Fiat 500's eDrive System Means Big Things For The Future Of EVs

Electric Vehicles / Comments

This from the same company that gave the Ford Focus RS a Drift Mode.

GKN Automotive, a global leader in drive systems, is well-respected in the automotive world. The company's many engineering feats include the rear-biased all-wheel-drive system equipped in models like the Jaguar F-Type R Convertible as well as an AWD system for the Ford Focus RS launched in 2016 that enabled it to have a Drift Mode. But as electrification approaches ubiquity, GKN's focus has expanded to include eDrive systems. The new two-in-one eDrive system from the company has been designed to be especially compact and light, making it ideal for use in the adorable new Fiat 500 electric city car which is sadly not sold here.

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The eDrive system features an inverter and the motor can provide just over 162 lb-ft of torque instantly, allowing for the car to reach 62 mph (100 km/h) in nine seconds. It can also attain a range of 199 miles on the WLTP cycle, not bad for a tiny car that is likely to spend a lot of time in cities where charging stations are easy to find. GKN's electric motor manages 117 horsepower and including oil, weighs around 138 pounds.

"The two-in-one integrated layout is more compact, lighter, more efficient and more cost effective than electric vehicle systems incorporating separate components," said a statement from GKN. An Electronic Park Lock System (ePLS) is also equipped that enables the electric axle to offer a park lock feature.

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"GKN Automotive is a global leader in eDrive technologies and this new system, now fully integrated into this exciting all-electric city car, is proof of that," said Dirk Kesselgruber, President, GKN Automotive ePowertrain. "We are the go-to partner for the world's leading automotive manufacturers, collaborating with them to deliver exciting and sustainable electrified vehicles."

Over 1.5 million vehicles on the road are now equipped with the company's electrified tech. Besides the efficient powertrain from GKN, the new Fiat 500 is one of the cutest city cars in the world. It can be recharged up to 80 percent in just 35 minutes and offers Level 2 autonomous driving. It's a pity that the US will miss out on it, but perhaps the Drive system from GKN might find its way into other products from Jaguar, which will be overhauling its entire lineup as an electric brand in the years to come.

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