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EIT InnoEnergy invests €4.2M in electric in-wheel drive company Elaphe

EIT InnoEnergy announced a €4.2-million A+ investment in Elaphe Propulsion Technologies Ltd. (Elaphe), a developer of electric in-wheel-drive technology for electric vehicles. The investment will serve as a springboard to secure further growth.

Elaphe’s approach to the in-wheel powertrain system is a fully modular platform, combining the in-wheel powertrain with software capable of optimizing each in-wheel motor in real-time. It can be integrated into a wide range of vehicles, cutting down on manufacturing costs and removing the constraints of centralized powertrains while increasing vehicle functionality and safety features.

With more than 20 different in-wheel motors developed and tested in more than 50 electric and hybrid vehicles, Elaphe is the most experienced in-wheel motor propulsion solution provider on the market. Its technology uniquely offers automakers the flexibility to integrate motors with their preferred standard parts (brakes, rims, bearings, suspensions, etc.). The patented electromagnetic core design enables specific torque up to 100 N·m/kg, 200 kW of power per wheel, and superior packaging benefits.

We believe Elaphe is uniquely positioned to play a leading role in the future of the automotive and transport sectors – a future that is electric and sustainable. Not only is the timing right, and their in-wheel powertrain technology the most advanced in the market – the approach they have taken, developing a highly adaptable platform, will allow them to deliver instantaneous benefit to automakers and thus have a far-reaching impact on the mobility sector for decades to come.

—Jennifer Dungs, EIT InnoEnergy Thematic Field Leader Energy for Transport and Mobility

By increasing the vehicle’s available space and reducing weight the move to in-wheel motors will allow for a level of flexibility in terms of vehicle design, while also increasing efficiency by moving the torque to where it is actually needed. This will allow manufacturers to break from the traditional restraints of vehicle design.

According to different market studies, the total addressable market for in-wheel powertrain by 2030 is predicted to climb from around €1.6 billion in 2025 to around €12 billion in 2030.

Customers, however, will not have to wait that long to purchase a vehicle powered by Elaphe’s platform. Several car manufacturers across the globe, from leading global brands to ambitious newcomers, are already working with Elaphe to apply their in-wheel technology to production vehicles. Those include US start-up Lordstown Motors—an Ohio-based electric truck start-up who has recently purchased the Lordstown production complex from General Motors. Their Endurance pick-up truck has already accrued pre-orders in excess of 40,000 vehicles and is set to start deliveries in 2021.

Investment banking firm E. J. McKay advised Elaphe in the transaction.

InnoEnergy was established in 2010 and is supported by the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT).



There are questions on inhub motors, i.e., Will the added unsprung weight affects handling? Will the hub bearings wear out faster, taking out the motor? Where will the brakes go? How much usable space will they add? Are they more expensive?, etc...


The original GM skateboard design may have been "inside" wheel hub.
That allows room for conventional disc brakes with no CV shafts.

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