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Chapter 1 Traffic Estimation and Forecasting

Section 19 FHWA Vehicle Classification Figures

Section 19 FHWA Vehicle Classification Figures

FHWA Vehicle Classifications

Figure 1-14: FHWA Class 1 Motorcycles

Figure 1-15: FHWA Class 2 Passenger Cars (With 1- or 2-Axle Trailers)

Figure 1-16: FHWA Class 3 2 Axles, 4-Tire Single Units, Pickup or Van (With 1- or 2-Axle Trailers)

Figure 1-17: FHWA Class 4 Buses

Figure 1-18: FHWA Class 5 2D - 2 Axles, 6-Tire Single Units (Includes HandicappeEquipped Bus and Mini School Bus)

Figure 1-19: FHWA Class 6 3 Axles, Single Unit

Chapter 1 Traffic Estimation and Forecasting

Section 19 FHWA Vehicle Classification Figures

Figure 1-20: FHWA Class 7 4 or More Axles, Single Unit

Figure 1-21: FHWA Class 8 3 to 4 Axles, Single Trailer

Figure 1-22: FHWA Class 9 5 Axles, Single Trailer

Figure 1-23: FHWA Class 10 6 or More Axles, Single Trailer

Figure 1-24: FHWA Class 11 5 or Less Axles, Multi-Trailers

Chapter 1 Traffic Estimation and Forecasting

Section 19 FHWA Vehicle Classification Figures

Figure 1-25: FHWA Class 12 6 Axles, Multi-Trailers

Figure 1-26: FHWA Class 13 7 or More Axles, Multi-Trailers

Vehicle layouts and some simple vehicle structures
Topics covered in this chapter
The types of forces to which a vehicle structure is subjected Unitary construction Chassis-built vehicles Front- and rear-wheel drive and the layout of these systems Passenger protection e crumple zones and side impact bars Vehicle shape e air resistance Pros and cons of front- and rear-wheel-drive systems End-of-life vehicles and methods of disposal There are basically two types of vehicle construction: one uses a frame on to which the vehicle is built; the other is called unitary construction where the body and frame are built as a unit to which subframes are added to support the suspension and other components. The frame is normally made from low-carbon steel that is formed into shapes to provide maximum strength; box and channel sections are frequently used for this purpose. The frame shown in Fig. 1.3 has a deeper section in the centre area of the side members because this is where the bending stress is greatest. In areas where additional strength is required, such as where suspension members are attached, special strengthening supports are tted.

Unitary construction

Light vehicles
The term light vehicle is generally taken to mean vehicles weighing less than 3 tonnes. These are vehicles such as cars, vans, and light commercial vehicles. Various types of light vehicles are shown in Fig. 1.1. Most of these vehicles are propelled by an internal combustion engine but increasing concern about atmospheric pollution is causing greater use of electric propulsion. Vehicles that incorporate an internal combustion engine and an electric motor are called hybrid vehicles.

Vehicle structure
Figure 1.2 shows some of the forces that act on a vehicle structure. The passengers and other effects cause a downward force that is resisted by the upward forces at the axles. The vehicle structure acts like a simple beam where the upper surface is in compression and the lower one in tension. When the loading from side to side of the vehicle is unequal the vehicle body is subject to a twisting effect and the vehicle structure is designed to have torsional stiffness that resists distortion through twisting.
2011 Allan Bonnick and Derek Newbold. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved

Most of the vehicle structure is made from steel sections that are welded together to provide a rigid structure which is able to cope with the stresses and strains that occur when the vehicle is in use. In most cases the material used is a deep-drawing mild steel that can be readily pressed into the required shapes. An example of unitary construction is shown in Fig. 1.4. In some cases, the outer panels are made from plastics such as Kevlar (Fig. 1.5), which has excellent strength and resistance to corrosion. Body panels are normally lined with sound-deadening material which is either sprayed, or glued, on to the inside. In order to protect body components against rust and corrosion, they may be galvanized, or treated with some other form of protection.

Passenger protection
In addition to providing the strength required for normal motoring conditions, vehicles are designed to protect the occupants in the event of a collision. Two areas of vehicle construction are particularly related to this problem: 1. Crumple zones 2. Side impact protection.

