Detroit/Friedrichshafen. Electric drives – from the hybrid drive to all-electric concepts – play a key role in reducing CO2 emissions in traffic. Plug-in hybrids will set the trend and become a main pillar of mobility. The ZF portfolio already encompasses all electric driveline components, including control units and power electronics. Thanks to modular kits, ZF hybrid solutions allow the electric drive to be packaged in a compact installation space. In the new 8-speed dual clutch transmission for sports car applications, an optional hybrid module also enables electric driving with zero local emissions.
“The electric driveline is an essential factor in reducing CO2 emissions on the road, which makes it a key to sustained mobility over the long term,” affirms ZF CEO Dr. Stefan Sommer. “Until we achieve complete electro-mobility, we will continue offering a broad range of products, from conventional fuel-saving drives and hybrid systems to all-electric drives.
Hybrid technology will not compete with all-electric drives, rather it will act as an important bridge between them and the combustion engine. To this end, ZF’s electric drive will either replace or support the combustion engine not only under certain driving conditions, but it will also be integrated intelligently and efficiently into the shifting strategy. Based on its comprehensive system integration expertise, ZF can offer automotive manufacturers innovative and highly integrated solutions ranging from integrated hybrid and electric technologies to all-electric drives with integrated power electronics.
Plug-in hybrids are trendsetters for future electro-mobility
To integrate electric drives into very compact installation spaces, ZF relies on modular transmission kits which can accommodate optional hybrid technology from the beginning. Along with the 8-speed plug-in hybrid transmission that went into volume production in 2015 based on the proven 8HP design, the completely redesigned and redeveloped 8-speed dual clutch transmission 8DT is now following this same strategy. It comes with a new gear set design that allows the very compact, custom-made hybrid module to be installed without making the transmission longer than its predecessor model.
With 100 kW peak output, 55 kW continuous power and 400 Nm torque, it can accelerate the car up to 150 km/h on pure electric power, without any assistance from the combustion engine. The plug-in hybrid model in the 8DT also offers all other hybrid functions, including recuperation and boosting, and combines these features with lightning-fast gear shifting typical for the dual clutch transmission.
Volume production of all-electric drive starting in 2018
ZF will start volume production of its all-electric axle drive system with integrated power electronics in 2018. This highly compact drive unit is positioned in the center of the axle and can drive both the front and rear axle across various vehicle and performance classes. Reaching 150 kW and a maximum motor torque of 380 Nm, the highly integrated, compact system comprising electric motor, transmission and power electronics is setting new standards in power/performance characteristics and is suitable as an all-electric drive for battery-powered, fuel cell or hybrid vehicles.