Formula E racing chips will power future Jaguar Land Rover EVs

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Jaguar Land Rover has entered into a new strategic partnership with semiconductor maker Wolfspeed (WOLF) to use its chips to power its next generation of EVs.

This is not the first business partnership between Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) and Wolfspeed. The chip maker has been supplying its silicon carbide semiconductors to the Jaguar TCS Racing Formula E for use in its powertrain since 2017.

Wolfspeed looks to power a new era of zero-emission transportation with its silicon carbide inverters (SiC). SiC-based inverters are smaller, lighter, and more efficient (5-10% increase in EV range), according to the chip maker.

With nearly every major automaker and startup spending billions to meet the growing wave of buyers demanding EVs, supply chain bottlenecks limit output.

In particular, a shortage of semiconductors crippled the industry. The pandemic greatly accelerated the need for computer chips as the world adjusted to a new, digital world.

The more digital, connected devices that come online, the more computer chips are needed. On top of this, production was limited as many companies anticipated a slowdown, not an acceleration in demand.

In 2021, Wolfspeed and GM established a supplier agreement for SiC devices to help the automaker accelerate its expanding EV lineup. JLR and GM are joining Wolfspeed’s Assurance of Supply program to ensure a reliable domestic semiconductor supply chain.

Jaguar Land Rover has been using the technology to boost on-track efficiency and performance with plans to power the future of JLR as it expands its EV lineup.

Jaguar Land Rover partners with Wolfspeed for SiC semiconductor / Source: JLR

Jaguar Land Rover EVs to feature Wolfspeed chips

As part of Jaguar Land Rover’s Reimagine strategy to convert to an electric-first business, the automaker is expanding access to critical semiconductor technology to ensure it can meet future demand.

Jaguar Land Rover’s CEO states:

We are not strangers having collaborated together with the Jaguar TCS Racing team for the last five seasons. By developing that into a strategic partnership as part of our Reimagine strategy, we can integrate Wolfspeed’s advanced Silicon Carbide technology into our next generation electric vehicles, delivering extended range and performance capabilities for our clients.

Wolfspeed’s technology allows scalable electric propulsion solutions from 400V to 800V. Furthermore, the SiC devices will be made at Wolfspeeds Mohawk Valley Fab, which opened in April 2022 in Marcy, New York.

The agreement is part of Jaguar Land Rover’s recent initiatives to accelerate its EV transition, including converting its Halewood plant for EV operations and retraining over half its technicians to support the automaker moving to a new era.

Jaguar will convert to a fully electric brand by 2025, while Range Rover will follow in its footsteps, releasing six EVs by 2030, with the first 100% electric Land Rover due in 2024.

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