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Sunday, January 5, 2014

SIM-Drive develop 4 motor AWD electric Toyota 86 [VIDEO]

The EV SIM-86e, a Toyota 86 developed by SIM-DRIVE, was exhibited at the Odaiba Motor Fes. The car is an 86 based EV, with all 4 wheels powered by independent motors.

Technical specifications haven't been released (in English at least) but we can make some educated guesses. The AWD EVs developed by SIM-Drive to date, SIM-Lei, SIM-Wil & SIM-Cel have all used direct drive in-wheel motors. We can see from the picture below (click on image to enlarge), the standard friction brakes are visible in the wheels so the SIM-86e must be running in-board motors.

In developing the SIM-86e, Tajima Motor Corporation used E-RUNNER technology, which the company has been developing for racing vehicles to participate in the Pikes Peak International Hillclimb. TMC Chairman of the Board and SIM-Drive President and Director Nobuhiro Tajima explained:

“Since our development of a 4WD automobile with a twin engine, we have been playing with such car-control technology as multiple power sources and 4 independent motors. In the SIM-86e we have thoroughly employed the control know-how cultivated through developments to E-RUNNER technology.”

While the Pikes Peak winning E-RUNNER was all-wheel-drive, it used only two motors driving the wheels through a differential on each axle. The motors were supplied by GKN and belived to be 2x AFM-240 motors, each capable of 335 kw (455 hp) and 1200 Nm Peak. As the GKN Evo motors are not suitable for in-wheel mounting we might speculate that the SIM-86e may be running 4x in-board AFM-140 motors driving the wheels via standard half-shafts, with or without gear reduction. The original SIM-Drive wheel motors were outer-rotor (drum brake type) radial flux BLDC motors (see SIM-Cel motor below) while GKN Evo's are axial flux (disc type) motors.

“This year there were some wet roads, and for that reason our times didn't improve. However, with next year’s dry conditions, I think it may be possible to achieve a new course record. Also, our efforts for next year’s car are making it compatible with a fast charger, meaning we will get technological feed back for product version EVs as well. Both for practical reasons and in times of crises, EV’s clearly need to have the ability to charge quickly. I’m confident that fast charging technology for harsh motor sports conditions will be useful for developing the product versions to come.”

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