A trailing-arm suspension is an automobile suspension design in which one or more arms (or "links") are connected between (and perpendicular to and forward of) the axle and the chassis. It is usually used on rear axles. A 'leading arm' as used on a Citroën 2CV, has an arm connected between (and perpendicular to, and to the rear of) the axle and the chassis. It is used on the front axle.
Trailing-arm designs in live axle setups often use just two or three links and a Panhard rod to locate the wheel laterally. A trailing arm design can also be used in an independent suspension arrangement. Each wheel hub is located only by a large, roughly triangular arm that pivots at one point, ahead of the wheel. Seen from the side, this arm is roughly parallel to the ground, with the angle changing based on road irregularities.
A semi-trailing arm suspension is a supple independent rear suspension system for automobiles where each wheel hub is located only by a large, roughly triangular arm that pivots at two points. Viewed from the top, the line formed by the two pivots is somewhere between parallel and perpendicular to the car's longitudinal axis; it is generally parallel to the ground. Trailing-arm and multilink suspension designs are much more commonly used for the rear wheels of a vehicle where they can allow for a flatter floor and more cargo room. Many small, front-wheel drive vehicles feature a MacPherson strut front suspension and trailing-arm rear axle.