Jaguar Land Rover has announced a new project called Tucana to develop lightweight vehicle and powertrain structures with advanced lightweight composite materials. The next-gen Jaguar I-Pace would be among the future Jaguar and Land Rover cars to benefit from the Tucana project.
The Tucana project is a four-year programme, and the research done here will enable JLR to replace aluminium and steel with composites capable of handling the higher torque of high-performance batteries. At the same time, the company will be able to improve efficiency and reduce CO2 emissions.
With the Tucana project, JLR aims to increase vehicle stiffness by 30%, reduce weight by 35 kg (77.1 lbs) and refine the crash safety structure further. The company would improve the crash safety structure through the strategic use of custom composites, such as carbon-fibre. The weight reduction achieved from the Tucana project will allow fitting batteries with more energy storage capacity without affecting the CO2 emissions. The company also expects this project to speed up the adoption of EVs.
JLR will have a fleet of Tucana prototype vehicles ready for testing by 2022. Several world-leading academic and industry partners are involved in the Tucana project, including Expert Tooling & Automation, Toray International UK, Broetje-Automation UK, Warwick Manufacturing Group (WMG), CCP Gransden, and The Centre for Modelling & Simulation (CFMS).
The current Jaguar I-Pace was introduced in March 2018, and so, the next-gen Jaguar I-Pace could come during mid-decade. JLR sees the Tucana project helping prevent four and a half tonnes of CO2 emissions between 2023 and 2032.
Featured Image: Jaguar Land Rover