2022.11.24 Kia

〈The Story Behind EV6 GT〉 Dynamic Handling Performance of The EV6 GT

The EV6 GT is redefining the standard for high‒performance electric vehicles ‒ just like the R&H performance of the EV6 GT, which delivers a high output of 585 horsepower with an exhilarating and dynamic driving sensibility. Here’s the story of how the EV6 GT’s refined R&H performance was born.

The EV6 GT has been a hot potato for its powerful performance since its unveiling; based on Hyundai Motor Group’s high‒performance electrification technology, it became the fastest car in Korean automobile history. The maximum output of the EV6 GT reaches 585 horsepower (PS) and displays a powerful maximum torque of 75.5 kg·m. Acceleration from 0 to 100 km/h takes just 3.5 seconds, and the top speed reaches 260 km/h. The EV6 GT has another charm ‒ like its robust basic performance that suits the EV6 GT’s power.

The exquisitely completed Ride & Handling (R&H) performance shows this. It provides a dynamic driving experience and elegant drive quality in any situation. Sang‒kyun Kim, senior researcher of the R&H Test 1 Team, and Min‒ho Choi, researcher of the Comprehensive Test Drive Team developed the R&H performance of the EV6 GT; and here they explained what R&H specifically refers to.

Robust R&H performance for the highest output

Q. For many drivers, ‘ride quality’ or ‘handling’ seem unfamiliar. Why is good R&H performance important?

Senior researcher Sang‒kyun Kim |  Sufficient ride quality must be guaranteed to drive long distances for a long time comfortably. Handling performance literally means the maneuverability of a car. A car with good handling performance responds quickly to the driver’s control, providing a sense of unity between the car and the driver. At this time, the driver feels that the car is well‒controlled and feels a high sense of stability and satisfaction. When developing a vehicle, the reason for grouping ride quality and handling performance together is that the two influence each other. Therefore, to increase R&H performance, achieving the best balance between the two is important.

It is necessary to secure a certain level of ride quality and handling performance in all areas, from daily to extreme driving

Here, R&H performance development can be divided into two categories. The first is to raise the driving limit of the vehicle. Automakers raise the limits of their vehicles and secure driving safety through electronic control devices related to driving, such as ESC, TCS, and ABS. The second is to improve R&H performance so that the driver can control the vehicle without feeling uncomfortable in the process of pushing the vehicle to the limit of driving. In other words, these are optimized R&H performance development processes that cover both daily driving and its limits.

Senior researcher Sang‒kyun Kim focused on implementing high‒quality R&H in the development of the EV6 GT

Q. What does it take for a car to excel in R&H performance?

Senior researcher Sang‒kyun Kim | A robust body is the essence of excellent handling performance. If you turn the steering wheel while driving, the tires twist, and the actual driving direction changes. However, there is a delay between turning the steering wheel and actually changing the direction of the car. At this time, if the rigidity of the vehicle body is weak, the elastic deformation of the body and the tire deformation are interlocked, resulting in a longer delay, and in this process, it is difficult for the driver to obtain accurate vehicle feedback. Elastic deformation refers to the property of a material to return to its original state after being deformed by external stress. In other words, in order to improve handling performance, it is necessary to secure body rigidity.

Q. What points did you focus on improving the R&H performance of the EV6 GT?

Senior researcher Sang‒kyun Kim | As the EV6 GT has a high output of 585 horsepower, it requires chassis setup and handling performance for stable control. Therefore, we focused on increasing the rigidity of the chassis, which directly affects the R&H performance. This is because when the body rigidity is increased, the response speed (delay time) of the car when the steering wheel is turned becomes faster, and the road followability is improved as the tires are accurately gripped on the road surface.

The EV6 GT was able to minimize body reinforcement because it secured sufficient body rigidity through the dedicated electric vehicle platform E‒GMP, which is its base. The front and rear parts of the chassis have been reinforced. A strut ring was added to the top of the front suspension strut tower of the EV6 GT to increase local rigidity. The body part connected to the steering system was strengthened to obtain agile front‒wheel response (yaw rate response). In addition, a rear‒floor luggage rigidity bar that connects the left and right sides of the rear body was added to reduce body torsion, thereby increasing rear wheel followability.

Q. What part of the suspension did you focus on the most to improve ride quality?

Senior researcher Sang‒kyun Kim | As the name ‘GT’ indicates, the EV6 GT emphasizes the character of a Grand Tourer that drives long distances quickly and comfortably. In other words, this model must satisfy both excellent handling performance and comfortable ride quality. If the suspension is set up rigidly to improve handling performance, ride comfort may be reduced. In the EV6 GT, taking this into account, some changes to the suspension structure and specifications made it possible to achieve a high level of performance.

There are three major differences in the suspension. The first is that the front suspension structure has been changed from the existing MacPherson strut to a MacPherson multi‒link. The EV6 GT’s McPherson Multi‒Link is characterized by separating the lower arm of the MacPherson strut into two joints. The effective arm ‒ the length from the knuckle coupled with the wheel to the tie rod end ‒ has been increased to improve the structure to offset vibration.

