November 15, 2023
THK, a Japanese manufacturer of machinery components, participated in the “Japan Mobility Show 2023” for the first time. The centerpiece of the exhibit was the “LSR-05,” an electric vehicle developed by THK. President Akihiro Teramachi said, “We worked on it to keep the spirit of challenge alive. The result is quite satisfying,” showing his contentment.
On October 25, THK unveiled the LSR-05, a prototype of an electric vehicle that can actually drive, at the Japan Mobility Show 2023 held at Tokyo Big Sight in Tokyo.
The four-wheel drive sport utility vehicle (SUV) was designed by SN DESIGN PLATFORM (Shibuya-ku, Tokyo), whose president is Shiro Nakamura, who formerly headed the design department at Nissan Motor.
The LSR-05 incorporates a number of advanced electric vehicle technologies developed by THK. Akihiro Teramachi, president and CEO of the company, said, “In the automotive industry, it is difficult to introduce modular components unless they have a proven track record. Then we decided to build a car at our company to establish a good track record and not forget the spirit of challenge that was our original intention. We adopted model-based development, which makes extensive use of simulation in the design phase, and it took about two years to complete the project,” he explained.
The LSR-05 is the fifth generation since its development, and the fourth generation LSR-04 and LSR-05 have already begun testing on a private track, with plans to test on public roads by the end of 2025. The company is also exploring external distribution in the future.
The LSR-05 incorporates several advanced technologies for electric vehicles. One of them is the stealth seat sliding system “SLES”. A linear motion guide called “LM Guide” is placed at the junction between the seat interior and the floor, and a dedicated electric actuator is used to slide the seat. The stroke is extended by using two LM Guides, one at the top and one at the bottom. Even when the guide is extended, there is little wobble in the seat. “SLES eliminates the need for rails that are often placed on the floor of cars to move seats,” explains President Teramachi.
The company has also adopted a number of proprietary products in the areas of motors and suspensions. The “enemo” variable flux in-wheel motor uses a variable flux mechanism based on ball screw splines to switch between high-torque drive and high-revolution drive.
The “ALCS” active suspension uses ball screws to adjust vehicle height and stability control. The vehicle height can be raised on uneven road surfaces and lowered at high speeds to reduce aerodynamic drag.
President Teramachi said, “Electric vehicles are not an extension of conventional automobiles, but can be a new form of transportation. Therefore, it is important to have the spirit of challenge to take on new things, and by developing the LSR-05, we want to show the Japanese manufacturing industry that we have this spirit”.
September 1, 2023