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  • Image Credit: Toyota
  • Image Credit: Toyota
  • Image Credit: Toyota
The Toyota Yaris Hybrid-R Concept has been teased already, offering up little glimpses and details of the Frankfurt-bound vehicle. And while those few, shadowy shots have been great, we've really wanted to know how this hatchback would deliver its promised 400-plus horsepower. Under hood sits a 1.6-liter, race-derived, direct-injection, turbocharged four-cylinder that powers the front wheels. Sounds peachy, but with 414 horsepower splashed across the page, we're going to need something more than a 1.6-liter, turbo four.

A supercapacitor, developed from the Toyota TS030 Hybrid Le Mans racer sits in place of a hybrid's traditional battery packs. The benefit, according to Toyota, is that power can be more rapidly absorbed and discharged than in a traditional battery system, like nickel metal-hydride.

The gas engine is joined by a trio of 60-horsepower electric motors. Two of the them power the rear wheels, while the third sits between the engine and the six-speed, sequential gearbox. Developing the same amount of power as the rear-axle motors, this centrally located motor channels power to the race-derived supercapacitor during braking, and ships extra grunt to the rear wheels under acceleration when the front wheels start to lose grip. Besides the distributive power of the central motor, the rear electric motors can adjust the amount of torque flowing to each wheel, much like a differential.

Take a look below for the full press release from Toyota, and then be sure to check back when the Yaris Hybrid-R Concept makes its official debut at the 2013 Frankfurt Motor Show.
Show full PR text
TOYOTA YARIS HYBRID-R: THE TECHNICAL STORY

More details on the new Toyota concept that will make its debut at the Frankfurt motorshow

In designing Yaris Hybrid-R, Toyota has created a supermini concept like no other. Based on a reworked three-door production model, Yaris Hybrid-R harnesses Toyota's race-winning sports hybrid technology in a powertrain that develops more than 400bhp.

The concept will appear for the first time at the Frankfurt motor show next month, but ahead of the unveiling, Toyota has released more details about its special engineering qualities.

In simple terms, the powertrain features a 1.6-litre petrol Global Race Engine and two powerful electric motors that give the car intelligent electric all-wheel drive. It also makes use of a supercapacitor to harvest and store energy, just like Toyota's TS030 Hybrid Le Mans car.

The engine is a turbocharged four-cylinder unit with direct injection, developed by Toyota Motorsport (TMG) according to international sporting regulations. This means it can potentially be used in a number of different racing categories. While the engine drives the front wheels, each rear wheel is powered by a 60bhp electric motor – the same as that used in the standard Yaris Hybrid.

In combination, the elements in the hybrid powertrain produce maximum power of up to 414bhp (309kW). The two electric motors work as electric generators when the car is braking, and supplement the petrol engine's performance under acceleration.

Supercapacitor

Just as in the Toyota Racing TS030 Hybrid race car, energy recovered under braking is stored in a supercapacitor. Compared to the standard nickel metal-hydride battery used in Yaris Hybrid, the supercapacitor has a higher power density and a fast power charge/discharge speed. This makes it perfectly suited to the demands of track driving in delivering brief, immediate bursts of power.

The level of power depends on the duration of energy delivery required. So, when Yaris Hybrid-R is running in "road" mode, the supercapacitor releases energy for a maximum 10 seconds per charge, and the total power of the two electric motors is reduced to 40bhp. In "track" mode, the motors reach a combined maximum of 119bhp for up to five seconds per charge, reflecting the more frequent braking and acceleration in circuit driving.

Advanced traction control

A third 60bhp motor is located between the engine and six-speed sequential transmissions. This operates as a generator, both during deceleration to feed power to the supercapacitor, and during acceleration to power the rear electric motors.

The latter only happens when engine power and torque exceed the front wheels' grip limit. The generator works like an advanced traction control system, redirecting torque as electric energy to the rear wheels, to boost acceleration and improve handling rather than simply to limit engine power.

Torque vectoring

The rear electric motors can have a big influence on Yaris Hybrid-R's handling when cornering, by altering the torque distribution between the left and right rear wheels.

Each motor can be used independently as a generator or a motor to achieve the same effect as an intelligent torque vectoring differential.

