Stability and directional control of automotive vehicle (Vehicle handling) – (DIN030)

This course has the following objectives:

  • To introduce the concepts of stability and directional control of automotive vehicles;
  • To present the main subsystems related to the directional behavior of vehicles and how to represent them;
  • To define the main parameters associated with the handling characteristics;
  • To evaluate the effect of the suspension and steering geometries on the directional behavior of automotive vehicles.


  • Introduction
    • Definition of vehicle handling
    • Quantities related to the lateral dynamics
  • Tire models for vehicle handling analysis
    • Mechanics of lateral force generation
    • Self-aligning torque
  • Steering system models
    • Steering of the vehicle using a motion statement on the steering-wheel (Fixed control)
    • Steering of the vehicle by applying torque to the steering-wheel (free control)
  • Vehicle models for handling analysis
    • Plane models
    • Models with approximate rolling of the vehicle chassis
    • Models with vehicle suspensions
  • Analysis of the vehicle lateral dynamics
    • Stability
    • Steady state response
    • Transient response
  • Under and over steering
    • Definition of understeer gradient
    • Methods for determination of understeer gradient
  • Effect of suspension and steering systems on the vehicle lateral dynamics
    • Definition of the main parameters associated with the handling characteristics
    • Analysis of the effect of suspension and steering parameters on the vehicle handling

Basic bibliography

  • Gillespie, T.D. Fundamentals of Vehicle Dynamics, 1992.
  • Costa, A. Apostila Dinâmica Veicular, 2003.
  • Bastow, D. & Howard, G. Car Suspension and Handling, 3rd edition, 1993.

Complementary bibliography

  • Manual “Running Analyses in ADAMS/Car”.
  • Rill, G. Simulation Von Kraftfahrzeugen, 1994.