In-wheel motor by Protean Electric
The story behind the story of the electric car is something that many people have not ever heard of, the electric wheel. More specifically, it is called either an in-wheel motor or a hub-motor system. Make no mistake, after Michiganís Protean Electric starts mass-producing in-wheel electric motors early next year, the world of automotive technology will never be the same. Some industry analysts actually think that in-wheel science is the future for cars, but that it will take some time to catch on.
This is no garage-based, pie-in-the-sky technology by any means. With almost $100 million of capital behind them, Proteanís first assembly plant will be able to produce 50,000 electric motors per year. The entire program will be underway in about six months, at which time Proteanís Liyang, China facility will move into full swing.
In-Wheel Motor: Video
The video clip below takes you on a brief tour of Proteanís display at the most recent Frankfurt Motor Show.
In-Wheel Motor Technology
Turning automotive engineering on its head, Proteanís design places motors within each wheel of a vehicle. The typical in-wheel motor measures between 18 and 24 inches in diameter, weighs about 70 pounds, and can deliver 110 horsepower and almost 600 lb-ft of torque, each! Keep in mind, however, that not all vehicles use four in-wheel motors. Some just need two.
The companyís CEO, Bob Purcell, came from the proving ground of a much larger entity, General Motors, where he was the leader of the auto giantís Advanced Technology Vehicles Group. Purcell is quick to point out that the truly revolutionary thing about in-wheel motors, no pun intended, has to do with adaptability. Because the units are so small, and inside the wheels
, auto designers can create just about any style of car they want, from the ground up.
For more about the company behind the leading-edge innovation of in-wheel motor technology, see Protean Electricís official corporate website: