Torque-Vectoring Electric Drive Increases Hybrid Vehicle Efficiency
Kagan Pittman posted on February 19, 2016 | 4984 views

As the evolution of the conventional gasoline vehicle stagnates, hybrid cars and fully electric cars are developing rapidly side-by-side.

The eTwinster, a new torque-vectoring electric drive system, is promising to advance hybrid cars even further.

GKN Automotive showcased its new eTwinsterR torque-vectoring electric drive system for hybrid vehicles at its Wintertest proving ground in Arjeplog, Northern Sweden this week.
GKN Automotive showcased its new eTwinsterR torque-vectoring electric drive system for hybrid vehicles at its Wintertest proving ground in Arjeplog, Northern Sweden this week.

The plug-in hybrid module combines eAxle technologies with twin-clutch torque vectoring technology. The former has been proven in the Volvo XC90 T8 Twin Engine, Porsche 918 Spyder and BMW i8 plug-in hybrids and the later has been featured in the Ford Focus RS and Range Rover Evoque.

According to GKN Automotive, which developed the eTwinster as part of its new eDrive technologies, current vehicle platforms only draw 30 percent of their energy from a battery and expects the small torque-vectoring electric axles could deliver 60-70 percent of the power in future vehicles.

“We have been building the momentum towards electric torque vectoring for some time,” said Peter Moelgg, GKN’s president of technology. “We believe our prototype torque-vectoring eAxle system represents the next step forward for the industry."

Automakers are currently test-driving the technology in SUV prototypes.

In those vehicles, a 60kW, 240Nm electric motor drives an electric axle with a transmission ratio of 1:10. A dual-clutch Twinster system then vectors the resulting 2,400Nm of torque between the rear wheels, significantly improving dynamic response and handling.

GKN predicts that 40-50 percent of vehicles will have some level of electrification by 2025, with more power coming from the electric motor than the gas engine.

The eTwinster could be programmed and integrated into a vehicle platform for production within the next three years, the company states. The new drive system is currently being showcased along with other hybrid electric technologies at GKN’s Wintertest proving ground in Arjeplog, Sweden.

For more information, visit www.gkn.com.

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