Some interesting information about EV motor design here: https://www.yasa.com/technology/
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I recently attended a press briefing about the upcoming automechanika show in Frankfurt. For those of us in the UK it is a fairly short flight to attend but this event is hybrid! This means that a digital version almost mirrors the actual event. C19 or otherwise the time taken to visit can be much reduced by attending digitally – I think I will be there however for the German beer (and ll the interesting technologies of course)… More details below:
What are the current issues and trends in the aftermarket? What are the future challenges for car repair shops, e.g. due to the fast increase in alternative drive systems? This year’s Automechanika Frankfurt Digital Plus will be held in a more compact form, with a different model adapted to suit the prevailing situation, and also with a wide range of online products and services. There is a strong demand for personal interaction, as around 75 per cent of the approx. 200 exhibiting companies want to have physical stands at the exhibition. What’s new is that Automechanika will take place at the same time as Hypermotion – the tradeshow of the logistics industry – at the Frankfurt Exhibition Centre. This will give the automotive sector valuable inspiration, e.g. with regard to resilient supply chains, fleet management and IoT systems.
The aftermarket sector will finally be meeting face-to-face again at Automechanika, from 14 to 16 September 2021. Olaf Musshoff, Director of Automechanika Frankfurt, says: “I’m really pleased that our ‘plug & play’ offer of fully equipped stands has been so well received and that so many companies who’ve signed up want to meet in person again in Frankfurt. However, even those who are not coming to Frankfurt can take part in our wide-ranging complementary programme. Thanks to our new online features, we’ll be providing additional options for presentation, for networking and for a wide international reach.” There has been considerable interest from other countries these days: exhibitors will be coming not only from Germany, but also from Belgium, France, the UK, the Netherlands, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Switzerland, Denmark, Finland, Poland, Hungary, the Czech Republic, Bulgaria, Croatia, Lithuania, Georgia, Ukraine, Russia, Greece, Turkey, India, the United Arab Emirates, Korea, China, Taiwan and Australia.
The following companies, among others, will be exhibiting at the Frankfurt Exhibition Centre: Schaeffler, Hunter, Liqui Moly GmbH, SATA, Mercedes-Benz Gebrauchtteile Center (Spare Parts Centre), Snap-on Equipment GmbH, Alfred Kärcher Vertriebs GmbH, Otto Christ, WashTec GmbH, AVL DiTEST GmbH, Hengst, Heinrich Eibach, ABBT Arnott, AJUSA Auto Juntas, Audatex, Adriateh d.o.o., BBT Automotive Components GmbH, AUTOonline GmbH, MAPCO Autotechnik GmbH, DINEX A/S, Glaubitz GmbH, Saxon Junkalor, Inficon, ATH Heinl, Schumacher, Auger Autotechnik, Erich Jaeger GmbH, Nissens Automotive A/S together with AVA Benelux, Inforserveis S.L., Visomax Coating, TÜV Rheinland, ZDK (Central Association of the German Motor Trade), and many others. And here are some of the companies that will be participating entirely online: Continental with four business units, including the tyre division, ElringKlinger AG, Mahle, Mol-Lub KFT, Body Shop News, Vogel Communications Group GmbH, Robert Bosch GmbH, who are also supporting the Workshops for Car Repair Shops, and BMW AG with its Original Spare Parts division. The latter will be exhibiting at Automechanika Frankfurt for the first time.
Programme highlights at Automechanika Frankfurt Digital Plus
As an innovation showcase, training centre and test lab for car dealerships and repair shops, the Future Repair Shop 4.0 will be working with the Institute for the Automotive Industry (IfA), demonstrating tomorrow’s technologies, processes and business models at the trade show. There will be eight learning stations on the customer journey with a focus on aftersales, giving visitors a hands-on experience of technological change. Motor industry professionals can gain valuable expertise and fresh inspiration for their own business in the future. Digitisation and new technical developments are posing new challenges to car repair shops on a daily basis. To keep up with it all, it’s important to engage regularly in professional development.
