Kinematic model: Ackermann steering mechanism (KI 160)

Kinematic model: Ackermann steering mechanism (KI 160)

investigation of the steering geometry according to Ackermann



  • When it comes to steering, the entire vehicle’s wheel should be exactly on a circular path.
  • To achieve this, the extensions of all the axles must intersect at the centre of the circle (Ackermann’s steering principle).
  • This requires that the wheel inside of the curve drives more than the wheel outside of the circle.
  • This is approximately achieved with a steering trapezoid, comprising an axle, a track rod and two track-rod arms on the wheels.
  • The KI 160unit can be used to study a steering trapezoid.
  • The experimental unit comprises two track rods with drag link, two track-rod arms and two steering pins, where, in theory, the wheels are attached.
  • The length of the axis corresponds to the distance between the steering pins.
    The lengths of the two track rods are independently adjustable.
  • To set the zero position of the steering angle, the mechanism is fixed via a lock on the drag link.
  • The steering angle on the inside wheel is set; the angle of the outside wheel changes according to the geometry and is read.
  • The difference between the two angles is the lead angle or relative steering angle.
  • The difference between the calculated and measured steering angles is the steering error.
  • Disadvantages of an incorrectly set track rod can be demonstrated.
  • The elements are mounted on a base plate, which can also be mounted on a wall.

Technical Details:


  • investigate a steering trapezoid
  • investigate the steering geometry according to Ackermann
  • adjustment of the track rod lengths
  • read the steering angle on the scales
  • adjustment of the zero position of the steering angle by locking the mechanism
  • adjustment of the steering angle of the inside wheel
  • measure the steering angle of the outside wheel

Technical Data:

  • Track rods
  • individually adjustable
  • Distance between the steering pins
  • 465mm
  • Measuring range of the steering angle
  • ±50°
  • scale graduation: 1°

Dimensions & Weight:

  • L x W x H: 620x280x60mm
  • Weight: approx. 6kg

Learning Objections/Experiments:

  • verifying Ackermann’s steering principle
  • calculate the wheelbase
  • determine the lead angle and the steering error

Scope of Delivery:

  • 1 kinematic model
  • 1 set of instructional material



Due to the continuous development of our products, the goods supplied may vary in detail to that illustrated on this Website.