Development of Electric Powertrain for New Model Hybrid Sports Utility Vehicle

Paper #:
  • 2017-01-1158

  • 2017-03-28
We have developed an Electric Drive Power Train for 2017 model hybrid SUVs. Base SUVs are equipped with the SH-AWD system, which allows the front and rear wheels, as well as left and right wheels for the rear axle, to be driven independently for enhanced handling performance. This flagship SUV also comfortably seats seven adults. Thus, the hybrid model had to improve fuel economy performance without any sacrifice to handling performance or comfort . The Electric Drive Power Train required for the hybrid model consists of a Twin Motor Unit (TMU), a high-output front motor mated to the 7-speed DCT for efficient power generation, a Power Control Unit (PCU), and an Intelligent Power Unit (IPU). The TMU has two motor units that can drive the left and right wheels independently, as used in our flagship sedan and high-end sports cars; the PCU delivers electric power to the motors; and the IPU stores drive torque and regenerative energy. The high-output front motor and TMU are equipped with sports hybrid SH-AWD components, as used in existing mass-production models, in order to achieve handling performance equaling that of the base SUV. Positioned under the floor outside the passenger cabin, the PCU has a newly developed 3-in-1 inverter, motor control ECU, and 12 V DC-DC converter built in and a fully waterproof structure. The IPU simplifies the arrangement of battery cooling ducts to make it more compact and is positioned in the cabin beneath the first-row seats. With these technologies, we have reduced overall volume for the PCU and IPU by 39% from past models. By positioning the PCU and IPU under the floor, we have achieved the same seating comfort for seven adults as the base SUV. Also, by mounting the heavy PCU and IPU side by side near the vehicle center, we have lowered the center of gravity by 26 mm over the base SUV and enhanced handling performance. Using these technologies in the hybrid SUV model has achieved fuel economy performance of 25 mpg for city and 26 mpg for highway driving, for a combined fuel economy of 26 mpg.
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