The second is that it responds to improved handling performance by applying variable gear steering (VGR). The EV6 GT’s VGR maintains a gear ratio of 62mm/rev (revolution, number of revolutions) until the steering wheel steering angle reaches 15° and increases to 68mm/rev beyond 15°. Here, the gear ratio means the ‘moving distance (mm)’ of the rack bar of the steering mechanism when the steering wheel is turned once. If you think about the principle that the front wheel is steered by moving the rack bar left and right, you can intuitively understand the value of the gear ratio. For reference, the basic gear ratio of the EV6 is 60mm/rev, and the EV6 GT provides a more agile steering feel with a tighter gear ratio.

R&H performance evaluation is carried out by installing driving measurement equipment on the vehicle

The third is the basic application of the electronically controlled suspension (ECS), in which the damper damping force varies depending on the drive mode. The ECS of the EV6 GT realizes a comfortable ride with low damping force in Normal mode, and significantly increases the damping force in Sport/GT mode to suppress body movement. In other words, both ride comfort and driving performance were taken care of through the suspension setup optimized for each drive mode according to the handling characteristics.

Innovative electrified chassis control technology completes the dynamic driving performance

Q. For electric cars, the application range of chassis control technology is wide, and the effect is great. What are chassis control technologies applied to the EV6 GT?

Researcher Min‒ho Choi | Compared to internal combustion locomotives, electric vehicles have different output characteristics ‒ just as a drive motor immediately develops powerful maximum torque as soon as it starts. Accordingly, in order for the driver to properly utilize the high output of an electric vehicle, sophisticated chassis control technology is essential. The EV6 GT’s electrified chassis control technology was developed by applying a dual motor permanent four‒wheel drive system. This is because when the driving force distribution optimized for the driving situation is achieved with the electrified chassis control technology, excellent handling performance can be improved. There are several electrified chassis control technologies of the EV6 GT that improve driving performance ‒ DTCH (Dynamic Torque Control for Handling) that distributes front and rear driving force, drift mode, and e‒LSD (Electronic Limited Slip Differential) that actively controls the left and right driving force of the rear wheels.

Researcher Min‒ho Choi developed the overall driving performance of the EV6 GT

Q. How does dynamic torque control, a control logic that distributes front and rear driving force, work to improve handling performance?

Researcher Min‒ho Choi |  Dynamic Torque Control improves handling performance by optimizing the distribution of front and rear drive forces. For example, if understeer occurs during corner driving, Dynamic Torque Control reduces the driving force of the front wheels and increases the driving force of the rear wheels to overcome it. By controlling each dual motor, it is possible to implement linear handling characteristics that were difficult to implement in conventional internal combustion engine AWD vehicles to the limit. In addition, differentiated driving force distribution control for each drive mode offers thrilling driving fun in any situation.

Q. Many drivers who experienced the EV6 GT were very satisfied with the drift mode. How does the drift mode control the power of the vehicle?

Researcher Min‒ho Choi | The drift mode provided in the EV6 GT works with a new control logic that optimally distributes front and rear driving force to enable smooth drift driving. During drift driving, the front and rear driving force is controlled so that the vehicle maintains its attitude without spinning, and when escaping after drifting, the driving force of the front wheels is increased to increase grip.

The e‒LSD technology distributes more drive power to the rear wheel on the outside of a corner to suppress understeer

Q. How does the EV6 GT’s e‒LSD enhance handling performance?

Researcher Min‒ho Choi | An electro‒hydraulic e‒LSD is applied to the rear wheel to provide sharper handling and driving dynamics. When driving in a corner, the number of rotations of the left and right wheels differs, and at this time, the e‒LSD transmits more driving force to the outer wheel to suppress understeer and improve cornering performance. The e‒LSD also provides considerable help when starting off on slippery roads. When the rotation speed changes due to the left and right wheels spinning due to a slippery road surface, the e‒LSD sends power to the wheels with higher grip to ensure a stable start.

The Michelin Pilot Sport 4S is a high‒performance tire that meets the demanding requirements of the EV6 GT

Q. In addition to chassis control technology, what are the characteristics of the EV6 GT that perfected the excellent R&H performance?

Researcher Min‒ho Choi | Because tires are in contact with the ground, they play an important role in the R&H performance of a car. In particular, electric vehicles require higher tire performance. They not only have to withstand the strong output of an electric vehicle that appears simultaneously with the start of the car, but also have to deal with a heavier body due to the battery.

Researcher Min‒ho Choi checking the driving performance of the EV6 GT

In the EV6 GT, a high‒performance electric vehicle, the Michelin Pilot Sport 4S is housed as an OE tire that meets demanding conditions such as grip, handling, ride comfort, and abrasion resistance. The Michelin Pilot Sport 4S is a high‒performance tire that satisfies the lateral grip performance, longitudinal grip performance, braking performance, and excellent ride comfort required for the EV6 GT. In addition, inside the tire is sound‒absorbing material to reduce road noise and maintain high quietness.

R&H Test Team 1 senior researcher Sang‒kyun Kim participated in the development of the EV6 GT

Senior researcher Sang‒kyun Kim | The EV6 GT uses various technologies to complete high‒level R&H performance. The EV6 GT’s robust basic performance, which offers excellent handling and comfortable ride at the same time, is the result of these efforts. We hope that more drivers will be able to experience the dynamic driving experience and top‒notch ride quality of the EV6 GT.

Photography by Sung‒pil Min

HMG Journal Operation Team


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