Tomoyoshi Osakabe, Suzuki responsible for the synergistic control of vehicle dynamics; and Tetsuo Yamase, responsible for controlling the brand’s all-wheel drive; tell us how this system was developed.
How did the electronically controlled 4×4 drive project come about?
(Osakabe) The idea came when we were discussing the SX4 S-Cross concept with the product planning team in its early stages of development.
(Yamase) After discussing consumer needs with the product development team and the engineers responsible for driving system development, we decided to add the ability to change driving modes for two reasons. First, drivers would like to be able to choose which driving mode to use based on factors such as weather, surface or driving conditions. Secondly, offering the ability to configure the car would improve performance on bumpy roads and vehicle stability by selecting the correct driving mode.
What does 4×4 mean to you?
(Osakabe) 4×4 drive improves safety, especially when driving conditions are more demanding, such as on snowy or bumpy roads.
(Yamase) For Suzuki, it is a system that offers riders more grip and three qualities: fun behind the wheel, peace of mind and efficiency.
What role does the ALLGRIP SELECT system play?
(Osakabe) Whether the roads are dry and paved, snowy and slippery or just bumpy and bumpy, the Allgrip SELECT system allows the driver to select the right driving mode depending on mood or road conditions to maximize the fuel efficiency, enjoy sporty driving, etc. .
(Yamase) With the ability to select four different modes, the driver can adjust the handling of the vehicle to suit a wide variety of driving situations. As a result, the Allgrip SELECT system offers great driving fun, even when driving on rough roads, while providing great fuel efficiency for everyday use.
How did they feel when they discovered they were chosen to work with the ALLGRIP SELECT system?
(Yamase) 4×4 with selectable drive modes was something new for Suzuki, so I found it very exciting. I immediately imagined the added value we could bring to customers. I thought we could create this value through a configurable system that maximizes the 4×4’s performance in a variety of driving situations by coordinating our all-wheel drive system with other different technologies.
(Osakabe) I also thought it was a great opportunity and was looking forward to collaborating with the other team members to produce a vehicle whose performance met our customers’ expectations.
Tell us your best memory of those days …
(Yamase) That’s when we had a barbecue and everyone smiled as we talked about how we were going to get great results. We have thought thoroughly about the concept of each driving mode, carried out a wide range of test drives and exchanged numerous views.
(Osakabe) I have fond memories of our stay at the Shimokawa Trial Course in Hokkaido, where you can try driving in the snow. Suzuki colleagues from headquarters took part in the tests and we took the opportunity to get to know each other better and strengthen our friendship after working together all day. It was a good opportunity to appreciate their role as team members from a different perspective.