The Triumph TE-1 project’s innovative AC motor produces 180 hp and weights only 10 kg
Back in May 2019, Triumph Motorcycles announced that it is working on an electric sportsbike project called TE-1 as a part of a joint research project funded by the Office For Zero Emission Vehicles, Government of the UK. Fast forward to the present day, phase 2 of the 4-phase project has reached completion, and the British marque has unveiled the electric powertrain prototype in addition to design sketches of the Triumph TE-1 electric motorcycle.
Triumph TE-1 – An Overview
The Triumph TE-1 project is being developed in collaboration with Williams Advanced Engineering, Integral Powertrain Ltd, and WMG of University of Warwick. The project is is a part of Innovate UK program run by the government, has already exceeded the targets set by the UK Automotive Council for 2025.
The phase 2 involves developing and testing the critical components of the motorcycle such as the battery, motor and vehicle control units. The end of phase 3 will involve realizing a full functional prototype of the motorcycle which will be used in phase 4 for final validation process.
Puny Yet Powerful AC Motor
While detailed specifications of the powertrain are still under wraps, we know that the new innovative AC motor developed by Integral Powertrain’s e-Division weights only 10 kg and produces a staggering 180 hp (130 kW), making it one of the best units in the motorcycle business in terms of power density. The company has worked on integrating the motor and inverter into a single unit so as to improve packaging and reduce mass.
Compact Battery Pack
Williams Advanced Engineering spearheaded the development of the Triumph TE-1 project’s battery module, battery management system and vehicle control unit. The system is heavily optimized for mass, performance, ideal location of center of gravity to enable sharp handling, and ease of recharging. The performance specifications of the battery is still under wraps but Williams says that the unit offers the best-in-class power and energy density, and has been successfully validated on test bench.
Advanced Modelling and Simulation
WMG at the University of Warwick brings its academic might to this joint research and development program. The university team has been working on model-based engineering techniques to aid the whole development process.
During phase 1 various models simulating the behaviors of motor, battery, control systems, etc., were developed to aid in selection and sizing of right kind of critical systems. The fidelity of the models of each sub-systems were improved during the second phase to aid the partners in optimizing the performance of the high-performance pure electric powertrain. The university also realized a Hardware-in-loop (HIL) test rig to validate the motorcycle’s various control units.
Triumph Motorcycles focuses on developing a new chassis and rear sub-frame to underpin the modern electric motorcycle in addition to coming up with a fitting design. The company also developed the fully digital colour instrument console and software for the vehicle control unit by integrating functional safety measures that is required for the final version to be homologated for road use.
The styling is an evolution of the brand’s street fighter design with the quintessential two-piece headlamp design. The Triumph TE-1 project is expected to be completed sometime in 2023. More details are expected to be released as the joint research project reaches the end of phase 3.