The award was presented to Tim Woolmer, the company’s founder and CTO, at an event held on October 31, 2023, at the RAC Club in London.
In a statement, Ben Cussons, chairman of the Dewar Technical Committee, said: “YASA’s development of axial-flux motors captures the simple essence of this special award – an outstanding British technical achievement. It’s an engineering breakthrough that has evolved electric propulsion to the next level, and is likely to influence the cars we will drive in the future.
“YASA is also overturning the norms of materials technology and manufacturing processes, as it gears up to mass-produce its components.”
YASA, spun-out from Oxford University in 2009 by Woolmer while studying his PhD in engineering, employs 400 people in the UK and is recognised as a world-leading pioneer in electric propulsion technology. To date, the company has amassed 150 patents, and has also designed its own robots to build its products at two UK manufacturing plants.
The compact and powerful topology of the axial-flux YASA electric motor frees up space and provides opportunities for electric vehicle design YASA said its motors offer up to four times more torque and double the power densities of current technologies used in nearly all electric vehicles, whilst being 50 per cent lighter and 20 per cent of the depth of a typical radial machine. YASA’s current generation of in-market products are said to deliver 250bhp from a 12kg electric motor package.
In 2021, YASA was acquired by Mercedes-Benz AG and is now central to Mercedes’ plans to go fully electric by 2030.
Woolmer said: “Receiving the Dewar Trophy is a huge honour for the entire YASA team, and a tremendous recognition of our axial-flux electric motor technology. We’re proud that YASA is at the forefront of the electric revolution as we, together with Mercedes-Benz, continue to reset the bar for electric driving experiences.”
In October, 2023, YASA was awarded £21.2m in funding and grants from the Advanced Propulsion Centre (APC) UK to ‘develop an electric wheel motor and active suspension handling system’. The project is part of the UK government's ambition to support the scale up of the research and development of net-zero vehicle technology.