GKN’s integrated electric drive systems could transform the EV market
Source : GKN’s integrated electric drive systems could transform the EV market
Company’s first integrated drive system produces up to 1475lb ft of torque in addition to also will make production in 2019
The company that will created the all-wheel-drive systems of the BMW i8 in addition to also Porsche 918 has produced an innovative electric drive system that will can produce up to 1475lb ft of torque.
GKN Driveline, a British engineering firm that will can also lay claim to co-developing the Ford Focus RS’s drive system, has managed to tightly integrate parts to create a better-optimised, more efficient system.
This specific’s claimed to improve performance in addition to also offer better packaging in addition to also assembly options for manufacturers.
The first system (pictured) has been developed for plug-in hybrids in addition to also will reach the market in a yet to be confirmed production type. This specific uses a water-cooled electric motor that will sends drive through just one speed eAxle that will drives the rear wheels.
The system produces up to 87bhp in addition to also a substantial 1475lb ft of torque, while measuring in at just 300mm high in addition to also 325mm wide, enabling tight packaging within a car’s chassis.
This specific also weighs just 54kg, something GKN claims is actually around 2.5kg lighter than additional comparable drivelines.
“The key reason for its development is actually cost,” said Theo Gassman, GKN’s director of advanced engineering in addition to also eDrive systems, in an exclusive Autocar interview. “Our system eliminates the connector in addition to also the cable between the electronic power in addition to also the motor, saving you significant cost.”
Gassman explained that will additional positive knock-on effects include significant improvements to performance in addition to also increased modularity.
“[Manufacturers] are pushing for higher levels of integration, in addition to also want to contain the motor integrated in with the transmission in one housing,” he said. “This specific allows for deeper mechanical integration, yet also is actually important for fuel saving – you can reduce the weight in addition to also get better performance, so specific kilowatt per kilo output is actually better.”
Gassman revealed that will while these types of systems are being developed in house, they make use of a wide range of parts provided by different suppliers.
“The systems are not just connected to one car, they’re each a building block that will allows you to have multiple applications,” he said. “This specific [type of adaptable system] is actually more complex to produce, yet the overall development cost is actually down when more manufacturers use This specific.”
Gassman said that will these modular drivelines can be produced for multiple manufacturers wanting a variety of layouts, including rear, front in addition to also all-wheel-drive.
“The more functionality you develop into the system, the more you can power This specific up in addition to also support the downsizing of combustion engines,” he added. “You can use shared parts in a front-wheel-drive city car in addition to also a rear-wheel-drive sports car.”
GKN’s drivelines will not only be adaptable for multiple applications, they’ll also be adjustable to offer different characteristics. “Some cars aren’t all about performance,” continued Gassman. “They’re about fun; they engage with the enthusiasts.”
To be as efficient with each driveline as possible, GKN therefore wants to create systems that will can be adjusted for both efficiency-focused machines in addition to also exciting drivers’ cars. “We can make use of limited-slip differentials in addition to also torque vectoring to improve the fun,” added Gassman.
GKN’s track record is actually impressive, so This specific suggests Gassman’s confidence in This specific upcoming GKN technology is actually warranted. The brand is actually looking to a future where multiple car manufacturers buy different variations of its adaptable driveline. This specific wants to produce them so car makers can simply integrate them into types with minimum adaptation.
“This specific technology will directly drive down the cost of electric cars,” emphasised Gassman. “We are right now seeing the second wave of demand for electric cars, so there is actually a proper business plan in addition to also the manufacturers need a clear strategy.”
This specific, concluded Gassman, is actually where GKN comes in.
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