Wheels (Australia) - - Contents - DANIEL GARD­NER

Twin­ster AWD clutches for sim­pler torque vec­tor­ing

What is it?

A de­par­ture from the tra­di­tional rear dif­fer­en­tial that takes torque dis­tri­bu­tion away from a set of ring, sun and planet gears and hands it over to just two gears and a lighter, more compact pair of multi-plate clutch packs.

The in­no­va­tion forms part of Holden’s new all-wheel-drive sys­tem that will be avail­able un­der cer­tain vari­ants of the new Euro­pean-sourced Com­modore.

Why does it mat­ter?

Torque needs to be shared be­tween driven wheels for op­ti­mum trac­tion and driv­ing dy­nam­ics, but tra­di­tional sys­tems have lim­ited con­trol over which wheel power is sent to. With im­proved torque dis­tri­bu­tion, grip and driv­ing en­joy­ment can be max­imised.

How does it work?

Un­like a purely me­chan­i­cal dif­fer­en­tial, the Twin­ster solution uses an elec­tronic con­troller lo­cated on the unit, which is con­nected into the ve­hi­cle’s sta­bil­ity sys­tems. In­for­ma­tion re­gard­ing wheel slip and avail­able grip is mon­i­tored 100 times per sec­ond and is sent to the con­troller, which al­ters clutch slip.

As clutch pres­sure in­creases, the lock­ing ef­fect also in­creases and more torque is sent to the in­di­vid­ual wheel.

Op­er­a­tion is sim­i­lar to a lim­it­ed­slip dif­fer­en­tial (LSD) but rather than the two rear wheels be­ing locked to­gether for boosted trac­tion, the Twin­ster clutches work com­pletely in­de­pen­dently for greater con­trol and flex­i­bil­ity.

As a bonus, the in­de­pen­dent func­tion­ing al­lows the sys­tem to in­cor­po­rate ‘torque vec­tor­ing’ which en­hances cor­ner­ing per­for­mance by brak­ing an in­di­vid­ual wheel, or ap­por­tion­ing torque to it.

Pack men­tal­ity Multi-plate clutch packs are hy­drauli­cally ac­tu­ated and in­fin­itely ad­justable

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