In 2014, Renault made its mark with the presentation of Eolab, a hybrid vehicle concept that consumed only 1 litre per 100 km.Five years later, research on this prototype led to the design of a new powertrain. Called E-TECH, it is presented exclusively at the Geneva Motor Show, a few months after Renault unveiled its strategy for the hybrid car.
The E-TECH block is built around a gasoline internal combustion engine (1.6L) whose action is supplemented by two electric motors powered by a battery. The whole system is dynamically controlled by an intelligent multimode gearbox without a clutch, designed by Renault’s design studio to offer the most efficient level of electrification at all times.
“The electronic control system constantly chooses the energy mode best suited to the current use,” explains Grégoire Ginet, Deputy Commercial Range Manager for Powertrain/Electrification at Groupe Renault.
For example, the gearbox systematically gives priority to electric starting, so that the conductor can take advantage of the immediately available torque. For overruns, it combines thermal and electrical to provide better acceleration. At other times, it ensures that fuel consumption is as low as possible and supervises energy recovery, thanks to the two electric motors. These allow the battery to be recharged during deceleration phases, as with a 100% electric car.
“The E-TECH engine benefits from the vast experience Renault has acquired on electric vehicles. Today, this enables us to offer a mature solution, adapted to needs complementary to those of pure electricity,” confirms Grégoire Ginet. The E-TECH block and its above-market performance have been the subject of 150 patents, of which one third are for the gearbox alone.
In practice, a Clio E-TECH hybrid will be able to drive electrically up to 80% of the time on an urban travel cycle. This saves nearly 40% of the fuel consumption measured on an equivalent internal combustion engine, while benefiting from instantaneous reactivity when starting and accelerating, without having to deal with recharging issues.
The availability of this hybrid engine is due for 2020, with two different implementations. The E-TECH variant, designed for the Renault Clio, includes a 1.2 kWh battery that is automatically recharged thanks to energy recovery. The Captur and Mégane will benefit from the E-TECH “plug-in” version, equipped with a 9.8 kWh battery and a charging socket. These hybrid models will benefit from the connected services designed by Renault to optimise journeys or remotely manage vehicle charging.
Copyrights : Renault Communication