As before, hands-on workshops will be held at the trade fair. They will take place in cooperation with well-known partners and will be directed at car repair shops, in particular. There will also be several live accident repair demonstrations, hosted by FabuCar and the Car Doctors (Die Autodoktoren). In addition, the Automechanika Academy will be running a wide-ranging programme on all three days. Recent developments on the topics of Tomorrow’s Service & Mobility, Electromobility, 3D Printing and Car Wash will be presented in several visionary talks, given by professionals, and will be debated in panel discussions. Anyone who runs a car repair shop will be particularly interested in Schadentalk (a vehicle damage chat show) as well as a range of talks and panel discussions on the day-to-day business of a car repair shop. In times of climate change and environmental protection, the topic of a circular economy and remanufacturing is becoming increasingly relevant.
The first Automechanika Remanufacturing Day will be therefore held on 15 September, in cooperation with APRA (the Automotive Parts Remanufacturers’ Association). On this occasion, several professionals will be presenting the topic from various angles, with opportunities for questions.
Hypermotion Frankfurt at the interface of mobility and logistics
Hypermotion Frankfurt is all about smart solutions in mobility and logistics, with numerous conferences in addition to the traditional exhibition. For example, one exciting feature for an audience from the automotive industry at Hypermotion will be the new container system of GH System GmbH. It will be presented at a special show and also in the Future Mobility Park. The new system can be used throughout the supply chain, right down to the regional and local levels. Using a small standardised container, the innovative system focuses on the end-to-end shipment of goods. RepairFix, a start-up company, is set to present a software application that smartly networks drivers, fleet managers and repair shops in dealing with damage and servicing.
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Now that much more research is going into EVs, rather than ICE vehicles, the developments will keep coming – IMHO! For example:
A new fabrication technique could allow solid-state automotive lithium-ion batteries to adopt nonflammable ceramic electrolytes using the same production processes as in batteries made with conventional liquid electrolytes.
More here: https://www.electrichybridvehicletechnology.com/features/researchers-discover-breakthrough-solid-state-ev-battery-manufacturing-technique.html
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Flexfuel Energy Development UK (FFEDUK), launches its latest class leading engine carbon cleaning via hydrogen injection machine, Hy-Carbon Connect. Hy-Carbon Connect is a fully automated, intelligent and digitally connected carbon cleaning machine. It is the only carbon cleaning machine that includes integrated diagnostics. Hy-Carbon Connect uses hydrogen gas to break down carbon deposits from key engine components. These carbon deposits are responsible for low returning fuel economy, reduced power, increased emissions and the premature failure of engine parts.
The Hy-Carbon Connect station is a connected hydrogen injection cleaning system, eliminating carbon deposits found in combustion engines – Cylinders, DPF, EGR valve, turbo etc). It is entirely chemical free, requiring simply deionised water to produce hydrogen gas that acts as a natural solvent on carbon.
The Hy-Carbon Connect station comes with a touchscreen, which acts as a wireless user interface. The carbon cleaning station, Hy-Carbon Connect®, is simple to use, fast and totally automated. Through its patented technology, Hy-Carbon Connect analyses the vehicle’s state of health – number of miles driven, fault codes and driver habits.
By using its OBD connection, a third patented technology, Hy-Carbon Connect enables automatic control of the engine and its key components allowing engine parts to be automatically ‘set in motion’.
The Hy-Carbon Connect builds on the latest developments in Artificial Intelligence. Hy-Carbon Connect learns characteristics of engine makes, fault codes, model, age and number of miles driven from all the Hy-Carbon Connect machines in use around the world. The more data on engine types it collects, the more targeted clean can be applied. Put simply, the machine gets better the more it gets used, better understanding the treatment specific engines will need.
Hy-Carbon Connect produces a treatment report showing levels of carbon build up in the engine pre clean and post clean. Additionally, automated emails and SMS reminders can be sent to the customer every 12 months or 15,000 miles, whichever comes first.
By removing carbon deposits the Hy-Carbon Connect gives the engine renewed life, power, saves consumers money and provides garages with an incremental revenue stream.
Jerome Loubert, Global Business Development Manager for FlexFuel comments: “Our machines produce industry leading concentration levels of hydrogen gas. The greater the concentration, the more effective the engine clean will be. Through years and years of investment, employing the sharpest minds in the industry and constant evaluation and research and development competitive products do not get anywhere near the volumes of hydrogen production that we do. Our carbon cleaning solutions are entirely chemical free, simply using deionised water – and a lot of science – to restore engines to their near factory condition.”