A Practical Approach to Motor Vehicle Engineering and Maintenance



SUV Pickup truck

People carrier Van

Fig. 1.1 Types of light vehicles

Vehicle structure

Twisting effect

Bending effect Twisting effect

Fig. 1.2 Forces acting on vehicle structure

Crumple zones
A vehicle in motion possesses kinetic energy. Because energy cannot be destroyed, some means has to be found to change its form. Under braking conditions, the kinetic energy is converted into heat by the friction in the brakes e this heat then passes into the atmosphere. When involved in a collision the kinetic energy is

absorbed in distorting the vehicle structure e if this distortion can take place outside the passenger compartment, a degree of protection for the vehicle occupants can be provided. The front and rear ends of motor cars are designed to collapse in the event of a collision; the areas of the bodywork that are designed for this purpose are known as crumple zones (Fig. 1.6). At the design

Vehicle layouts and some simple vehicle structures


Cross members Suspension mounts

Fig. 1.3 A typical vehicle frame

Box section side members

Cant rail

Bulk head Floor panel Radiator grill panel B Pillar Sill A Pillar Wing valance
Fig. 1.4 Features of a unitary construction body

C Pillar

Boot lid made from Kevlar

Fig. 1.5

Kevlar body panel

Fig. 1.6 Crumple zone e impact test at the British Transport Research Laboratory (TRL) Image Courtesy of StaraBlazkova at the Czech language Wikipedia

A Practical Approach to Motor Vehicle Engineering and Maintenance Air resistance 5 Cd 3 A 3 V2, where Cd is the drag coefcient, A is the frontal area of the vehicle, and V is the velocity of the vehicle relative to the wind speed. The way in which engine power is absorbed in overcoming air resistance is shown in the graph in Fig. 1.8.

Strengthening member

The efciency of the streamlining of a vehicle body is a major factor in reducing the drag coefcient; other factors, such as recessing door handles and shaping of exterior mirrors, also contribute to a lowering of drag. Another factor that contributes to the lowering of drag is the air dam that is tted to the front of a vehicle (Fig. 1.9); this reduces under-body turbulence.
Tubular protection bar

End-of-Life Vehicles Directive

Fig. 1.7 Side impact protection (Toyota)

and development stages, and prior to introduction into general use, samples of vehicles are subjected to rigorous tests to ensure that they comply with the standards that are set by governmental bodies.

The End-of-Life Vehicles (ELV) Directive aims to reduce the amount of waste produced from vehicles when they are scrapped. Around two million vehicles reach the end of their life in the UK each year. These vehicles are classed as hazardous waste until they have been fully treated.

Side impact protection

In the event of side impact, a degree of protection to occupants is provided by the bars that are tted inside the doors (Fig. 1.7).

What does the directive mean?

The directive requires ELV treatment sites to meet stricter environmental standards. The last owner of a vehicle must be issued with a Certicate of Destruction for their vehicle and they must be able to dispose of their vehicle free of charge. Vehicle manufacturers and importers must cover all or most of the cost of the free take-back system. It also sets higher reuse, recycling and recovery targets, and limits the use of hazardous substances in both new vehicles and replacement vehicle parts.

Vehicle shape
A considerable amount of engine power is consumed in driving a vehicle against the air resistance that is caused by vehicle motion. The air resistance is affected by a factor known as the drag coefcient and it is dependent on the shape of the vehicle.

Power loss [kW]

Aerodynamic DHAS

Rolling assistance Transmission 45 Speed [km/h]

Fig. 1.8 Power used against air resistance


Vehicle layouts and some simple vehicle structures

Fig. 1.10 Typical front-wheel-drive arrangement

Fig. 1.9

An air dam (DuPont)

Who implements the directive?

In the UK, the directive is implemented through ELV Regulations issued in 2003 and 2005, and through the Environmental Permitting (EP) Regulations 2007. The 2003 regulations deal with information requirements, certicate of destruction requirements, and restricting the use of hazardous substances in new vehicles. The 2005 regulations cover recycling targets and free take-back for ELVs. The 2007 regulations extended the treatment requirements in the UK to all waste motor vehicles (including coaches, buses, motor cycles, goods vehicles, etc).

In the arrangement shown in Fig. 1.10 the engine and transmission units are placed transversely at the front of the vehicle, which means that they are at right angles to the main axis of the vehicle. Some of the advantages claimed for front-wheel drive are:

 Because the engine and transmission system are

placed over the front wheels the road holding is improved, especially in wet and slippery conditions.  Good steering stability is achieved because the driving force at the wheels is in the direction that the vehicle is being steered. There is also a tendency for front-wheel drive vehicles to understeer, which can improve driveability when cornering.  Passenger and cargo space are good because there is no need for a transmission shaft to the rear axle. Possible disadvantages are:

 Complicated drive shafts are needed for constant-

Authorized Treatment Facilities

Authorized Treatment Facilities (ATFs) are permitted facilities accepting waste motor vehicles, which are able to comply with the requirements of the End-of-Life Vehicle (ELV) and Environmental Permitting (EP) regulations. In the UK, most local authorities have vehicle recycling companies that are authorized to deal with ELVs:

 Acceleration is affected because load transfer to the

velocity joints.

rear of the vehicle lightens the load on the drive axle at the front.  The turning circle radius is limited by the angle through which a constant-velocity joint can function.

