Hybrid technology isn’t just a Japanese specialty anymore, everyone is jumping on the electric bandwagon from the Detroit three to German automakers. Even the British are investing in cutting-edge batteries and motors.
Jaguar and Land Rover will contribute some £4 million to the project and lead a consortium of 12 different partners. Eight of them are from the automotive industry and three are universities. Some of the associated companies and educational institutions include GKN Driveline, Tata Steel and Bristol University.
The “Evoque_e” as it’s known is part of a £16.3 million UK government Technology Strategy Board project that’s slated to last two years.
Starting next month the collaborative team will design, develop and construct three different research vehicles. One will have a fuel-saving mild hybrid electric drivetrain, basically start/stop technology. Another will feature a plug-in hybrid drivetrain while the third test vehicle will have a fully electric powertrain.
The consortium will focus on creating smaller, lighter and cheaper electric motors that sacrifice nothing when it comes to durability and performance. They’ll also look at ways to limit the use of rare-earth metals in these motors.
If all goes according to plan the Evoque_e program will result in real benefits and useful technology that can make it into high-volume production vehicles. The future success of any automotive brand hinges on technology and innovation. Jaguar and Land Rover are putting pounds sterling where their mouths are by investing in tomorrow, today.
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