BorgWarner in Auburn Hills Develops Electric Demonstration Vehicle

Auburn Hills’ BorgWarner Inc., which creates advanced propulsion systems, has developed its first high-voltage all-electric demonstration vehicle. The test platform was created from the all-terrain Ariel Nomad.
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BorgWarner all-electric demonstration vehicle
BorgWarner has created a high-voltage all-electric demonstration vehicle using its Ariel Nomad as the base. // Photo courtesy of BorgWarner

Auburn Hills’ BorgWarner Inc., which creates advanced propulsion systems, has developed its first high-voltage all-electric demonstration vehicle. The test platform was created from the all-terrain Ariel Nomad.

The company’s Corporate Advanced Engineering group created the vehicle. Technologies highlighted include traction inverters, a torque-vectoring rear drive unit, an electric coolant pump, vehicle and traction control software, a DC/DC converter, and a high-voltage battery pack.

“Our new high-voltage demonstration vehicle illustrates BorgWarner’s leadership in electrification and gives us a fantastic tool to showcase our extensive capabilities, collaborate with industry partners, and evaluate BorgWarner’s current and future technology at a system-level,” says Hakan Yilmaz, vice president and chief technology officer of BorgWarner. “We will continue to embrace projects such as this EV demonstration vehicle that help us validate next-generation products and, ultimately, propel the industry toward a cleaner, more energy-efficient world.”

The vehicle offers improved steering response made possible through torque vectoring. The feature allows both forward motion and regenerative braking. It also has a thermal-management system, which circulates coolant through an electric pump through the inverters and battery pack. The liquid-cooled, 350-volt, 30-kilowatt hour pack delivers peak power of 200 kilowatts.

The group built the vehicle in six months. The Ariel Nomad vehicle was chosen as the base vehicle for the project because of ease of access to install and remove components due to its open-air design.

Cascadia Motion, a BorgWarner-owned company, developed the rear-wheel-drive system featuring two separate BorgWarner high-voltage Hairpin 250 electric motors and eGearDrive gear sets, each independently controlling a rear wheel. The system also features two of BorgWarner’s inverters and enables more power and durability.

BorgWarner’s joint venture with Romeo Power, a battery pack and module supplier, allowed the team to power the demonstration vehicle with different configurations of battery power and test and validate battery pack applications for specific goals or driving experiences. The venture’s battery modules and packs are expected to include intelligent battery management systems for enhanced performance and cycle life as well as thermal engineering for active and passive cooling.

BorgWarner is a global company focusing on clean and efficient technology solutions for combustion, hybrid, and electric vehicles. It has manufacturing and technical facilities in 19 countries and employs about 30,000 people.

Cascadia was created to combine assets and operations of the former Rinehart Motion Systems and AM Racing into one company. It is based in Oregon.

California’s Romeo was founded in 2015 by a group of engineers from SpaceX, Tesla, and Samsung who want to advance energy technology to help end energy poverty.

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