This Gator™ XUV Crossover Utility Vehicle is equipped with power steering and a dual A-arm front suspension. These automotive-type systems exhibit excellent handling characteristics, as well as responsive steering and low steering effort:
Steel ball-bearings secure the steering shaft and deliver smooth, responsive operation
Tight turning radius of 3.8 m (12.4 ft) two-passenger or 10.4 m (34.1 ft) four-passenger for excellent maneuverability
Completely sealed rack-and-pinion for long life
- Low steering ratio (lock-to-lock) provides more responsive steering and less operator input
Shaft U-joints are phased for a smooth, uninterrupted motion of the steering wheel
Electric power assist steering (EPAS) system has advanced features:
- Anti-kickback feature reduces the amount of steering unwinding when traversing difficult terrain.
- The system is speed sensing and adjusts steering effort as the speed of the vehicle changes.
- As speed increases there is less steering assist for improved road feel.
- As speed decreases steering assist increases to give lower steering efforts for improved maneuverability.
- A warning/functional light on the instrument panel provides self-diagnostics and a warning light in the situation of no assist.
- Torque sensor measures steering wheel input so the on-board computer can provide the appropriate output for various driving situations.
With the EPAS system, the operator maintains a direct mechanical linkage from the steering wheel to the front wheels. The power steering system interfaces mechanically with the steering system by being inserted between the steering wheel and the rack and pinion assembly.
A differential torque sensor is integrated into the power steering assembly. The circuit board assembly is also integral with the power steering assembly.
Power steering does not reduce turning radius but significantly reduces steering effort, by approximately 85 percent compared to those models without power steering.
EPAS INTERFACE DIAGRAM
The numbered descriptions refer to the EPAS interface diagram shown above:
- Torque sensor
- Fail-safe relay
- Current/thermal control circuit
- Reduction gears
- DC motor
- Rack and pinion
- Function/warning light
- Key power and ground
- Vehicle speed sensor
- Instrument cluster
- Relay module
The tire scrubbing, which also creates unwanted heat and wear in the tire, can be eliminated by turning the inside wheel at a greater angle than the outside one (Ackerman steering).
NOTE: Some competitors use parallel steering instead of Ackerman steering.
Bump steering defines the change in the forward steering angle (thus wheel position) as the suspension travels through its full motion. A large amount of angular change (5 degrees to 7 degrees) will alter the vehicle's direction and excessively move the steering wheel.
ACKERMAN STEERING DESIGN
Ackerman steering design provides more responsive steering, decreases tire wear when used on hard surfaces, and is turf friendly (see description below).
Minimal bump steer eliminates unintended vehicle direction changes when traversing terrain and permits less feedback to the steering wheel (see description below).
The Ackerman steering principle defines the geometry that is applied to all vehicles (two- or four-wheel drive) to enable the correct turning angle of the steering wheels to be generated when negotiating a corner or a curve.
The red lines in the picture represent the path that the wheels follow. One can notice the inside wheels of the vehicle are following a smaller diameter circle than the outside wheels.
If both of the steering wheels were turned by the same amount (parallel steering), the inside wheel would scrub (effectively sliding sideways). This wears the tires on hard surfaces, scrubs or tears the turf, and lessens the effectiveness of the steering.
Dual A-arm front and rear suspension provides a smooth ride over challenging terrain and excellent hauling characteristics
To complement the most capable frame available in a high-performance utility vehicle, the XUV is equipped with four-wheel independent suspension.
A dual A-arm front and rear suspension provides a smooth ride over challenging terrain and excellent hauling characteristics.
The entire suspension system has been optimized to handle no cargo to maximum cargo without compromising ride quality or vehicle stability.
DUAL A-ARM FRONT SUSPENSION FEATURES INCLUDE:
203.2 mm (8 in.) of travel provides ample compression and wheel extension, which keep all four wheels on the ground for superior traction and vehicle control
17.5-mm (0.6875-in.) solid anti-roll bar with fully rubber isolated connecting links and pivots for minimal vehicle body roll and quiet operation
Heavy-duty nodular cast-iron knuckles to support the strut, constant-velocity (CV) shaft, and wheel
Maintenance-free rubber torsional A-arm pivots for long life and quiet operation
CV shaft protection from sticks that may puncture the rubber boot
Dual A-arm independent rear suspension features include:
Unequal length, dual A-arm construction for superior wheel control and travel
228.6 mm (9 in.) of total travel provides ample compression and wheel extension, which keep all four wheels on the ground for superior traction, excellent ride quality, and vehicle control
Coil over shocks absorb the most demanding terrain
A-arms made from square/rectangular tubing reduce weight while remaining rigid
Heavy-duty nodular cast-iron uprights support wheel loads with a double row of ball bearings
CV driveshaft protection from sticks that may puncture the rubber boot
Rear sway bar for lateral stability
Superior terrain capability
The Gator™ XUV Crossover Series Utility Vehicle has a precision-engineered drivetrain system that fully utilizes engine power, optimizing acceleration, hauling, towing, and hill-climbing capabilities. Power is transmitted from the engine through a continuously variable clutch system to the transaxle.
Key elements of the drive system include:
The variable-speed drive consists of two clutches and a drive belt:
- Drive clutch is attached to the engine.
- Driven clutch is attached to the transaxle.
- The engine braking system utilizes a tight belt for operation, requiring an idler sleeve on the primary clutch for neutral. The secondary clutch is a new build-on-shaft design that utilizes a cam to tune the acceleration and deceleration of the vehicle. The clutch will stay engaged, providing deceleration until approximately (5 km/h) 3 mph.
