Koenigsegg, the Swedish supercar manufacturer, recently released details of an all-new electric motor that weighs just 63 lb, but produces 335 hp and 443 lb-ft of torque. The company says that the new motor has "class-leading torque-to-power-to-RPM-to-weight” and could be used in its existing models, future hybrid cars and even in marine or aerospace applications.

Electric motors for EVs

The most common type of electrical motor for electric vehicles (EVs) is the DC motor. It consists of a stator, which is the stationary part of the motor; a rotor, the rotating part of the motor; commutator; and brushes, which are conductive materials that make contact with the rotating part of the motor.

When electricity flows through the rotor, it creates an electromagnetic field. This magnetic field interacts with the permanent magnetic field of the stator, causing the rotor to rotate. The brushes and commutator allow the electrical field to flip, quickly inverting polarity to the electric field, further keeping the rotor spinning. Battery power is always DC and although some EVs do rectify the current for AC. The amount of current flowing through the rotor determines the speed at which the rotor rotates. The faster the current flows, the faster the rotor will rotate.

A typical hybrid car has two DC motors: one that powers the wheels and another that helps generate electricity. The motor that powers the wheels is known as an induction motor, while the other is known as a generator motor.

The induction motor uses electricity to create a magnetic field that rotates the armature, or shaft, of the motor. This rotation turns the wheels of the car.

The electricity for the induction motor comes from a battery pack. In most cases, the battery pack is located beneath the floor of the car. When the driver presses down on the accelerator, the battery pack sends electricity to the induction motor, which then powers the wheels.

Generator motors typically only work in conjunction with regenerative brakes and fuel cells. This system is used for instrument electricity, or as a supplementary range extender by providing additional power for the battery. Regenerative braking takes some of the vehicle's kinetic energy, which is typically spent as heat or noise during vehicle braking, and converts that back into electricity, and then back into chemical energy in the battery pack.

Hybrid cars are able to achieve high levels of combustive fuel efficiency because they can rely on electric power at lower speeds and use gasoline power when more power is needed, such as when accelerating or going up hills.

Koenigsegg’s new tiny electric motor

Koenigsegg’s tiny 335 HP electric motor is capable of producing an impressive amount of power, while still being extremely efficient. It is perfect supercar performance, although it certainly could be employed elsewhere.

This electric motor from Koenigsegg, called the Quark, has been specifically designed to be as light and compact as possible, while still delivering an impressive amount of power. The motor weighs just 30 kg and is only 30 cm long. Despite its small size, it is still capable of producing up to 335 hp (250 kW) and 442 lb-ft of torque.

To put this into perspective, a 2.0-liter vehicle engine routinely produces around 100 hp. Modern fuel injected, V8 engines produce roughly 400 hp or more, and six-cylinder engines in the 300 hp to 400 hp range. So, this new Koenigsegg motor is closer to a V6. Even more impressively, it is a fraction of the size of a typical 2.0-liter engine.

The Quark combines a radial and axial flux construction, which allows it to deliver good torque and power. There is also a two-rotor drive unit called the Terrier, which combines two Quarks to create a whopping 670 hp and 811 lb-ft of torque.

The Quark is not only powerful but also extremely efficient. It has a power-to-weight ratio of 11.2 hp/kg and a torque-to-weight ratio of 14.8 lb-ft/kg. This makes it one of the most efficient electric motors on the market today and gives it the industry leading power-to-weight ratio that Koenigsegg claims.

The Quark is constructed using high-strength aerospace/motorsport-grade steel and hollow carbon fiber thanks to Koenigsegg's Aircore technology, which makes it extremely lightweight and durable. Koenigsegg's Aircore technology is based on the company's philosophy that lighter is better. The Aircore technology uses a completely new approach to constructing the wheels of a car, and instead of using heavy metals such as steel or aluminum, the Koenigsegg team has developed a way to use air-filled carbon fiber cores.

[Browse suppliers of DC motors on GlobalSpec].

The beauty of the Aircore design is that it not only saves weight, but also provides significant strength and stiffness benefits. The end result is a wheel that is around 40% lighter than a traditional alloy wheel, but with similar or even better performance in terms of strength and stiffness.

But that's not all...

The Quarks provided for the Gemera produce about 1,100 hp altogether, which is delivered to the rear wheels. They are paired with a dual-turbo charged, three-cylinder combustion engine, which delivers up to 600 hp to the front wheels, as well as range extension.

The combustion engine is novel as well. It is the first camless piston engine designed for production automotive applications, and it is extremely small as well - weighing just 150 lb. It is called the Tiny Friendly Giant.

Summary

Koenigsegg’s new tiny electric motor is incredibly powerful and efficient. Though it is tiny, it packs a huge punch with 335 hp. This technology could revolutionize the hybrid car market as we know it today, especially where hybrid supercars and hypercars are concerned. Koenigsegg continues to be on the cutting edge of motor technology, and we can’t wait to see what they come up with next.

What do you think of this new electric motor from Koenigsegg? Will it be a welcome addition to their line of ultra-luxury performance cars, or are they trying to do too much with too little? Engineering360 would love to hear your thoughts in the comments below!