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Motorsport Wheel Alignment: Wheel Base & Wheel Track

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Wheel Base & Wheel Track


00:00 - The wheelbase and track are aspects of the wheel alignment that are often not given too much thought to and as with many of the topics we're discussing in this section, in a stock suspension system, you'll almost certainly have no way of influencing them.
00:14 With aftermarket suspension arms however, we gain a lot more adjustability and we can easily alter the wheelbase and track often inadvertently.
00:23 The wheelbase is simply the distance from the centreline of the front axle to the centreline of the rear axle while the track is the width of the axle line between the centre of the contact patches on each axle.
00:35 It's not uncommon to have a different track width at the front and the rear of the car and this can often be manipulated purposefully to help influence the handling of the car.
00:45 On the other hand, we do want to ensure that the wheelbase is the same on each side of the car to ensure that the handling is consistent in left and right handed corners.
00:54 Since fitting adjustable aftermarket lower control arms or trailing arms gives us the ability to affect their length, we need to consider the adjustments we make to maintain consistency with our wheel track and wheel base.
01:07 For this reason, some care is needed when setting up and installing these parts initially.
01:12 Particularly when it comes to lower control arms, we want to ensure that these are adjusted so that they're the same length on both sides of the car.
01:20 This will ensure that the centreline of each wheel is an equal distance from the car's centreline on the left and the right.
01:27 Adjustable rear trailing arms in a multi-link suspension are an easy way of inadvertently affecting the wheelbase on one side of the car compared to the other.
01:35 So again we need to be certain that the lengths of these arms is consistent.
01:40 Using a front lower control arm to alter castor by moving the front wheel forward relative to the strut tower, is another easy way that the wheel base can be altered with aftermarket suspension arms.