Your probably thinking, did I read the teaser right? Did it really say 2,581 lb-ft of torque or 3,500 NM from a 160 horsepower or 120 kW motor with torque vectoring?
Yes, Yes you did!
GKN Automotive is proud to unveil the world's first battery electric vehicle (BEV) with a two-speed transmission and torque vectoring. GTD19 demonstrator vehicle is built from a Jeep Renegade and is currently in Arjeplog, Sweden undergoing winter testing. To prove the industry-leading standards of efficiency, safety and driving dynamics in this BEV model, GKN choose to go with a FWD version where torque vectoring can provide noticeable benefits than in a rear wheel drive or all-wheel drive platform. To Quote GKN:
..the Twinster system keep the front wheels in check during acceleration, it can correct an understeer yaw moment experienced by a driver entering a corner at speed. The system prioritizes torque delivery to the outer wheel helping to correct the natural understeer characteristic typically associated with a front drive vehicle.
Why a two-speed gearbox? The setup in the GTD19 is engineered to ensure the shifts are seamless, with minimal loss of power and torque while providing faster acceleration and higher top speed with improved efficiency. What is the top speed you ask? The eTwinsterX allows a top speed of 155 mph or 250 kph.
To quote Hannes Prenn, COO of GKN ePowertrain:
“This new technology demonstrator showcases how we are evolving and improving integrated eDrive technologies to help OEMs further improve efficiency, safety and driving dynamics."
“Within the last year, we have seen a 40% increase in the value of our eDrive order book, rising from £2 billion at the end of 2017 to confirmed business now worth £3 billion. Our dedicated focus on production and development of electrified drivelines will enable us to support the rapid acceleration in demand for BEVs equipped with all-wheel drive systems in the coming years.”
The all new eTwinster powertrain can be easily adapted and integrated into existing vehicle platform for FWD, RWD or AWD configurations. Twinster torque vectoring delivers swift and smooth acceleration while providing greater lateral control and optimized driving dynamics. GKN has stated their eTwinster system is smaller than many equivalent systems from competitors allowing it to be easily integrated into existing vehicle plate forms as they did with the GTD19 replacing it's ICE powertrain. The small size allowed GKN to install in place of the ICE, the complete solution of electric motor, inverter controls, eAxle along with all required cabling leading to a very thin battery pack underneath the GTD19.
GKN system integration allows them to offer the eTwinster powertrain as a readily adaptable solution for all types of auto's from all-wheel drive hypercars to plug-in hybrid luxury SUVs to entry-level city cars.
If you have ever been in a Range Rover Evoque Hybrid, then you have already experienced the Twinster system as it can be added to the Hybrid solution with the Twinster unit in the back helping to improve the dynamics and calibration of the auto. This GKN solution will also show up in the Opel Insignia. To quote GKN:
One of the Twinster system’s most lauded applications is in the Ford Focus RS, where it has enabled previously unimaginable all-wheel drive dynamics in the hot hatch sector. Set up for maximum driver enjoyment, the Focus RS has an innovative combination of new gearing ratios and control algorithms to over-speed the rear wheels, helping Ford to create a car with unprecedented dynamics, feel and handling.
Where else will you see this amazing system that was the number one hybrid / electric vehicle system shown at the Geneva Auto show this year is in the BMW M3 Concept, Volvo XC90 demonstrator which will be paired with the T8 Twin Engine Plug-in Hybrids as well as Mercedes-Benz AMB GLA45 prototype.