GM patents tow-assist gadget to extend towing capability

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Automakers are at all times trying to one-up one another by growing the towing capability of their pickup vehicles, which has led Basic Motors to ponder a wild towing resolution.

GM lately filed a patent utility for a tow-assist gadget that enhances a car’s towing capability. Revealed by america Patent and Trademark Workplace (USPTO) on March 21, 2023, however initially filed Oct. 21, 2019, the appliance is for a “tow help system” based mostly round a wheeled booster unit that {couples} between the tow car and trailer.

General Motors tow assist device patent image

Basic Motors tow help gadget patent picture

The unit would have as much as 4 wheels and {hardware} that permits it to couple with the hitches and a car and trailer. Patent drawings additionally present a fifth-wheel attachment for towing these forms of trailers. By turning its personal wheels, the unit would complement the tow car, utilizing onboard sensors to find out how a lot energy to use. It might additionally brake itself to help with trailer braking, in line with the patent utility.

Electrical motors would drive the tow-assist unit’s wheels, doubtlessly with one motor per wheel to simulate a differential by altering the quantity of energy going to every wheel. Traction should not be an issue as a result of the unit will carry most of a trailer’s tongue weight, GM notes within the patent utility. The motors can be powered by an onboard battery pack, which is also configured to assist energy a trailer, and even assist cost the tow car by way of bidirectional charging, which GM is beginning to roll out in electrical vehicles just like the GMC Hummer EV. GM did not say how a lot horsepower or torque the unit would possibly produce.

General Motors tow assist device patent image

Basic Motors tow help gadget patent picture

The tow help gadget might additionally make hooking as much as a trailer simpler. It might transfer a trailer round by itself, or be guided utilizing a deal with, eliminating the necessity to reverse and line up with a hitch, the patent utility states. Whereas GM has not indicated manufacturing plans, this may give the automaker a solution to rival Ford’s driver-assist options for connecting a trailer.

An exterior unit like this provides drivers extra flexibility, GM claims. It envisions clients utilizing the gadget to tow heavier masses than their autos would in any other case be able to. That eliminates the necessity to purchase a sure car only for occasional towing use, however it assumes drivers will take heed to what they tow. Growing towing capability an excessive amount of might put a load in a weight vary that requires a CDL, no matter what car the driving force is towing with.

Supply By https://www.motorauthority.com/information/1139351_gm-tow-assist-device-patent