 Vehicle recyclers must dismantle vehicles in an

environmentally responsible manner and achieve between 75% and 85% recycling targets.  The vehicle owner must dispose of their unwanted vehicle in a legal and responsible manner by using an Authorized Treatment Facility.

Front-engine rear-wheel drive

Until reliable mass-produced constant-velocity joints became available, the front engine and rear drive axle arrangement shown in Fig. 1.11 was used in most light vehicles. In the layout shown in Fig. 1.11 the engine is mounted in-line with the main axis of the vehicle. The gearbox is at the rear of the engine and power is transmitted through the propeller shaft to the drive axle at the rear. The gearbox, propeller shaft, and rear axle make up what is known as the driveline of the vehicle. The advantages of a front-engine rear-wheel drive arrangement are:

Layout of engine and driveline

Front-wheel drive
The majority of light vehicles have the engine at the front of the vehicle with the driving power being transmitted to the front wheels.

A Practical Approach to Motor Vehicle Engineering and Maintenance

Fig. 1.11 Front-engine rear-wheel drive

 The front axle is relatively simple.  Acceleration and hill climbing are aided because

load transfer to the rear of the vehicle retains traction at the driving wheels.

 Space for luggage is reduced.  Difculty steering in slippery conditions.

Possible disadvantages are:

Four-wheel drive
In this system the engine power is transmitted to all four wheels of a light vehicle. In the arrangement shown in Fig. 1.13(a), the engine is placed at the front of the vehicle. Power to the front wheels is provided through the gearbox to the front axle and from the gearbox to the rear axle via the propeller shaft. Permanent drive to all four wheels (Fig. 1.13(a) and (b)) poses certain difculties with braking and steering that require the use of sophisticated electronically controlled devices. A common approach to four-wheel drive makes use of an additional gearbox that is known as the transfer gearbox. This additional unit allows the driver to select four-wheel drive when driving conditions make it benecial and for cross-country work the transfer gearbox provides an additional range of lower gear ratios. The advantages claimed for four-wheel drive are:

 Reduced space for driver and front passenger

because of the bulge in the oor panel that is required to accommodate the gearbox and clutch housing.  The raised section known as the propeller shaft affects available space throughout the length of the passenger compartment.  Long propeller shafts can cause vibration problems.

Rear-engine rear-wheel drive

Figure 1.12 shows an arrangement where the engine is mounted transversely at the rear with the drive being transmitted to the rear axle. The advantages claimed for the rear-engine layout are:

 Short driveline because the engine, gearbox, and nal  A preponderance of weight at the rear of the vehicle
gives improved traction during hill climbing and acceleration. drive can be built into a single unit.

 Better traction in all conditions.  Wear of tyres and other driveline components is more
evenly shared. Possible disadvantages are:

Possible disadvantages are:

 A tendency to oversteer.  Difculty accommodating liquid cooling of the

 Increased weight and initial vehicle cost.  Increased maintenance due to the complexity of  Increased fuel consumption.  Possibly difcult to accommodate anti-lock braking
systems. transmission systems.

engine.  Difculty accommodating the fuel tank in a safe zone of the vehicle.

Vehicle layouts and some simple vehicle structures

Fig. 1.12 Rear-engine rear-wheel-drive layout


Transfer box


Transverse engine with transaxle Visco clutch and 60/40 diff

7. 8. 9. 10.

Front engine with 60/40 differential and visco clutch

11. 12.

Fig. 1.13 (a) Optional four-wheel drive. (b) Permanent four-wheel drive


Self-assessment questions
1. What happens to a motor vehicle that has reached the end of its useful life? 2. Find out the names of the Authorized Treatment Facilities in your area. 3. What percentage of a vehicle is recycled? What happens to the steel that is reclaimed when a vehicle is scrapped? 4. Examine a manual for a vehicle that you work on and describe the features that the design

14. 15. 16. 17.

incorporates to protect the occupants in the event of a collision. Write a few notes to describe why you think that four-wheel drive vehicles are now popular for use as family cars. What is meant by the term oversteer. Why do you think that a rear-engine vehicle may be more prone to oversteer than a front-engine vehicle? What is the purpose of an air dam? What measures should be taken to protect paintwork when a vehicle is being worked on? In which position on vehicle panels is soundproong applied? If the speed of a vehicle is doubled, by what factor is the air resistance increased? What features of vehicle design affect the drag coefcient? Which part of a four-wheel drive transmission system permits the four-wheel drive to be engaged? In which positions on a vehicle are the side impact protection bars tted? Make a list of the external parts of a motor car that are made from plastic. What methods of joining body panels are used in modern vehicle construction? What materials and methods are used to prevent water entering the interior of a car? Describe, with the aid of a diagram, the type of engine mounting that is used to attach an engine to a vehicle frame.