New Delhi: Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) said it is preparing for future electric vehicles with research in advanced lightweight composites that will help deliver increased range, greater performance and more dynamic drive.
The research will allow JLR to develop lightweight vehicle and powertrain structures by replacing aluminium and steel with composites capable of handling the increased torque generated by high-performance batteries while improving efficiency and reducing CO2 impact.
The luxury carmaker aims to increase vehicle stiffness by 30%, cut weight by 35kg and further refine the crash safety structure through the strategic use of tailored composites, such as carbon fibre. Reducing the vehicle body weight will allow the fitting of larger batteries with increased range – without impacting CO2 emissions.
The research is part of the ‘Tucana Project’, a four-year programme for helping prevent 4.5 million tonnes of CO2 emissions between 2023 and 2032 by accelerating mainstream use of electric vehicles and making vehicles lighter to decrease tailpipe emissions and reduce energy consumption of electrified powertrains.
Advanced composites reduce vehicle weight, and by 2022, Jaguar Land Rover expects to have developed a fleet of prototype Tucana test vehicles.
The consortium, led by Jaguar Land Rover, brings together academic and industry partners including the Warwick Manufacturing Group (WMG), Expert Tooling & Automation, Broetje-Automation UK, Toray International UK, CCP Gransden, and The Centre for Modelling & Simulation (CFMS).
“The development of new lightweight body structures to complement the latest zero-emissions powertrains will be the key as the electrification of our vehicle range continues”, Marcus Henry, Research Manager at JLR, said.
He added this project will allow the true environmental credentials of electric vehicles to be realised by enabling wider adoption of the technology and will propel Jaguar Land Rover and the UK supply chain into a world-leading position in low-carbon technology.
Ian Risk, chief technology officer, CFMS, said, “Tucana shows how new technology development can be optimised and accelerated with digital engineering. Using new digital design, the development and manufacturing tools helps reduce emissions faster and the UK economy can reach zero emissions quicker.”
Jaguar said it has completed electrification of its Pace family with the P300e plug-in hybrid powertrain offered on the new Jaguar E-Pace and P400e for Jaguar F-Pace alongside the all-electric Jaguar I-Pace.