48V Issues and Prospects: Unlocking the Opportunities

Current and near-future developments in 48V Power Supply Systems

48V – a key automotive technology of the 2020s

48V is clearly going to be a very important technology in the coming decade. Some senior OEM executives say it should be one of those fundamental technologies that should be adopted by all ICE vehicles in the future.

Key benefits for 48V are that it is is a system that augments combustion engines to reduce fuel consumption, reduces particulate emissions in diesels and improves the driver experience by increasing the responsiveness of the vehicle.

48V systems can help OEMs deliver most of the reductions in CO2 emisisons required by regulations at a fraction of the cost of full electrification – a real benefit in a world of political uncertainty about the future of EV subsidies – and without having to tackle the barriers to adoption (such as range and cost) thrown up by more fully electric solutions.

What this report offers

The report offers insight into the opportunities and challenges offered by the development of 48V Power Supply Systems for automotive OEMs, established suppliers and potential new entrants.

It looks at new systems and new applications that are enabled by higher voltage power systems – and the ripple effects on electrical and electronic architectures and feature configurations that could follow.

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Currently over 250 companies have corporate or individual subscriptions to reports from Autelligence. Most reports are bought by CEOs, other C-level executives, partners, directors, vice-presidents and country managers at automotive suppliers across marketing, engineering, R&D, and purchasing functions. Subscribers also include OEMs, financial analysts and management consultants.

48V systems will get better

There is a lot of room for improvement in the technology, according to two leading engineering consultants familiar with the area:

Jason McConnell, Business Unit Director at IAV Automotive Engineering:

“People are looking to integrate technologies, putting the battery, power electronics from the inverter and the DC-DC converter in one box so you’ve got less cabling. 48V technologies can be adopted over a large number of vehicles; there’s definitely reusability and scalability in most designs.”

Tomasz Salamon, Engineering Operations Manager for Hybrid and Electric Systems at Ricardo: “Eventually we’ll see more components going to 48V, which gives you smaller and more-efficient electrical components—and more power capability.”

And these benefits will be enhanced by scale effects.

Rudolf Stark, head of the Hybrid Electric Vehicle Business Unit at Continental has said that his company expects “good market penetration across all vehicle segments, from A to D.” That, he says, will “bring large quantities of the technology to market” and “ensure cost-effective production”.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Introduction

1.1 The 42V revolution that never was
1.2 What did we learn from the 42V exercise?
1.3 Why 48V, and why now?
1.3.1 48V bridges the gap between our legacy and our future

Chapter 2: The automotive industry’s assessment of 48V

2.1 The future of 48V: the industry’s consensus view
2.2 A change in consensus? Comparing 2016 vs. 2017 Autelligence survey results
2.2.1 General comments
2.2.2 Could 48V roll out sooner than originally anticipated?
2.2.3 What is really driving 48V progress?
2.2.4 Will socio-political uncertainty influence growth?
2.2.5 48V is about more than emissions: power unlocks value!
2.3 Key questions about the uncertainties leading up to 2025

Chapter 3: Overview of global market drivers and constraints

3.1 EV incentives: a mixed blessing for 48V MHEVs
3.2 Shifting trends contribute to 48V sales
3.2.1 48V MHEVs set to outgun 12V SSVs
3.2.2 Growth in the premium brand market: what is the benefit to 48V?
3.2.3 Automated vehicles and 48V electrification: a match made in heaven!
3.3 Global uncertainties could upset the consensus view
3.3.1 Fuel is cheap, but is this likely to change?
3.3.2 Politicians want to restrict diesel/ICEs
3.3.3 The Trump administration seems set to trade GHGs for jobs
3.3.4 The Chinese revolution: Is there room for 48V?
3.3.5 The death of the 48V MHEV in India: India’s future lies with EVs
3.4 It all comes down to cost: what will the customer pay for 48V?
3.5 Summary of global uncertainties impacting 48V forecasts