Depending on the radius of the curve, the system can send more torque to the outside rear wheel, allowing higher entry speed into middle-speed bends; apply more braking force to the inside wheel in fast curves; or even brake and accelerate each wheel independently in slow bends to adjust the yaw effect for a better line, and to limit steering angle and understeer.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 31 Comments
      Nine Elements
      • 1 Year Ago
      Seems like an engineering exercise. Perhaps a hint of the possible trickle-down technology we'll see in the production LF-LC or the Supra's spiritual successor?
      skierpage
      • 1 Year Ago
      Interesting, it isn't using Hybrid Synergy Drive e-CVT, just a six-speed transmission.
      RA
      • 1 Year Ago
      yes please
      landypd5
      • 1 Year Ago
      Toyota wtf is this? Are u bunch of comedians? U dont implement first class Le Mans technology on a ******* joke shitbox such as the yaris. what a disspaointment.
      SquareFour
      • 1 Year Ago
      Man, I had this idea a couple of years ago: rear wheel electric motors (always wondered why no one would mount a motor in a hub), capacitors, third motor as a generator/powerboost and everything. I also thought of mounting an intercooler in between a supercharger and an intake manifold. I'm ahead of my times, I tells ya! I just don't have the resources (or the technical knowledge/ability) to do a damn thing about it! :)
        Letstakeawalk
        • 1 Year Ago
        @SquareFour
        You should see the doodles I drew in middle school... Ferrari is just starting to get close to what I envisioned!
          SquareFour
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Letstakeawalk
          lol I was never that good a doodler. All my creations ended up looking like Fox-body Mustangs with more spoilers and vents...in other words, they looked like 90's Pontiacs. :)
        Drakkon
        • 1 Year Ago
        @SquareFour
        Is your question about mounting the motors in the wheel hubs? The answer to that is unsprung weight. For any car, especially performance cars, engineers try to keep as much mass as is practical out of the wheels, tires and suspension. Back in the 1970s and 80s, Lotus and Jag went as far as to move the brakes out of the wheel too. They moved the brakes right next to the diff and the braking action went through the half-shaft just like the power. Intercoolers as part of the intake tract are a very cool idea. I've been cooking my own version of that for a while.
          Hans
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Drakkon
          And the answer to that problem, in turn, would be some form of active suspension... But that's a technical trick that mankind yet has to (re)invent. Bose (yes, the audio manufacturer) had a promising concept, but that didn't quite make it - I suppose due to lack of computational power at higher speeds.
        Technoir
        • 1 Year Ago
        @SquareFour
        Ideas have 0 value in the real world. What has value is turning ideas into real things.
          SquareFour
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Technoir
          Yeah, I was being facetious. Note the end where I say I have neither the resources nor the technical ability.
        BF4ALTF
        • 1 Year Ago
        @SquareFour
        All of this has been done before. Hub mounted electric motor were first done more than 100 years ago. Intercoolers are almost always between the point of compression and the cylinder head. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lohner-Porsche Your not ahead of your time, just living under a rock.
      John
      • 1 Year Ago
      Is this measured in the same way the Chevy Sonic has more torque than a Ferrari 458? lol.
      airchompers
      • 1 Year Ago
      this is the sort of thinking that will earn Toyota my bizness.
      Whitaker Behrens
      • 1 Year Ago
      Holy mother of god, PLEASE put this into production. Preferably still in the two-door Yaris chassis. If they build this, I'm done with Subaru...
      ClementZ
      • 1 Year Ago
      Very similar to the powertrain used in the NSX Concept and the RLX hybrid.
      lad
      • 1 Year Ago
      Toyota has been working on this concept for some time...it's not new and this is the reason I say Toyota could deliver an EV anytime they think the market is right. Believe me, they have the engineering talent. Here is a link from 2007 that uses the same driveline concept and it's in a winning race car. http://www.greencarcongress.com/2007/07/toyota-hybrid-r.html Right now Toyota is making a great profit off their electric assist hybrid, The Prius. So when sales of this car slow and batteries are available at less cost and at a higher energy density, you will see them enter the market and easily sweep away the head start Nissan is squandering by not addressing their range issue.
        krona2k
        • 1 Year Ago
        @lad
        You don't think Nissan are working on the next generation EV powertrain? They are.
        clquake
        • 1 Year Ago
        @lad
        They have a RAV4 EV.
        chanonissan
        • 1 Year Ago
        @lad
        @lad, you would be stupid if you think nissan is sitting around, I want to remind you of infiniti emerg-e that uses two motor 400 HP system and that was in a car that could go in production with and 811 lb ft torque and a small engine to power generator, some what close to this toyota system and the nissan essence hybrid with 600HP. And now the nissan ZEOD.
      Cruising
      • 1 Year Ago
      This Hybrid R is a Yaris based concept. This is one the reason I think the Nissan "Pure Drive Hybrid-R" might be applied not so much to the GT-R but maybe the Altima/Maxima or something more below the GT-R. Hell even the Note?
      Scooter
      • 1 Year Ago
      Now we all have to take back those jokes about turbo charged Yaris's.
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