Suppliers, rather than vehicle manufacturers (VMs), will promote the market for ECMs. Design flexibility, weight reduction and fuel savings will be the main catalysts implementing ECMs.
“Enhanced design flexibility and additional space due to the absence of the transmission and engine will boost the adoption of ECMs,” notes Frost & Sullivan Industry Manager Vijayendra Rao. ”The implementation of ECM will also act as a product differentiator for OEMs to showcase their technological expertise.”
With the electric motors being integrated within the wheels, there is no additional drive force required to drive the vehicle. Thus, it will eliminate the need for conventional engine, transmission, differential and other powertrain components.
The removal of powertrain components will not only create extra space but will also reduce the overall curb weight of the vehicle and further increase the fuel savings.
“By-wire technologies will be required to implement in-wheel motors on all four wheels,” remarks Rao. “Also, OEMs’ preference for centralised motors over in-wheel motors will pose a major challenge to the implementation of ECMs.”
The installation of in-wheel motors on all four wheels will require by-wire technologies such as steer-by-wire, brake-by-wire and suspension-by-wire due to higher voltage requirements. European OEMs prefer centralised electric motors to in-wheel motors due to their simpler architecture. This will create a strong challenge for the market entry and the growth of in-wheel motors, particularly in the European market.
Motor, chassis and tyre suppliers will have to work closely to ensure the widespread uptake of ECMs. Moreover, ECM suppliers should target OEMs who have strong product portfolios in terms of hybrids and electric vehicles.
Furthermore, ECM implementation requires expertise in electric motors, steering, suspension, braking, electronics and tyre areas. Hence, different suppliers have to work closely with OEMs to promote the adoption of ECMs.
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Strategic Analysis of European Market for Electric Corner Modules / M2D1
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