Talking about Aisin’s future
As electrification gains momentum,
Aisin accelerates the excitement
with inspirational and essential products
*Dec.27, 2022 update
Since the 1960s, Aisin has developed and produced automatic transmissions (ATs), directly contributing to the development of the modern automotive society. As the world moves toward achieving carbon neutrality, vehicles are also undergoing unprecedented changes toward electrification. What kind of strategy is Aisin pursuing in this phase? CESO (Chief Electric Strategy Officer) Yoshihisa Yamamoto, who is responsible for electrification, shares his vision.
- 1. Aisin's initiatives for electrification to achieve carbon neutrality
- 2. Aiming to improve overall power consumption of the vehicle by 15% or more by 2025
- 3. Aisin's product creation to inspire movement – straight to the heart
Chief Electric Strategy Officer,
Chief Technology Strategy Officer,
Executive General Manager:
EV Promotion Center Yoshihisa Yamamoto
１．Aisin's initiatives for electrification to achieve carbon neutrality
A full lineup of electric units for optimal,speedy response
Since its inception, Aisin has been involved in all areas related to “movement” of a vehicle, including driving, turning and stopping, comfort and convenience, and the use of location-based information. Today,the world is dramatically changing toward carbon neutrality, and Aisin is accelerating its development of products that support vehicle electrification by leveraging its strengths in its areas of specialties.
At the heart of this is the powertrain, the source of the vehicle's power. Next is energy efficiency of the entire vehicle through a wide range of products, including brakes and body-related products. In particular, we are taking on the challenge of providing a full lineup of products for various types of electric vehicles, including hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs), plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs), battery electric vehicles (BEVs) and fuel-cell electric vehicles (FCEVs)
Why do we need a full lineup of electric units? Yoshihisa Yamamoto explains the reasons for this because of various activities around the world.
“Aisin's customers are spread all over the world, and the energy situation and policies for achieving carbon neutrality vary greatly from country-to-country and region-to-region. In addition, manufacturer and user preferences also differ significantly, with some seeking conventional gasoline vehicles with ATs, and others seeking HEVs and BEVs. Even under these difficult circumstances, Aisin will continue to provide products that meet the various needs of the world in a speedy manner.
Also, looking at carbon neutrality from a medium-term perspective, we believe that expanding the range of electric units for HEVs and PHEVs, as well as BEVs, will be effective in achieving this goal.
I believe that the most important of Aisin's missions is to meet the needs of people through our products and to ensure the satisfaction of our customers. That is the reason we provide a full lineup for all directions.
Our intention and ability to respond quickly and optimally to the needs of our customers will not change, even after the industry shifts to electrification -- this is the mission of Aisin.”
２．Aiming to improve overall power consumption of the vehicle by 15% or more by 2025
Applying and evolving our strengths will lead to decarbonization and benefits to users.
Aisin's most important strategic product among its electric units is the eAxle, an electric unit for BEVs, which is expected to grow rapidly. Aisin is working on a three-generation concept for the development of the eAxle focused on high efficiency and size reduction.
Development of the eAxle is attracting worldwide attention due to the expected demand, and competition is expected to intensify further. Even against this challenging backdrop, Yamamoto is confident that "we will be able to take advantage of Aisin's well cultivated technological development and manufacturing capabilities, as well as cohesive strength as a group.”
“One of Aisin's strengths is that technologies for gears, shafts, casings and other products that we have cultivated in the AT field and their production facilities can be applied and transferred to electric units, and we can evolve them. In addition to the technologies for high efficiency and size reduction that we have refined in the AT field, we also have a track record in producing a cumulative total of more than 10 million units of drive motors.
As competition intensifies, what is most important is how we can leverage our own strengths to increase our competitiveness and differentiate ourselves from others. We will create products that only Aisin can create."
The technologies for high efficiency and size reduction can improve electric mileage (electric power consumption rate; equivalent to the fuel consumption of gasoline cars) and reduced weight can lead to energy conservation, as well as reducing material consumption of the electric unit itself, saving resources and also reducing waste.
The 2nd Generation eAxle,* which is currently being developed for mass production in 2025, will come in three types in line with car size, from the small type pursuing size reduction to the large type featuring high output, by employing the latest high-efficiency and cost-reduction technologies, including improved motor technology. The medium-size model, which pursues high efficiency, will increase power consumption efficiency by approximately 15% in combination with aerodynamic devices.
*Jointly developed with BluE Nexus and Denso
The 3rd Generation eAxle, which is currently being developed with an eye toward market launch in 2027, will realize overwhelmingly high efficiency and size reduction via motor and gear train reforms. The 3rd Generation eAxle, featuring half the volume of the 2nd Generation model, will provide high mountability for various types of BEVs, large cabin and trunk space, expanded battery space, and increased power consumption efficiency due to reduced battery volume, thereby extensively contributing to customers’ manufacturing of new vehicles.
In addition, we have been strengthening the development of new electrification products from the viewpoint of overall vehicles mainly in the EV Promotion Center, which develops products specifically for BEVs across existing business boundaries.
We will speedily introduce attractive products that feature “high efficiency” and “compact size” to the market. These include cooperative regenerative brakes, which contribute to the efficient use of energy by generating power as the vehicle stops; the world’s smallest cooling modules; aerodynamic devices, which reduce resistance while driving; and lightweight framework components.
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３．Aisin's product creation to inspire movement – straight to the heart
Exceeding expectations and inspiring our customers to lead one step into the future
As electric vehicles are expected to become even more common in the future, Yamamoto shares Aisin's future prospects.
“When the engine is replaced by the motor, the potential of the car increases dramatically both in terms of responsiveness and control. I believe that this will expand the range of value that Aisin can offer.
Aisin has already been working on vehicle dynamics control that appropriately controls both the eAxle in the drive system and the cooperative regenerative brake in the control system, thereby harnessing the full advantage of the strengths of our products. With this technology, electric vehicles should be able to offer a different and more attractive driving experience than that of conventional gasoline vehicles.
In terms of resources, I am convinced that Aisin will be able to lead the way in the future of electrification with its excellent engineers, who have been involved in research and development of ATs and hybrid transmissions, and its plants and facilities that enable high-quality manufacturing.
I still remember the sense of accomplishment that I felt when we started mass production and launched our products onto the market when I was an engineer. I hope that many employees in the younger generation who bear the future of Aisin upon their shoulders will feel this joy of manufacturing.
I believe that meeting customers' expectations is to inspire them with products and work that exceeds their expectations. We are involved in manufacturing products related to "movement." The word ‘move’ is used in the sense of physically moving people or objects but also in the sense of emotionally moving people, or moving people’s hearts. I believe that it is of the utmost importance for Aisin to continue to create products that move our customers’ hearts and inspire them, even when the future is difficult to predict.”