While many of the prominent names in the worldwide automotive industry seem to have been hogging the electric car headlines, it would appear that Jaguar Land Rover has been working behind the scenes. This week the company announced further research into an array of electric drive modules, with rumours suggesting significant progress. The company is looking at both hybrid and pure electric powered vehicles as yet another prominent name joins the electric car party.
What is this new technology?
The rumours suggest that the new electric drive modules created by Jaguar Land Rover are capable of producing twice the torque and twice the power of any electric motor available today. This could be a potential game changer for not only Jaguar Land Rover, but also the industry as new technology comes into play. These new devices can simply be inserted between the engine and transmission to create either a plug-in hybrid vehicle or a pure electric play vehicle.
This project began back in 2013 and was partly funded by Innovate UK, as well as taking in 12 other technology partners. The broad basis for the electric drive modules are based upon the Range Rover Sport engine which has been improved and now takes in eight speed transmissions with a 150 kW electric motor and 320 V lithium battery pack.
When will this technology hit the market?
While Jaguar Land Rover has working models of this new zero emission powertrain, it may be some time before it is available on a commercial basis. As you would expect from a company with such a prominent name and reputation this is all about getting the technology perfected and releasing a vehicle which will be in demand. History shows us that many electric cars come and go and you do not get a second chance to make a first impression in this ever-changing industry.
There is also the ability for this new technology to be utilised across an array of other everyday uses, which perfectly illustrates automobile companies and technology companies coming together. Many people now believe that technology companies will play a major role in the future of the electric vehicle market as basic vehicle shells have been perfected over the years. That isn’t to say there is not further room for improvement in the shape, weight, and efficiency of vehicle shells today but perhaps the focus will now shift towards purer technology.
Is new technology causing a divergence in the industry?
There is some danger that we could have an array of different electric vehicle powertrain protocols but the fact is that each traditional powered engine is slightly different even today. One thing which is becoming apparent is the fact that companies are now starting to build on previous progress as we move towards the next stage of development. Some experts believe that the ultimate electric vehicle battery technology is still out there and new and innovative ways of storing and creating power, then using more efficiently, will emerge.
Those who suspect that the electric car industry will fade into the background as it has done time and time again in years gone by are likely to be disappointed!