Dana introduces e-axle for heavy trucks

Updated Sep 2, 2021
Dana Zero 8 e-axles

Dana Incorporated has expanded its Spicer Electrified e-Powertrain offerings to include a family of single and tandem e-Axles designed for a wide variety of Class 7 and 8 applications.The news was announced Tuesday at the ACT Expo in Long Beach, Calif.

The Spicer Electrified Zero-8 e-Axles complement Dana's established heavy-duty electric-vehicle (EV) e-Propulsion systems, which are currently powering thousands of vehicles around the world.

The Zero-8 e-Axles leverage Dana's most robust and efficient drive axle technology, and are precisely engineered for demanding, over-the-road applications. Dana says its the new e-Axle portfolio supports Dana's approach to meet the diverse landscape of Class 7 and 8 EV architectures with multi-faceted electric powertrain solutions, including systems for direct drive and now 4x2, 6x2, and 6x4 multi-speed e-Axle systems. 

[RELATED: Hyliion launches improved hybrid powertrain solution]

"Dana has leveraged its experience in global heavy-duty e-Powertrain systems to introduce a complementing family of e-Axles that offer maximum efficiency, performance, and reliability," says Ryan Laskey, senior vice president of Commercial Vehicle Drive and Motion Systems for Dana. "These new product platforms utilize our proven, vertically integrated motors and inverters and provide our customer with improved packaging and efficiency for their electric vehicle needs. Our technical team is committed to providing our customers with the best purpose-built, zero-emission solutions."

The new e-Axles are designed to easily integrate into most existing chassis, Dana says. The platform utilizes Dana's vertically integrated and long-standing technologies, including Dana TM4 motors and inverters, Spicer high-efficiency axle gearing, Graziano synchronizers, transmission controllers, system software, and shift system and controls. 

The 4x2, 6x2, and 6x4 configurations are compatible with drum or disc brakes, the company says, and are available as completely integrated fully dressed assemblies. The e-Axles range from 52,000 Nm to 69,000 Nm of nominal output torque, and support gross axle weight ratings (GAWR) from 21,000 to 30,000 lb., for single e-Axle configurations, and 40,000 to 52,000 lb., for tandem e-Axle propulsion.  

Additional distinct features of the system are its modular motor design that provides easy accessibility for servicing and maintenance, and a motor interchange capability for increased ease of scalability in the Class 7 and 8 application range, further accommodating customers' electrified platforms, the company says.

"These new e-Axles are predicated on our most sought-after, field-proven technologies," Laskey adds.  "They are currently undergoing testing around the world in both battery-electric and fuel-cell applications and are ready for full-scale adoption as the commercial-vehicle segment continues to progress to fully electrified platforms."

[RELATED: Hino Trucks reveals XL8 fuel cell electric truck prototype]

With global production strategies underway, Dana says it has commitments from global OEM customers with deliveries beginning in late 2023.

Dana to provide e-axle for medium-duty truck

Dana also announced Tuesday it will begin production of its eS9000r e-Axle — the first in a line of Spicer Electrified Zero-6 e-Axles  to support the market launch of the Freightliner Custom Chassis Corporation (FCCC) all-electric MT50e medium-duty last-mile delivery vehicle.

Designed with a custom Spicer S130 rear drive axle, the propulsion system for the MT50e application is engineered as a fully integrated e-Axle, including a gearbox and motor, providing up to 240 kW of power to support the vehicle's driving range of up to 170 miles, Dana says.

"Delivery fleets are adopting electrified vehicles today, and Dana is supporting platforms such as the FCCC MT50e, with optimal e-Powertrain solutions," says Laskey.  "As more and more vehicle manufacturers rely on Dana innovations for their electrified vehicle architectures, we continue to evaluate each application to provide the ideal electrodynamic system for the given vehicle, duty cycle, and customer requirements." 

The Zero-6 e-Axles efficiently integrate into the all-electric FCCC MT50e chassis, streamlining the e-Propulsion system that is designed with full-charge capability in about three hours using DC fast charging.  Also included in the design of the e-Axle is Dana's patented, electronically controlled parking pawl system, Dana says.

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