Canoo shows off performance and versatility of its skateboard platform


Canoo Holdings Ltd., a company developing breakthrough electric vehicles (EV) with a proprietary and highly versatile skateboard chassis for personal and business use, released a video showcasing the performance of its self-contained skateboard platform for the first time.


For this video, Canoo transformed its skateboard into a cabin-less “skatekart” and professional racing driver, Sara Price, tested the performance of the platform, which will serve as the backbone of all Canoo vehicles.

“I was blown away by how fun it was to drive,” said Price. “The overall performance was impressive. The skateboard felt powerful, with smooth and dynamic handling, especially during high speed cornering. The drive-by-wire steering was something new for me and it felt like it was built for the track.”

Canoo developed a complete set of proprietary high-performance powertrain systems ideally suited for its modular skateboard platform. The powertrain systems were specifically developed entirely in-house to offer class competitive performance across its full range of vehicles. The skateboard supports dual, front or rear motor configurations, and is capable of achieving up to 500 horsepower and over 300 miles of range with dual motors.

The rear primary unit is designed to deliver a maximum 300 horsepower and 450 Newton meters of torque, and the front unit is designed to deliver a maximum of 200 horsepower and 320 Newton meters of torque. Efficiency of the motors is designed to peak at 97% which is optimized for urban driving environments.

Canoo's skateboard platform includes the industry's first true steer-by-wire system, which was inspired by performance race cars, to provide a highly responsive driving experience and versatility for Canoo's future line up.

Thanks to steer-by-wire, eliminating the mechanical steering connections between the cabin and skateboard, Canoo is able to demonstrate for the first time how the steering wheel can be moved to suit any cabin design or driver positioning. This versatility is well suited to accommodate full autonomy once commercially available, as well as for right hand drive and Canoo's future delivery vehicles.

The variable ratio, speed sensitive by-wire electronic power steering also introduces an opportunity to leverage software to customise the driving experience depending on user preferences and use cases, for example, by changing the lock-to-lock ratio to provide more precision driving.

Unlike other platforms on the market, Canoo's skateboard is uniquely modular, offering a truly self-contained, fully functional rolling chassis, so much so that it can be driven entirely independently. The skateboard architecture directly houses all of the most critical components of an electric vehicle, including its industry leading steer-by-wire platform, a transverse composite leaf spring suspension system, an advanced fully electric drivetrain, a proprietary battery compartment and battery thermal management systems, power electronics, vehicle controls, crash absorption structures and autonomous driving components, among others. Each of these component systems has been engineered for optimal performance and efficient packaging into Canoo's compact platform, with a strong emphasis given to functional integration.

“We wanted to showcase our skateboard's performance and prove that our rolling chassis is a truly self-contained unit with everything needed to drive built inside,” said Ulrich Kranz, In Charge of Canoo. “We have revolutionised the platform design concept with a chassis that can be easily married with different cabins, with little adjustment, enabling us to get new vehicles on the road faster and cheaper. By keeping the most critical and expensive part of the vehicle uniform in all our models, it allows us to rapidly and cost effectively bring to market a full line-up of EVs.”

Canoo's core technological backbone is its skateboard vehicle platform that is common to all its vehicles. By utilising a common platform, Canoo will be able to rapidly scale subsequent vehicle programs at a significantly lower capital cost because it reduces expenses in research and development, testing and manufacturing.

Canoo's skateboard provides a significant advancement in automotive technology. With the company's skateboard, along with an efficient design and proprietary production process, Canoo anticipates new vehicle models can be developed in as little as 18-24 months, significantly faster than the average estimated timeframe across the automotive industry.

The dimensions of Canoo's skateboard were deliberately selected to suit the needs of more than 75% of the most common passenger and light duty commercial vehicles on the road today.

Canoo has developed the world's flattest skateboard platform, which enables class-leading passenger and cargo volume on a small vehicle footprint. For example, the canoo, which will offer the interior space of a large SUV, but on the exterior footprint of a compact car.

To help achieve this, Canoo's suspension utilizes a double wishbone with two fiberglass leaf springs, mounted transversely in the front and rear of the platform. The dampers are mounted to the frame, eliminating the need for large shock towers that take up vital cabin space. The entire suspension system is incorporated into the skateboard and sits below the height of the tyres.

Canoo expects to introduce the canoo in 2022, followed by a series of delivery vehicles set to launch in 2023 and a sport vehicle to come thereafter.

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Canoo shows off performance and versatility of its skateboard platform
Modified on Wednesday 30th September 2020
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