Chapter 4: Flexible 48V building blocks fit any strategy

4.1 It is all about saving the planet: 48V’s role in cutting emissions
4.1.1 Some markets are about to run into emissions trouble
4.1.2 New emissions test procedures rewrite all the rules
4.1.3 No need to go HV: 48V will meet emissions targets
4.1.4 Will 48V save the diesel; or replace it?
4.2 Tiny engines love the 48V Powernet
4.2.1 The 48V eSupercharger: the best of both worlds
4.2.2 48V torque-boost puts the fun back into driving
4.2.3 Going electric stamps out parasitic losses
4.3 More sizzle less steak: are premium brands selling 48V as a feature?
4.4 Comfort features come standard with 48V
4.5 Automated vehicles: smart cars need a lot of power
4.6  Uncertainties impacting manufacturers’ 48V strategies and forecasts

Chapter 5: OEMs show their hand

5.1 Mercedes-Benz goes all out with an ISG
5.2 Cost effective 48V MHEVs for the masses
5.2.1 Renault’s mild hybrid solution: Simple yet effective
5.2.2 FCA throws its weight behind mild hybrid pickups
5.3 OEMs lining up to roll out new 48V models
5.4 Chapter 5 summary: uncertainties and forecasts

Chapter 6: Projects pushing the boundaries of 48V technologies

6.1 Diesel can work: the ADEPT project
6.2 The Schaeffler High Performance 48V concept with AWD
6.3 The THOMSON project: The EU’s 48V think-tank for rapid deployment
6.3.1 Ricardo creates the ideal model to reduce time and save money
6.4 Chapter 6 summary: uncertainties and forecasts

Chapter 7: 48V – Key technologies up to 2030 and beyond

7.1 The heart of 48V: batteries dictate the pace
7.1.1 Are lead acid batteries still relevant?
7.1.2 Li-Ion: chemistry of choice
7.1.3 Can new cathode materials unlock more energy?
7.1.4 A 48V battery delivers 25kW!
7.1.5 Solving capacity loss in lithium-sulfur batteries
7.1.6 IONICS: paving the way for the next generation
7.1.7 Revolutionary solid state battery ups the ante
7.1.8 Could Nickel-3D Zinc technology pip Li-ion to the post?
7.1.9 Can the flowcell battery work in a car?
7.2 Materials and design set to revolutionize power electronics
7.2.1 New materials pave the way to higher switching frequencies
7.2.2 Managing the energy flow in dual voltage systems
7.3 Future of 48V rotating machine technology
7.4 Back to the future with 12V MHEVs
7.5 Chapter 7 summary: Uncertainties and forecasts

Chapter 8: 48V as a powerful EV – the Volabo concept

8.1 A 48V motor producing 180kW!
8.2 Unique controls deal with the high current
8.3 Smart battery configuration provides the power
8.4 What to do with transmission cables?
8.5 Post MHEV: High power 48V offers impressive performance
8.6 Chapter 8 summary: uncertainties and forecasts

Addendum A: 2016 vs 2017 Autelligence survey respondent demographics

Addendum B: Topology, the heart of the 48V mild hybrid

Addendum B summary: uncertainties and forecasts


Table of figures

Figure 1.1: Overview of changes to emissions regulations in major markets

Figure 1.2: CO2 savings achievable through flexible 48V architectures

Figure 1.3: 48V’s position on the path to zero emissions

Figure 1.4: 48V as an enabler for future electrification strategies

Figure 2.1: Consensus view of 48V trends up to 2025

Figure 2.2: Autelligence survey indicates growing optimism in the uptake of 48V

Figure 2.3: Autelligence survey results on timing for 48V-only architecture

Figure 2.4: Autelligence survey establishes factors driving 48V growth

Figure 2.5: Autelligence survey questions the effect of socio-political factors on the growth of 48V

Figure 2.6: 2017 Autelligence survey shows opinions split on the impact of incentives on sales of
48V in the US and China

Figure 2.7: Autelligence survey respondents’ views on systems to benefit most from 48V

Figure 2.8: Suppliers and OEMs that could walk away as winners or losers in the 48V stakes

Figure 3.1: Breakdown of global GHG emissions by type and sector

Figure 3.2: 2016 to 2026 global total vehicle sales by region

Figure 3.3: Breakdown of powertrain market share by type and region for 2025

Figure 3.4: PHEV sales comparison 2015/2016 – highlighting the impact of incentives on sales

Figure 3.5: The impact of incentives on market share

Figure 3.6: Breakdown of vehicle sales by technology highlights SSV contribution

Figure 3.7: EU light vehicle production forecast by architecture

Figure 3.8: SSV sales by region to 2025

Figure 3.9: Premium brand vehicle sales by region to 2025

Figure 3.10: Breakdown of the automated-driving vehicle market, by level, to 2035

Figure 3.11: Oil price forecast up to 2030

Figure 3.12: What will the Indian market pay for 48V?

