View Full Version : Magnetic Ride Control

Lord Cadillac
06-14-07, 12:05 PM
What is people's experience(s) with Magnetic Ride Control? Does it make for a softer ride than the regular suspension? A firmer ride? Both? In other words - is it softer than normal when you want it to be soft, and firmer when you need it to be firm?

06-14-07, 12:54 PM
at lower speeds it rides as good as my moms Deville.
When you nail it and try to take a bend the thing out handles my ETC.

Lord Cadillac
06-14-07, 01:15 PM
Very, very interesting.. Thank you..

06-14-07, 01:30 PM
Via Cadillacs website
Magnetic Ride Control
Enjoy a smooth, steady ride, courtesy of the world's fastest-reacting suspension system. Sensors read road conditions up to 1,000 times per second and damper settings adjust almost instantly to respond to conditions. System can read every inch of the road at 60 mph.


a bit more behind the science

PIKE'S PEAK RACEWAY, Colo. - Techno geek alert: If your current Cadillac isn't providing enough damping control for your car, do not despair. The company's engineers have remedied the situation. The 2002 STS will be the first vehicle in the world to hide a magnetic-fluid-based system inside its shocks to assure every driver of the most advanced handling and ride possible thus far in Cadillac's bid for excellence.

Those old CVRSS (continuously variable road-sensing suspension) struts? Gone. Replaced by magneto rheology - the science of the flow of matter and in this case, the behavior of the fluids, or oil, in the shock absorbers. MR, or MagneRide, as Cadillac coins an easier word for the system, is actually an enhancement of CVRSS and is ten times faster to respond to your car's performance needs. MR's response time under driving conditions that call for smoother rides over rough roads and better handling is measured in milliseconds.

...On 2002 STS models, MagneRide, developed with Delphi Automotive Systems, means that when you push your Seville hard, it will develop less body roll on even the worst roads. In tech-speak, metal particles are suspended within damping fluid. When subjected to an electronic field the fluid viscosity changes, which changes the damping characteristics of your car. There are no moving valve components and therefore no delays waiting for strut response.

The bottom line? Rapid and precise vehicle control, superior handling and a very, very smooth ride. In other words, chassis control over the motion of the vehicle is top quality. MagneRide enables the Northstar system to push performance handling to its upper limits without any harshness.

Confused? Buckle up for more and learn how it works: based on the wheel inputs from the road-sensing suspension, the MR's on-board computer sends an electric current to the coils in each damper to change the flow properties of the damping fluid. This fluid holds iron particles that are floating lazily around in the fluid like Californians in their swimming pools. When the sensor goes to work a magnetic field pops up, the iron bits cling together like plastic, and thanks to scientific magic, change the damping properties in milliseconds. Thus saving the driver and his passengers from any discomfort from anything larger than a pimple on the road surface.


i did my research to see if it was JUST hype or if the system was really that great, i could of saved 5k by going with an older STS but i wanted a 03 (standard) or late 02 STS with F55 Magnetic Ride Suspension. My dad has a 98 with the old CVRSS and my 03 STS has Magride, driving them on rough surfaces is like night and day, and at higher speeds attempting less than intelligent performance moves, it will run circles around my dads 98

Lord Cadillac
06-14-07, 03:39 PM
That really is very impressive. I'm glad you've owned both vehicles to give a good review on how it feels.. My 95 ETC handled very well, but it was a bit harsh on the road.. This creates a scenario of the best of both worlds.. Cadillac should be including this in more commercials.. It's a great selling poiint for the STS over the CTS.. And they should start using it in more vehicles.. I THINK the new DTS has it, but I'm not sure. If it doesn't, why?

What vehicles currently use this system?

06-14-07, 04:02 PM
I know the STS does and i think its the only one from lac, along with the Lucerne and the Vette. Ive herd talks about the STS now being more of Cadillacs fleet car due to its midway between the CTS and DTS. All the new technologies have been going to the STS, for 08 i believe its getting stabilitrak 3.

06-14-07, 05:46 PM
:thumbsup: Mirror experience with STS2003. My late '02 STS with MagneRide is truly a pleasure to drive, whether on the Interstate or doing the country road thing, either during daylight or at night (careful of deer..). Whether TC is on or off, the system reacts instantly to "aggressive" driving, hardening up the strut/shock system and leveling the vehicle in turns and stops. The way the system lets you do a 270 degree on-ramp is impressive for a FWD car. Sure, you'll scrub the front tires if you get carried away, but it's nice to know the handling is there. In late '02, the STS and Corvette were the only ones with the system, and '03 added some more models, but I don't know which. STS2003 took the plunge, and I think is happy with the change. As an old MG/Austin Healey/Jaguar racer, I'm happily impressed.

Lord Cadillac
06-14-07, 10:45 PM
I'd like my next Cadillac to have this.. I wonder if it's possible to have on the Escalade...

06-15-07, 01:48 AM
Lades are not build for speed or maneuvers.

Lord Cadillac
06-15-07, 09:10 AM
Regardless of speed and maneuvers... Wouldn't it just make for a softer and safer ride? In the event of having to avoid an accident - sharp turning would be safer... It makes sense... To me...

06-15-07, 10:03 AM
This magnetic fluid technology is really old stuff. It was originally conceived as a way to make an electric clutch for a non-hydraulic automatic transmission. The thing was suppposed to shift gears like an old manual transmission while the electric fluid clutch smoothed out the jerks and grinds. It worked, but not as well as a HydraMatic.

Lord Cadillac
06-15-07, 10:27 AM
That's interesting to know.. I guess it would pretty good thinking to bring the whole idea into suspensions...