- The Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT™) air intake draws in 50 percent more air vs. previous designs to reduce heat and the amount of water ingestion into the CVT system. The system will reduce belt slipping and improve durability.
- A low- and high-speed forward gear offering:
- Low range is 0 km/h to 27 km/h (0 mph to 17 mph), 625i
- Low range is 0 km/h to 43 km/h (0 mph to 27 mph), 825i and 825i S4
- Low range is 0 km/h to 24 km/h (0 mph to 15 mph), 855D and 855D S4
- High range is 0 km/h to 40 km/h (0 mph to 25 mph), 625i
- High range is 0 km/h to 71 km/h (0 mph to 44 mph), 825i and 825i S4
- High range is 0 km/h to 51 km/h (0 mph to 32 mph), 855D and 855D S4
- Ability to creep along slowly to maneuver in tight spaces
- Standard full clutch enclosure with high speed fan provides longer belt and clutch life
- High-ratio clutches with three cam weights for maximum belt clamp load in high torque conditions
- Powertrain reduction ratios:
- The complete reduction ratios range for high gear is (8.6:1 at top speed and 42:1 at initial clutch engagement. This varies between the three vehicles listed above.
- The complete reduction ratios range for low gear is (17.9:1 at top speed and 86.8:1 at initial clutch engagement. This varies between the vehicles listed above.
NOTE: Delivery and torque to the ground depends on tire size which is a function of nominal size and pressure.
How the variable-speed drive works:
- As engine speed increases, the spring-loaded drive clutch is closed by weights being forced out by centrifugal force.
- As the drive clutch closes, the belt rides up to the largest diameter of the drive clutch and forces open the driven clutch.
- With the belt running in the smallest diameter of the driven clutch, the speed being transferred to the transaxle is increased.
- The driven clutch is designed to sense varying loads (inclines, mud, etc.) and constantly adjusts drive speed upward or downward so that engine rpm remains optimal.
TRANSAXLE, MECHANICAL FRONT-WHEEL DRIVE (MFWD), AND CONSTANT VELOCITY (CV) SHAFTS
On-demand true four-wheel drive (4WD) system with an auto-locking front differential and dash-mounted electronic rocker switch is best in class; when the rocker switch is in the on (4WD) position, the front differential will automatically lock for extra traction when needed, but when the rocker switch is in the off two-wheel drive (2WD) position, the vehicle will remain in 2WD
Provides exceptional traction in challenging conditions
Maintains turf-friendly operation in 2WD mode
Illuminated for visibility in low light conditions
Two-speed fully enclosed oil bath transaxle allows for superior pulling ability
Cast aluminum design is the most robust in the industry
Helical forward and reverse gears are used for quiet operation
Rear traction assist (differential lock) is built in and can be engaged on demand
Allows locking the rear drive wheels together
Provides increased traction in tough spots
NOTE: Differential design reduces scuffing of the turf during turns because it allows the inside wheels to turn slower than the outside wheels
Neutral start safety interlock for engine ignition system
Large, sealed bearings are located inside the housing for better protection and durability
Contains gear case for transferring power to the MFWD
Splined shaft interfaces for maximum torque transfer and durability
All drive gears machined from highest grade gear steel
Protected by a skid plate
Mechanical front-wheel drive
Rear CV shaft diameter measures 27 mm (1.1 in.) and designed for peak engine and braking torque
Front CV shaft diameter measures 23.9 mm (0.94 in.) and designed for peak engine torque
Propshaft (transaxle to MFWD shaft) diameter measures 23 mm (0.91 in.) and designed for peak engine torque
All CV shaft and propshaft joints are maintenance free and protected by exclusive Neoprene boots for durability
Powerful gas engine delivers superb starting, idling, and throttle response
The machine is powered by a 812-cu cm (49.6 cu in.), 3-cylinder, dual overhead cams, liquid-cooled, four-cycle gasoline engine. It produces 6.5 kgm of torque (47 lb-ft) at 3200 rpm. The advanced electronic- controls and fuel-injection systems deliver superb starting, idling, and throttle response during operation.
The engine offers the following performance and reliability features:
50 hp* at 6000 rpm
71-km/h (44-mph) top speed
Electronic fuel injection for superb performance, altitude adjustment, and cold-weather starting (tested to -20°F)
Electronic ignition is continuously variable for optimum engine power and provides fast, reliable starts
Exclusive electronic ground-speed governor and throttle body
Overhead valve design provides greater efficiency and fuel economy
Full-pressure lubrication system
Spin-on oil filter with drain bracket and oil drain valve enable easy servicing
Dry replaceable single-element air cleaner with remote intake
See-through coolant recovery tank permits the operator to check the coolant level without having to remove the radiator cap
Standard high-capacity alternator - 75 amps for maximum accessory capability
ADDITIONAL DETAIL ON THE ELECTRONIC GOVERNOR AND THROTTLE BODY
The electronic governor system allows the electronic control unit (ECU) to continuously monitor the throttle opening and engine speed, electronically regulating the throttle opening to maintain a constant engine speed, even under changing engine-load conditions
Electronic throttle control (ETC) is an electronic link between the accelerator pedal and the throttle; the ECU determines the required throttle position through other sensors; the system provides input to the fuel injection system
Benefits of ETC are consistent powertrain characteristics, regardless of engine temperature, altitude, accessory loads, etc.; ETC also dramatically improves the ease with which the driver can execute gear changes and deal with the dramatic torque changes associated with rapid accelerations and decelerations
* The engine horsepower information is provided by the engine manufacturer to be used for comparison purposes only. The actual operating horsepower will be less.