A Motorcycle Model for Stability and Control Analysis

Robin S. Sharp, David J.N. Limebeer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

139 Citations (Scopus)


The observed dynamic behaviour of motorcycles suggests that interesting and significant motions occur that are not currently understood. The most elaborate modelling exercise completed so far has produced results that need confirmation and extension. The construction of these models necessitates the use of automated methods and one such modelling methodology is described. The automated model building platform that was used here is AutoSim. This code was used to generate a variety of linear and nonlinear models in symbolic form. The relatively complex geometry of the steering system and the front tyre force system is discussed in detail and a new method of checking the self-consistency of the model is described and exploited. Sample results in the form of root-locus plots for small perturbations from straight running and cornering equilibrium states are presented. These are used to reproduce important findings from the literature. Conclusions are drawn on the basis of the results presented.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)123-142
Number of pages20
JournalMultibody System Dynamics
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2001
Externally publishedYes


  • Control
  • Dynamics
  • Motorcycle
  • Stability

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Modeling and Simulation
  • Aerospace Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Control and Optimization


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