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Products and solutions, 2005-04-26, 03:09 PM

ThyssenKrupp Automotive presents front axle independent suspension for trucks

ThyssenKrupp Automotive is presenting a design study showing the cost-effective realization of a front axle independent suspension system for trucks. At the heart of the development is an integral subframe on which the entire axle suspension and steering gear are preassembled. More than 80 percent of the components for the independent suspension system are made by ThyssenKrupp Automotive subsidiaries. The neighboring assemblies steering system, frame and cab suspension are likewise developed and produced in the Group. By carrying out a holistic analysis of these systems, ThyssenKrupp Automotive has achieved synergies which will make it possible, despite the cost pressure, to integrate this technical innovation in a truck front end and utilize potential for optimizing weight, safety, comfort and service requirements.

As system development partner to our customers, ThyssenKrupp Automotive Systems is in charge of project management, engineering, testing and coordination of all internal and external component suppliers. A new project center in Bochum, Germany will allow even closer cooperation among the Group companies and external partners involved in the project. The result is a team of developers who can get together to efficiently discuss interface information as and when necessary. This not only dramatically reduces the time involved in coordinating with the various suppliers, it also helps prevent errors and promotes the development of innovations through interdisciplinary approaches to system design.

With ThyssenKrupp Automotive Systems also responsible for the final assembly of the axle suspension system and the requisite logistic services, future customers will be able to obtain the entire package from a single source.

In the commercial vehicle sector, independent suspension systems have previously only been used in small vans, buses or off-road vehicles. Manufacturers are currently looking for ways of introducing these systems in vehicles currently featuring solid axles.

The advantages are obvious: By significantly reducing the unsprung masses, independent suspension offers vastly improved handling as each wheel can react independently to irregularities in the road and absorb disturbances. Enhanced roll stability and more accurate wheel control make for improved driving safety, and the resultant reduction in dynamic wheel loads helps protect both payload and road surface while significantly enhancing safety and comfort for the driver.

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