Vitesco produces series components for the EMR4 drive
The first EMR4 components to roll off the production line at Vitesco in South Korea will be used to confirm the robustness of the sample components by testing series components. The company has budgeted around six months for this phase. During this time, Hyundai will integrate the new components from the line in Icheon into pre-series vehicles and validate them.
Full-scale series production with an annual capacity of over 200,000 EMR4 (Electronics Motor Reducer) units is scheduled to ramp up in 2024. Around a third of the new production area in Icheon will be used for stator winding, and a third for manufacturing the rotor and inverter. The remaining third will be used for assembly. According to the supplier, over 80 million euros has been invested in the factory expansion.
“We are proud to be an active part of Korea’s transition to electromobility. With the expansion of the production area in Icheon for EMR4 axle drive production, we are continuing our long-standing and successful strategy of manufacturing in the region for the region,” says Thomas Stierle, Member of the Executive Board and Head of the Electrification Solutions Division at Vitesco Technologies.
Stierle is referring to the deal with Hyundai. The Korean car manufacturer opted for the EMR4 axle drive from Vitesco in March 2022. Over its term, the order has a total volume of around two billion euros. The EMR4 version for Hyundai will be a 400-volt system with a rated output of 160 kW. The South Koreans want to use this drive in their B and C-segment e-cars worldwide. These will not be based on Hyundai’s E-GMP, as this is a pure 800-volt platform – Vitesco is known to supply the 800-volt inverter. The Koreans have repeatedly indicated that, in addition to 800-volt technology, they intend to continue to rely on 400 volts for some models.
With an output of 160 kW, the drives are ten kW more powerful than the current 400-volt electric vehicles from Hyundai-Kia, such as the Kona Elektro or the Kia Niro EV. Within the EMR4 range, however, Hyundai is only in the medium power range. As Vitesco announced at the presentation of the new drive generation in July 2021, the EMR4 can cover the spectrum from 80 to 230 kW – instead of the much smaller range of 120 to 150 kW with the EMR3.