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Volvo Cars to introduce 3-cylinder FWD PHEV in 2018, BEVs & 48V mild hybrid in 2019; Modular Electrification Platform

Volvo Cars will introduce a front-wheel drive (FWD), 3-cylinder engine variant of its Twin Engine plug-in hybrid electric vehicle system in 2018, followed by its first production battery-electric vehicles and a new 48V mild hybrid system in 2019, according to Mats Anderson, Senior Director of Electric Propulsion Systems. Anderson was speaking at the SAE 2017 Hybrid and Electric Vehicle Technologies Symposium in San Diego.

Currently in its line-up, Volvo offers the T8 Twin Engine all-wheel drive (AWD) system, currently on the XC 90 T8 Drive-E Twin Engine (earlier post). The 4-cylinder engine T8 AWD is intended to match the performance of 6- and 8-cylinder engined competitors, said Anderson. The new Twin Engine FWD platform will use a 3-cylinder engine, with the system matching the performance of 4- and 6-cylinder engined competitors.

The FWD Twin Engine system will feature a 9.7 kWh Li-ion battery in the tunnel, an electric A/C compressor, and a 7-speed DCT with integrated 55 kW electric machine. Estimated all-electric range will be about 50 km (31 miles), Anderson said.

In 2019, Volvo Cars will also introduce a 48V mild hybrid system for gasoline or diesel engines, with a 10 kW motor in the first generation, moving up to about 15 kW in the follow-on system. A 0.25 kWh 48V Li-ion battery will supply the energy storage, along with a separate 12V AGM battery.

2019 will also see the introduction of the first battery-electric vehicles. Both the Compact Modular Architecture (CMA) and Scalable Product Architecture (SPA) architectures (earlier post and earlier post) are being evaluated for the initial vehicles, with FWD and AWD variants.

To enable the cost-effective production of a range of BEVs meeting different requirements, Volvo is developing the Modular Electrification Platform (MEP)—a set of modular building blocks for electrification than will allow Volvo to deliver vehicles ranging between 100 - 450 kW of propulsive power, with battery packs of up to 100 kWh in size.

Volvo’s BEVs will support AC charging up to 20 kW and high-speed DC, with support for CCS and CHAdeMO; Volvo Cars is a member of CharIN (earlier post).

Volvo Cars is targeting one million electrified Volvos on the road by 2025. The company is prepared to support the potential phaseout of diesels by introducing more electrified powertrains, Anderson noted. “We are committed [to electrification]. There is no way back,” he said.


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