Figure 3.13: What will the EU customer pay for 48V?

Figure 4.1: Actual vehicle emissions plotted against regulation driven emissions targets

Figure 4.2: Quantifying the impact of switching from NEDC to WLTP

Figure 4.3: EU emissions penalties – 2015 vs. 2020

Figure 4.4: Cost/g CO2 reduction by topology

Figure 4.5: Scalable cost vs. benefit from 48V electrification

Figure 4.6: Energy recovery by vehicle segment, topology and machine power over most
common driving cycles

Figure 4.7: Analysis of the BSG efficiency map

Figure 4.8: The impact of changing BSG torque on overall efficiency

Figure 4.9: Breakdown of driving modes over a Real Driving Cycle

Figure 4.10: Results of Engine Technology International’s poll on the long-term viability of LDV diesels

Figure 4.11: Reduction in transient diesel fuel-consumption with an iBSG

Figure 4.12: The influence of electric assistance on BSNOx emissions

Figure 4.12: The influence of electric assistance on BSNOx emissions (continued)

Figure 4.13: 48V enables CO2 vs. NOx optimization for diesel ICE emissions

Figure 4.14: The impact of a 48V electrically heated catalyst on the warmup time

Figure 4.15: 48V eSC reduces NOx by lowering combustion temperature

Figure 4.16: Response time curve of a turbocharged engine equipped with a supplementary 48V eSC

Figure 4.17: eSupercharger sales by region to 2025

Figure 4.18: Power-on vs. power demand schematic of systems that will benefit from 48V

Figure 4.19: Time, speed and torque curves for S/G assisted acceleration from coasting mode

Figure 4.20: Comparison of current and future comfort-feature power requirements

Figure 4.21: Timeline for the roll out of automated vehicle features

Figure 4.22: ADAS and automated driving power requirements

Figure 5.1: The degree of current electrification by OEM and architecture

Figure 6.1: Schematic layout of the ADEPT system

Figure 6.2: ADEPT technologies that cut emissions to 75g/km with 70g/km in reach

Figure 6.3: 48V improves ADEPT vehicle acceleration and engine cranking-time

Figure 6.4: Schaeffler High Performance 48V AWD concept

Figure 7.1: Forecast of future battery development

Figure 7.2: Advanced Lead Acid Battery Value by Region 2016–2025

Figure 7.3: Overview of the 2016–2018 ALABC research program

Figure 7.4: ADEPT project shows 48V LABs are still in with a chance

Figure 7.5: 48V battery market by region 2016–2025

Figure 7.6: Comparison of key cost/performance criteria of the three most likely Lithium battery

Figure 7.7: Comparison of the energy densities of Li2CoP2O vs. conventional cathode materials

Figure 7.8: Unique 48V BMS guarantees safe, long-life performance

Figure 7.9: DC/DC Converter market growth to 2025

Figure 7.10: Relative cost comparison of key topologies and systems

Figure 7.11: 48V Starter-Generator market by region to 2025

Figure 7.12: 12V MHEV architecture may displace 48V on lower cost small vehicles

Figure 8.1: Advantages of the Intelligent Stator Cage Drive Motor

Figure 8.2: Advantages of the ISCAD Power Electronics

Figure 8.3: Comparison of highly parallel cell setup vs. series configuration

Figure 8.4: Simple Volabo battery construction

Figure 8.5: Volabo design improves efficiency across a wide speed/torque range

Figure 8.6: ISCAD reduces energy demands

Figure A.1: Geographical spread of respondents to Autelligence survey

Figure A.2: Autelligence survey respondent’s work diversity

Figure A.3: Respondent diversity by job function

Figure A.4: Respondent diversity by level of seniority

Figure B.1: Configuration of a low-cost P0 Topology

Figure B.2: Energy recovery and torque boosting over the NEDC

Figure B.3: Torque-boosting improves overtaking acceleration where it is most needed

