IAV Automotive Engineering has developed a rear-axle differential with integrated motors that can enable a parallel hybrid powertrain without affecting existing engine/transmission configurations. The system is on display at the SAE World Congress in Detroit.
The axle unit incorporates two 30kW motors (one for each wheel) with rated torque of 350 Nm (258 lb-ft) each. The prototype, based on the rear axle unit of the BMW X5, permits higher-cornering speeds by active torque vectoring to optimize driving safety and dynamics.
With the addition of a battery pack and control unit, it can also provide the basis for a parallel hybrid system. The integrated motors can recuperate the braking energy.
The system could serve as the basis for an electric axle, or as the basis for a retrofit 4WD system.
IAV is in discussions with OEMs over a possible future for the axle, but as of now there is no committment. The axle unit has yet to be vehicle tested, although IAV has done a great deal of simulation work with it, not only in terms of longitudinal and lateral dynamics but also in the overall context of the powertrain.
IAV also has on display a urea SCR aftertreatment system targeted at US Tier 2 Bin 5 light duty diesel applications.