GKN Wants To Spread Its Porsche 918 Spyder Hybrid Tech To Small Cars

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The component-supplier company GKN, whose eAxle tech has seen duty in the Porsche 918 Spyder, BMW i8 hybrid and Volvo XC90 T8 Twin Engine has produced a version suitable for C-Segment cars such as the Ford Focus and Volkswagen Golf.

Utilizing a development of the same system in the Porsche 918 Spyder, the single speed differential houses a two-stage geartrain, facilitating up to an additional 2000Nm and 65kW(88hp) of power for either pure electric, or eAWD modes. An electromagnetic dog clutches disengage the electric motor ad higher speeds, while the whole unit weighs just 46lbs (20.9kg).

The intention is for existing front-wheel drive vehicles to integrate the GKN unit into their rear module to add all-wheel drive and potentially plug-in functionality.

Driveline Managing Director Rainer Link had the following to say:

“GKN’s position as the only hybrid technology supplier that can also deliver complete all-wheel drive systems makes us an ideal partner on these programmes. Our vehicle integration teams can support automakers in the tuning of their vehicle’s eAWD mode, ensuring that the torque delivery results in the right front-rear balance and delivers the brand’s trademark driving characteristics.”

The technology could mean a greater spread of electric, hybrid and plug-in hybrid vehicles in the not too distant future. With Volvo assuring us there will be Twin Engine variants of their CMA-based small car collaboration with Geely in 2017, it could be the first candidate.

By Mitchell Jones