Since coming to the UK in 2018, FFEDUK boats in excess of 300 garage partners. FFED UK also has distribution agreements with Point S, part of the world’s largest Independent Tyre & Autocare Group. This year FFEDUK is looking to increase its market share by building additional agreements and partnerships with the UK Motor Factors and by targeting the currently untapped commercial vehicle sector in the UK.
Neil Chapman, owner at Offmore Road Garage in Kidderminster and one of the very first adopters of Hy-Carbon in the UK comments: “I have been a FlexFuel customer for nearly two years. In only a few months, I could see that this would be the most profitable machine in my workshop. It is near autonomous, it does not take a mechanic away from other jobs and can run in the corner and do its job. Importantly, there are no consumables or chemicals which reduces running costs and stops toxic emissions associated with traditional chemical engine cleaning. The feedback from customers has been fantastic to date.
I have a strong service customer base and many are now having an engine clean as part of their annual service plan. They are all reporting improved mpg, better engine performance and generally smoother running. At a curative level, it is being used on sticky EGRs, turbos and blocked DPFs. For vehicles failing emissions on their annual MOT test, it is also proving to be highly effective in reducing emissions and ensuring a successful pass.”
The Hy-Carbon Connect is available to the UK from March 1st at £499 per month, but is being offered at £399 per month for the first 1,000 customers to sign up. FlexFuel provides full training, a full marketing pack, 5 year warranty and continued ongoing support whenever required.
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Climate-neutral powertrain for the long haul
This is information supplied by Bosch, and as always it includes some really useful information. My personal view is that hydrogen is the future for heavy vehicles but not necesarily for cars – see what you think.
Electromobility is picking up more and more speed. It is an important element in reducing CO2 emissions from traffic. But how economical is it to operate heavy-duty trucks with 40-ton payloads over long distances using only battery-electric power? Given the battery weight, long charging times, and limited range of today’s technology, electric powertrains aren’t the first choice for heavy trucks. Nevertheless, even 40-ton trucks will be able to travel more than a thousand kilometres in all-electric mode in the near future. The key to this is the Bosch fuel-cell powertrain. When powered with hydrogen produced using renewable energy, this powertrain enables the climate-neutral transportation of goods and commodities. Bosch is taking the first step in this direction by developing the fuel-cell powertrain primarily with a focus on trucks, and the company plans to start production in 2022–2023. Once they have become established in trucks, Bosch fuel-cell powertrains will then increasingly find their way into passenger cars – rightly making them an integral part of tomorrow’s powertrain portfolio.
Seven reasons why fuel cells and hydrogen are crucial building blocks of tomorrow’s mobility:
1) Climate neutrality
In a fuel cell, hydrogen (H2) reacts with oxygen (O2) from the ambient air. The energy this reaction releases is converted into electricity, which is used for driving. Heat and pure water (H2O) are other products of the reaction. H2 is obtained using electrolysis, in which water is separated into hydrogen and oxygen with the aid of electricity. Generating this electricity from renewables makes the fuel-cell powertrain completely climate-neutral. Especially for large, heavy vehicles, fuel cells have a better carbon footprint than exclusively battery-electric powertrains if the CO2 emissions for production, operation, and disposal are added together. All that fuel-cell vehicles need in addition to their hydrogen tank is a much smaller battery for intermediate buffer storage. This greatly reduces their carbon footprint in production. “The advantages of the fuel cell really come into play in those areas where battery-electric powertrains don’t shine,” explains Dr. Uwe Gackstatter, president of the Bosch Powertrain Solutions division. “This means there’s no competition between fuel cells and batteries; instead, they complement each other perfectly.”
2) Potential applications
Hydrogen has a high energy density. One kilogram of hydrogen contains as much energy as 3.3 litres of diesel. To travel 100 kilometres, a passenger car needs only about one kilogram; a 40-ton truck needs a good seven kilograms. As with diesel or gasoline, it takes just a few minutes to fill an empty H 2 tank and continue the journey. “Fuel cells are the first choice for transporting larger loads for many kilometres every day,” Gackstatter says, summarizing the advantages. In the EU-funded H2Haul project, Bosch is currently working with other companies to build a small fleet of fuel-cell trucks and put them on the road. In addition to mobile applications, Bosch is developing fuel-cell stacks for stationary applications with solid-oxide fuel-cell (SOFC) technology. One intended use for them is as small, distributed power stations in cities, data canters, and charge points for electric vehicles. If the Paris climate action targets are to be met, in the future hydrogen will need to power not only cars and commercial vehicles, but also trains, aircraft, and ships. The energy and steel industries are also planning to make use of hydrogen.
