Toyota patent describes virtual manual transmission for EVs


Okay I LOVE manual transmissions for being involved in the joy of driving, but I've thought long and hard about the technicalities of how to make this work on an electric drivetrain and just keep coming back to "Why?". It just costs more money and is, well... fake. I don't like fake. It probably would feel like driving manual transmission in a racing game with a full three pedal and H shifter setup, which I do have... and honestly I don't enjoy it that much - you can't feel anything like a real car. How are they going to make the sensation of stalling? Electric motors don't stall. Are they going to make the motor intentionally cut out and make acceleration rough and jerky? Sounds like it... and then virtual shifting, EV motors have pretty flat torque curves so there isn't much of a point to gears - so why make it slower just to simulate going up though the gears? I just find it silly to apply this albeit enjoyable thing onto a technology that has absolutely no need for it at all, plus it just costs more money and adds unnecessary complexity for what is ultimately fake fun.

What I would really prefer, and want, is a hybrid sports car where the electric drivetrain and ICE drivetrain are completely separate. The EV would drive the front wheels and the ICE would drive the rear wheels. When I want to be lazy I can just have it in EV mode driving the front wheels with the IC engine off and transmission in neutral. Then if I want to switch back to ICE when at a stop I just start it up and put it in gear like any other manual equipped ICE vehicle. I'd like the option to have the EV motor provide power to the front wheels in sync with my throttle input for the ICE to basically feel like a supercharger would, I.e. not providing power when the clutch is disconnected. I'd also like the option to NOT have that, mainly for powersliding hooniganism.

I was really hoping the new Toyota Supra or Nissan Z was going to do this... even with a small 12kWh battery pack or something it would have been enough for quick lazy trips to the store without starting the ICE. I don't know what would take up less space and weight, having the batteries only charge from the ICE or from being plugged into mains. Either way an extra 500Kg for this option would be something I'd easily say yes to.

Anyway, I think Toyota's efforts to keep the fun spirit of driving alive is noble of them, and this is an interesting idea and I'm curious to see where it goes.... but even with my limited knowledge I just don't see it being at all anywhere near practical.