This article is primarily about four-wheeled vehicle suspension.
In its primitive form, a wheel is a circular block of a hard and durable material at whose center has been bored a circular hole through which is placed an axle bearing about which the wheel rotates when a moment is applied by gravity or torque to the wheel about its axis, thereby making together one of the six simple machines.
A vehicle is a mobile machine that transports people or cargo.
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For information on two-wheeled vehicles' suspensions see Suspension, Motorcycle fork, Bicycle suspension, and Bicycle fork.
A motorcycle fork connects a motorcycle's front wheel and axle to its frame, typically via a yoke, also known as a triple clamp, which consists of an upper yoke joined to a lower yoke via a steering stem, a shaft that runs through the steering head, creating the steering axis.
Bicycle suspension is the system, or systems, used to suspend the rider and bicycle in order to insulate them from the roughness of the terrain.
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Suspension is the system of tires, tire air, springs, shock absorbers and linkages that connects a vehicle to its wheels and allows relative motion between the two.
A tire or tyre is a ring-shaped vehicle component that covers the wheel's rim to protect it and enable better vehicle performance.
A shock absorber is a mechanical or hydraulic device designed to absorb and damp shock impulses.
Suspension systems must support both road holding/handling and ride quality, which are at odds with each other.
Ride quality refers to a vehicle's effectiveness in insulating the occupants from undulations in the road surface.
The tuning of suspensions involves finding the right compromise.
It is important for the suspension to keep the road wheel in contact with the road surface as much as possible, because all the road or ground forces acting on the vehicle do so through the contact patches of the tires.
The suspension also protects the vehicle itself and any cargo or luggage from damage and wear.
The design of front and rear suspension of a car may be different.