Despite the mess that Saab has been in these past few months, things at spinoff company e-AAM, a joint venture between Saab engineers and American Axle, are ramping up. They’re increasing their office space at Innovatum Office Park in Trollhättan, and are one of the ten largest employers in the city.
TTela has a great in depth piece with the management at e-AAM. I strongly urge you to read it (English translation here). Some interesting tidbits, there are several companies around the world interested in the technology, including American, German, and Chinese. Also, they’ve managed to design through software a way for the car to turn itself without the driver turning the wheel (I’m guessing this is for automated actions like parallel parking unless something was lost in translation, it may mean more an e-ReAxs system). They’re working to have it applied to electric vehicles with FWD platforms (hello Chevy Volt and others).
E-AAM’s Interaction Manager Peter Johansson explains that their modular solution is much more attractive than the specific and complicated systems currently under development by other automakers.
The beauty of it, if we’re talking four-wheel drive, is that you get an equally low or lower consumption of electricity than four-wheel drive with front wheel drive. The electric motor provides extra power during acceleration and braking recycles energy. There will also be safer to drive including an offer individual control of each wheel and the different torque at each wheel. And, unlike mechanical systems, this system is much faster. And the icing on the cake, it’s easy, pull down the emissions of vehicles and have a competitive price. Sounds like a good deal?
Saab will of course have the technology first on the new 9-3, despite it’s delayed development that’s pushing its on-sale date to 2013. We’ll have our own interviews with the E-AAM crew soon.
Thanks to Lennart for the tip!