Introduction - Scott Ahlman - Chassis/Vehicle Dynamics Engineer


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Thread: Introduction - Scott Ahlman - Chassis/Vehicle Dynamics Engineer

  1. #1

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    Introduction - Scott Ahlman - Chassis/Vehicle Dynamics Engineer

    Hi All!

    My name is Scott Ahlman, President of Ahlman Performance LLC and I am new to AudiR8Talk. We are also a new owner of a 2012 Audi R8 V10 manual for suspension development work on this car as well as chassis related videos on and off of the road/track - coming soon! I will start joining the chassis related threads (suspension, shocks, wheels, tires, weight, etc) right away!

    My background - My childhood passion and focus led me to a chassis/vehicle dynamics design and development career for the past 25 years including so many incredible opportunities at the top of IndyCar and NASCAR as well as high performance cars like the R8 (Greater detail on our results and my background can be seen at AhlmanPerformance.com)

    My professional career started Ford Motor Company in 1994 as a chassis/vehicle dynamics engineer for 12 years, which was highlighted by:
    Chassis Design and Ride and Handling Development Engineer for Ford Light Truck.

    ○ Ford's only Vehicle Dynamics Engineer for the Ford Craftsman Truck teams in 1995.

    Vehicle Dynamics Engineer for Team Rahal in ChampCar CART for 5 years working with drivers Bobby Rahal, Bryan Herta, Kenny Brack and Max Papis.
    This is where my 25 year relationship with Ohlins started since Team Rahal ran Ohlins at the time and they sent me to Ohlins shock school in Sweden.

    Chassis Design and development of the 2005-2006 Ford GT for 4 years. I was one of the four who led the chassis design side (suspension geometry and bushings, tires, the coil-overs, bars and control arms).
    After my design work I was also a ride and handling development engineer on the GT due to my driving background and certification at Ford.



    • I left Ford to start Ahlman Engineering in 2006 where I spent the IndyCar season as a Vehicle Dynamics Engineer for Rahal Lettermen Lanigan with drivers Danica Patrick and Buddy Rice.

    • In the Fall of 2006 I (Ahlman Engineering) was contracted as a Chassis/Vehicle Dynamics Engineer with Ford Racing and Roush Fenway Racing, which included working with Matt Kenseth, Carl Edwards, Jamie McMurray and Marcos Ambrose. I ended being a kind of "offensive coordinator" developing a weekly playbook for car setup for our teams. We were fortunate to win over 30 races, two Daytona 500 wins and two very close second places in the Championship with Edwards over my seven years with the team.


    • In 2013, Ahlman Performance started developing our Adjustable Ahlman Performance Ohlins Coil-over Package for the 2005-2006 Ford GT as I was not happy with the options out there for Ford GT Owners. We have been selling and supporting these Coil-Overs for Ford GT owners since.
    • In 2013, seven of us at Ahlman Engineering were vehicle dynamics engineering support for three of Honda's lead IndyCar teams for five years including direct team support for many wins including the Indy500.
    • In 2015, Ahlman Performance developed custom Ohlins Suspension (coilovers - damping, spring rates, bumpstops/gaps, and ride heights) for Mark Heidaker and Kevin Kesterson at M2K Motorsports and their 2500 HP twin turbo Ford GT in their quest for world Record Speed with stability, grip and power down in the standing Mile. (they had been running the stock Ford GT suspension we had developed at Ford up to 270 mph, which was getting dicey since we only intended it to go 205 mph!). M2K Motorsports kept moving the World Record and are now at 300 mph in the standing mile with our suspension doing 240 mph at the half mile mark!


    Ahlman Performance - we develop, sell and support Ohlins highest end suspension packages for the Audi R8, Porsche GT3/RS, Porsche GT4 and the 2005-2006 Ford GT. We also sell and support nearly 50 other Ohlins road and track packages for Audi, Porsche and BMW. Please see AhlmanPerformance.com/Products for detail on all of our packages, especially for the R8.


    Our partnership with Ohlins results in the best balance between road and track application (depending on your needs) providing unmatched:
    • Performance and Refinement
    ○ There is a reason Ohlins has been used for decades at the top of worldwide motorsports. They are the best you can buy - hands down. Our further development and support can help you adjust as your needs change for road or track. From a bias for comfort to performance and anywhere in between.
    Craftsmanship
    ○ We are a function AND form company. It has to look as great as it works. Some of our customers have told us they aren't sure if they should just hang their Ahlman Performance Ohlins Coil-Overs on the wall or put them on their car!
    Quality and Reliability
    ○ Our highest mileage Ford GT owner has over 50,000 miles on our Adjustable Ohlins Coil-Overs without a rebuild needed when we dyno'd them to check.
    Package
    ○ No remote reservoir to package as shown in this picture. No need to make brackets and cut up your beautiful R8 to accommodate reservoirs and lines. Just bolt them on and go.
    Adjustability
    ○ The Ohlins design has all of the fluid flow going through the adjusters so each click is actually felt as a change with a huge range available.
    ○ You can lower your ride height over an inch from stock. Tell us the ride height you want on your R8 and we will calculate it, set the coil-over, you bolt them on and go. This is what we have been doing for 6 years for our customers. This is not an iterative process!
    Technical Support
    ○ We have the background and ability to help you adjust for your needs and vary from road to track including alignment adjustments for camber and toe as well as tire decisions!

