Peugeot EX1 concept – Click above for high-res image gallery

It's obvious that the Peugeot EX1 electric concept car looks, well, like electric sex on wheels. The exterior looks so good, we didn't have much time at the car's debut to think about how we'd actually pilot one down the road. You have to look inside to notice that the EX1 doesn't have a steering wheel.

Instead, the concept uses two steering handles, kind of like what you'd see in an airplane, that contain a single-pinion electric power steering (EPS) system from Nexteer. The EX1 may be completely conceptual, but the EPS is a production item and everything is functional (versions can be found in the Citroën DS3 and C3). Driver Nicolas Vanier was even able to break some FIA records for an electric-powered terrestrial vehicle in the EX1 when it debuted in September. Those records fell thanks to the EX1's four electric motors that put out 340 horsepower and 240 Nm of torque and can send the EX1 down the track at 161 miles per hour after getting to 62 mph in 3.58 seconds. All this, and Nexteer promises that the EPS uses low-friction design and "advanced non-contacting sensors, brushless motors and controls" to consume a minimum amount of energy during the drive. We liked the EX1 when we first saw it, and we think getting our hands on these handles would be just the way to cure our Monday blues.




[Source: Nexteer Automotive]

PRESS RELEASE

Peugeot EX1 electric concept car gets Nexteer's high-performance electric power steering

Nexteer's single-pinion electric power steering (EPS) system provides the core technology behind an innovative driving concept

Paris, 6 December 2010 – The EX1 concept car, developed by PSA to demonstrate how dynamic and desirable electric vehicles can be, has a current production single pinion electric power steering (EPS) system from Nexteer Automotive at the heart of its innovative steering concept. The low-friction, high-efficiency single-pinion system helps to ensure that the EX1's driving experience matches its futuristic looks.

The Peugeot EX1 uses four electric drive motors to provide a combined power of 250kW (340bhp) and a torque of 240Nm, giving the car a maximum speed of 260 km/h, accelerating from 0 to 100 km/h in 3.58 seconds. The EX1 replaces the steering wheel with two control handles, similar to those found in aircraft cockpits, to make piloting the zero-emission car a unique experience.

The heart of the EX1's steering system is Nexteer's most experienced EPS, which other than bringing about 10 years of evolution to reach unparalleled level of performance is also highly energy-efficient and helps to ensure the vehicle's manoeuvrability and its range. The low-friction design of the single-pinion architecture provides a purity of steering feel for the driver and ensures that the on-demand system consumes the minimum amount of energy in the process. Thanks to in-house patented development of advanced non-contacting sensors, brushless motors and controls, Nexteer EPS systems provide more natural feedback and feel, and steering effort builds in a more linear fashion as the steering wheel is turned.

"The Peugeot EX1 demonstrates how electric power steering can create new driving sensations that also reduce vehicles' environmental impact," says Laurent Bresson, Nexteer Automotive's Executive Director Global Sales & Marketing and Executive Director European Region. "We are proud to support PSA's exciting vision for the future of electric driving. The fact that Nexteer already has this highly versatile EPS technology in production, helping to reduce CO2 in current production models, shows that vehicle electrification is a reality."

Nexteer engineers worked closely with PSA on the software tuning of the system to deliver a fully-resolved system in a very short space of time. "As the industry's only Tier One supplier focused on steering systems, with broad experience in electric systems and with all our software development in-house, Nexteer can deliver projects of this nature faster than anybody else," Bresson adds.

Nexteer has EPS systems in production on the broadest range of vehicle platforms, across more vehicle sectors than any other supplier. This experience makes the company's high-performance EPS systems the technology of choice for manufacturers seeking class-leading steering feel and refinement. Nexteer supplies its single-pinion architecture to current high-performance models such as the Citroën DS3 and C3.

"Nexteer's people have worked on EPS systems for everything from electric urban vehicles to high-performance muscle cars and so bring a lot of know-how to manufacturers developing new types of vehicles. Not to mention the fact that Nexteer EPS can provide information to other systems like ESP for vehicles that needs it, thus contributing to enhanced vehicle safety and comfort" says Paul Poirel, Nexteer Automotive's Chief Product Engineer for Europe. "Nexteer's engineers have an unrivalled understanding of how to create steering characteristics that meet and exceed brand expectations."

About Nexteer Automotive
Nexteer Automotive is a multi-billion dollar global steering and driveline business solely dedicated to electric and hydraulic steering systems, steering columns and driveline products for original equipment manufacturers. Its 8,300 workforce serve more than 60 customers in every major region of the world. The company has 22 manufacturing plants, six engineering centers and 14 customer service centers strategically located in North and South America, Europe and Asia. Nexteer Automotive's customers include GM, Fiat, Ford, Toyota, Chrysler and PSA Peugeot Citroen, as well as automakers in India, China and South America. www.nexteer.com
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