GKN develops eDrive technologies for the Concept_e research project

As part of its role in the Concept_e project, a £16million Government-backed initiative to develop state-of-the-art hybrid and electric powertrain systems, GKN Driveline has developed electric drive technologies which were unveiled at the LCV2015 low carbon vehicle show.

The two-year collaborative research and development project has designed and developed three research technology demonstrators to showcase next-generation technology for a mild hybrid electric vehicle (MHEV), a plug-in hybrid (PHEV) and a full battery electric vehicle (BEV).

GKN has designed, developed and integrated two eAxles into the BEV powertrain, including a single speed and a two-speed transmission. Both eAxles build on existing GKN eDrive technology already in series production on hybrid electric vehicles, with GKN’s engineers adapting them for use on a heavier, all-wheel drive SUV platform.

Peter Moelgg, GKN Automotive president of engineering said: “The project has demonstrated the flexibility and adaptability of GKN’s technology to a wide range of applications. The technology developed for the Concept_e project certainly has production potential and the data generated from this project will be useful for future developments.”

A single-speed eAxle, coupled with an 85kW electric motor, is utilised on the vehicle’s front axle and has been engineered to operate at 15,000rpm. A two-speed eAxle helps power the rear wheels, offers electric power across the BEV’s entire speed range and is coupled with a 145kW electric motor. The combination of the two eAxles allows permanent all-wheel drive capability and high torque at low speed from a two-speed gearbox.