    Let me know how I can help you with your R8 chassis development from our suspensions to tire choices and anything in between. I look forward to interacting with you all on AudiR8Talk!

    Scott Ahlman
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Introduction - Scott Ahlman - Chassis/Vehicle Dynamics Engineer-pic_rahalhomestead_1998.jpg   Introduction - Scott Ahlman - Chassis/Vehicle Dynamics Engineer-pic_05fgtorlando_2013.jpg   Introduction - Scott Ahlman - Chassis/Vehicle Dynamics Engineer-pic_rfr1-2-3atdover_2008.jpg   Introduction - Scott Ahlman - Chassis/Vehicle Dynamics Engineer-pic_m2ktexasmilespeed_march2019.jpg   Introduction - Scott Ahlman - Chassis/Vehicle Dynamics Engineer-pic_ohlinsr8suspension.jpg  


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  3. #2
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    Re: Introduction - Scott Ahlman - Chassis/Vehicle Dynamics Engineer

    Welcome to the board

  4. #3
    Senior Member DaveL's Avatar
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    Re: Introduction - Scott Ahlman - Chassis/Vehicle Dynamics Engineer

    Welcome to the forum.
    Black/Gold 09 V8 Coupe R-Tronic. Black/Gold 05 Race prep'd Yamaha R1.

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    Senior Member Trev450's Avatar
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    Re: Introduction - Scott Ahlman - Chassis/Vehicle Dynamics Engineer

    Welcome to the forum. Impressive CV.
    10 V10 Coupe, Ibis, 6MT, Capristo, Carbon Blades, OZ Ultraleggera HLT's, Maxton Splitter.
    Maintained by RE Performance.

    Mitsubishi Evo V1 RS450 Extreme

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  7. #5
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    Re: Introduction - Scott Ahlman - Chassis/Vehicle Dynamics Engineer

    Wow. That's quite an introduction. I look forward to seeing your postings.

  8. #6
    Senior Member ezmaass's Avatar
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    Re: Introduction - Scott Ahlman - Chassis/Vehicle Dynamics Engineer

    Welcome to the forum! Quite an impressive background.

    If you hang around the board, you'll quickly come to learn that one of the biggest suspension issues of the R8 is the premature failure of its magnetic ride shocks. Yes, there's always the option to replace them with more traditional passive dampers, but many of the owners (myself included) prefer the adjustability of the magnetic ride.

    So... your biggest business opportunity around here could be coming up with a direct after-market adjustable damper replacement (that doesn't leak!) - the forum would likely build a small shrine to you, and you'd have a flood of happy customers.
    2015 Audi R8 V10 | S-Tronic | Brilliant Red on Black | Carbon Blades | Carbon Trim | Sport Exhaust | Full Leather | Contrast Stitching | OEM 5-Piece R8 Luggage | Full XPEL Ultimate | Fully Stock | Original Owner

    -- Other Vehicles --
    2017 BMW 650xi Gran Coupe
    2012 Audi Q5


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  9. #7

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    Re: Introduction - Scott Ahlman - Chassis/Vehicle Dynamics Engineer

    Thank you for the welcome guys. Sorry about the CV...it was recommended, but way too much.

    I missed the most important part - how much I enjoy the R8. Such an incredible car that I enjoy driving a great deal and carving through our hills. Everything about it. My first I can't wait to get her to the track.

    EZMAAS - I did review the R8 a lot before buying it and this forum so I was aware of the premature magnetic ride failures (my Ohlins teammates made me aware of it as well) and the AC compressor failures. Question - do you switch to sport mode on smooth twisty roads and then back to "normal" for rougher pavement and cruising? Ohlins and I discussed an electronic adjustable (by a phone application) as an option a few years back that they have used in one application. I will talk to them again about this option.
    2012 Audi R8 | V10 | Manual | AWE Exhaust | Carbon Blades | Carbon Engine Bay | Tuscan Brown Interior 2009 Buell 1125R | Barker Exhaust and ECM Tune | Michelin Pilot Road3's

    Ahlman Performance LLC | Audi R8 Ohlins Coil-Overs | Chassis Development

  10. #8
    Senior Member aquarianuw's Avatar
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    Re: Introduction - Scott Ahlman - Chassis/Vehicle Dynamics Engineer

    I absolutely agree with Ezmaass regarding aftermarket magnetic struts that will replace the OEM ones directly - plug and play.
    2012 Audi R8 V10 - Titanium package - TCU tuned - Kline exhaust

  11. #9
    Senior Member ThunderDent's Avatar
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    If you made an aftermarket, adjustable height (coilover), with magnetic ride function, that plug & played into the OEM shock connections, didn’t leak, and works directly with the mag ride button (no phone apps please)...


    Literally every forum member on here would buy a set of 4 from you tomorrow.

  12. #10
    Senior Member GT#298's Avatar
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    Re: Introduction - Scott Ahlman - Chassis/Vehicle Dynamics Engineer

    Quote Originally Posted by ThunderDent View Post
    Literally every forum member on here would buy a set of 4 from you tomorrow.
    Not quite literally. . .GT & Plus owners are probably happy with their setup. Converting to mag-ride would be a lot more involved & difficult than converting from mag-ride.

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