06-15-07, 06:04 PM
Well, I might try to retrofit MagnaRide if I get a '93-96 FWB . Let's see .

06-15-07, 08:18 PM
cant be done
well anything can be done with enough money
but way to many specifics for each car, sensors etc etc etc

06-15-07, 09:04 PM
:bigroll: There IS a way to retrofit MagneRide: Jack up your obsolete OnStar antenna and run a new car under it.

06-15-07, 09:31 PM

06-15-07, 10:40 PM
Is it a lot better than the computer controlled struts that came before it?

06-15-07, 11:47 PM

06-17-07, 10:02 PM
:confused: If you could buy a late 2002-2003 vehicle with the same driver-adaptive suspension system as a Corvette, for $16,500, what would be your choice?

07-01-07, 08:59 PM
:rolleyes: Did some Googling.....look at www.delphi.com (http://www.delphi.com) and www.mrfluid.com (http://www.mrfluid.com) and surf around for magneto-rheological fluid and vehicle suspension systems. Appears we're in good company......Ferrari?

07-02-07, 11:04 AM
Yes, Ferrari uses same system and derive it from Delphi .As I recall, it was National Geo Channel showing Ferrari factory equipped with magna ride .

07-02-07, 01:36 PM
I can drive my '06 STS with magnetic ride control over roads here in Alaska that would have me bouncing off the roof in my lux sport CTS. It's the difference between night and day. The touring setting is much smoother than the performance and is exceptionally stable. I'll let you know in about six months what it does in -50F weather.

07-02-07, 01:43 PM
That sounds pretty cool and hope you will keep being satisfied with it .

04-18-08, 04:21 PM
Many struts have a relatively short life expectancy as the fluid experiences sheering force and slowly brakes down.

High end struts such as Koni's feature teflon slides, tight tolerances and high quality oil's that are more resilient to the sheering effects.

The idea of adding iron molecules, or worse very fine filings to the strut oil, doesn't exactly sound very "anti-wear"

While I'm sure these struts work well (when new) what kind of life expectancy do they have?

an electronic problem could cause some unpredictable handling characteristics as well.

In an un-powered state, are the struts at max stiffness? Or are they at max stiffness when completely energized?

04-18-08, 05:06 PM
The struts and shocks are constantly active in the system and the fluid goes from fully liquid to gel in less than a millisecond. At rest and during "nonaggressive" driving they remain relatively fluid. When the braking, yaw, pitch, and roll sensors, coupled with speed input, send "aggressive maneuvering" to the PCM and EBTCM the system shifts into an instantaneous reaction time mode which is truly impressive to experience. The shock and strut life is predicted to be longer than standard hydraulics. The system is very, very much more sophisticated than just dumping iron filings in some 10W shock oil. The system uses damping orifices, not pistons, cups and check valves. Lose the electronics and a code sets and the system defaults to a fairly stock "Cadillac" sport suspension ride. If things are bad enough (system failure) you'll get a suspension, braking, speed limited, and TC code string set.

Google "magnetic rheologic" , "magnetic fluid suspension control".

It is entirely possible to take a 270 degree exit/entry cloverleaf marked "30 mph" at 55 or 60. I ruined a (well-used) set of Goodyear RS-A's learning how. Make very sure your wheels are properly torqued to 100 ft/lb.

04-18-08, 05:56 PM
Here's but one of a volume of articles........and it may answer your life expectancy and "iron filings" queries. Open the attachment, from the New York Times, which pretty well defines the GM work on magnetic fluid suspensions.

Attachment deleted by NYT

04-19-08, 04:49 AM
:bigroll: There IS a way to retrofit MagneRide: Jack up your obsolete OnStar antenna and run a new car under it.

Comedy gold!!! :histeric:

11-11-08, 09:37 PM
I had a 2005 Escalade platinum ESV and the dealer tells me it had magnetic ride control. I loved the car and want another with this system. The salesman tells me that all the 2007-2008 Escalade ESVs with 20 or 22" inch wheels have this system. True or false? What difference does the wheel size make? Bill

11-11-08, 10:01 PM
I believe 2009 Escalade's are the first to have this feature. Not sure if the old models had it or not.

11-18-08, 08:29 PM
2009 Escalade Platinum's are the first to use this feature.

03-11-14, 01:01 AM
Do all 05+ V8 STS's have magnetic ride?

03-11-14, 07:13 PM
2009 Escalade Platinum's are the first to use this feature.

Not exactly, my 06 XLR has it.

...and with the crappy Houston roads, it takes those bumps very well

03-11-14, 08:34 PM
Compared to CVRSS, MRC is much firmer, especially on the Seville STS.

It's much smoother around town on the DTS Platinum compared to the Seville.

Haven't tried it in the 05+ STS or Corvette.

It's unbeatable on the highway or around corners on winding roads, stable and smooth with few disadvantages, if any.

03-11-14, 10:19 PM
Post #7. Mid-year 2002.5 STS (beginning AM 01/15/02) was the first GM car with MRC. The Seville Touring Sedan was the test mule, with all 2003 STS continuing. Then the system made its way into Corvette and Ferrari. It is now (2014) a very adaptable, efficient, long-lived suspension control system.

Google "lord delphi magnetorheological suspension".

Jesda, I have driven a MRC Corvette to some insane speeds at Lime Rock. It's a wonderful system.

03-11-14, 10:34 PM
Post #7. Mid-year 2002.5 STS (beginning AM 01/15/02) was the first GM car with MRC. The Seville Touring Sedan was the test mule, with all 2003 STS continuing. Then the system made its way into Corvette and Ferrari. It is now (2014) a very adaptable, efficient, long-lived suspension control system.^^^This^^^