One of the decisive factors for a powertrain’s eco-friendliness and profitability is its efficiency. This is around a quarter higher for fuel-cell vehicles than for vehicles with combustion engines. Employing recuperative braking further increases efficiency. Battery-electric vehicles, which can store electricity directly in the vehicle and use it for propulsion, are even more effective. However, since energy production and energy demand do not always coincide in time and location, electricity from wind and solar plants often remains unused because it cannot find a consumer and cannot be stored. This is where hydrogen comes into its own. The surplus electricity can be used to produce it in a decentralized way, ready for flexible storage and transportation.
The cost of green hydrogen will come down considerably when production capacities are expanded, and the price of electricity generated from renewables declines. The Hydrogen Council, an association of over 90 international companies, expects costs for many hydrogen applications to fall by half in the next ten years – making them competitive with other technologies. Bosch is currently working with the startup Powercell to develop the stack, the core of the fuel cell, and make it market-ready, with manufacturing to follow. The goal is a high-performance solution that can be manufactured at low cost. “In the medium term, using a vehicle with a fuel cell won’t be more expensive than using one with a conventional powertrain,” Gackstatter says.
Today’s network of hydrogen filling stations doesn’t offer complete coverage, but the roughly 180 hydrogen filling stations in Europe are already sufficient for some important transport routes. Companies in many countries are cooperating to push ahead with the expansion, often supported by state subsidies. In Germany, too, politicians have recognized the important role of hydrogen in decarbonizing the economy and have anchored it in the National Hydrogen Strategy. For example, the H 2 Mobility joint venture will have built around 100 publicly accessible filling stations in Germany by the end of 2020, while the EU-funded H2Haul project is working not only on trucks but also on the filling stations required on its planned routes. Japan, China, and South Korea also have comprehensive support programs.
The use of gaseous hydrogen in vehicles is safe and no more hazardous than other automotive fuels or batteries. Hydrogen tanks do not pose an increased risk of explosion. It is true that H 2 burns in combination with oxygen and that a mixture of the two beyond a certain ratio is explosive. But hydrogen is about 14 times lighter than air and therefore extremely volatile. For example, any H 2 that escapes from a vehicle tank will rise faster than it can react with the ambient oxygen. In a fire test conducted on a fuel-cell car by U.S. researchers in 2003, there was a flash fire, but it quickly went out again. The vehicle remained largely undamaged.
Hydrogen production is a proven and technologically straightforward process. This means it can be ramped up quickly to meet higher demand. In addition, fuel cells have now reached the necessary technological maturity for their commercialization and widespread use. According to the Hydrogen Council, the hydrogen economy can become competitive in the next ten years, provided there is sufficient investment and political will. “The time for entry into the hydrogen economy is now,” Gackstatter says.
(Source: Bosch Media)
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For overseas, there is a free delivery option here (not signed!): Routledge Publisher
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Pedestrians obscured from view by vehicles, cyclists passing in front of the car, buses that suddenly approach: negotiating city traffic can quickly become a difficult task. Of all things, it could be streetlights that make urban traffic safer and provide automated vehicles with an overview of the traffic situation. This was the subject of the MEC-View research project. The project required streetlights to be fitted with video and lidar sensors, which then used advanced cellular technology to provide vehicles with critical information in real time, allowing them to detect obstacles – whether other cars, bicycles, or pedestrians – quickly and reliably. After more than three years of development, the project is now ready to present its findings. Partners in the project, which received 5.5 million euros in funding from the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi), were Bosch, the consortium leader, together with Mercedes-Benz, Nokia, Osram, TomTom, IT Designers, and the universities of Duisburg-Essen and Ulm. The project’s associated partner was the city of Ulm, which for the past three years has been the testing ground for the sensors on the streetlights and the connectivity technology. The insights gained in the project will now be used to further develop automotive technology, automated driving, and cellular technology. In addition, the infrastructure the project has built up will now be available for further research projects to use.
