Lordstown Motors hasn't revealed many details of its Endurance electric pickup truck, but the company did say earlier this year that the truck will use in-wheel motors. Now we know exactly which motor Lordstown will use.
They'll be licensed from Slovenian company Elaphe, and built at Lordstown's Ohio factory.
Lordstown is setting up a 20,000-square-foot production line for the motors with input from Elaphe, a company press release said. Production is scheduled to start within the next 6 months for beta testing and pre-production vehicles. Lordstown said.
In-wheel motors sit in a way that looks a bit like an old fashioned drum brake. Elaphe designed its motors to be easily bolted to an existing suspension system.
Moving motors out to the wheels hubs potentially allows for extra space within a vehicle's footprint, but also adds unsprung mass, which can make tuning for ride and handling difficult. It also exposes motors to potential damage from potholes and curbs.
Lordstown Motors Endurance
But some companies, like Japanese supplier Nidec, think they're ready. Last year, the company predicted it would be mass producing in-wheel motors by 2023.
Aptera also hoped to make in-wheel motors from Elaphe part of its 1,000-mile two-seater, while Chinese company NEVS last year bought one of the most advanced in-wheel motor companies—Britain's Protean.
Lordstown has set a more aggressive target for producing a vehicle with in-wheel motors, though. The Endurance pickup truck is expected to be unveiled this summer, with the first deliveries in January 2021.
The company was created last year to to take over General Motors' Lordstown, Ohio, assembly plant. The Endurance is an all-electric continuation of the Workhorse W-15 extended-range electric truck, developed by Lordstown CEO Steve Burns' other company.
Lordstown originally indicated that thousands of pre-orders for the W-15 would be transferred to the Endurance, but hasn't offered any further clarification.