Jaguar Land Rover's advanced composites will help drive EVs of the future

26 January 2021 - 14:54 By Motoring Reporter
JLR is looking to build future EVs with lightweight and ultra-rigid composite materials.
JLR is looking to build future EVs with lightweight and ultra-rigid composite materials.
Image: Supplied

Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) is gearing up for future electric vehicles (EVs) with advanced lightweight composite research that will help deliver better range, greater performance and sharper driving dynamics.

The Tucana Projectis a four-year programme that aims to make the UK a world leader in low-carbon technology, helping prevent 4.5 million tonnes of CO2 emissions between 2023 and 2032 by accelerating mainstream use of EVs and making vehicles lighter to both decrease tailpipe emissions and reduce energy consumption of electrified power trains.

The learnings achieved in this forward-thinking programme will allow JLR to develop lightweight vehicle and power-train structures by replacing aluminium and steel with composites capable of handling the increased torque generated by high-performance batteries, while improving efficiency and reducing CO2 affect.

The Coventry-based manufacturer also aims to increase vehicle stiffness by 30%, cut weight by 35kg and further refine the crash safety structure through use of tailored composites such as carbon fibre. Reducing the vehicle body weight will allow the fitting of larger batteries with increased range — without affecting carbon dioxide emissions.

The Tucana Project will allow Jaguar Land Rover to make future electric vehicles go further, using advanced composites such as carbon fibre.
The Tucana Project will allow Jaguar Land Rover to make future electric vehicles go further, using advanced composites such as carbon fibre.
Image: Supplied

“The development of new lightweight body structures to complement the latest zero-emissions power trains will be key as the electrification of our vehicle range continues,” says JLR research manager Marcus Henry.

“This project will allow the true environmental credentials of EVs to be realised by enabling wider adoption of the technology and will propel JLR and the UK supply chain into a world-leading position in low-carbon technology,” Henry concludes.

JLR says it expects to have developed a fleet of prototype Tucana test vehicles by 2022.


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