Thyssenkrupp Bilstein and Eibach UK formed a partnership to develop armoured vehicle suspension systems. This provides clients with a single engineering entity, which designs and volume produces suspension systems.

Bilstein pioneered the gas-pressurised mono-tube damper that revolutionised motorsport, and is used in high-performance and luxury road cars. Eibach, on the other hand, led the development of the spring and anti-roll bar design and production to enable the group to make more durable and lightweight springs. Alongside the high-quality armoured vehicle suspension components, the company’s expertise spans exotic cars and the series production of tyre-smoking executive saloon cars.

There are great similarities between the history and market position of both companies. This fact, and the great respect they have for each other’s products, makes for an ideal UK-based partnership. By sharing the characteristics of their components during the design phase, the companies can ensure that products are right first time. Springs, dampers and anti-roll bars all work within a shared kinematic system, so there is a direct relationship between the spring and the damper.

Both companies disagree that motorsport technology is transferable to the armoured vehicle field. Personnel could be stranded if a damper fails on an armoured vehicle. They have developed internal design rules and ultra-duty components to mitigate in-service failures. For Bilstein’s dampers, one can see that the external oil reservoir is encased by a stone-strike protection shield that consists of an aluminium plate, which is supported by a shock-absorbing polyurethane cushion.

The partnership prides itself on providing a personal service for varied projects, ranging one-off instructions for a fabricated chassis through to others that require the creation of three-dimensional computer-aided design models for integration and simulation.

This partnership provides a true turnkey solution for the armoured vehicle manufacturer. With involvement from the initial design concept to the final training of fitters, all bases are covered.