A $36B Firm You have By no means Heard of Is Defining the Electrical Truck Future

Chances are you’ll not see their model title at dealerships or promoted within the booklet you get at your native auto present, however there is a good probability that if you’re sitting in a brand new automobile, you are surrounded by Magna elements.

The specialty automotive elements provider has developed and sells all the things from seats and chassis to mirrors and lighting. In addition they have developed parts for lots of the automobiles which might be available on the market now and people which might be coming quickly.

Magna has provided powertrain methods for among the hottest-anticipated fashions coming in 2022 and past, together with the Ford F-150 Lightning, Cadillac Lyriq, Mercedes-Benz EQE SUV, Rivian R1S and Volkswagen ID. Buzz. Its items can already be discovered within the BMW iX, GMC Hummer EV and Volkswagen ID.4.

Magna did $36 billion in gross sales in 2021. It employs 158,000 staff worldwide and is the highest automotive elements provider in North America. Persevering with that success, Magna CEO Seetarama Kotagiri advised Newsweek, means capitalizing on the 4 cardinal factors of the automobiles of the longer term: electrification, autonomy, new mobility and connectivity.

The important thing to shifting ahead, profitably, is all the way down to a modular element technique that the corporate has initiated. As an alternative of launching a brand new growth program, which may value lots of of tens of millions, if not billions of {dollars}, the corporate is economizing whereas appearing smarter, not more durable, utilizing know-how and elements already in place to evolve its powertrain choices for the fashionable electrical automobile period.

Magna has additionally tapped partnerships with LG and Haskell to push innovation ahead throughout their lineup.

Magna’s EtelligentForce battery electrical four-wheel drive powertrain take a look at truck on a closed course in Michigan.
Eileen Falkenberg-Hull

Growth of the recent all-electric propulsion system that was proven off throughout a snowy take a look at observe day in Michigan’s Higher Peninsula, is because of a mixture of applied sciences and gear which might be already on-sale or nicely on the event observe and making their method into automobiles.

That mixture, together with fashionable laptop modeling and three-dimensional (3D) printing, use has allowed for shorter growth instances. It is a technique automakers are using as nicely.

In simply 18 months, Magna has created an electrical propulsion system for giant vans and SUVs, a section that’s historically considered being all-electric far down the street.

The result’s Magna’s EtelligentForce battery electrical four-wheel drive powertrain system for passenger vans and light-weight industrial automobiles. Not like the compromises which might be inherent with all-electric powertrains in autos available on the market as we speak, Magna’s system is designed to supply “uncompromised payload and towing” capability. It could ship 14,500 kilos of towing functionality, the corporate says.

The important thing to the success of that powertrain, Kotagiri mentioned, is that it’s designed to suit inside current platforms automakers are creating, which means that it might be provided alongside an inside combustion engine (ICE) or hybrid system and produced on the identical meeting line.

That is to not say that each automaker that chooses to make use of the system can be getting the identical product. Kotagiri defined that the corporate’s 1,200 software program engineers are “working nearer than ever earlier than” with mechanical, electrical and automotive engineers to create the digital constructing blocks of the corporate’s new methods, which could be fine-tuned to suit the wants of every automaker’s product growth targets.

Additional, as soon as the Magna system is put in in a automobile, it may be recalibrated all through its lifespan utilizing over-the-air updates. Any such enhancement is not a risk in inside combustion engine automobiles as their gear isn’t a part of a linked mobility atmosphere.

Magna EtelligentForce technology rendering
Magna’s EtelligentForce battery electrical four-wheel drive powertrain system for passenger vans and light-weight industrial automobiles.

To exhibit the probabilities of the EtelligentForce system, Magna retrofitted it to a 2020 GMC Sierra HD 2500 AT4, stripping out the ICE parts and inserting its all-electric eBeam rear axle and the eDS Mid+ entrance drive unit. The result’s a truck that’s simply 50 kilos heavier than the mannequin was with its unique 6.6-liter V8 engine.

The now-electric truck maxes out at 547 horsepower and may transfer from zero to 60 miles per hour (mph) in 4.6 seconds, quicker than most large or small SUVs available on the market as we speak.

When matched up in opposition to a comparable Normal Motors ICE truck in a drag race Magna hosted on privately owned proving grounds, the EtelligentForce truck pulled away heartily within the first 10 yards of the competition.

Dynamics are spectacular as nicely, leaning closely on the centralized weight of the truck’s battery pack, the truck is simple to deal with when pushed to its limits on a snow area and is ready to work hand-in-hand with current stability management know-how to maintain the truck shiny facet up.

The most important problem going through electrical vans and industrial automobiles is not energy, however vary and charging functionality. Magna’s know-how consists of the flexibility to select from 400- and 800-volt inverter variants.

Using 800-volt know-how permits automobiles to be charged way more quickly than most powertrains as we speak, when hooked as much as an appropriately highly effective charger.

The Porsche Taycan, Hyundai Ioniq 5 and Kia EV6 are on sale now with 800-volt structure.

Future implementation of the powertrain in a manufacturing mannequin automobile has not but confirmed. Nonetheless, the corporate has an in depth working relationship with Stellantis and the Ram 1500 EV is anticipated to return to market quickly. It would be part of the Rivian R1T, Ford F-150 Lightning and Chevrolet Silverado EV within the more and more well-populated full-size truck section.

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