Jaguar Land Rover Previews Future Tech Including New Electric Car Concepts

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Jaguar Land Rover is fully embracing the concept of vehicle electrification and has already developed a series of technology demonstrators that will be used to test various systems that one day could be offered to customers. The vehicles are all described as concepts, though they hint at powertrains Jaguar Land Rover may launch in the future.

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You may recall that Jaguar Land Rover’s Range_e Hybrid concept from 2010 eventually led to hybrid versions of the Range Rover and Range Rover Sport SUVs. The latest concepts, though, are much more advanced. They consist of a mild hybrid, a plug-in hybrid and an all-electric vehicle.

Concept_e MHEV: This is the mild hybrid and like most mild hybrids it uses an electric motor generator to convert wasted brake energy into electricity that can be stored and later used to power ancillary features such as the starter motor, air conditioner or other electric systems. The Concept_e MHEV technology is being demonstrated in a Range Rover Evoque and consists of a hybrid module sandwiched between the transmission and the internal combustion engine, in this case a downsized diesel unit.

Concept_e PHEV: The plug-in hybrid concept employs a similar setup to the mild hybrid but with a larger, more powerful gasoline engine and a larger, more powerful electric motor. This time the motor, which is still sandwiched between the engine and transmission, can drive the wheels, either by itself for short distances or together with the engine. The motor draws electrical energy from a lithium-ion battery stored in the trunk. The Concept_e PHEV technology has been fitted to a Range Rover Sport.

Concept_e BEV: The all-electric concept is the most radical and thus likely to be the furthest away from reaching production. Designed to fit Jaguar Land Rover’s lightweight aluminum platform underpinning vehicles like the Range Rover, the Concept_e BEV consists of a 70-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery stored in the floor and an electric motor at each axle to create an all-wheel-drive system.

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All three concepts feature a unique modular electric drive module developed in-house by Jaguar Land Rover. The module can be inserted between any engine and transmission to create hybrid or used alone in the case of an all-electric vehicle.

“This is a long-term Jaguar Land Rover research project exploring all aspects of future hybrid and battery electric vehicle technology,” Jaguar Land Rover R&D chief Wolfgang Epple said in a statement. “The three Concept_e vehicles will allow us to test and develop exciting new potential technologies that could form part of our low and zero emissions vision beyond 2020.”

Note, you don’t have to wait until 2020 to purchase vehicles with technology like that which Jaguar Land Rover is developing. Tesla Motors [NSDQ:TSLA] already offers an all-electric SUV with similar technology to the Concept_e BEV in the form of its Model X, and German firms Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz are now launching plug-in hybrid SUVs that offer similar technology to that found in the Concept_e PHEV.

Hit the next page to read about additional technologies Jaguar Land Rover is working on to improve the efficiency of its vehicles.

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