The main pressures on vehicle designers and engineers continue to be safety and exhaust emissions, together with fuel economy (except in North America). However, intense competition, especially towards the top of the market, means that comfort and sheer ease of driving are also important considerations. They can make the difference between winning and losing the customer. Consequently, a great deal of engineering effort has lately been devoted to the chassis - in its modern sense of suspension, brakes and steering - in a search for unparalleled levels of ride comfort & quietness, control and dynamic safety. Jeff Daniels reports, in this extract from an exclusive just-auto research report.