Suspension for SUVs - hidden problems and opportunities

03.01.20194 Min Read — In Suspension

Before embarking, it is necessary to determine the concept of "SUV". Without a 4x4 drive. However, this is a controversial issue. So, each car is created at the request of consumers. It is not always a car. The pattern of suspensions used is very diverse. Each has a pros and cons.

How to choose a suspension for a SUV


The suspension for SUV car must meet several requirements:

  • haeve a big move, articulation;
  • be durabile;
  • must pass through a large mass of soil and snow;
  • give a minimum of comfort. This item requires clarification. Comfortable driving is carried out by adjusting the angles of the wheels. For an SUV operated in the mode of constant loads, the operation of adjusting the "collapse-collapse" will turn into everyday maintenance, which noticeably hits the owner's pocket.

From all of the above, it follows that the best version will be dependent suspension with continuous bridges. It should be noted that, depending on the purpose of the SUV, there are three layout options:

  • front - independent, back - dependent;
  • front and back - independent;
  • Front and back - dependent.
  • Fans of thrill consider cars with suspension of the first and second type - cars for outdoor activities. A true SUV should have both dependent suspensions.

What is an independent suspension?

Dependent suspension vs independent

Let's start with independent suspension. Unlike solid bridges, which went to cars directly from carts, this is a relatively new (not older than 100 years) technical solution.

It is clear that if the dependent suspension ideally performed its functions, then it would be useless to invent such an intricate design. So, independent suspension has some advantages. Which ones? First, the independent suspension has less unsprung masses. By the way, the “sprung masses” are not located “under the springs”. In fact, this is the total mass of parts and structural elements that act on the road through elastic elements. Accordingly, what affects the road directly is the “unsprung masses”.

What applies to them is determined by technical standards. For example, according to the DIN standard, the unsprung masses of a car include wheels, levers, shock absorbers and springs (springs), torsions are already “sprung”, and stabilizers can be considered this way or that, because half of their mass is sprung, and the other half is not.

It is obvious that in many ways such a division is conditional, but the importance of the issue does not diminish from this. After all, the less unsprung weight is relatively sprung (suspension weight versus body weight), the less influence it has on handling.

Simply put, a heavy suspension has a large kinematic inertia, so as it increases in speed, it is worse at work on road irregularities. The wheel that took off on a hummock does not have time to fall back onto the road under the influence of an elastic element, as it encounters a new bump. In general, large unsprung masses negatively affect handling.

What is a dependent suspension?

The spring suspension, no matter how ridiculous it looked, was inherited by cars from carts. But, thanks to a number of constructive improvements, it is still used today. The strength of the spring plates allows you to install it on heavy vehicles of high traffic. When driving irregularities oscillations are transmitted to the springs associated with the body or frame. Extinguish vibrations shock absorbers. Getting one wheel into the pit leads to the inclination of the entire bridge. But the car body can still remain in a horizontal position. It all depends on the suspension travel. In the spring version it is undoubtedly more.

Conclusion: pros and cons

Independent suspension

The higher the speed and the better the road, the more attractive the independent suspension.


  • Good handling
  • Taxi feedback
  • Small rolls
  • Excellent parameter setting

In most cases, a high level of comfort when driving (but there are unsuccessful models)


  • Short duration
  • Vulnerability details
  • The complexity and high cost of operation
  • A large number of parts
  • The subtlety of adjustment easily broken under trying conditions
  • Difficulty or lack of serious opportunities for off-road tuning

The excellent decision for high-speed asphalt cars. Acceptable for crossovers. Poor SUVs, which need to drive on real off-road.

Dependent suspension

The lower the speed and the worse the road, the less you worry about handling, and the more you want something more massive. GOOD

  • Strength
  • Simplicity of design
  • Big articulation
  • Damage resistance
  • Cheapness in operation
  • Patency

The possibility and in most cases the simplicity of the implementation of highly efficient off-road tuning


  • Large unsprung masses
  • Poor handling
  • Low information content and sharpness of steering
  • Not always good directional stability
  • Not always a good level of comfort while driving