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Old 08-21-2013, 02:56 PM   #1
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Default Volvo considers F1-style hybrid for its road cars

has considered fitting its entire range with hybrid flywheel technology that it claims will deliver 25 per cent better fuel economy and more power, as well as being significantly cheaper than conventional hybrid and electric drivetrains. The Kinetic Energy Recovery System (KERS) can be used to recover a vehicle's wasted energy under braking. The power is stored in a flywheel which spins up to 60,000rpm and can provide bursts in acceleration for up to eight or nine seconds. Volvo says the technology can deliver fuel savings of up to 25 per cent and adding an additional 60kW in boost.

The technology, which is a shared with Formula One cars and used by Porsche and Audi in its Le Mans-style sportscars, could be implemented across Volvo’s entire range as the Swedish marque complies with tightening emission rules in Europe.

“There’s no commitment on timing as yet – but at the moment we have designed the technology to fit with our future platforms,” Volvo transmission boss Dr Tomas Hannelbak told Drive.

“How the KERS system will be part of our green strategy, that is still being discussed and the investigations are ongoing
“We are trying to establish which platform is the most effective in terms of costs and efficiency.”

Drive this week sampled the KERS technology in a prototype front-wheel drive S60 T5 on Volvo’s Gothenberg test track.

The flywheel system is mounted to the rear axle, weighing only 60kg and offering noticeable gains in power during short bursts of acceleration. The prototype operated with an industrial turbine-like whine, though finished systems will be better insulated to emit less sound.

Volvo claims that, in the case of the S60 prototype, KERS can add an additional 60kW in power, reducing the car’s 0-100km/h time from 6.8 seconds to less than 5.5 seconds. The gains also improved the vehicle’s efficiency significantly.

Volvo in Australia is yet to embrace the company’s green solutions as in Europe because demand hasn’t been as high. Hybrid technology is also more affordable in European countries because of government tax incentives.

“We’ve put out hands up for the upcoming V60 plug-in hybrid and we’re still working through that in terms of logistics,” Volvo Australia spokesman Oliver Peagam told Drive.

“Moving forward, I suspect that plug-in hybrid technology will play a role in future Volvos.

“It’s a proven technology and something that we’re definitely looking at.”
Nissan recently announced a deal with Formula One team, Williams, to help develop its performance cars with the likelihood they will adopt the British team's flywheel hybrid system.
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Old 08-21-2013, 03:56 PM   #2
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Uhhh, F1 does not use flywheels for KERS, they've had a spec battery solution for at least a few seasons now. Flywheel energy storage is awesome stuff and I think will do realyl well in road vehicles.
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