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Automotive Powertrain Electrification Fundamentals


The 21st century automotive industry is transitioning at pace to electric propulsion technology, presenting new challenges in component and system design and vehicle integration. This module provides a holistic introduction to electrified automotive powertrains, from global motivations through to component design. Existing approaches to partial and full electrification are critiqued and opportunities for new design and research opportunities are exposed. The module is delivered through a mix of traditional lectures, group discussion and design activities and hands-on practicals using both established and novel tools and techniques.

Principal module aim is to equip participants to constructively engage with automotive powertrain electrification programmes and technologies in their current or future engineering careers.


Upon successful completion participants will be able to:

  • Independently critique global stakeholder influences, motivations and industry progress in automotive powertrain electrification
  • Comprehensively understand existing H/EV products, their relative merits and critique designs against practical real-world applications
  • Systematically derive power and energy requirements for automotive products in alignment with standardised evaluation criteria and real-world end-user requirements
  • Design and evaluate energy storage and electric machine technology as co-dependant sub-systems of vehicle powertrain applications
  • Critique a wide variety of approaches to energy management with regards to applicability, complexity, optimality, resource requirements and practicality


  • Motivations for the transition to electrified powertrains in automotive applications.
  • Emissions formation and control.
  • Air quality and global warming.
  • Life cycle analysis of environmental impact.
  • Industry roadmaps for low carbon vehicle technology.
  • Assessment of vehicles against certification requirements.
  • Hybrid and pure electric powertrain architectures.
  • Vehicle product case studies.
  • Road load modelling and systematic energy and power requirements derivation.
  • Energy storage technologies.
  • Battery modularity and design.
  • Electrical behaviour and modelling of batteries.
  • Charging processes and the impact on user experience and carbon footprint.
  • Electric machine types and approaches to torque control.
  • Drivetrain and battery specification and matching to vehicle system requirements.
  • On-board energy management and optimisation.


  • Online discussion forum (15%)
  • In Module Online Test (15%)
  • Post-module Design Assignment (50%)
  • Critical review of academic research paper (20%)


2 weeks including 19.5 hours of lectures, 7.5 hours of seminars, 7.5 hours of supervised practical classess

This is an elective module on the MSc in Smart, Connected, and Autonomous Vehicles and as part of the part-time TAS JLR scheme.

Please note: the details of this module are correct for the current year of study and may be subject to change for future years.