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Help me debunk/support rumor that only 3 out of 4 Model Y tires contact road during turns

berkeley_ecar

S 90D (fully loaded) delivered 18 Mar 2017
Jul 21, 2014
262
217
Berkeley, CA
I am the original owner and grateful driver of a 2017 Model S. My sister recently acquired a model Y, which she is also very happy with. However, a close friend of hers who is an ICE engineer/designer (hence, not a disinterested party) told her of a "Model Y design defect" such that in some turns, only 3 of 4 tires are in contact with the road. I've done a bit of searching on the web, as I would suspect that if this were true there would be substantial discussion of the issue -- and I find nothing. Does anyone have evidence-based comments to share relating to this issue? I'm guessing at the moment that it is going to turn out to be an unsubstantiated rumor and nothing more.
 
You should ask to this "ICE Engineer Designer" /S to give you some references.

The great argument for EVs against ICEs is that the battery is located under the car,
thus providing better turning grip than ICEs with the engine located above the wheel axial.

May be this friend was takling about the Mustang Mach-E?
Here is what I found for the Model Y:

>> One of the team members even managed to go through the test
>> without touching the cones when coming in at 82 km/h (51 mph).

Looking at the video (at the 1:00 time) of the rear view of the Model Y, all the wheels seems to be touching the ground.







 
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thesmokingman

Active Member
Jun 21, 2021
3,071
7,834
Socal
I am the original owner and grateful driver of a 2017 Model S. My sister recently acquired a model Y, which she is also very happy with. However, a close friend of hers who is an ICE engineer/designer (hence, not a disinterested party) told her of a "Model Y design defect" such that in some turns, only 3 of 4 tires are in contact with the road. I've done a bit of searching on the web, as I would suspect that if this were true there would be substantial discussion of the issue -- and I find nothing. Does anyone have evidence-based comments to share relating to this issue? I'm guessing at the moment that it is going to turn out to be an unsubstantiated rumor and nothing more.
You should have asked this supposed hack engineer for his proof. Btw, lifting a wheel in a corner is not a design defect. Just saying that shows the they are really dumb, lack of a better word at the moment, when it comes to suspension.
 
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berkeley_ecar

S 90D (fully loaded) delivered 18 Mar 2017
Jul 21, 2014
262
217
Berkeley, CA
Thanks for the comments. I think we can safely lay this to rest. After showing my sister the materials kindly shared by Watts_Up, and pushing her a bit, I understand things differently. She lives in Sausalito, which has lots of very steep and winding roads, and sharp turns, so the road surfaces are very convoluted and unusual. She now realizes that past vehicles also made what she (by imitation) would describe as a kind of brief squeal when taking certain turns. This happened once with her ICE engineer as a passenger in her Model Y, and he explained it as being due to one of the 4 tires not being well grounded on the pavement at that particular moment, which makes perfect sense to me. It was she, and not he, who then extrapolated this to being a "design defect." I think this whole phenomenon can be attributed to wonky roads, not an automotive design defect. Apologies if I unintentionally set off a slight false alarm here, and I don't think the engineer friend was at fault in the misunderstanding (also I happen to know that he realizes that the era of ICE is coming to an end). Still, this exchange led to seeing some of the interesting "moose test" and other videos! Thanks, all.
 
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GSP

Member
Supporting Member
Dec 28, 2007
2,627
894
I've only seen very small and light FWD hatchbacks from the 90's lift a back wheel during cornering. This is a fabricated story. No Model Y is going to lift a wheel during turns unless you are about to be in a serious accident. They probably got it from a wildly made-up Facebook comment.
In the 1980’s, I owned three such hatchbacks that lift a rear wheel on hard corners. At autocross events, also in the 1980’s, I saw a Porsche 911 lift its *front* wheel briefly while cornering. No big deal, that is just how some cars work.
 
My Subaru would pick up a tire on a track day. But it was on coil overs. If you want to see a production car pick up a wheel stock look a the ford fiesta st. It does it all the time. Boy it’s fun. If anybody is driving the model y that hard to lift a wheel That’s crazy on the street. I’ve tried on a track and I can’t get it to do it even when trying lift off oversteer the battery’s too low And the fun police kick in too quick. also Look at the nhtsa side impact crash test.
 
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This ICE engineer doesn’t sound too bright for some reason. 4,500 lbs, low center of gravity, 50/50 weight distribution, and no heavy ICE engin in front.

What kinda engineer is he, software? EE? Doesn’t sound like any mechanical engineer I know of. Also doesn’t seem to know how sway bars or multi-link suspension works either.

Moose test video someone posted proves the point. Have you see the crash test video trying to roll the MY over? It’s very difficult just even to do that.

 
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jpfive

Member
Supporting Member
Oct 31, 2019
588
557
Pensacola, FL
In the 1980’s, I owned three such hatchbacks that lift a rear wheel on hard corners. At autocross events, also in the 1980’s, I saw a Porsche 911 lift its *front* wheel briefly while cornering. No big deal, that is just how some cars work.
I can corroborate this, also from auto-crossing in the 80's. 911's would regularly lift a front wheel. VW Rabbits would lift a rear. There were others. These cars still did very well in their respective classes.
 
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