Transmission/Driveshaft TunnelPosted by Russell on April 5, 2022 at 9:50 am
Is the center tunnel necessary? There is no driveshaft or transmission running to the rear wheels so why is there a tunnel? Seems like a carry-over from last century. I like the flat floor of the new Ioniq 5 and it’s ability to slide the center console back out of the way.
Looking at the beta I see some bolts on the side of the tunnel near the accelerator so maybe it’s a structural member of the vehicle? If so then can we at least cut down on the size to make it flat with the floor of the hatch? It would be nice to use that space for hauling long objects without having to rest them on top of the tunnel.
Although, it is just fiberglass and I own a dremmel tool so…
- This discussion was modified 1 year, 5 months ago by Russell Fauver. Reason: Clarity
- 27 Replies
- ModeratorApril 5, 2022 at 9:58 am
I think, if you look as you build your battery choice on you order… the batteries start from the front uo through the center area …
- MemberApril 5, 2022 at 10:29 am
I would expect the batteries to be mounted more toward the middle of the available space. They would want to keep the center of gravity around the same place because otherwise the suspension tuning differences get even more complex. It is already non-trivial because the 1000 mile adds 750lb or more over the base model.
At one point they talked about the extra space being accessible for cargo but I suspect that likely won’t happen to simplify things and because it would be an clunky space to make use of anyway.
- MemberApril 5, 2022 at 11:57 am
What resmbles a driveshaft tunnel of course is there to hold the cupholders!
Maybe it fulfills a structural function (stiffening), so dremelling if off might be a bad decision.
- MemberApril 5, 2022 at 2:16 pm
It doesn’t look like a tunnel, but more like a storage area. I find the design good, since I can rest my right hand over the storage area, which I often do. I hope there will be something similar at the doors. The cup holders are located between the storage area and the dashboard, it looks like the design/rendering is not completed yet, there might be a cover over the cup holders.
- MemberApril 5, 2022 at 3:12 pm
I for one would like a removable center console, so long items can lay flat from the back hatch to the front dash. 8′ 2x6s come to mind. If the passenger seat folded flat, even better. If there is a structural reason to keep the center pillar in place, oh well. But as long as the flat back storage can continue, I think a removable padded center box would honor the form over function Aptera vibe.
I miss the flat front door of my long gone Saab 96. It’s surprising how having more room around your feet can make the whole car seem roomy.
- MemberApril 5, 2022 at 6:33 pm
I’m pretty sure the battery pack makes use of the space. The current visualization seems to put a vertical stack of batteries into the space your referring to; this doesn’t seem like something they would include in the graphic for no reason. They have visualized the packs in various ways but given the relatively small space and unusual shape of the vehicle I think the pack will make use of any area they can for the 1000 mile. They mentioned the idea of making the excess space behind the battery available as an in a webinar but with nothing official for about a year I wouldn’t count on it.
- MemberApril 6, 2022 at 7:05 am
Just went back and looked, yes the current graphic shows a vertical battery design. That’s new. Also took a closer look at the render from the interior design video and it shows a separation point on the uppermost portion of the center console. Maybe that top part will be removable to make it level with the rear deck. I might not need my Dremel tool after all 🙂
- MemberApril 6, 2022 at 8:10 am
Russell, I would take any “illustration” with a large salt lick. As the cooling channels one showed lines throughout the full body (Including the doors.), while we now no that they are only in the belly pan. The battery one is not likely fully accurate at all, if you consider that when it shows the difference between a 600 and a 1,000, it adds a single smaller module about 1/2 the size of the others, when, realistically it would need to be twice the size to add 400kWhs.
- MemberJuly 26, 2022 at 10:47 am
You just brought to me an idea. For those interested in that proverbial 3rd-seat. The Apterae models which are 400 miles and below would not be utilising this extra allocated space which could potentially be used to help accommodate a 3rd seat. …just me thinking out loud.
- MemberApril 5, 2022 at 4:07 pm
I thought the tunnel creates structural regidity between the rear wheel and the front two wheels.
The VW beetle has a similar tunnel running on its floor. While it does have some cables and tubes within, it is much larger than it needs to be if this were its only purpose. Essentially, it serves as the vehicle frame, giving the vehicle much more strength and rigidity.
