A British engineering company has revealed a 107bhp ‘turn-key’ electric motor that could easily be slotted into a compact project car.
Swindon Powertrain, which recently engineered an electric version of the classic Mini under the name Swind, is developing that power unit further to open it up to niche manufacturers, EV conversion specialists and, shortly afterwards, even the likes of us.
The ready-to-roll High Power Density (HPD) motor assembly weighs just 70kg – 27kg lighter than a three-cylinder 1.0-litre Ford EcoBoost even without fluids in it – and measures a dinky 60cm wide by 44cm long and 28cm tall, meaning cars thus equipped will benefit not just from light weight but also a low centre of gravity.
Swindon has initially developed the crate motor to be an easy and ready-made solution for everything from electric delivery vans to lightweight Caterham-style kit cars. Its diddy size means it can fit under a bonnet, beneath a load bay or right behind a pair of seats. It can even slot into many designs of ATV. Individuals will be able to buy their own crate soon after it’s made available to companies.
Contained within the compact HPD shell is the motor itself, a single-speed transmission and a cooling system. You don’t get batteries as different manufacturers and converters will have wildly different needs in terms of space, size and capacity, but as long as 107bhp and the accompanying slug of torque are enough, the motor unit itself is versatile enough to fit almost any needs.
It will be designed with ‘multiple mounting points’ for options when installing it, and there are additional waterproofing options to ensure that it can be used in serious off-road applications. Testing and validation are under way with production scheduled for June 2020. What would you slot it into first?