The vehicle inertial properties used as input parameters in handling, braking, and accident dynamics analyses are difficult to measure and are rarely reported by manufacturers or researchers. Frequently, estimation techniques are used to extrapolate from the few values reported in the literature. Inaccurate experimental measurement of inertia properties and inappropriate groupings of vehicles can introduce large errors into such estimates.
This paper presents measured inertial properties of sport utility vehicles, pickup trucks, and vans and describes analytical estimation techniques for moments of inertia applicable to most light trucks. The measurement techniques and estimates of their accuracy are described. Comparisons of results with values reported in the literature for similar vehicles also are made. The moment of inertia estimation equations are presented and their agreement with measured values reported here and by others is discussed.