Next-Generation Suspension System Provides High Comfort at Low Cost

Cost-effective ride height and suspension leveling systems, that allows car manufactures to experience height leveling benefits of an air suspension with significantly less complexity and costs.

While air suspension is a popular feature among larger EVs and luxury vehicles, models in smaller segments – including compact EVs – often miss the benefits of ride height adjustment and suspension leveling.

Vibracoustic’s engineers closed the gap and set new standards for these conflicting goals with the new Smart Leveling System. The new cost-effective and easy-to-implement system offers this functionality for both front and rear axle applications. The Smart Leveling System can be used to integrate a range of features into volume vehicles, including improved comfort and customizability, EV battery cooling, energy efficiency and safer trunk loading and unloading. It can also be used to adjust ground clearance, optimizing for speed bumps and driveways, as well as for more aerodynamically efficient high-speed motorway driving.

Actuator front (left) and rear (right)

Power Pack

Height Sensor

Electronic Control Unit (ECU)

Our Smart Leveling System enables car manufacturers to include single or dual-axle variable ride height systems in their programs at significantly lower cost. Backed by the rigorous engineering and testing processes of a global leader in NVH and air spring systems, this new solution has been designed for durability, comfort, and cost-effective integration.

When used in a rear-axle application, the Smart Leveling System can compensate for trunk loading, improve ride comfort, and maintain ground clearance for fully loaded vehicles. It can also adjust the angle of stall for improved battery cooling of EVs or provide a more comfortable loading / unloading position. When applied to both front and rear axles, it can adjust ground clearance for speed bumps and driveways or lower the vehicle for high-speed driving to reduce drag and increase range. Furthermore, it can also help increase the energy efficiency of EVs and therewith allow a smaller battery pack while maintaining the same range.

At the heart of the Smart Leveling System is a hydraulic actuator, which is based on air spring technology and draws upon Vibracoustic’s deep knowledge of rubber-to-metal components. The Smart Leveling System is controlled by a dedicated electronic control unit (ECU), including software developed by Vibracoustic. It incorporates height sensors and a powerpack (pump, tank, valves) and offers a leveling speed of up to 10 mm per second in two-corner applications, operating when the vehicle is static.

As a next-generation suspension system, the Smart Leveling System prototype was thoroughly tested for durability and functionality while integrated into a popular European C-segment vehicle with a total of 40mm travel at each wheel. The system was shown to offer comfort improvements at low frequencies of up to 15 Hz due to significant reductions in road-induced excitations compared to a coil spring vehicle without leveling.