Development of the Hybrid System for the Saturn VUE Hybrid
The hybrid system for the 2007 Model Year Saturn VUE Green Line Hybrid SUV was designed to provide the fuel economy of a compact sedan, while delivering improved acceleration performance over the base vehicle, and maintaining full vehicle utility. Key elements of the hybrid powertrain are a 2.4L DOHC engine with dual cam-phasers, a modified 4-speed automatic transmission, an electric motor-generator connected to the crankshaft through a bi-directional belt-drive system, power electronics to control the motor-generator, and a NiMH battery pack. The VUE's hybrid functionality includes: engine stop-start, regenerative braking, intelligent charge control of the hybrid battery, electric power assist, and electrically motored creep. Methods of improving urban and highway fuel economy via optimal use of the hybrid motor and battery, engine and transmission hardware and controls modifications, and vehicle enhancements, are discussed.