Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Land Rover project looks to electrify Evoque SUV

A new £16.3 million project will explore electrifying Land Rover’s hugely popular baby SUV, the Range Rover Evoque.
Led by Land Rover, the new project, funded by the Technology Strategy Board, will develop three different research vehicles based on the Evoque platform each featuring a new electrified powertrain, including a mild hybrid electric vehicle (MHEV), a Plug-In Hybrid (PHEV) and a full Battery Electric Vehicle (BEV).
Jaguar Land Rover will contribute £4m to the project and will lead a consortium of 12 selected partners – eight from industry and three universities. The partners in the new ‘Evoque_e’ two year research project are Zytek Automotive, GKN Driveline, Motor Design Limited, AVL, Drive System Design, Williams Advanced Engineering, Delta Motorsport, Tata Steel, Bristol University, Cranfield University and Newcastle University.
Work on the project is expected to commence this October.
Peter Richings, Jaguar Land Rover Director Hybrids and Electrification,said: “The aim of the project is to develop technology platforms which are configurable and compatible within the architecture of an existing production vehicle. The modular technologies include single and multi-speed axle drives; modular battery packs and integrated power electronics, multi-machine, advanced control development and torque vectoring.
“The research teams will look at how the speed of the electric motor can be increased, to reduce its size, weight and cost while enhancing performance and durability. We will also look at the use of alternative materials to both reduce the use of rare earth materials and for systems optimisation.
Land Rover hopes that the project will lead to the development of new technologies with the potential for high volume production, with lost cost and weight and able to use sustainable materials.
Jaguar Land Rover already collaborates with a number of UK universities on a range of technology and skills projects. More than half of Jaguar Land Rover’s research and advanced engineering team are based at Warwick University’s Warwick Manufacturing Group (WMG) and work on key new technologies including energy storage, weight reduction and digital verification.