Mahle Opens Vehicle Test Facilities in UK

Mahle Powertrain has completed construction of two vehicle test chamber facilities able to replicate a wide range of weather testing conditions for most modern vehicles.

The new Vehicle Development Center in Nottingham, UK, claims to allow manufacturers to test vehicles in a variety of conditions and circumstances, all without the need for a grueling program of international travel. The facility replicates the conditions found in the coldest arctic climates and the hottest arid deserts, the humidity of a tropical rainforest or the pressure experienced at the highest peaks.

The facility’s test chambers can accommodate both two- and four-wheel-drive vehicles tested at speeds up to 155mph. Climatic conditions can be simulated from -40°C to +60°C with humidity ranging from 10% to 80%, while pressure control allows altitudes up to 5,000m (16,400ft) to be simulated. Hydrogen-fueled technologies can be rigorously tested in chambers that monitor and safely vent any escaping gases. The new battery testing facility, meanwhile, with its own substation and dedicated National Grid connection, has the capability to test battery packs of up to 1MW with full fire protection in the event of a thermal runaway.

Mahle has invest

Simon Reader, Mahle Powertrain’s managing director said: “We’re extremely proud of our new test facilities which complement our end-to-end development process. As the industry accelerates the development of a new generation of vehicles that will offer carbon-neutral solutions for the transport sector, it creates a huge demand for testing facilities. Our new center has been designed with both battery and future-fueled vehicles in mind and provides a spread of capabilities that is almost unique anywhere in the world.”

— Paul Myles is a seasoned automotive journalist based in Europe. Follow him on Twitter @Paulmyles_

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