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Unlocking Electric Vehicle Performance

Unlocking Electric Vehicle PerformanceBy Pete Melville, Hybrid and Electric Vehicle Repair Alliance

Increasing the performance of a car is a subject that goes back almost as far as the invention of the car itself. For combustion engines, the basic formula is to get more air into the engine. Whether that’s through making the engine bigger, fitting forced induction to push more air in, increasing the rotation speed, improving the flow of the intake or exhaust, or increasing the number of valves per cylinder, they all have the same objective – more air (and of course fuel mixed with it) = more power.

Of course, when it comes to a vehicle powered by electricity, the obvious answer is that you need more current or more voltage. But the limiting factor isn’t always what you expect. In this article, we’ll look at three aspects of increasing performance: acceleration, top speed, and towing capacity.

Firstly, let’s consider acceleration, which, if you’ve driven one, you’ll appreciate is one thing electric vehicles do pretty well. Whilst there are high-performance models from companies like Porsche, Tesla, and BMW, even a run-of-the-mill 60bhp Kangoo van pulls away quite well when nipping about town.

There are a few factors at play here – one is probably that the lack of noise makes the acceleration feel effortless, therefore perhaps is only a perception rather than a real factor. Another is that a combustion engine has such a narrow speed range that it requires multiple adapters to make it useful for driving a car, and these need to be swapped over whilst on the move.

These gear changes take time, which of course slows down our acceleration and is another win for the single-speed electric vehicle. But the biggest difference of course is that the electric motor can provide full torque as soon as it starts turning. The inverter can also control the torque (via current) and the speed (via frequency)

separately. Some situations such as motorway cruising require low torque but high speed, whilst others such as driving up a kerb, need more torque but less speed.

So, we’re already off to a good starting point, but how do we increase the power of our electric car?

Continue reading the article HERE

“Drivers of used EVs shouldn’t be paying over the odds to service and repair them in the dealerships, so it’s vital that independent garages can do the work. Garage owners need support with the cost of retooling and upskilling staff, and a willingness from OEMs to collaborate – not just on access to RMI data and coded parts, but also when it comes to refurbishing and repairing key components, to maximise the lifespan of an EV and realise the sustainability benefits fully.”

Andy Hamilton, CEO at LKQ Euro Car Parts

About Autotechnician
Autotechnician is a magazine published nine times a year, delivering essential information to independent garage owners and technicians in the UK. Delivered both digitally and in print, autotechnician provides readers with technical, training, business advice, product and news, allowing our readers to keep up to date with information they need to run and work within a modern workshop.
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