[YesAuto Chassis Analysis] As one of the most important auto shows in Europe, the Frankfurt Auto Show can be described as the home ground of German brands. Therefore, at this year's auto show, we saw German brands such as BMW, Audi, Volkswagen, MINI, etc. choose to let new cars meet the world here. At the same time, away players such as Toyota's hybrid ace, Jaguar's first SUV, and the resurrected Borgward are also actively fighting, and a good show of you come and I will be staged in turn. The old rules, after seeing their appearance and interior introduction, let's take a look at the “skills” of the chassis.
● BMW 7 Series
Aspect: weight loss
In 2015, the fifth-generation BMW 7 Series code-named F01/F02 finally came to an end. The 6th-generation 7-series code-named G11/G12 officially took to the stage at this Frankfurt Motor Show. Old rival Mercedes-Benz has successfully played the beautiful brand of the S-Class. As the flagship model of the BMW family, the 7 Series, what surprises can its chassis bring?
In the development process of the new generation 7 Series, engineers spent a lot of time making lightweight improvements for it. Among them, the passenger compartment part uses carbon fiber composite materials to help the body-in-white weight loss by 40kg, and the suspension part is also the “severe disaster area” that needs to lose weight.
Another place where the chassis part changes is the shock absorber. The front suspension of the current BMW 7 Series uses shock absorbers and coil springs, and the rear suspension is air springs. The new 7 Series changes the front and rear air suspension system to the standard configuration of the whole series, and provides three damping control settings. The driving mode control button can choose to emphasize comfort mode (COMFORT and COMFORT+) and agile control sports mode (SPORT).
In addition, the new 7 series also provides an electro-mechanical drive active anti-roll system, that is, to counteract the body roll by applying a reaction force. When the vehicle quickly changes lanes or corners, the body posture is more stable, which helps To improve handling and ride comfort.
For an overhead family flagship model, every time it is updated, engineers are bound to equip it with as many of its own most advanced technology as possible. At the same time, the added technology and configuration often bring the side effect of weight gain. . Therefore, the application of new structures and new materials to reduce weight has become the main theme of the development of these flagship models. In the newly upgraded 7 series chassis, the application of a large number of aluminum materials proves this development concept.
● BMW X1
The former BMW has always been a firm supporter of front and rear drive. Now with the debut of the 2 series sports wagon and the new X1 using the front-wheel drive UKL platform, the Germans seem to be changing the stubborn image in our impression. Previously, we had speculated on the suspension structure of the new BMW X1 when disassembling the 2 Series station wagon. Now it is time to verify our inference results.
With the gradual promotion of the modular platform, BMW, which once stubbornly defended the layout of the front and rear drive, has slowly begun to learn to “work around”. For ordinary consumers, there is very little chance of experiencing the fun of front and rear drive in the actual car environment. After changing to a front-end front drive, the “deal” of getting more riding space is definitely worth it.
● MINI CLUBMAN
Aspect: the same as the UKL platform
The reason why MINI CLUBMAN is placed in such a high position is that it is also developed on the BMW UKL platform. Then, theoretically, the chassis structure of this little guy, which is also just renewed, should be the same as the BMW X1. However, one cannot draw a conclusion without witnessing it in person.
The same is the UKL development platform and the same front-driver. We once again see a similar chassis structure to the BMW X1 on the MINI CLUBMAN chassis. On the one hand, it helps manufacturers to save costs, and on the other hand, it helps ordinary consumers to own More and more practical technologies and configurations.
● Audi A4
Aspect: vertical front drive
With the successive replacements of the BMW 3 Series and Mercedes-Benz C-Class, only the Audi A4 is left in the mid-size car camp of the three major German luxury brands. Among these three evenly matched opponents, only A4 adopts a slightly “strange” vertical predecessor. Then, will the new A4 retain its “traditional”?
In addition, as can be seen from the above picture, some models of the new A4 do not use a saddle-shaped fuel tank, and the central channel area is not enough to arrange a drive shaft. Therefore, except for the four-wheel drive model, it is the same as the domestic current A4L, and is still vertical. Set the front drive.
As the only vertical front-wheel drive model in the layout of the three major German luxury brands, the A4 has adhered to its “creed”. This original intention is not unrelated to the development concepts that have been accumulated before.
● Volkswagen Tiguan
Highlights: Classic E-type multi-link
Recently, the Volkswagen Group has been pushed to the forefront again due to emissions problems. Now, let's put it aside for now. Take a look at the Tiguan, which is quite popular in the Chinese market, and what changes have been made to the chassis of the Tiguan replacement model.
With a more beautiful appearance, richer configuration and a mature and stable chassis structure, the result of such a replacement is what consumers love to see. For an ordinary family car, R&D personnel pursue more stable and consistent performance, rather than unconventional innovation.
● Toyota Prius
Although Prius has accumulated more than 3.5 million global sales so far, it is the most successful hybrid model in the world, but because of policy, price and other reasons, it has not been accepted by Chinese consumers. At this Frankfurt Motor Show, the fourth-generation Prius appeared in front of the world.
