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GoAuto glossary

Suspension

The complex system of controlling the movement of each wheel in a vehicle.

Each wheel is attached to a hub, which is linked in some way to a spring and shock absorber that controls its upward and downward movements.

Those links take many different forms and have many different names, such as control arms, radius rods, wishbones and tracking rods.

All modern cars have independent front suspensions that, as the name implies, move totally in isolation of one another.

Rear suspensions are usually independent also, especially in front-wheel drive cars, but rear-drive vehicles can have either a ‘live’ rear axle (like a cart) or an independent rear end that connects the differential and the wheels by separate half-shafts that are hinged at both ends to enable independent movement.

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