Automotive Engineering - February 2024 - 24

Tremec-trification
Tremec cranks
up electric-drive
innovation as the
logical extension
of its transmissionmaking
expertise.
by Bill Visnic
T
remec is charting a future in vehicle electrification that leverages
the company's gear-manufacturing history while clearly
departing from its intrinsic connection to internal combustion
engine. Tremec, a transmission developer and manufacturer,
was created in 1964 to build transmissions in Mexico for Ford, GM
and then-Chrysler. Like many longstanding auto-sector suppliers,
Tremec is now remaking itself to be successful in the inevitable EV
transition, and the company is shaping that transformation with a
strategy that reflects its unique market presence.
Industry insiders and performance enthusiasts know Tremec by its
decades-long reputation in manual-transmission development and,
most recently, as the supplier of the brilliant automated-manual transmissions
that flavor the high-performance character of the current
eighth-generation Chevrolet Corvette and the thundering Ford
Mustang Shelby GT500, among other high-profile applications. The
company produces about 300,000 light-vehicle transmissions and
upwards of 80,000 commercial-vehicles transmissions a year, said
Matt Memmer, Tremec's director, engineering and program management,
in an interview with SAE Media in the first half of 2023. Memmer
emphasized how Tremec's internal combustion-related transmission
expertise is fueling its expansion into electric propulsion.
The company's palette of next-generation products includes a
family of electric drive units (EDUs) that feature traction motors in
single and dual configurations that operate on a single drive axle. The
EDU integrates the traction motors with silicon-carbide (SiC) power
electronics and the company's own gearsets.
Memmer said the initial market focus is on comparatively low-volume
performance applications that could provide an easy path for an
OEM to add a high-performance variant to a more workaday EV.
Tremec's engineers have ensured that capability isn't an issue.
Tremec displayed a dual-motor EDU featuring internal permanentmagnet
(IPM) design in a 736-kW (986-hp) specification at the 2023
Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) show. The 800-volt
capability and SiC electronics help optimize efficiency, which in turn
enhances driving range, while oil cooling enables consistent delivery
of maximum power even under demanding racetrack conditions,
Tremec said.
24 February 2024
Tremec DC7010 dual-motor
EDU can develop as much as
1000 hp and is 90% efficient.
The DC 7010 dual-motor EDU weighs just 243 lb. (110
kg) and is 90% efficient on the WLTP test cycle. It produces
what the company claims is a class-leading 5.25 kW
per kilogram - while peak torque can be as much as 4000
Nm (2950 lb-ft) at each wheel. Maximum motor speed is
16,000 rpm and can generate vehicle speed of up to 186
mph (300 km/h) with its single-ratio epicyclic gearset.
Specialty focus
Tremec sees its EDUs and other electric-drive components
as options for OEMs to augment their volume
traction-motor offerings. There are also interesting
aftermarket possibilities.
" Our goal is to not compete with the vertical integration
of the OEMs or with the high-volume [suppliers], "
Memmer asserted. " It's to participate in the more
specialty segments and offer a solution that has a high
level of performance in a very dense package space.
One of the objectives at the OE level is to be able to
offer them a solution that is a higher performance level
than their vertically-integrated standard products. "
Crucially, Tremec engineers concentrated on keeping
its EDUs' footprint and weight to a minimum.
Memmer said its aim is to offer exceptional motor
power density that packages in the same space as a
" production " EV drivetrain. " They don't have to redesign
the vehicle architecture, they don't have to come
up with a new frame. They don't have to do much other
than put [our EDU] in, " Memmer explained. " Now
there's more to it than now you got to make the battery
and everything else. But we would like that space
- that's kind of our core space as it is. "
But there's more. " There's an aftermarket space
that's growing very quickly with battery electric conversions, "
he added. " And that's a space we're already
very heavily entrenched in, in the aftermarket side
AUTOMOTIVE ENGINEERING
TREMEC

Automotive Engineering - February 2024

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