- MemberApril 6, 2022 at 5:05 pm
It’s a short structural area that the batteries go in
- MemberJune 14, 2022 at 4:36 pm
Russel, or anyone else, can you please provide a link to the graphic that illustrates the vertical mounting of batter packs? Thanks
- MemberJune 14, 2022 at 5:47 pm
Check the battery selection pane in the configuration tool (For making a reservation)
- MemberJune 14, 2022 at 7:43 pm
Most any Alpha drive videos that Chris has accompanied in, Chris states that the battery pack is under your butt. The “Battery Update” video in the News page illustrates a flat battery pack covering the majority of the floor space in the cabin and not at all the same as the illustration of the battery packs on the Configuration page. The tunnel probably is for structural rigidity and cable management.
- MemberJune 14, 2022 at 8:23 pm
@Kevin Bradbury You are correct: At one point the Ambassadors were told that the center channel is for structural purposes.
- MemberJuly 25, 2022 at 4:08 pm
- MemberJuly 26, 2022 at 7:13 am
In the latest interior shots, yes it’s still a computer rendering but, it looks like both the cup holder and the arm rest/storage bin have four buttons each holding them in place. It would be awesome if that idea makes it into the production vehicle. Opens the door for lots of aftermarket products.
- MemberJuly 26, 2022 at 11:58 am
Jason Hill mentioned that there are/will be numerous choices of components that can be installed on the center channel. The render shows button down options. For those that want a third seat, remove the arm rest unit and fashion a button down cushion, just like I explained in a post many months ago. I had even said I would remove the arm rest even if I had to use a saws-all. A seat belt and shoulder harness could also be installed for the center passenger (child) who would share the foot/leg room with the right side passenger. All this plan comes out of my experience with a Porsche 914 where I often drove with three or more, once across the parking lot with eight people in the passenger compartment (front/only seats).
- MemberJuly 26, 2022 at 9:08 pm
If we can get rid of or sufficiently lower the tunnel, I would really love to see a 3-seater bench option with center seat folding down as armrest/cupholder, similar to the backseats of many compact cars. I guess single bench may even be cheaper to produce than 2 single seats.
- MemberJuly 27, 2022 at 5:12 am
It’s likely not going anywhere, as part of the construction it provides a great percentage of the strength and rigidity of the vehicle, and is probably the main reason for it’s size, it’s the backbone of the Aptera.
- MemberJuly 27, 2022 at 5:47 am
About a year and a half ago, I was pushing for a center driving position. You can offset left and right passenger seats (maybe 6” behind driver seat) to have a 3 passenger vehicle. Advantages of also not having to change the vehicle for markets with right hand drive. Having a 3 passenger vehicle is much more marketable.
- MemberJuly 27, 2022 at 7:20 am
There would be a significant performance penalty to be paid if such a design were adopted. The design ethos of Aptera is “Efficiency”. Performance is the selling point of Aptera. That would go away with a three seat design. A four wheel multi seat Aptera is next.
There are probably 30K reservations at this point. That is more than sufficient validation for Aptera current design approach
- MemberJuly 27, 2022 at 7:57 am
John, I certainly agree with you on the priority of pushing the current design through production process. However, I am not sure a three-person front-row seat Aptera is necessarily inefficient than the current design, especially measured on per passenger basis. If it can be done without changing exterior dimensions…
- MemberJuly 27, 2022 at 12:30 pm
Adding a factory 3rd seat may take a small penalty for efficiency, as I proposed prior to beta. How much more efficient would it be if you didn’t have to develop both right and left hand drive vehicles because center seat would not require further development. As a driver I can also enter or exit my vehicle from either side.
Most buyers see 2 seaters only as an extra car they can own. 3 seater becomes closer to an all family vehicle. Plus separating yourself from what seems to be a growing number of electric 2 seaters starting to become available.
Aside from development costs, your marketability would shoot way up. Families with one child or expecting or even multiple children, as dad can drive both kids to school or events.
Efficiency in automotive industry is generally measured in scale…a 3 seater would (in my mind) would give you more than a doubling effect in orders. Adding a younger demographic to boot.