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Auto leveling headlights - how do they work?

nelw

Passed Driver's Ed
Location
Vancouver
Obviously this is about cars with the LP package.

I've seen people say that our headlights come with auto leveling capability but how does this work exactly? When I go over a speed bump, I don't see the headlights dip down and up.

Of course when the car starts up you can see them move around while they self-test and adjust, but after that how does it work?
 

Wastegate13

Autocross Champion
Location
SoFla
There is a sensor attached to the rear suspension that will angle the lights down when the rear suspension is compressed.
 

DV52

Drag Race Newbie
Location
Australia
neiw: Wastegate is correct, The rear vehicle level sensor measures the inclination of the car and adjusts the lights accordingly.

The response time of the sensor is purposely "dulled" to ensure that the range control motors don't work too hard,. This stops the motors from changing when the car hits a small bump and then changing-back again a short time later on the level raod (it's called a "hysteresis"). That's why nothing happens when you go-over a speed-bump - because the inclination doesn't change for a sufficiently long time.

Anyhow, since you have shown an interest, here's the component layout for the system. Note: the front left level sensor is only installed if the car has "dynamic chassis control" (not many cars have this)
 
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Whackamac

Ready to race!
Location
Earth
You are all wrong.

Momma said the headlights are powered by magical fairy dust, love, and a hooker riding a unicorn.

Now there. Question solved. Picture is for reference only.

 

Mark V1

Go Kart Champion
Location
Herts, UK
The self-levelling aspect is intended to respond to changes in the (semi) permanent loading of he vehicle - ie passengers and cargo - which is why it takes its instructions from sensors on the rear suspension...
 

Wastegate13

Autocross Champion
Location
SoFla
So what does the front sensor do?

Unless you have a DCC equipped car you don't have a front sensor. Mk5 cars had both front and rear but they did away with them in the mk6. Having sensors on the front and rear let the car do all the adjusting when the vehicle was lowered. Having only the reference point on the rear requires you to reset the starting point for the xenon range when you lower the car.
 

David Lewis

Ready to race!
Location
Milton Keynes
Why??? The lights will be at the same level they are on a flat road therefore nothing will change...

yes thinking about it of course they will. The leveling only comes into play if there is a difference in the height of the body on the road between the front and the rear of the car. On a hill the distanc would still be the same so no levelling.
 

nelw

Passed Driver's Ed
Location
Vancouver
AH! Thanks guys. The "dulling" of the motors is what I didn't consider. And yeah I guess its to help when the car is loaded.
 

Gignomeus

Ready to race!
Location
United Kingdom
You are all wrong.

Momma said the headlights are powered by magical fairy dust, love, and a hooker riding a unicorn.

Now there. Question solved. Picture is for reference only.


Neil Patrick Harris presents a documentary about the Empire's use of Unicorns as cavalry! how did I miss that?!?! thank god for BBC iPlayer!
 

supernova_inc

Passed Driver's Ed
Location
ABQ, NM
They also turn with the steering angle sensor. I am not sure at what speed it kicks in but it will turn the headlamps as I drive through my neighborhood to better illuminate the path in front of you with the turn. Also NPH, because Doogie Howser and reasons!
 

the bruce

Go Kart Champion
Location
land
Car(s)
Golf GTI Mk.V 2008
Unless you have a DCC equipped car you don't have a front sensor. Mk5 cars had both front and rear but they did away with them in the mk6. Having sensors on the front and rear let the car do all the adjusting when the vehicle was lowered. Having only the reference point on the rear requires you to reset the starting point for the xenon range when you lower the car.
this
 

alper

Ready to race!
So basically the headlights will auto level on their own based on the relative height difference between front and rear axle? Is that why I couldn't find any manual leveling switch then? :p

And does the auto level include a cornering function? I think I saw a setting for the cornering behaviour in the menu but again, I wasn't aware you are getting auto leveling + cornering functions with the Bi-Xenons. It now makes sense why their price was that high. It's not just the Xenons but also some mechatronics that are involved in the pack.

I also got DCC, does that mean I have a front sensor also and what does that do? Only on my 3rd day in and a lot of the non-traditional equipment feels pretty futuristic...
 
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