Tata Technologies is partnering with NIO China in the development process of NIO’s range of electric vehicles. The partnership began with collaborative engineering for NIO’s first electric all-aluminum vehicle, the recently launched ES8, which NIO intends to be their first product positioned in the Chinese electric vehicles mass market.
Tata has engaged with NIO to drive major engineering aspects related to the development of ES8, such as body structures, closures and exteriors, advanced manufacturing engineering, product lifecycle management (PLM), and off-car connectivity. The companies have worked on a range of concepts on weight optimization using advanced materials and on creating a process that would pioneer the way for more advanced material based vehicles in China. The result of implementing such expertise is that the ES8 is currently achieving high body weight efficiency targets.
The ES8 is the first car to have an all-aluminum body and chassis featuring aerospace grade 7003 series aluminium alloy, enabling a torsional stiffness of 44,140 Nm/Deg. According to NIO, the vehicle features the highest amount of aluminium for any mass production car, providing excellent passive safety design and 21 active safety features.
Novelis signed an agreement with NIO in 2017 to provide aluminum sheet products for the automaker’s fleet of premium electric and autonomous vehicles. Magna announced that it is providing the aluminum front sub-frame and rear cradle, the gearboxes for both e-drive systems, and the latching system for the side doors and hood for the ES8.
“ES8 is an important milestone for the automotive industry,” said Warren Harris, managing director and chief executive officer for Tata Technologies. “It has been a privilege for Tata Technologies to partner with NIO on this breakthrough product. Our close working relationship in the areas of lightweighting, connected vehicles, and PLM is a great example of the type of partnerships that will define the future automotive ecosystem.”
Roger Malkusson, vice president of Vehicle Engineering for NIO noted that Tata was “able to pool in experts and teams from China, India, U.K., and Romania to work together with the NIO engineering team to deliver the final product which adhered to the highest standards in safety and finesse. The first finished product, ES8, is an all-aluminum SUV that broke lightweight index benchmarks and was delivered in record time from a blank page to a validation vehicle in world class duration.”