Suppliers Switch On

It’s not only truckmakers who are buzzing about electric trucks and connectivity at the Brisbane Truck Show – some of their suppliers are switching on too….

 

Unsurprisingly, I guess – since they need to be keeping up (or staying ahead?) of where the OEMs are heading with new-age powertrains.

 

Same story with increasingly making the most of connectivity: Trailermakers….even tyre manufacturers are tapping into connected technology with products on show here.

 

Driveline manufacturer DANA’s stand at the show very much reflects its recent global focus, which has seen it dramatically up the ante in developing electric and hybrid axles and propulsion systems.

 

Hence the centrepieces are two electric driveline products – the first a TM4 Sumo HP hybrid system: The electric motor/generator is designed for series and parallel hybrid configurations and can be integrated with a standard diesel, with multi-speed gearboxes, or used to charge a battery pack….and so power an electric motor, which drives an axle.

 

It produces up to 220kW of peak power and 915Nm of peak torque and is reckoned by Dana to be well-suited to high-power applications, ranging from light commercials to heavy-duty trucks and offroad dumptrucks.

The other switched-on showpiece is a heavy-duty TM4 Sumo HD motor and inverter system, capable of producing up to 350kW of peak power and 3500Nm of peak torque.

 

It’s targeted at medium to heavy-duty truck applications and is designed to interface directly with standard rear diffs and/or gearboxes....or e-axles.

 

On the stand, the HD is coupled to a Dana driveshaft and a new 40,000 lb standard axle, designed for applications in agitator and car carrying markets.

 

It’s this electric motor that’s in two Isuzu F Series concept trucks on display elsewhere at the show – namely on the stands of development partners Isuzu Australia and Aussie company SEA Electric.

 

As Dana’s Brad Wolstenholme puts it, the company, which was founded on the back of Clarence Spicer’s invention of the encased universal joint – which “revolutionised and reinvented the automotive industry” 115 years ago – is “now determined to reinvent propulsion in the electrification space.

 

“We are,” he declares, “at the start of what we expect to be a wave of electrification in the commercial vehicle industry.”

 

And yes….the electric drive systems on show “are available right now,” Wolstenholme adds.

 

Dana has been developing electric driveline products for quite a few years, but has increased the urgency of its e-programme during the past 12 months – buying electric motor specialist TM4, and the SME Group….maker of low-voltage motors and controllers for hybrid drivelines.

 

It has also started up production of Dana e-axles in China, bought a major shareholding in heavy-duty hybrid/electric truck developer Hyliion and has acquired the drive systems division of the Oerlikon Group – maker of high-precision hellical gears and planetary drives for electrification systems...

 

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