With the continuous development of passenger car technology in China, air suspension systems have received more and more attention as an effective solution to improve vehicle comfort. Recently, at the 2017 Beijing International Road Transport, Urban Bus and Parts Exhibition (hereinafter referred to as the “Beijing Bus Show”), a number of Air Suspension System companies unveiled and brought the latest products. At the same time, as the "protagonist" at the Beijing Bus Show, most passenger cars also use the air suspension system, as if overnight, the air suspension became the "darling" of the passenger car market.
■The advantages of air suspension system are obvious
Since the birth of the air suspension system in the mid-nineteenth century, it has experienced a variety of "pneumatic springs → airbag composite suspension → semi-active air suspension → central charging and deflation suspension (ie ECAS electronically controlled air suspension system)" The type was not used in trucks, large passenger cars, passenger cars and rail vehicles until the 1950s.
At present, almost all foreign advanced buses use air suspension, and the proportion of heavy-duty trucks using air suspensions is over 80%, and the application volume of light-duty vehicles is also rising rapidly. In addition, air suspension is almost standard on some special vehicles (such as ambulances, special military vehicles and container carriers with high requirements for shock protection). China is still in its infancy, and the air suspension system is only used on some luxury buses and a small number of heavy trucks.
“In recent years, air suspension systems have been used more and more on passenger cars, especially in the context of new energy bus blowouts. The air suspension market has ushered in an opportunity for development.” Shanghai Keman Vehicle Parts Systems Co., Ltd. Market In an interview with the reporter of China Auto News, Mr. Guo said that as people's requirements for ride comfort are gradually improved, the air suspension system will be more and more equipped on passenger cars. Suspension manufacturers have also seen this opportunity, so the loan show has launched their latest products.
According to him, the air suspension system can meet the requirements of the suspension of the passenger car of the first class or higher in the classification and rating of the operating bus, and the overall performance is 2 to 3 higher than that of the leaf spring suspension. Comfort, reliability, safety and economic performance play an important role.
Among them, in terms of comfort, the airbag in the air suspension system has variable stiffness characteristics, which can quickly reduce the vibration during the running of the vehicle and improve the ride comfort of the vehicle; and reliability, the air suspension system can be isolated by the airbag. Effectively reduce the impact vibration caused by the uneven surface of the road surface, reduce the vibration frequency of the chassis and the electrical system, thereby improving the service life of the chassis and the body electrical system; for safety, the air suspension system can be low due to the low vibration frequency. Improve the adhesion of the tires, make the wheels less slippery, improve the starting ability on the road with low adhesion coefficient, improve the driving safety of the vehicle; finally, in terms of economy, improve the service life of other parts of the vehicle, the fuel consumption of the whole vehicle Can be reduced by 5% to 10%, compared with the leaf spring suspension, the economy is improved by 20% to 30%.
■ Bus air suspension application has been widely used
It is precisely the outstanding advantages of the air suspension system that the domestic passenger car manufacturers are getting higher and higher.
“At present, in the application of air suspension system, the proportion of Huanghai bus has reached more than half. In the future, with the increase of market demand and the transformation and upgrading of passenger transport enterprises, air suspension systems will become more and more popular.” Huanghai Bus Lin Chongfu, director of the market department, said that the air suspension system is mainly used in highway tourist buses and bus passenger cars. Its "traits" such as high comfort and high safety are widely favored by users.
"In addition to cost considerations, it is very common to use air suspension systems for passenger cars today." Lin Chongfu said that the industry standard for the division and rating of operating bus types issued by the Ministry of Communications has made the suspension type for large and medium-sized passenger cars. It is stipulated that the medium and large passenger cars must adopt an air suspension system. This creates a good external environment for the promotion of air suspension products.
"Because of the many superior characteristics of the air suspension system, the proportion of air suspension systems in the high-end passenger cars on the market is now higher and higher." Zhu Jie, deputy general manager of Jiangsu Changlong Bus Sales Co., said that with the traditional steel car suspension system Compared with air suspension systems, there are many advantages. The most important point is that the spring's spring constant can be adjusted automatically. “For example, when driving at high speed, the stability of the spring can be improved by adjusting the spring rate of the spring. When driving at low speed for a long time, control The unit is intelligently adjusted to reduce vibration and enhance comfort."
■ Both an inevitable trend and a realistic requirement
However, it is worth noting that at present, in the domestic passenger car market, vehicles using air suspension systems are still a minority, accounting for only 30% of the total.
"China's application of air suspension systems is indeed lagging behind in foreign countries for decades. In recent years, with the introduction of high-end passenger car manufacturing technology and the improvement of people's requirements for comfort, plus the national standard requirements for passenger car classification, air suspension The system has only begun to be gradually applied. However, due to various factors, the air suspension deployment rate is still very low, basically belonging to the promotion stage.” In the view of Wang Jian, a public transportation scholar at Chongqing Jiaotong University, with the continuous development of the domestic bus industry Development, the future air suspension system will have a lot of room for development.
According to Wang Jian, the suspension system is the key assembly that affects the comfort of passenger cars. Nowadays, the requirements for vehicles are getting higher and higher, and the leaf spring suspension can no longer meet the needs of passengers. The use of air spring suspension can greatly improve the vibration of the car and improve the ride comfort of the passenger car.
“For example, if an air suspension system is installed on a bus, it can not only facilitate the elderly, children and other vulnerable groups to get on and off, but also provide a wheelchair ramp for the disabled by tilting the side of the car.” In Wang Jian’s opinion, Replacing the traditional leaf spring suspension with an air spring suspension is both an inevitable trend and an objective requirement.
■ The technology gap is gradually shrinking
Compared with the previous years, it was unable to develop independently and completely rely on the optional foreign air suspension. At present, China's air suspension system development technology has been significantly improved.
It is understood that the fitting rate of self-developed air suspension systems of passenger car manufacturers in China has reached more than 80%, and even many bus manufacturers have begun to design air spring suspension systems.
"At present, Koman has ranked first in the sales of professional air suspension manufacturers for four consecutive years. In 2016, it achieved sales of nearly 500 million yuan and the domestic market share reached 30%." Mr. Zhang said that in the air suspension system industry, The company has fully met the needs of micro-circulation buses, large and medium-sized buses and articulated vehicles, and also provided supporting services for many domestic bus manufacturers.
"From the perspective of technology itself, the gap between China's self-produced air suspension system and foreign products is gradually narrowing. From the perspective of cost, it is more competitive in the market." In Wang Jian's view, for China's bus industry. The development and progress of the air suspension system has played a vital role in improving the overall automobile brand influence, technology level and market share in China. At the same time, it can shorten the gap between technology and grades of foreign products, and consolidate and expand domestic buses. Market share.