Jaguar Land Rover Researching Advanced Composites for Electric Vehicles

Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) is researching advanced light composites as it looks to deliver electric vehicles (EV) with increased range and improved performance.

The company is leading a consortium of academic and industry partners on a project called Tucana which JLR says will allow it to develop lightweight vehicle and powertrain structures by replacing aluminium and steel with composites capable of handling the demands of EVs.

The aim is to increase vehicle stiffness by 30 per cent, cut weight by 35kg and further refine the crash safety structure through the 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.

JLR says it expects to have developed a fleet of prototype Tucana test vehicles by 2022.

The Tucana project, and another UK-based program, has received funding via the Advanced Propulsion Centre – a joint venture between the UK government and the country’s automotive industry.

“The development of new lightweight body structures to complement the latest zero-emissions powertrains will be key as the electrification of our vehicle range continues,” said Marcus Henry, Research Manager at Jaguar Land Rover. “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.”

Source: Motor Trader e-Magazine (February 2021)

24 February 2021

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