ISSUE 012 Winter 2021 Sigma Powertrain EMAX transmission dossier l In conversation: David Hudson l 48 V systems focus l 2021 Battery Show North America and Cenex-LCV reports l Everrati Porsche 911 digest l Switching insight l Motor laminations focus

honed a specialisation in noise, vibration and harshness (NVH) that would serve him well in the years ahead. The electric car Hudson’s tenure at Jaguar ended in 1991. Since then, he’s held numerous consulting positions at vehicle producers including Aston Martin, Ford, JaguarSport and Lotus. His career took on a new focus in 1995, when he was appointed technical director for NVH at Ricardo, in its then-new North American office in Detroit. “They were rapidly expanding from pure CAE work for IC engines into real-world experimentation across full powertrains, and they were working with General Motors on the EV1 project in 1995 – a vehicle since made famous by the film Who Killed the Electric Car? ,” Hudson muses. “They brought me in largely just to reduce its gear noise, which had become audible thanks to the IC engine’s absence, but I got a real appreciation and excitement for its overall engineering and what it showed that EVs could do on the US freeways. “Granted, it was limited by the battery technologies of the day – nickel metal hydride for 26 kWh and 140 miles or so – but it was a reasonably quick car and a great introduction for many of us into what a fully OEM-developed EV felt like. It did 0-60 mph in 8 seconds, felt very sporty, and a lot of the chassis inputs were actually done by Lotus, so they’ve had a long heritage in EV innovation that’s continued to this day.” Although Hudson was very bullish about GM’s opportunities to get ahead of the curve in EV manufacturing at the time, he notes that the project fell through. GM did not become the EV market leader for various political and economic reasons, not least the introduction of European diesel engines into North American light vehicle markets. “That yielded good lessons too, thankfully. Integrating diesel engines in place of gasoline ones really made a lot of engineers remember that what a lot of drivers want isn’t power, it’s torque. So we learned to design for what the customer wants, to start doing so early in the automotive design process, and never to go to market with a car made by engineers just for engineers – something new SMEs in the EV space are now quickly learning.” Between 1998 and 2003, Hudson served as a director at AVL, also in Detroit. Like Ricardo, AVL did little real work in electrification, especially compared with its leading role in the field now, although Hudson did work heavily on emissions compliance across a range of new markets, including powersports and leisure vehicles. At Tata Hudson joined Tata Motors in 2008, after being recruited through the company’s European technical centre at Warwick University. He moved to Pune, India, in June that year to become head of NVH for the next three years. “It was my first work on heavy-duty trucks and buses, and I was tasked mainly with bringing their vehicles time],” Hudson recounts. “It was partly out of a love of the brand, but also their interview involved being given an engineering problem to solve; as a 17-year-old, that was quite a thrilling process to be put through.” He adds that his final-year project was in fact part of an EV competition by Lucas Automotive, open not only to students but professional and independent engineers worldwide. Its aim was to see how far a car could be built to travel on two of Lucas’ lead-acid batteries (similar to the Shell Eco-marathon competitions, he notes). Entrants selected from an initial design round would continue on to a constructors’ round. “I worked with a colleague – who’s since gone on to a very successful career in Formula One with Arrows, McLaren and Toyota – using small- scale wind tunnels and finite element stress analyses on the frame to produce a vehicle design that won second prize nationally in the design round,” Hudson says. “The department was overjoyed, and its technicians helped us get our vehicle built for round two at Donnington Park in 1979. Unfortunately, on the day, Lucas changed the venue from Donnington’s full track – which was hilly but generally all gentle turns, and for which we’d specifically engineered our steering and transmission – to just a test on the pit straight with a U-turn at the end. “So we didn’t do as well at that event as other, cruder vehicles with lower centres of gravity, but I learned the value of good teamwork on a vehicle concept – dividing tasks, preparing drawings for somebody else to understand, and so on. As an engineer about to enter the professional automotive field, it was maybe the best thing I could have done.” Although Hudson was involved largely in vehicle research at Jaguar, very little of it had anything to do with electrification at that point. Instead, he David Hudson David Hudson was educated at Coventry University, in England, graduating in 1979 with a BSc in mechanical engineering. He quickly took a senior management position at Jaguar, which he held for 14 years. Between 1991 and 1995, he held a number of consulting roles simultaneously at several companies while working as chief engineer of vehicle development at Lotus Engineering from 1993 to 1995. He worked at Tata Motors for 13 years in a series of chief engineering roles before joining ePropelled as its head of EV strategy. In addition, he sits on Cran ield University’s Industrial Advisory Board, steering committees for various conferences, and is a member of the UK Automotive Council Technology Group. Winter 2021 | E-Mobility Engineering 17 InConversation | David Hudson