Bird’s-eye beats worm’s eye
Reaching up to six meters in height, streetlights tower above road traffic. They have a precise bird’s eye view of developments at busy intersections, say – and it is knowledge like this that automated vehicles will need in the future. While a vehicle’s sensor systems – cameras, radar, and lidar sensors – give it precise 360-degree vision, the view from the ground – from the vehicle alone – is not always sufficient for it to see a pedestrian currently obscured by a truck, a vehicle emerging from a concealed entrance, or a cyclist approaching from behind and changing lanes quickly. “Because the vehicle itself cannot see around corners or through walls, we use the streetlight sensors to extend the vehicle sensors’ field of view,” says Dr. Rüdiger Walter Henn, who heads the MEC-View project at the consortium leader Bosch. The project partners have developed the corresponding hardware and software for this purpose; the system processes the images and signals from the infrastructure sensors, combines them with high-resolution digital maps (HD maps), and transmits them to the vehicle over the air. There, the data merges with the vehicle’s own sensor information to create an accurate picture of the situation, including all relevant road users.
Wireless data transmission
Advanced cellular technology makes extremely low-latency transmission of sensor information possible. While the MEC-View project used LTE mobile communications technology with an optimized configuration for this purpose, in the new 5G communications standard, real-time data transmission is a basic function. The core task of latency-optimized mobile communications is not only the virtually instantaneous wireless transmission of data, but also the processing of that data as close to the source as possible. This task is performed by special computers, known as mobile edge computing servers (or MEC servers for short), which are integrated directly into the cellular network. They combine the streetlight sensor data with data from a vehicle’s surround sensors and highly accurate digital maps. From this, they generate a model of the surroundings that includes all available information about the current traffic situation, and make this model available to vehicles over the air. In the future, facilities such as the city traffic control centers could be equipped with such servers, so that they can share the data with all vehicles, regardless of manufacturer, and other road users.
Seamlessly merging with trafic
In Ulm, the project partners have been testing the interaction of automated vehicle prototypes and infrastructure sensors in real traffic conditions since 2018. One intersection in the Lehr district of Ulm is notorious for its lack of good all-round visibility. The streetlights there were equipped with sensors to help automated vehicles negotiate the intersection. Vehicles approaching the difficult intersection from a side road have to merge onto the main road. Thanks to the newly developed technology, the automated prototype now recognizes road users early on and can adapt its driving strategy accordingly. As a result, the vehicle targets gaps in the traffic on the main road and merges seamlessly, without stopping. Such a development will make urban traffic not only safer, but also more fluid. The infrastructure built up during the project will remain in Ulm, where it will be available for use by subsequent research projects.
Project website with the findings: www.mec-view.de
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Mercedes-AMG is implementing electric exhaust gas turbochargers in its next vehicle generation. The turbocharger features an electronically controlled electric motor which drives the compressor wheel before the wheel takes over the exhaust gas flow.
Electric exhaust gas turbocharger from Mercedes-AMG
The electric exhaust gas turbocharger was developed in partnership with Garrett Motion. The technology comes from Formula 1 and is intended to combine the benefits of a small turbocharger with fast response times that achieves relatively low peak performance and of a large turbocharger with high peak performance but delayed responses.
A slim electric motor measuring around 4 cm is integrated directly on the charger shaft between the turbine wheel on the exhaust side and the compressor wheel on the fresh-air side. The electronically controlled electric motor drives the compressor wheel before the wheel takes over the exhaust gas flow, which significantly improves responsiveness even at idle speeds and across the entire engine-speed range. The turbocharger is powered by a 48-volt on-board electrical system and can achieve speeds of up to 170,000 rpm, which enables a very high air flow rate. Along with the electric motor and power electronics, the turbocharger is connected to the combustion engine’s cooling circuit.
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Volvo XC40 Recharge Pure Electric available to order now amid surging interest in battery-powered cars
The Volvo XC40 Recharge Pure Electric – Volvo’s first all-electric car – is now available for UK customers to order.
The first of five fully electric cars to be launched by the Swedish company over the next five years, the XC40 Recharge Pure Electric P8 is capable of a travelling more than 249 miles on a single charge, and can be charged to 80% of its battery capacity in as little as 40 minutes using a fast charger. Being an electric car, it will deliver significant savings to owners in running costs, as well as tax benefits.
