According to BMW, the BMW engine plant in Steyr will exclusively manufacture all electric drive housings for the new BMW iX3. The annual production capacity is to be increased to 460,000 units by 2025. The company announced in a press release on Tuesday. This marks a new era for the Austrian plant which was focused mainly on internal combustion cars in the past.
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The BMW iX3 will use the latest technology the German company has to offer in the field of electric vehicles. As they have repeatedly said, it will adhere to the ‘Power of Choice’ strategy which implies BMW cars are being made on the same platform, regardless of the engine used.
This, of course, will imply smart usage of the space available and BMW electric vehicles use special drive housings that accommodate the gearbox, the electric motor and power electronics in one unit.
Therefore, this approach saves space and makes the unit scalable, meaning different sizes and performance levels can be manufactured on one assembly line. The housing itself weighs 22 kilograms and Plant Steyr will be responsible for the final steps of production, after the casting itself is done in Landshut. So basically the housings start their life in Germany, move to Austria and then travel to China to be installed in the BMW iX3.
In addition to manufacturing the parts, the Steyr plant is also doing other upgrades to them. For example, they are analyzed on an acoustic test bench. The sound measurements provide insights for further optimization of the components. In many areas of application, this saves the time-consuming and costly construction of a complete vehicle.