Table of Contents
International Journal of Vehicular Technology
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 562424, 16 pages
Research Article

Optimisation of the Nonlinear Suspension Characteristics of a Light Commercial Vehicle

Mekar Mechatronics Research Labs, Department of Mechanical Engineering, İstanbul Okan University, Akfırat-Tuzla, TR-34959 İstanbul, Turkey

Received 9 October 2012; Revised 16 December 2012; Accepted 30 December 2012

Academic Editor: Shinsuke Hara

Copyright © 2013 Dinçer Özcan et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The optimum functional characteristics of suspension components, namely, linear/nonlinear spring and nonlinear damper characteristic functions are determined using simple lumped parameter models. A quarter car model is used to represent the front independent suspension, and a half car model is used to represent the rear solid axle suspension of a light commercial vehicle. The functional shapes of the suspension characteristics used in the optimisation process are based on typical shapes supplied by a car manufacturer. The complexity of a nonlinear function optimisation problem is reduced by scaling it up or down from the aforementioned shape in the optimisation process. The nonlinear optimised suspension characteristics are first obtained using lower complexity lumped parameter models. Then, the performance of the optimised suspension units are verified using the higher fidelity and more realistic Carmaker model. An interactive software module is developed to ease the nonlinear suspension optimisation process using the Matlab Graphical User Interface tool.