Figure B.4: Comparison of P0 vs. P2 kinetic energy recovery

Table of tables

Table 1.1: 12V/42V/48V Powernet system comparison

Table 3.1: EV incentives by country/region

Table 3.2: Cities and countries considering restrictions on ICE vehicles

Table 3.3 Forecasts on the impact of global uncertainties in the 48V market, with probabilities assigned

Table 4.1: Emissions, comfort and performance strategies unlocked by 48V electrification

Table 4.2: Achieving CO2 reductions by applying a system level approach to downsized engines

Table 4.3: Increased BMEP vs. downsizing potential

Table 4.4: Typical parasitic losses on a 2.0TD LDV

Table 4.5: Diverse 48V strategies differentiate premium brands

Table 4.6: Power consumption by comfort system

Table 4.7: Forecasts around future 48V strategies with probabilities assigned

Table 5.1: Overview of major OEMs’ electrification activities

Table 5.2: OEMs show their hand:  48V strategies and partners actively working on 48V

Table 5.3 : Predicting OEM 48V strategies with probabilities assigned

Table 6.1: Suppliers at the forefront of the 48-volt roll out: Projects and contact details

Table 6.2: Benefits of the 48V technologies applied to the ADEPT project

Table 6.3: Forecasts on governments’ impact on research projects, with probabilities assigned

Table 7.1: Significant developments taking place around Lead Acid Batteries (companies and
contact details included)

Table 7.2: Significant developments taking place around Lithium-ion Battery technologies
(companies and contact details included)

Table 7.3: Forecasts on the future direction of 48V E/E components with probabilities assigned

Table 8.1: Energy comparison of various battery cell configurations

Table 8.2: Forecasts on the possibility of 48V evolving into a part- or full-time EV, with
probabilities assigned

Table: B.1: Benefits of differing 48V MHEV System Configurations

Table B.2: Systems powered by regen energy

Table B.3: Forecasts on the future of 48V with probabilities assigned

Report Options

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Author: Peter Els
Publisher: Autelligence
Published: April 2018
Pages: 111
Edition: 3rd
Format: PDF

Bonus 48V launch database

48-Volt power supply system database (June 2018) includes almost 600 announcements involving 48 –Volt Power supply systems, from May 2016 to June 2018. The majority of the announcements are new vehicle launches by OEMs. The spreadsheet also includes major announcements by suppliers such as Continental, Bosch, and Delphi, as well as other companies such as engineering consultancies.

OEM groups and brands are identified for each of the announcements and where a new model is involved the model and variant is identified. The list is searchable by country. For each announcement the list provides the headline summary and a link to the relevant news story.

Who is the report for?

Chief Executive Officers, Marketing Directors, Business and Sales Development executives, Product and Project management, Purchasing and Technical Directors that need a powerful third party perspective and overview of the trends and issues in their sector and the potential ramifications for their business.

Author of this report: Peter Els

Peter Els has been involved in the automotive industry since 1979 when he joined Nissan South Africa’s product development team as an engineer. His later professional career was spent in engineering positions at OEM’s such as Daimler Chrysler, Fiat, Toyota, Nissan and Beijing Automotive Works. He’s also been technical sales and export manager at Robert Bosch South Africa, where rotating equipment and electronic control units were developed for local and international OEMs. After years in an industry driven by information gathering and communication Peter began writing technical reports and articles on various aspects of the industry and the cars it produces. Since then he has produced a broad spectrum of automotive analysis work on technology and the automotive industry, for several publishers focusing on the automotive industry.

About Autelligence

Autelligence is a leading provider of information to the automotive sector about the market and business implications of product, regulatory and technological developments. Over the last fifteen years Autelligence has supplied its insights to most of the leading vehicle makers and first and second tier suppliers. Autelligence staff based around the world conduct regular surveys and discussions with industry experts in Europe, Asia and North America on the key issues that will affect the industry in the coming decade.

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