Automotive Engineering International 2004-07-01

Automotive Engineering International 2004-07-01
    • The need for speeds
      The recent automatic-transmission introductions by Toyota, DaimlerChrysler, and ZF highlight the trend toward greater gear-ratio spreads for better launch performance and cruising efficiency.
    • Mechanical advantage
      Ride and handling can be influenced and controlled by the latest electronics, but careful mechanical design of the suspension can deliver significant benefits.
    • Hard drives
      Driven by the insatiable demand for more usable navigation information and entertainment content, automotive disk drives will become commonplace, but not until cost and other issues are overcome, experts predict.
    • Trucks get aerodynamic touch
      Light truck and SUV designers must reconcile conservative customer tastes with the need for reduced drag to bost efficiency.
    • Pedestrian protection possibilities
      Carmakers consider a variety of solutions to the problem of saving lives outside the vehicle.
    • Volvo goes with the flow
      The rapid development of the XC90 on the S80 platform was marked by use of computational fluid dynamics techniques, which delivered 50% more cooling airflow and drove the development of more advanced methods for future programs.
    • GM explores sheet hydroforming
      It is a slow way to make them, but for low-volume vehicles such as the Pontiac Solstice, GM believes it is effective for producing large, complex, and blemish-free body panels.
    • Continuous improvements the JCI way
      Johnson Controls uses lean manufacturing principles and Six Sigma to stay ahead of the competition in terms of quality and productivity.
    • Advantage Aston Martin
      With little automation, the British carmaker's new assembly plant is all about hand-built excellence.