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Old 11-08-2012, 11:50 PM   #11
Gnarly Adventurer
Joined: Jul 2008
Location: Sydney, Australia
Oddometer: 166

Originally Posted by El Guero View Post
When you are driving a Volt down the highway, does the gas engine ever directly drive the wheels? Or is it all power to the wheels through the electric motor?
FYI, the Chevrolet Voltís engine DOES NOT directly drive the wheels.

An 111kW electric drive unit powers Voltís wheels at all times. Positioned under the hood next to the generator, it packages a pair of electric motors and a multi-mode transaxle with continuously variable capability. Unlike a conventional powertrain, there are no step gears within the unit, and no direct mechanical linkage from the engine through the drive unit to the wheels.

Inside the drive unit, one or both of the motors drives the vehicle based on performance and speed to optimise efficiency. One of the motors serves a dual function, either to help drive the wheels, or to operate as a generator to keep the battery pack at its minimum state of charge.

At higher loads and speeds, the second motor will activate as needed for efficiency. The Voltec propulsion system optimiser evaluates the best efficiency point hundreds of times per second.

It seamlessly switches from one-motor to two-motor operation to use as little energy as possible while still meeting the driverís needs.

Voltís extended driving range comes courtesy of a highly refined, 1.4 litre, 63 kW petrol generator that provides power to the electric motors.

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