Volkswagen showcased its next-generation electric drive – the APP550 back in April 2023. This motor is for the rear axle and will power the ID. family of electric vehicles. Now, according to a media report, Mahindra has reconfigured this motor to be used on the INGLO platform. This means, Mahindra’s upcoming BE electric vehicles will be powered by this motor. Mahindra is likely to use this motor in the BE.05 SUV that is the first amongst the next-gen EVs from the Indian carmaker. It is due in 2025.
Mahindra has also tied up with Volkswagen for the components of the MED platform. This means, Mahindra will get access to the latest technologies from the German carmaker. Meanwhile, APP550 motor will first debut in the ID.7 that is expected around the end of this year.
APP550 Motor : More Details
As the name implies, this motor has a maximum torque of 550 Nm. It is also rated at 210 kW or 286 HP. The motor that APP550 replaces was good for 150 kW and 310 Nm. This means that the latest motor is quite a bit ahead of the older motor tech.
The high torque output of the motor is thanks to an enhanced stator. There are higher effective number of windings along with a greater cross section area of the wire. The rotor meanwhile is designed with powerful magnets that have a higher load capacity. The electric drive unit comes with additional reinforcements to tackle the higher power and torque numbers.
For any electric motor, the current is the main deciding factor to determine the power. Hence, Volkswagen has used an inverter, that has been improved from before. This inverter is capable of providing high phase currents, which are needed for the extra power.
Another area of design is thermal management. In the APP550, the higher efficiency of the electrical unit is managed thanks to cooling without an electric oil pump. Instead the drive units the gear wheels using a specially formed component that uses oil supply and distribution. This heated oil is in turn cooled by the vehicle’s cooling system. Meanwhile, the exterior of the stator gets cooling from a water heat sink.
Could APP550 be made in India?
Volkswagen might consider localising the motor in case there is a sufficient demand for the same. This means, vehicles using this motor from VW, Skoda and Mahindra might need to reach a minimum viability level from the point of view of production numbers. Further, VW has also revealed that the German company is open to supply this motor to other OEMs in India. That said, Mahindra will be the sold customer in India for a while.