As a hybrid model, the protection of the battery pack is very important, and only through brief observations at the auto show, we can’t know how meticulously Prius has taken care of it. This problem will only be disassembled in detail in the future. Time to get the answer.
● Jaguar F-PACE
Highlights: SUVs that focus on handling
Jaguar, which has always been sporty and luxurious, launched the C-X17 concept car in 2013. At that time, the SUV dressed in aqua blue coat left a deep impression on people, and the world is looking forward to its mass production. . So, can this mass-produced F-PACE chassis, which continues the concept car design, continue Jaguar's sporty and elegant genes?
For this British car manufacturer, which registered its brand in 1935, since the day of birth, the DNA contains the genes for sport and elegance. Even if their future product is an SUV, they must abide by this creed. So, how to make the SUV also have excellent handling and sportiness and enough elegance? The answer is simple, continue the previous mature chassis design.
● Borgward BX7
Highlights: The first brand revival
Although the Borgward brand is reluctant to mention it, what cannot be avoided is that the brand that was resurrected after BAIC's capital injection has indeed disappeared for too long. Therefore, the continued design of the chassis is almost zero. So, what exactly is hidden under its body?
Once Borgward was a luxury brand comparable to Mercedes-Benz and BMW, but with the sinking of this huge ship, it was forgotten in the dust of history by future generations. Now, BAIC has injected fresh blood into it, giving it the strength to re-voyage. However, from the perspective of the chassis structure, Borgward's first product, BX7, seems to be a little careless in structure. Can it carry the heavy responsibility of brand rejuvenation?
● Renault MEGANE
Highlights: Once a favorable contender for New North’s fastest front-wheel drive
There are thousands of stories on the Nürburgring track, and every car factory that is eager to prove its sports genes is vying to be the owner of the fastest lap. Renault's MEGANE RS was briefly included in the bag, but it was quickly defeated by Honda TYPE R. Although Renault has declared a “surrender” in the race for the fastest lap, the story of ordinary MEGANE continues.
In the world of radical performance control, it seems that as long as a car uses a torsion beam suspension, it has nothing to do with handling. The emergence of MEGANE and the European version of Civic broke this inertial thinking. The suspension structure does not directly determine the performance of the vehicle, the important thing is tuning.
● Kia SPORTAGE
Aspect: May be made in the future
You may be a little unfamiliar to mention the name SPORTAGE, but I believe you must have some impressions when you mention Smart Running. It was its latest generation model that was unveiled at the 2015 Frankfurt Motor Show, and domestic production is just around the corner. Then let us “preview” its chassis.
At this stage, the suspension of SmartTrain can already meet the daily needs of most consumers. Therefore, there is really no reason to replace such a practical product when it is changed.
● Infiniti Q30
Highlights: The same DNA as the Mercedes-Benz A-Class?
The relationship between Nissan, Renault and Mercedes-Benz is very delicate. We will have the opportunity to talk with you about the story in the future. At the auto show, we saw the results of their cooperation-Infiniti Q30. The interior that is very similar to the Mercedes-Benz A-Class makes people wonder whether their eyes are wrong, so is there any reference to the chassis part?
The subtle relationship between Nissan, Renault and Mercedes-Benz makes their recent products always have an inextricable connection. Inadvertently, you will always smell the familiar taste of another product. On the chassis of the Infiniti Q30, this familiar stranger reappears, making you inadvertently recall the Mercedes-Benz A-Class.
● Ford Kuga
Aspect: almost equivalent to domestically produced wing tiger
Similar to the Kia Sportage above, the name of this Ford SUV may be unfamiliar, but as long as you see the shape, you must have guessed it. Yes, it is the domestically produced Ford Maverick. As a mid-term facelift, its chassis does not seem to change much.
Although the name is changed, the Kuga chassis structure that was unveiled at the Frankfurt Motor Show is almost the same as the current domestic Maverick. The same suspension structure, the same material, and the four-wheel drive structure are also consistent.
● Suzuki Baleno
Aspect: Is the chassis as grounded as the name?
Baleno, yes, the same pronunciation as Baleno, there are reports that it is really developed for the European market, but it is the Indian media that shoot the most on-site. So, is the chassis part also split like this?
Like the homonym of the name, its chassis is equally approachable. For a “little guy” who pays attention to home use, the front MacPherson independent suspension and the rear torsion beam semi-independent suspension are just right.
Full text summary:
At this Frankfurt Motor Show, new cars gathered. This includes entry-level models, sports cars, SUVs, brand flagships, etc. The performance of their chassis is also very different. But when we observe and analyze it calmly, we will find out. Similar to previous auto shows, inheritance and reference have become the mainstream trend of today's chassis design development. As more and more car companies begin to develop new generation models based on platformization, the suspension design is as unconventional and innovative as the appearance of the vehicle. Is becoming impractical. But for consumers, this is not a bad thing. Continuing the previous successful experience will not only help improve the technical stability of new cars, but also reduce the cost of vehicles to a large extent, so that people can get benefits when buying cars. .