How does in wheel motor work?

The in-wheel motor  (hub motor) is a type of EV (electric vehicle) drive system. The in-wheel motor can be used in electric cars with 4-wheel independent drive configuration. Within every wheel, there can be one “direct-drive in-wheel motor” to generate the necessary torque per wheel. Unlike conventional “central drive unit” systems, torque as well as the power and speed can be supplied to each tire independently.

One of the greatest advantages of in-wheel electric motors is the fact that the power goes straight from the motor directly to the wheel. Reducing the distance the power travels increases the efficiency of the motor. For instance, in city driving conditions, an internal combustion engine may only run at 20 percent efficiency, meaning that most of its energy is lost or wasted via the mechanical methods employed to get the power to the wheels. An in-wheel electric motor in the same environment is said to operate at about 90 percent efficiency.

In addition to good accelerator responsiveness, an advantage of EVs, the in-wheel motor makes the behavior of the car more in tune with the steering by independently controlling the left and right wheels. When accelerating or cornering, the car moves intuitively in the way the driver wants.


With an in-wheel motor, motors are installed close to each of the drive wheels, and are moving the wheels through extremely small drive shafts. Since the drive shafts are so small, the time lag that arises with the rotation all but disappears, and motor power is transmitted to the wheels instantaneously, making it possible to control the wheels very precisely.

An in-wheel motor drives the left and right wheels by separate motors, so left and right torque can be controlled independently. For example, when a driver turns left, the right-hand torque can be controlled greater than the left in accordance with how much the driver is steering, and this allows the driver to generate the power to steer the car to the left. There are already similar technologies for controlling brakes independently on the left and the right, but with an in-wheel motor, not only is the torque reduced, it can also control the increasing of torque, broadening the range of control and attaining a more liberated driving experience.

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Post time: Nov-01-2017
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