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Efficient Drivetrains Inc

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Efficient Drivetrains, Inc. (EDI) produces components for plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEV), Range Extended Electric Vehicles (REEV), hybrid electric vehicles (HEV), and battery electric vehicles (BEV) including drive train controllers, continuously variable transmissions, prototype drive trains, battery modules, drive train control software, and energy management software. They also provide support services such as technical and manufacturing support, drive train engineering, design and analysis, technology licensing, system analysis, architecture and design, computer simulation, and engineering support. Efficient Drivetrains, Inc. markets via distribution partners to vehicle manufacturers, EV component developers, industry suppliers, integrators, and conversion companies in the China, India, Asian region, United States, Canada, and Europe.

The company was founded in 2006. Efficient Drivetrains, Inc. is based in Palo Alto, California and has a research and development center in Dixon, California, USA.

Simplified Low Cost PHEVs Engineered by EDI

EDI's new generation of affordable plug-in hybrid electric vehicles cost the same as conventional vehicles of comparable size and performance.

The first generation of plug-in electric vehicles (PEVs) in the marketplace have higher purchase prices than similar-sized conventional vehicles with internal combustion engines. This has been one of the barriers to increasing adoption of electric vehicles in our society. <ref>National Academies issues interim report on overcoming barriers to PEV deployment - Green Car Congress 22may2013</ref> <ref>Overcoming Barriers to Electric-Vehicle Deployment: Interim Report 2013 - The National Academies Press</ref>

Efficient Drivetrains, Inc. (EDI) has now developed an inline Parallel-Series-Electric powertrain system for plug-in hybrid electric vehicles that is less complex, more efficient, less costly, and lighter than powertrains made by the competition. It can operate as either a pure EV for trips around the neighborhood, or as a Series Hybrid, optimum for stop-and-go city traffic conditions, or as an efficient Parallel Hybrid that is ideal for the highway. It also features an EV+ Mode for hill climbing and added acceleration. EDI will develop drivetrain solutions using a full range of transmission options (AT, AMT, MT) and it has also developed its own continuously variable transmission (CVT) technology which it says can provide significant performance improvements for hybrid, plug-in hybrid, electric, and conventional vehicles. <ref>Efficient Drivetrains Inc launches inline, triple-function, plug-in vehicle drivetrain - Green Big Truck 07dec2012</ref> <ref>Efficient Drivetrains Inc launches inline, triple-function, plug-in vehicle drivetrain - Green Car Congress 01dec2012</ref> <ref>First Compact Inline Triple-Function Plug-In Vehicle Drivetrain Launched By EDI - Auto Central 29nov2012</ref>

"Efficient Drivetrains Inc. (EDI) has designed and constructed "plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) with a minimum of parts, much greater simplicity and lower costs than the Plug-In Electric Vehicles, PEV’s, currently in production. This has been achieved by making PHEVs with smaller and simpler liquid fuel engines, oil-free continuously variable, multimode, electric transmissions and small battery packs. The concept has been applied to small and large vehicles greatly improving fuel economy while achieving cost equivalence to conventional vehicles." "PHEVs can efficiently use our existing energy distribution infrastructure to transition the world from fossil fuel dependency to the clean, green, renewable fuels of the future." See slideshow to the right and the complete abstract (<ref>Frank, Andrew A. (2013) Simplifying the Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle to Make it More Affordable. Institute of Transportation Studies, University of California, Davis, Presentation Series UCD-ITS-PS-13-04</ref>).

This kind of lighter, simpler PHEV with a smaller battery may be the best option for reducing fossil fuel use in transportation. "In an new study analyzing the cost-effectiveness of policies subsidizing electric-drive vehicle battery capacity and charging infrastructure installation to reduce gasoline consumption in the US, Scott Peterson and Jeremy Michalek of Carnegie Mellon University found that, under a wide range of scenarios, the least-cost solution is for more drivers to switch to low-capacity (small battery) plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) or gasoline-powered hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs)." <ref>CMU study finds small battery PHEVs and gasoline hybrids the least-cost policy solution to reducing gasoline consumption - Green Car Congress 29oct2012</ref>

The most popular plug-in hybrid-electric vehicle (PHEV), hybrid-electric vehicle (HEV), and extended range electric vehicle (EREV) powertrains now in production all use two electric motors/generators plus a geared transmission set. Reducing the cost and improving the powertrains for light- and heavy-duty vehicles with a larger battery pack enables high power/torque electric motors to replace the gears and mechanical transmission components. This also enables an all-wheel-drive option to provide greater flexibility in advanced electrification of ground transportation systems. The Automatic drive, 2 Motor Solution from Efficient Drivetrains, Inc. can replace all other powertrains to increase the highway fuel economy and performance of electric vehicles. See slideshow to the right and the complete abstract ( <ref>Frank, Andrew A. (2013) Lowering Cost and Increasing Electrification using the Dual Fuel PHEVs. Institute of Transportation Studies, University of California, Davis, Presentation Series UCD-ITS-PS-13-02</ref>).

Efficient Drivetrains Inc at Plug-In Singapore 2009

Andy Frank, CTO at Efficient Drivetrains Inc., discussed their goal to create a zero-carbon emissions future at the Plug-In Singapore 2009 conference on Nov. 20, 2009. Gasoline, oil, coal and natural gas (fossil fuels) cause 80 % of the world's carbon greenhouse gas pollution. Transition away from gasoline and diesel as transportation fuels will be most efficient if the existing energy distribution infrastructure can be used and if the vehicles provide high performance. Electric vehicles fueled with electricity generated from wind and solar energy (renewable energy) have potential for elimination of carbon emissions from the transportation sector.

Dr. Frank reviewed our currently available vehicle technologies:

a. Internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles and hybrid electric vehicles (HEV) could use ethanol biofuel instead of fossil fuels, but there is not enough land and water to grow sufficient crops both for food and for all of our liquid fuel needs.

b. Battery electric vehicles (BEVs) are limited to short range uses in and around urban areas because of limits in battery performance.

c. Plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) can use electricity to fuel 80-90% of our transportation needs. We can produce enough carbon-neutral, renewable biofuel for the remaining long distance transport of our vehicles. PHEVs are "dual fuel vehicles" that make good use of our existing energy infrastructure. PHEV charging overnight would make efficient use of our existing electricity infrastructure. Vehicle-to-grid (V2G) technology would enable electric vehicles to help improve the stability of a smart electrical grid. Our existing pipeline and gasoline station infrastructure can be adapted for delivery of liquid biofuels.

See also:

EDI in the News

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EDI Company Newsletter

September 2014 EDI Newsletter

  • CEO Corner: Innovate or Die
  • PG&E Partners with EDI to produce PHEV work truck
  • The Edison Electric Institute visits Dixon
  • Private companies boost Natural gas fueling infrastructure
  • Tech Talk: Our Heritage of Design Excellence and Innovation

August 2014 EDI Newsletter

  • Recapping the EDI Journey
  • EDI Partners to deliver first CNG/PHEV truck
  • The Push for Alternative Fuel Vehicles
  • CEO Corner: We're on a Roll
  • Tech Talk: Point of View - CNG/PHEV