Spotlight on Cenex LCV2012 exhibitors: Xtrac – motorsport transmissionsAugust 17, 2012
Xtrac develops transmissions which are used in international motorsport and increasingly in the automotive mainstream, including for hybrid and electric vehicles – such as the Infiniti EMERG-E electric sports car.
Xtrac has been involved in the REEVolution project, which is a collaborative research and development programme funded by the government’s innovation agency, the Technology Strategy Board, designed to create new high performance range-extended electric vehicles (REEV) and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEV). Jaguar Land Rover leads the consortium, which includes vehicle manufacturers Lotus and, through its Infiniti brand, Nissan. The battery, electric motor and transmission suppliers are, respectively, Axeon Technologies, EVO Electric and Xtrac.
The consortium has built three demonstrator vehicles to showcase the innovative new technologies developed since the project was announced in 2010. The demonstrators aim to be best in class and build on the skills of all the businesses involved. The driving force behind this is the development of a UK supply chain for new ultra-low carbon vehicle technologies to position suppliers so that they can exploit an expanding global market.
One of those demonstrator vehicles is the Infiniti EMERG-E electric sports car. The prototype delivers its power and torque via an Xtrac 1092 transmission, which also features in the Lotus Evora 414e series hybrid technology demonstrator.
Established in 1984, Xtrac has become a world leader in the design and manufacture of gearboxes, differentials and driveline components, which are used throughout international motorsport and in particular within F1, IndyCar, Touring Car, Rallying, Rally Raid, GRAND-AM and many forms of sportscar racing including a major involvement in the Le Mans 24 hours, Daytona 24 hour and Sebring 12 hour races.
The company is often cited as an industry benchmark and exemplar for small and medium size companies (SMEs). All employees can participate in an award winning share scheme becoming shareholders through its Employee Shareholder Trust. The UK business operates its global headquarters from a hi-tech factory at Thatcham in Berkshire and has additional facilities in North America. It plays a significant role in the £6 billion UK motorsport industry and is in the forefront of hybrid and electric vehicle transmission innovations for many international automotive companies.
Evolution of REEV Technologies Building a UK Supply base is a collaborative R&D project funded by the Technology Strategy Board that is creating new high performance Range Extended Electric Vehicles (REEV) and Plug-in Hybrids Electric Vehicles (PHEV). Three new demonstrator vehicles will showcase innovative new technologies. The cars are ‘best in class’ and combine and build on the skills of all of the businesses involved. The driving force behind this is to build a UK supply chain for new ultra-low carbon vehicle technologies and position suppliers so that they can exploit the global market. The REEVolution consortium, led by Jaguar Land Rover, consists of Axeon Technologies Ltd, EVO Electric Ltd and Xtrac Limited; and three vehicle manufacturers: Jaguar Land Rover, Lotus and Nissan Motor Company Ltd for INFINITI brand. The total cost of the project including industry investment is over £20M. Just over £9M of this is grant funding from the Technology Strategy Board.
The Technology Strategy Board is the UK’s innovation agency. Its goal is to accelerate economic growth by stimulating and supporting business-led innovation. Sponsored by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS), the Technology Strategy Board brings together business, research and the public sector, supporting and accelerating the development of innovative products and services to meet market needs, tackle major societal challenges and help build the future economy. For more information please visit www.innovateuk.org