Inside, the car benefits from the company’s brand-new infotainment system powered by Google Android, as well as taking the XC40’s already renowned use of interior space even further.
Kristian Elvefors, Volvo Car UK’s Managing Director, said: “For Volvo Cars, the future is electric. The battery-powered XC40 spearheads our ambitious sustainability strategy, while bringing the huge benefits of electric driving – and more – to an already award-winning package.”
A milestone in one of the automotive industry’s boldest electrification strategies
Volvo’s first entrant into the compact premium SUV segment when it was launched in 2018, the XC40 has seen unprecedented success, winning a host of prestigious awards – including European Car of the Year in 2018 – and quickly becoming the firm’s best-selling model in the UK. The Recharge Pure Electric variant comes at the perfect time, with almost three quarters of consumers considering an all-electric car for their next purchase1.
The XC40 Recharge Pure Electric marks a major milestone in Volvo Cars’ electrification strategy, which is one of the boldest from any traditional car maker. As part of a long-term ambition to be climate-neutral by 2040, the company aims to reduce tailpipe emissions by 50% per car, and for half of all new vehicles it sells globally to be pure electric, by 2025.
The all-electric XC40 also expands Volvo’s already comprehensive range of plug-in vehicles, now sold under the Recharge brand, with customers already able to purchase a plug-in hybrid version of every model in the Volvo range.
While the recently launched plug-in hybrid XC40 is ideal for those making the transition to electric driving – its 28-mile electric range is backed up by a petrol engine for greater distances – the Pure Electric is the perfect car for those ready to commit to all-electric motoring. The average distance driven each day by UK motorists is 30 miles2, so its 249-plus-mile range more than covers most people’s daily requirements – especially if home or workplace charging is installed meaning a full charge at the start of each journey.
The XC40 P8’s long range does not come at the expense of performance, with its twin electric motors producing 408hp to deliver a 0-62mph time of only 4.9 seconds.
Interior design: making clever even cleverer
While the XC40 already follows the principle of doing more with less, the Recharge Pure Electric version takes this even further. The lack of an internal combustion engine frees up space for an additional 30-litre storage compartment or ‘frunk’ under the front bonnet, while the placement of the batteries under the centre of the car means space is not compromised elsewhere.
As with any other XC40, the battery-powered version comes equipped with clever interior touches such as a removable waste bin, a fold-out hook in the glove compartment for bags, and a useful boot divider complete with hooks for keeping shopping bags separate and upright. A pair of sizeable front door bins come courtesy of the traditionally door-housed speakers being moved to the base of the windscreen.
The interior of the battery-powered XC40 also carries over the strong focus on sustainability from other variants, with the door linings and carpets made from 97% recycled plastic bottles.
The all-electric XC40 marks the debut of Volvo Cars’ brand-new Android-powered infotainment system, which gives customers unprecedented personalisation increased intuitiveness and new embedded Google technologies and services.
Total integration of Android Automotive OS, Google’s open-source Android platform, means services such as Google Maps, Google Assistant and other automotive apps will be built in.
For the first time on a Volvo car, software and operating system updates will be available over the air, meaning an XC40 Recharge Pure Electric will improve over its lifetime rather than being at its peak on leaving the factory.
One of the safest cars on the road
In spite of the challenges presented by the lack of an internal combustion engine, the electric XC40 is one of the safest cars on the market. Volvo Cars’ safety engineers have totally redeveloped the frontal crash structure, while introducing a new and unique safety structure for the passengers and battery – helping to keep occupants as safe as they are in any other Volvo.
The fully electric XC40 SUV – Volvo’s first electric car and one of the safest on the road
The XC40 Recharge Pure Electric is also the first Volvo to feature a new version of Pilot Assist, the driver-assistance technology that deploys steering, acceleration and braking support to help take the strain during long motorway journeys and sitting in traffic. The system now uses Google Maps for information such as speed limits and curves in the road to improve its functionality.
A new Emergency Stop Assist function is now included, meaning that if the driver is not holding the steering wheel while Pilot Assist is activated, the driver will be warned in different stages until the vehicle is brought to a safe stop.
(Source: Volvo Media)
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