Suzuki Motor Corp developed a concept model of an electric off-road compact SUV (sport utility vehicle).
The company exhibited the EV, "e-Survivor," at Tokyo Motor Show 2017, which was open to the public from Oct 28 to Nov 5, 2017.
"Vehicles must always excite people," said Toshihiro Suzuki, president of Suzuki, at a press conference that took place at the site of the Tokyo Motor Show, Oct 25, 2017.
Suzuki's "Jimny" light SUV is a good example. The e-Survivor came with an auto body structure using a ladder frame, as in the case of the Jimny. Lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries are arranged inside the ladder frame as if they are covering the floor. The company did not disclose the drive range of the e-Survivor.
One of the distinguishing features of the e-Survivor is the layout of its motors. Two motors were attached to each of the front and rear axles. The four motors are used to drive the four wheels separately. As a result, unlike existing four-wheel-drive (4WD) vehicles, the EV can turn on the spot.
Also, the driving force of the EV can be finely controlled in accordance with the condition of the road surface and running state. The output of each motor is about 20kW (80kW in total).
The unit incorporating two motors is located in the center of each axle to enhance durability in consideration of off-road environments. It is possible to use an in-wheel motor for each wheel, but there is a risk of being broken due to dirt and sand, Suzuki said. The ground clearance can be higher when the motor units are attached to the axles.
Size close to that of Jimny
Suzuki formed a hub reduction mechanism for the wheels, contributing to increasing ground clearance. By driving the hub via gears, it becomes possible to realize the off-set drive shaft in a high position. With those improvements, the motor unit is about 350mm higher than the road surface.
Both of the front and rear suspensions are five-link suspensions. The riding capacity of the e-Survivor is two persons. The dimensions of the EV are 3,460 (L) x 1,645 (W) x 1,655mm, and its wheelbase is 2,300mm.