Performance Derating Strategy for EV Powertrain With VCU

Electric vehicles (EVs) are becoming increasingly popular due to their environmental benefits and cost savings over time. However, one challenge with EVs is maintaining their performance over the long term. One way to address this issue is through the implementation of performance derating with a vehicle controller unit (VCU).

Performance derating is the process of limiting the power output of an electric vehicle to protect the battery and other components from damage due to excessive stress. By reducing the maximum power output, the vehicle can operate more efficiently and safely, while also prolonging the life of its components. This is particularly important for high-performance electric vehicles, which can put significant strain on their components when driven aggressively.

A vehicle controller unit (VCU) is the electronic brain of an electric vehicle. It is responsible for managing the powertrain and other systems, such as the battery and regenerative braking. The VCU can be programmed to implement performance derating based on various factors, such as the battery state of charge, temperature, and current draw.

To implement performance derating with a VCU, the following steps are typically taken:

  1. Determine the performance limits of the vehicle: Before implementing performance derating, it is important to understand the maximum power output and other performance limits of the vehicle. This can be done through testing and analysis of the vehicle's components and systems.
  2. Set derating thresholds: Once the performance limits are determined, derating thresholds can be set in the VCU software. For example, the VCU may be programmed to reduce the maximum power output by 10% when the battery state of charge drops below 20%.
  3. Monitor vehicle conditions: The VCU continuously monitors various vehicle conditions, such as the battery state of charge, temperature, and current draw. If any of these conditions exceed the derating thresholds, the VCU will automatically reduce the power output of the vehicle.
  4. Implement derating: When the VCU determines that derating is necessary, it will adjust the power output of the vehicle accordingly. This may involve reducing the maximum torque or limiting the top speed of the vehicle.
  5. Notify the driver: To keep the driver informed, the VCU may provide notifications on the vehicle's dashboard or through an app. These notifications may indicate that performance derating is in effect and provide information on why it is necessary.


Implementing performance derating with a VCU can help ensure the long-term health and performance of an electric vehicle. By reducing stress on the battery and other components, the vehicle can operate more efficiently and reliably. Additionally, by keeping the driver informed, the VCU can help promote responsible driving habits and increase the lifespan of the vehicle.

We at EVhicle Mobility are developing VCUs intelligent enough to implement performance derating to prolong the EV life. Connect with us to know more.