ZF teams up with Tevva to develop regenerative braking system

In News3 MinutesBy NZ Trucking magazineJune 15, 2023

British electric vehicle manufacturer Tevva has successfully completed development of the regenerative braking system on its 7.5 tonne battery-electric truck.

This involved working with ZF to integrate its Electronic Brake System for use in zero-emission Tevva electric trucks.

“Our broad product portfolio and systems competence, including ZF’s standardised Electronic Braking System, enables faster time-to-market for new, innovative market players such as Tevva,” said ZF’s Heiko Eggers, head of EMEA application engineering for braking and ADAS in the Division Commercial Vehicle Solutions.

“Their commitment and agile engineering expertise allowed us to meet our stringent safety requirements and complete our project. We look forward to seeing the first Tevva trucks on the road.”

Tevva’s Uzair Jilani, Lead Engineer, Drive and Brake Systems, added, “We have worked hard to secure a ringing endorsement from arguably one of the world’s most significant Tier 1 suppliers.

“Working with ZF is a crucial step in the momentum we are building as a truck manufacturer,” he said.

“The system has been adapted for use with our regenerative system; when the brake pedal is pushed, most of the ‘braking’ is handled by regenerative, meaning that the drive system slows the vehicle down.

“The conventional braking system is still needed to bring the truck to a complete stop, but this double layer of safety is an excellent aid to more efficient driving. It also means that the hardware undergoes less strain to extend the braking system’s life in the long run.”

Tevva’s engineers successfully met a range of stringent testing criteria for the company’s truck, working on fine-tuning the electric truck’s vehicle control unit (VCU) and enhancing compatibility with the EBS. The result is a system that recuperates up to four times more energy than a conventional compressed air brake system, optimising the range of the Tevva truck.

The implementation of EBS allows for a safe incorporation of regenerative braking up to 180kW, whereas the traditional air brake system had limited passive regen to around 40kW due to safety considerations. Testing of the adapted system, which took place at the ZF test track in Jeversen, Germany, involved a variety of conditions, gradients, and surface types.

Tevva’s 7.5t battery-electric vehicle  begun mass production at the company’s London facility this year. This will be followed by a 7.5t hydrogen-electric truck, which benefits from a hydrogen range-extender that enhances vehicle range to 570km. The Tevva BEV offers up to 1227km from its 105kWh battery on a single charge and is ideal for last-mile and urban delivery fleets.