Delphi 48-Volt Mild Hybrid System Could See Production by the End of 2017

Delphi 48-volt mild hybrid system 4 photos
Photo: Delphi
Delphi 48-volt mild hybrid systemDelphi 48-volt mild hybrid systemDelphi 48-volt mild hybrid system
Delphi, not the oracle, nor the programming language, is set to revolutionize the hybrid vehicle genre with a 48-volt mild hybrid technology that lowers carbon dioxide emissions by more than 10 percent while improving overall performance.
Delphi, the same company that manufactured the defective ignition switches for the Chevrolet Cobalt and all those other GM products recalled over the course of 2014, is rather serious about electrification solutions. The 48-volt mild hybrid technology could prove pivotal for all automakers out there, more so if you consider that meeting emission regulations is getting harder with each and passing year.

The company highlighted that “two global automakers” are interested in the system and their mild hybrid-enhanced products could see production “within 18 months.” In other words, by the end of 2017. The concept of a 48-volt mild hybrid system isn’t all that new, though. General Motors used it in the Chevrolet Malibu and Impala, Buick LaCrosse and Regal. The 2017 Renault Scenic also has one, as does the 2016 Chevrolet Silverado and 2016 GMC Sierra in eAssist Hybrid flavor.

You see, a 48-volt mild hybrid system is, in plain English, the halfway point between a true hybrid such as the Toyota Prius and a conventional car with an internal combustion engine enhanced by a stop-start system. Furthermore, 48-volt mild hybrid technology can offer some extra pound-feet of torque early on in the rev range, something that translates to better in-gear and off-the-line acceleration.

“This is not only a significant step forward with reinventing the electrical architecture for dual voltage capability, it is also a triumph of software,”
said Jeff Owens, the chief technology officer at Delphi. “This intelligent approach to vehicle power, wiring and data management will not only improve fuel efficiency but will also enable a world-class driving experience while providing additional power for active safety systems and increased connectivity in the car.”

Owens is so confident in this technology, he estimates that “one out of every 10 cars sold globally in 2025 will be a 48-volt mild hybrid.” That’s 11 million cars per year. Check the infographic below for more information on what 48-volt mild hybrids would bring to the table.
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About the author: Mircea Panait
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After a 1:43 scale model of a Ferrari 250 GTO sparked Mircea's interest for cars when he was a kid, an early internship at Top Gear sealed his career path. He's most interested in muscle cars and American trucks, but he takes a passing interest in quirky kei cars as well.
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