Yet another benefit from applying torque to each wheel individually.
I expect this would probably increase tread life also, unless you get into the habit of making a lot of very tight
turns by opposite side wheels in reverse drive directions...
http://www.electric-vehiclenews.com/201 ... roves.html
Torque Vector Steering Improves Electric Vehicle Energy Efficiency
Germany's Karlsruhe Institute for Technology along with industry partner Schaeffler are researching improvements in electric vehicle energy efficiency by using brake steer or torque vector control of wheel motors to assist power steering.
The project "Intelligent Assisted Steering System with Optimum Energy Efficiency for Electric Vehicles (e²-Lenk)" subsidized by the Federal Ministry for Education and Research (BMBF) focuses on a new assisted steering concept. In conventional vehicles, the internal combustion engine not only accelerates the car but also supplies on-board assist systems with energy; such as the assisted steering system, which reduces the strain on the driver at the wheel.
In electric vehicles, this energy comes from the battery and also reduces the range as a result. In this research project by the collaborating partners, Karlsruhe Institute for Technology (KIT) and Schaeffler, the steering system is assisted in an energy-efficient manner by intelligent control of the drive torques transmitted to the individual wheels. The project is being sponsored by BMBF with a sum of around 0.6 million euros over 3 years and was started in January 2015.
"The new assisted steering system would require less system components in an electric vehicle, this would mean savings in terms of weight and energy in an electric vehicle", explain project managers Dr. Marcel Mayer, Schaeffler, and Dr. Michael Frey, KIT. "This would mean that an electric car would be cheaper and have a greater range." Materials and production steps can be saved due to the potential optimization of the design and weight.
The basic idea of the e²-Lenk project is simple: The wheels in an electric car will be driven individually by electric motors in contrast to a car with an internal combustion engine where all the wheels are provided with equal force. If the wheels on the left side transmit more drive torque to the road than those on the right side, this will result in acceleration of the vehicle to the right without the need to turn the front wheels or consume additional energy for steering...