Chassis techology: From independent wheel
to active suspension (from 1930)
Active Body Control
Dynamism and motoring pleasure – that was the motto with which the large Mercedes-Benz CL 500/CL 600 coupe claimed the peak position in 1999, and not just in German automotive engineering. Highly sophisticated technology, unequalled in this configuration by any other car worldwide, and a correspondingly innovative design characterized this exclusive car.
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Active Body Control suspension
The pioneering technology of the coupe had a new motoring experience in store for car drivers, which was particularly characterized by the world’s first actively controlled suspension system, Active Body Control (ABC), as an outstanding milestone of dynamic handling control and ride comfort. In this system hydraulically controlled servo cylinders in the spring struts work in unison with the passive shock absorbers and coil springs. The actively controllable elements reduce oscillating body vibrations up to five hertz, such as are noticeable in the form of body lift and roll on uneven road surfaces, heavy lateral roll on bends and bodywork diving under braking. In the Mercedes-Benz CL passive gas-pressure shock absorbers and coil springs are still responsible for handling higher-frequency wheel vibrations from six to 20 hertz, however their damping effect is less pronounced than in conventional suspension systems. This has a positive effect on vibration and road noise. Active roll stabilization renders torsion bar stabilizers superfluous.
With multi-link independent rear suspension, AIRMATIC and the ABC suspension system, Mercedes-Benz created outstanding conditions for maintaining its peak position in suspension engineering. These innovations are now found in various Mercedes-Benz vehicles on the market.
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