Definitions for ride height
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The ground clearance.
Ride height is the amount of space between the base of an automobile tire and the underside of the chassis; or, more properly, to the shortest distance between a flat, level surface, and any part of a vehicle other than those parts designed to contact the ground. Ground clearance is measured with standard vehicle equipment, and for cars, is usually given with no cargo or passengers. Ground clearance is a critical factor in several important characteristics of a vehicle. For all vehicles, especially cars, variations in clearance represent a trade-off between handling and practicality. A higher ground clearance means that the center of mass of the car is higher, which makes for less precise and more dangerous handling characteristics. However, it also means that the car is more capable of being driven on roads that are not level, without the road scraping against and likely damaging the chassis and underbody. Higher ride heights will typically adversely affect aerodynamic properties. This is why sports cars typically have very low clearances, while off-road vehicles and SUVs have higher ones. Two well-known extremes of each are the Ferrari F40 and the Hummer.
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