In response to the need to decrease transportation-related emissions and energy consumption, all major passenger car and other light-duty vehicle manufacturers are broadening their electric vehicle portfolio. The dependency of the present electrical traction motors on rare materials, such as rare earth permanent magnet materials, namely Neodymium-Iron-Boron magnets, is problematic from several viewpoints: they are imported and expensive, and there is a real risk of supply problems in the coming years. To strengthen European competitiveness, VOLTCAR ('Design, manufacturing, and validation of eco cycle electric traction motor') proposes high-speed, permanent magnet assisted
synchronous reluctance technology with a drastic reduction in rare materials' utilization.
During VOLTCAR, the motor prototype is perfected to meet the strictest performance requirements (power density, efficiency), sustainability criteria (recyclability, circularity, and low use of rare resources and copper), and the expectations of the automotive sector (cost, reliability, integrability). This primary goal is supported by introducing digital design and optimization methodologies capable of assessing the life cycle costs, energy consumption, and carbon footprint in the early phase, guiding the outcomes towards maximized sustainability with reduced use of rare materials and efficient recycling and repurposing patterns. The validity of the VOLTCAR motor prototypes, 50 kW and 120 kW motor, and
related technologies is proved according to the automotive standards, presenting an X-in-the-loop (XiL) experimentation environment. With this development, VOLTCAR will simultaneously lead to more green jobs in local SMEs throughout Europe to reduce unemployment.
The VOLTCAR consortium comprises world-leading automotive Tier 1 and Tier 2 companies and research partners with complementary
knowledge and expertise for the successful execution of the proposed work.