Low-pollution three-wheeler autorickshaw with power-assist series hybrid and novel variable DC-link voltage system

Andrea Vezzini, Hari Sharan, Loganathan Umanand


Hybrid cars, i.e. cars with two sources (electric and petrol) for the drive train, are generally accepted as a solution
for consumption and pollution reduction compared to normal combustion engines. While in the beginning public and industries favored pure electric or even fuel cell cars, time has shown that atthemoment neither of these two can realize as many benefits as the hybrid car solution. The three wheeler autorickshaw is commonly used in Indian cities as taxi and for commercial transportation. It is an old technology, very easy to repair and very robust, but contributes largely to the known pollution problems in larger Indian cities. A study shows that over 72% of the pollution in New Delhi was caused by transportation, a large part of it by the autorickshaws and two wheelers, before the current antipollution regulations came into force. This situation is still prevalent in other Indian cities. At the same time the study does notice the rise of an Indian middle class which wants to replace their traditional two wheeler transportation means with a small car. Since 1996 the Biel School of Engineering, together with Centre for Electronics Design and Technology of the Indian Institute of Science in Bangalore, has worked on the concept of a new and simple low pollution drive concept for the autorickshaws. The goal of this new drive train concept was to propose a viable alternative for the autorickshaws as well as to show how to satisfy the need for a small commuter car for the India of tomorrow. After a general overview of the possible solutions, the paper will focus on the CEDT/ARGE CH simple hybrid solution, called LP3W, to show that hybrid solutions also make sense for smaller cars in Indian cities.


Hybrid car; series hybrid; small urban car; variable DC-link; Indian city car.

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