Ford solid works ford motor company
Ford has filed a patent application for solid axles with integrated hub motors, suggesting a very different type of EV powertrain than the Blue Oval Ford solid works ford motor company.
Instead of letting the wheels move up and down individually, as in independent suspension systems, solid axles pivot as they move over uneven surfaces. That means they’ve been primarily relegated to pickup trucks, but Ford’s patent application, filed with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) on February 9, shows how they could hold their own in the EV era Ford solid works ford motor company.
Ford patent image showing a solid axle with EV hub motors
The document details adding hub motor units to a solid axle, with one unit per wheel to enable four-wheel drive. As opposed to the inboard motors in most current EVs, these units move the motors out to the wheel hubs, theoretically freeing up more space within the vehicle’s footprint.
Hub motors are not a new idea. Slovenian company Elaphe supplies them to some of the most anticipated super-efficient vehicles – including the Aptera three-wheeler and the solar-assisted Lightyear 0. Earlier this year, Elaphe also announced a partnership with McLaren to incorporate the latter’s racing technology into future hub motor powertrains.
Ford patent image showing a solid axle with EV hub motors Ford solid works ford motor company
However, Ford previously removed in-wheel motors for the F-150 Lightning, due to concerns that the motors would be more susceptible to damage than in a conventional inboard position and could interfere with the friction brakes, which even an electric truck often uses when towing. The hub design also increases unsprung mass, making tuning for ride quality and handling more difficult Ford solid works ford motor company.
Despite these potential issues, Lordstown Motors chose Elaphe-licensed hub motors for its Endurance pickup, which finally began shipping in late 2022 after several delays. The Endurance is aimed more narrowly at commercial fleets than the Lightning, which Ford is pitching to both commercial and residential customers. But this patent filing suggests Ford is open to trying a similar engine setup on future electric cars Ford solid works ford motor company.