Suspension, as we know, is that part of the car which without which a car can work, but its importance can only be felt when the car is driven. The driver will then come to know that suspension system in the car is not only for the comfort of passengers but also for important tasks like control of the vehicle while on curves, bumps, jumps and the contact maintained between tires and the road. In this post, we’ll discuss the main types of suspension systems used in automobiles.
Any suspension available can be put into 3 basic categories, which are:
1. Non-Independent – These are those type of suspensions in which movement of both wheels in a bump (or where suspension comes in action) is not independent. Both wheels are connected with one single shaft, so if the right wheel gets into a bump, the left one rises up a little bit. Which means, suspension system part on left loosens up and wheel on left goes down, and suspension system part on right tightens and the right wheel moves up. This is a kind of direct contact between both.
Main suspensions used in this type are Leaf spring suspension, Coil spring suspension, solid axle suspension
2. Semi-Independent – This type of system consists of indirect contact between both wheels unlike in above mentioned non-independent systems. So, because of this, vertical movement in one wheel affects the movement of the other wheel with the help of connections made using twist-beams. Torsion Bar is a type of semi-independent system.
3. Independent – Independent type of suspension system as the name suggests creates and independent movement between both wheels. Any vertical or horizontal movement of the left wheel doesn’t affect movement of the right wheel and vice-versa.
Main examples are Mac Pherson strut, Double wishbone, Trailing arm suspension etc
In next post, we’ll discuss the detailed working of leaf and spring suspensions which come under non-independent type.