• History
  • Features of the McPherson suspension

Earle S. MacPherson designed the McPherson strut construction in 1949, which is still the most widely used front suspension today. The first car to use the McPherson suspension was on the Ford Vadette.

Features of the McPherson suspension:
The big advantage of the McPherson wheel suspension is that the suspension and the shock absorber are combined. This saves a lot of space and is also easy to construct when designing the car. As a result, production costs are also low.
The McPherson wheel suspension is a further development of the wheel suspension with two transverse wishbones (also called a double wishbone construction). The upper wishbone is replaced by the piston rod of the shock absorber, which now also absorbs the lateral forces. Therefore, in the event of a collision with the wheel (by another vehicle or when hitting a curb) is driven) usually direct damage to the piston rod. This is because it deforms very quickly and is therefore curved. The complete shock absorber must then be replaced.

The McPherson wheel suspension is always applied at the front of the car. Suspension struts are sometimes also used at the rear axle, but these are not of the McPerson type. The coil springs and shock absorbers are often carried out separately on the rear wheel suspension.
The operation of a coil spring is not based on bending as you may first think, but on torsion (torsion). When the spring is compressed, the helical rod will be twisted.

The top bearing is located on top of the strut. The top bearing makes steering movements possible. The strut is often screwed to the body under the hood. So this is a fixed point. The top bearing, located underneath, ensures that the complete suspension strut can rotate smoothly with respect to the upper fixed point. This system with load-bearing function and a pivot with a top bearing is called the McPherson system.

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