The power of tires is considerable when it comes to changing the image of your vehicle. But now it is also possible to turn a car into electric by simply changing its tires for this prodigious invention from the Orbis firm.
If you are fond of the world of cars, you probably already know that high-quality alloy wheels considerably change the experience when driving, while offering you better behavior when rolling. Something for you to take your time when looking for the best tires for your car. But surely what you do not know is that it is possible to convert a combustion car into an electric or hybrid with a simple tire change. A system that, despite what it may seem due to its modernity, draws on the most classic tradition in automotive history. Let’s see what this procedure consists of.
The prototype of motorized wheels presented by Orbis is based on a technology that is almost a century old and that was designed by no less than Ferdinand Porsche back in the distant year of 1897. This system modifies conventional wheels for motorized wheels, which are They are responsible for directly transferring the force to the tires, without the need for transmission shafts, belts and other similar elements. This system has the advantage of being self-supporting, so that when replacing the conventional rim we will not need anything else inside the vehicle, other than the batteries and their plugs, so that these engines develop all their power and perform optimally. .
Among the technical parameters of this model, we have a power capacity that reaches up to 100 horsepower for each one of the wheels, which translates into a power of almost 400 horsepower if we apply this design to all the wheels of the vehicle. . In case the product is applied only on the rear wheels, as Orbis did on a Honda Civic Type R, the total power is added to that of the vehicle. Specifically, this Honda model has a nominal power of 320 horsepower, to which the 200 horsepower provided by the electric motors installed in the non-drive wheels would add, to total no less than 520 horsepower, in a hybrid design model and really interesting.
How these motors work
As we have mentioned, the engines directly replace the alloy or aluminum wheels that may be mounted on the vehicle, including the engines. The entire drive system is mounted here, simplifying the process of transferring power directly to the wheels, mainly because those motors are in the wheels. So we will not lose a single horsepower when driving, since the force is transmitted directly and with greater efficiency.
Best of all, these engines don’t add much weight to what conventional tires would have. In fact, according to the tests carried out by the company, it is not even necessary to modify the geometry of the suspensions or the support arms of the tires, proof of how well synchronized the technology is with what has been the original approach of the vehicle.
By the way, this new model of rims also eliminates the need to mount conventional brakes, which otherwise could not be installed for reasons of space. The presence of the electric motor notably solves this problem, since it is enough to lift the foot so that the inertia itself begins to brake the vehicle. And for when more intense braking is necessary, only a motorcycle brake caliper is required, which due to the characteristics of the vehicle is more than enough for this driving. According to the manufacturer’s data, this braking system is even capable of reducing temperatures and better distributing the heating of the brakes when it comes to stopping.
Regarding vehicle control, the high level of maneuverability that this new system allows makes it easy for the driver to manage steering more efficiently. It is even possible to achieve greater steering angles at the steering wheel, due to the particular design of these engines and the elimination of superfluous elements in the vehicle’s structure.
Regarding energy, in this design a battery from a Toyota Prius has been used, which responds adequately to the hybrid use that this particular model will have. A battery that has already been extensively tested and has a capacity of 1.3 kilowatts, in line with what these small motors in the tires need to give a boost to the operation of the vehicle.
The result of this assembly, in the Honda Civic that the firm has presented as a model, could not be more interesting. The final motorization offers high power, efficiently managed by the corresponding computerized units installed both in the main engine and in the wheels. All this in a system that also regenerates energy when braking, to achieve greater battery autonomy.
Regarding weight, this mounting system eliminates around 10 kilos of unsprung masses within the tire mounting, with a total weight increase of about 80 kilos, of which a good part comes from the battery. Something that has to do with the manufacture of these new engines, which to its simple approach adds a high-strength machined aluminum construction, which reduces weight and improves efficiency when driving.
This machining has the additional advantage that all parts can be mass-produced, which will undoubtedly make this prototype scalable and cost less for the future, should this technology gain the necessary popularity. to become an alternative to conventional engines.
As for its price, the cost of this kit is currently around $ 10,000, of which about 40% belongs to the battery. Anyway, since we are talking about prototypes, both the availability of the product and the rest of the aspects that we have mentioned are subject to changes and improvements. We will see what the future holds for this particular technology.