From the point of view of driving dynamics, commercial motor vehicles pose a special challenge for all automotive chassis designers and engineers. Load and weight distribution varies and are rarely in the best optimum condition, unlike in a normal passenger car. However, a commercial motor vehicle loaded to capacity, must drive just as safe and comfortable as one which is driven when unloaded. This is a balancing act that the standard steel spring suspension can only address with a compromise solution.
Anyone who wants to drive comfortably, with the optimum dynamics and still keep a constant level vehicle for driving, where the base vehicle and chassis are to a large degree protected from the load, should take a look at the current most innovative full air suspension system created for the Renault Master. The system developed for Renault and in conjunction with Renault and Renault-Tech, by suspension specialist Drive-Rite (Dublin) replaces the original steel suspension and is available as an option fit, at time of ordering from the Renault Factory. The design incorporates purpose made Air Springs from the world’s leading air spring manufacturer Firestone, one of Drive-Rite’s exclusive development partners.
Advantages of this full air suspension system: Unlike a steel spring suspension which deflects under load, an air suspension system automatically adjusts its air pressure to accommodate the different loads, not its geometry. The air spring compensates for the higher load with an appropriately higher pressure in the air spring. This leads to minimal changes in the response characteristics, but not in the programmed set ride height level which is maintained at all times. This can be easily seen by a casual observer – when looking at the vehicle from the outside, an air-sprung vehicle always keeps the same relationship in height of car body to axles, completely independent of the load. The Air suspension is fully compatible with the ESP and has no adverse effect on the braking efficiency.
This is not the limit of the potential of the Drive-Rite product. The IntelliRide control, developed by Drive-Rite, and also used by many other convertors, offers many other possibilities and features ! With the press of a button individual programmable height levels can easily be selected. Raising the rear of a Renault Master to improve loading or unloading is easily achieved as is lowering the rear to a minimum level for easy access. The quick raising of the vehicle to ride height is achieved with the aid of an on board air reservoir that was purpose made for the application.
With the IntelliRide you have all the options, and the unique hand held controller also acts as an intelligent self-diagnostic unit. When in Manual mode the customer can adjust the rear vehicle height to any position thus facilitating loading/unloading at different dock levels. While in Service mode the system is secure for vehicle maintenance and changing the spare wheel.
Therefore the new optional Drive-Rite full air system for the Renault Master is the professional high tech solution for all those who need flexibility, maximum comfort and safe driving on a daily basis.
When considering the many advantages of the Renault Master full air suspension, one point is often forgotten – the Firestone Air Springs help to reduce noise and road vibration to the drivers and passengers. Transmission of vibration to the car body is significantly reduced or eliminated with the air suspension fitted. The material is less stressed which minimizes general wear and tear. Other extra advantages of this load protecting air suspension system when driving is improved comfort for the passengers. The air suspension improves the driver’s comfort - an important aspect for commercial drivers on long haul journeys or drivers spending long days at the wheel. Don’t forget also the air suspension guarantees optimum headlamp aim with every loaded condition !
More information available from your Renault, Renault Truck, Nissan, Opel and Vauxhall network.
In addition to the high-end full air suspension solution, Drive-Rite has developed a technically superior, high quality semi-air system for the Renault Master, which with minimal maintenance stands up to the most challenging transportation applications.
With a semi-air system, special Firestone tapered sleeve or convolute air springs with individual adjustable air pressures work in conjunction with the steel springs of the original chassis. The normal springs in the rear axle of the Renault Master remain in place, and are supported in their daily work by the additional Firestone air springs.
Advantages of this efficient and cost-effective solution are: more clearance, significantly higher roll stability, (clearly noticeably with cross-winds and in tight curves) and altogether much improved handling and driving comfort.
The Drive-Rite systems for the Renault Master win out due to the ease of fitting (1-2 hours), which is possible thanks to a clever design which utilize original fixations in the chassis.
More information on these products can be found at www.driveriteair.com