An active suspension is a computer-controlled suspension system that raises and lowers the vehicle’s body independently at each wheel to match changing road or dynamic conditions.

Similar in effect to adaptive suspensions, which vary shock absorber firmness to control ride quality and body movement, true active suspensions utilize powerful, fast-acting actuators in addition to or in place of conventional steel springs and shocks or struts. Because they literally raise and lower the vehicle’s chassis independently at all four corners rather than simply firming and softening the shocks or struts, they are more effective in controlling body roll — and are considerably more expensive.

One of the most notable systems is Mercedes-Benz’s Active Body Control (ABC) on the SL-Class and S-Class models, which delivers astonishingly flat body control that bests any conventional active suspension, even in aggressive turns.

Information for this was taken from the Cars.com’s glossary, written by Joe Wiesenfelder.

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Answered by Joe Bruzek on September 25, 2008 in Glossary | Permalink

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