supposed to sag less than 1" even when loaded with 300lb of load in the boot. That means if I just replace my dampers the springs alone will not be able to prop the car up, and the rear will sag a lot. In order to remove the Nivomat system from a wagon, a set of non-nivomat coil springs will also be installed. Since it's impossible to buy 1 pair of springs I'm stuck to buying a set of springs. And therefore might as well replace all 4 shock absorbers.
What kind of options do I have for this wagon? I want to know if there are some Volvo-specific brands I should also look out for.
From Tire Rack alone there are the following options:
Eibach Pro springs
H&R Sport springs
Koni Sport dampers
Koni FSD dampers
Koni FSD dampers and springs set
Koni STR street struts
KYB gas-a-shock OEM replacement
KYB GR-2 / Excel G shock
Bilstein HD shocks
Bilstein Touring Class
If I want heavy duty daily use on rougher paved roads and retain OEM-like comfort but with enhanced cornering and highway stability, which combination would you recommend? Discuss.