Niche Vehicle Network

Feasibility Study: Range Extension & Improved Efficiency / 2021

Clipper Cab Range Extension


Range extension is critical to accelerate the adoption of electric taxis by drivers and fleet operators. The study will assess the viability of increasing the battery capacity of the existing Clipper Cab electric taxi to achieve circa 300 mile range, including optimal BMS functionality, thermal management, battery box designs and chassis modifications. Other changes that impact range and efficiencies include rapid charging system improvements, aerodynamics, light-weighting, solar-wrap, insulation, vehicle control parameters and driver behaviour. A full option appraisal will be carried out to assess feasibility, and a plan built to test on a small fleet of 100% electric London Taxis.

Feasibility Study: Range Extension & Improved Efficiency / 2021



In combatting Electric Vehicle (EV) range anxiety and weight challenges, Westfield is collaborating with the National Graphene Institute (NGI) to develop a bespoke graphene-enhanced battery and supercapacitor package that meets Westfield vehicles specific needs -enabling 15-20% increased vehicle range.

In leveraging the advantages of graphene-enhanced battery technology, lighter, more durable, and better-suited batteries with high-capacity energy storage are produced. Further, using graphene-enhanced supercapacitors results in rapid charging and discharging, yielding substantial benefits in EV applications such as increased recapture during regenerative braking.

The GraphEVe project will demonstrate an automotive specification battery panel (TRL5) -evidencing advantage to state-of-the-art.

Feasibility Study: Range Extension & Improved Efficiency / 2021



SubThree is a three wheeled, narrow body, tilting, fully enclosed, 2+1 seater that can filter through dense traffic in any weather in a safe manner. All its benefits compared to micro cars stem from tandem seating configuration. The concept has been awarded by International Design Awards in Los Angeles as well as London International Creative Competition. The grant will enable creation of the first preliminary feasibility, engineering, and marketing study to validate the efficiency as well as market potential of SubThree's narrow body design combined with 2+1 seats which make SubThree a very attractive alternative to micro cars.

Feasibility Study: Range Extension & Improved Efficiency / 2021

Carbon Fibre Structure For Electric Wells Vertige


The Wells Vertige is a brand new niche vehicle engineered and built by Hall Engineering And Design Ltd for Wells Motor Cars Ltd. This project looks at how a BEV version could retain the core product's light weight and simplicity. A carbon fibre structure is proposed to replace the steel structure, to offset the extra mass of the batteries. An off-the-shelf integrated electric power unit will be selected and packaged along with standard battery modules that will be arranged to a suitable pack. The project will prove the feasibility of creating a beautiful, lightweight, efficient and sustainable electric sports car.

Feasibility Study: Range Extension & Improved Efficiency / 2021

Development of Structural Battery Enclosure


By developing a EV battery enclosure to also carry vehicle structural loadings, opportunities exist for weight reduction and hence overall vehicle efficiency gains. This project aims to prove the feasibility of replacing the front end structure of a light weight sportscar with a structural battery enclosure to which the front suspension will be directly attached. The studies will investigate the application of low density plastic / composite materials that can be moulded to create the component. Finite element analysis techniques will be employed to develop and verify stiffness and strength performance.

Feasibility Study: Range Extension & Improved Efficiency / 2021

BICARB: Bio-derived Composites for Structural Battery Boxes


The design of lightweight battery boxes is critical for increasing the range and efficiency of Electric Vehicles (EVs). Tailored new materials are required for designers to produce optimised lightweight structures. BICARB will investigate the processing of Bio-derived composite materials for application in structural EV battery boxes. Polyfurfuryl alcohol (PFA) based resin systems can be entirely sourced from sugar beet waste materials. PFA resin systems deliver outstanding fire performance which meet both aerospace and rail industry fire retardancy material specifications. Other characteristics include: • Low toxicity and emissions improving operator health and safety • Low environmental impact • High chemical resistance

Feasibility Study: Range Extension & Improved Efficiency / 2021

Lightweight, low cost, recyclable frame for e-mobility: L2RF


The market for e-bikes and e-cargo bikes is rapidly growing and driving demand for cost effective, light weight structures to extend range.

In project L2RF, the feasibility of developing a low cost, multi-material lightweight structural joining technology for welding tubes made from thermoplastic composites to metal nodes, will be investigated.

Joints and a frame will be manufactured and tested for structural integrity, weight and recyclability. The technical advantages and potential for commercial exploitation will be assessed against competing approaches for manufacturing lightweight multi-material structures.

Feasibility Study: Range Extension & Improved Efficiency / 2021

Thermally Managed Batteries for Range and Efficiency Improvements in Niche Road Vehicles


McMurtry Automotive plans to evaluate the potential for improvements in road car range and efficiency that result from accurate thermal control of battery cells. Testing will cover the effects of temperature on cell capacity, impedance and life. The investigation will also look at the feasibility of implementation.

Feasibility Study: Range Extension & Improved Efficiency / 2021

Improved Efficiency Sustainable Batteries


This project will produce a battery for e-mobility which is capable of maintenance and repurposing, providing a truly sustainable road to net zero future. The technical developments will focus on improved customer experience, but crucially, will develop the battery design to improve vibration resilience, increasing both range of a vehicle and its lifetime.

Feasibility Study: Range Extension & Improved Efficiency / 2021

Niche Vehicle Hydrogen Fuel Cell Powertrain


Assessing the feasibility of Hydrogen Fuel Cell Powertrains for Niche Vehicle applications for 200kW-400kW peak outputs including Hydrogen storage, Electrical energy store, Vehicle control unit, E-Machine & Inverter choice as well packaging optimisation