Best Cars with Air Suspension

Always wondered what it’d be like to drive on a cloud? Look at cars with air suspension. Learn more about the comfort and convenience of air suspension systems.
Written by Elaine Duvet
You’ve heard of suspensions. They support the weight of your vehicle and keep body movements at bay when you hit a bump. 
Suspension support also isolates your car from road imperfections, improving ride quality in the process. Typically, load-bearing falls on steel or composite coil. But what if you could ride on air instead? 
, the
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you can buy

What exactly is a car with air suspension?

During World War II, the U.S. created an air suspension system commonly used in heavier warplanes. So what exactly is air suspension? It’s supposed to conserve weight with a compact design. 
Originally reserved for the strongest, largest cargo transporters and autos, air suspension is now widely accessible in everyday vehicles. You’ll often find cars with air suspension when looking at luxury vehicles, modern SUVs, and even run-of-the-mill commuter cars. 
When it comes to cars with air suspension, leaf springs or coils are replaced with pressurized flexible rubber bellows, otherwise known as air springs. 
According to
, “An air spring at each corner is monitored by the vehicle for internal air pressure and ride height. With help from an onboard compressor, air dryer, and air reservoir, the air pressure (which determines the equivalent spring rate) and ride height can be adjusted to provide optimal ride quality and ground clearance for the task at hand.”
While an air suspension system comes at a higher cost and more parts susceptible to failure, you’ll be left with a more fuel-efficient vehicle with improved off-roading capability.  
Different automakers may refer to their air suspensions as the following:
  • Smart Air Suspension (Tesla)
  • Air Glide Suspension (Lincoln)
  • Four-C Adaptive Air Suspension (Volvo)
  • Airmatic (Mercedes-Benz)
  • Active Air Suspension (Jaguar)
  • Active-Level Four-Corner Air Suspension (Ram)
  • Adaptive Air Suspension (Audi)
  • Air suspension with Porsche Active Suspension Management (Porsche)
  • Adaptive Variable Suspension with Adjustable Height Control (Lexus)
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2018: A great year for cars with air suspension

The 2018 Lexus GX 460 is equipped with a Kinetic Dynamic Suspension System, but you’ll need to upgrade to the Luxury trim at $63,530 to receive the Adaptive Variable Suspension with Adjustable Height Control. Drivers can utilize Normal, Sport or Comfort driving modes, while electronically controlled variable shock absorbers smooth out the ride.
The 2018 Volvo XC90 features a highly advanced four-corner air suspension with a "Four-C Active Chassis." The system comes with Comfort, Eco, Dynamic, Off-Road, and Individual modes. 
When Eco mode is activated, aerodynamic drag is reduced on the highway by lowering the XC90. Dynamic mode aids twisty turns on windy roads, and Off-Road delivers extra ground clearance on your weekend adventures. 
Mercedes-Benz has been working with cars with air suspensions since the 1960s. The 2018 Mercedes-Benz GLS450’s Airmatic suspension system offers plenty of performance and comfort on the road. In fact, it lowers the car automatically at highway speeds for improved aerodynamics, stability, and fuel efficiency. 
Adaptive Damping optimizes handling and ride quality, and the advanced system compensates for added weight when cargo or passengers load in. The Off-Road package will set you back $2,250 while delivering downhill speed regulation, aggressive ride height settings, and a useful two-speed transfer case. 
The 2018 Jeep Grand Cherokee inherited its Quadra-Lift air suspension system from Mercedes-Benz. The versatile technology comes standard on the Trailhawk, Overland, and Summit trims. 
Buyers will also receive five modes from the Quadra-Lift system which include Normal, Aero, Park, Off-Road I, and Off-Road II. A total of 4.1 inches of lift is available to tackle even the roughest trails. 
The 2018 Tesla Model X may not be made for serious off-roading, but don’t underestimate its ability to take on a gravel road like a boss. The electric car with air suspension aims to increase driving range and improve aerodynamics on the highway. The “smart” air suspension system also includes GPS, which is able to adjust the ride height based on location.
MORE: The Best ‘90s Cars You Can Still Buy

Smooth rides with air suspension

The Audi A6 allroad is a durable and capable wagon that thrives in low-grip conditions. It may not be a Range Rover, but it's more cost-effective and maneuverable than most SUVs. 
The cornerstone of its off-roading prowess, the air suspension system delivers a more pleasant drive lower to the ground. And when venturing into rugged terrain, the car with air suspension can lift 45 millimeters to avoid damage from gullies, grooves, and curbs. 
The luxurious
Lincoln Navigator
is a lavish and comfortable ride, thanks to its air suspension. The vehicle uses airbags instead of springs, resulting in one of the smoothest rides on the market. Both the driver and passengers benefit from the suspension system muting bumps and uneven terrain, even when carrying a heavy load. 
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