Magna's decoupling devices promise a 9% boost to EV range

Max McDee, 14 August 2023

Even the fanciest of the current electric vehicles have one nagging problem: inefficiency when their drive motors are just idling around. Think of it as a treadmill that's still running even when you're not on it. Sure, it's not sprinting at full speed, but it's still using up energy. This inefficiency can result in energy wastage and a reduction in the overall vehicle range. Enter Magna's latest gadget: the electromechanical eDecoupling device.

Magna, the automotive supplier that’s always got a trick up its sleeve, claims its eDecoupling device is the solution to this age-old (or at least decade-old) problem. By disconnecting the drive motors when they're not needed, the device helps reduce energy consumption. It essentially curbs the drag-torque losses from the motor and its gearbox. The result? An overall efficiency boost.

But here's where it gets even cooler: Magna isn't just speaking in hypotheticals. Their device can supposedly improve your EV's range by up to 9%. So if you're driving a car with a 300 miles range, that's an extra 27 miles! It's like getting a free gallon of gas, but, you know, the electric version.

Magna's eDecoupling device Magna's eDecoupling device

Magna states that their gadget can be conveniently integrated into existing EV powertrain designs. And speed? It's faster than your morning coffee machine, activating in less than 100 milliseconds. As for versatility, this isn't just a one-trick pony. Magna suggests its device is apt for hybrids and a range of vehicles including SUVs and light commercial vehicles. So, no matter what you drive, Magna seems to have you covered.

Here’s a fun fact to sprinkle into your next conversation about EVs: Permanent-magnet motors in many EVs continue to exert a drag, meaning they can't truly coast. Hence, they’re usually best used for regenerative braking. That might change with innovations like Magna’s eDecoupling. Production is set to take place at Magna's Austrian facility in Lannach, and the company hints that a "German premium automaker" has already put its order through.

Now, you might be wondering about the Fisker Ocean and its relationship with Magna. Is this the mysterious "unique clutch" Fisker's CEO mentioned? The connection remains as clear as mud. However, it's no secret that Magna has been experimenting with ways to enhance EV efficiency. In the past, the company showcased a Jaguar I-Pace that could potentially amplify its range by up to 30% mainly through software tweaks.

In the ever-evolving world of EVs, one thing is clear: Innovation never stops. As manufacturers like General Motors and Polestar explore next-gen motors designed for optimum cruising and coasting, the likes of Magna's eDecoupling device are proof that the journey to perfecting the EV experience is neither simple nor finished.


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Reader comments

Long article decribing a "clutch".



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